This was a great interview! I got to talk to the great Kimberly Davis Basso (author of the awesome collection Next Door) about my new book, ghost stories (and experiences), and a little about self-publishing. Had a lot of fun, here’s a link!
I was on this podcast to talk Halloween and read my story A Texas Halloween. But then Damien Casey, Kyra Torres, Adam Hulse, and I all sit back and just let this one go completely off the rails. Damien felt weird in a parking lot, and it just got stranger from there. Maybe one of my all-time favorite podcast experiences. Check it out!
It’s here! You can officially pick up Apartment 239 in ebook and paperback. It’s the story of Abe, a doomed parks department employee reeling from a recent tragedy, who finds himself with three days to solve the mysterious disappearances in Marble Springs before he joins them.
Ebooks are also available at Barnes and Noble, Scribd, Apple Books, Kobo, and more!
Also, Google Play!
Of course, you can also order an ebook right here at this website!
Less than a month until this one is out, so I thought I could offer a little peek of the prologue. If you’re intrigued, you can preorder the ebook here. Enjoy! -Elford
PROLOGUE: FATHER AND SON
“Now son,” Earl said as he ejected the spent round from his rifle. The casing dropped with a slight crackling sound as it disappeared beneath the leaves. “Always remember, nothing goes to waste.”
The setting sun cast long shadows from the line of trees that stretched across the field in front of their home.
This side of seven years old, the boy looked at his father, assessing the deep lines in his face and the sideburns peppered with white and gray. Earl’s red plaid coat hung loose on his thin, yet muscular arms. The boy, short for his age, felt even smaller next to him, and his shock of thick, black hair bounced as he nodded, wiped snot from his nose, and desperately tried to blink the tears from his eyes. Hoping his father didn’t notice, he glanced up and watched as he pulled off his hat, wiped his brow, then pulled it back onto his head.
“I know it seems cruel, but son… sometimes life doesn’t make sense, and sometimes… well, it’s just not fair.” Earl propped the gun against the side of the small white house, located off a dirt road on the outskirts of a small North Texas town called Marble Springs. A place surrounded by trees, cut off from the hum of passing cars. “Clothes are a big one. Save what you can. Also, the cash in the wallet. Never use the cards. Always hide the body, and never in the same place or the same way.”
The boy nodded, looking at the woman at their feet. Her leg jerked for a moment, causing him to gasp.
“Just nerves,” Earl laughed. “Remember, in this world we’re surrounded by copies.”
“Yes,” Earl said solemnly, removing his ball cap again. “You’re real, and so am I. Your mother,” he waved the cap at her. “She fooled us.”
The boy looked down at her body, her eyes half open, blood trickling down the corner of her mouth.
“They’ll pretend to be your friends, but you’ll have to know who’s real, and who isn’t.”
“How?” the boy squeaked.
“I’ll teach you.” Earl smiled.
Damien Casey and Kyra Torres are two fantastic horror authors, and also hosts of the hilarious podcast Bubble Bath with Baph. They recently put out an epic Halloween anthology called A 3-B Halloween, with stories from a ton of incredible authors, such as Rayne King, Adam Hulse, Caitlin Marceau, Coy Hall, Sarah Jane Huntington, C.J. Sampera, and more! My story is a spin on the classic razors-in-the-candy called A Texas Halloween. I really tried to capture a true Texas Halloween, with sweltering evenings and a sin that hangs on a little too long. I hope you dig it!
When I brought the cover to Kristina (@nwreader) to create a book wrap, she told me she had a few ideas. The result is a significantly cooler cover, and a killer wrap. I mean, just look at it! A thing of absolute beauty. Seriously, I can’t wait for people to read it. The very first notes of what would become this book were written in Oklahoma, when I lived there briefly in the early 2000s. Now that I’m back, it’s finally going to be available to read. A weird full circle thing, I guess? Anyway, you can preorder it on Amazon, Google Play, and pretty much everywhere else.
William Sterling, the horror author who brought us Synapse, has a podcast called Killer Mediums. On each episode, he talks to a different horror author about a specific genre, for example, horror comedies with the great Damien Casey. With me, we talked about the “cabin in the woods” subgenre, from Evil Dead and well, The Cabin in the Woods, to the Friday the 13th game and more. A fun time was had by all, damn it!
My horror-comedy debut is finally available outside of Wattpad! This story kicked around for a few years as a series pitch. I made a very bad novella of it in 2010. Then tried again in 2013 (also bad). The started over in 2016, and finally made it click. I pitched it around, and eventually added it to Wattpad, where it did very well. Now, everyone will have a chance to enjoy it! The book is out November 1st. This is a weird book and honestly a weirdly personal one for me too. It’s dark and creepy, but funny too. I play with horror/comedy a lot, but I think this is the best balance I achieved between the two. Expect the sequel, High Strangeness, in 2023. There’s a third part, which will be out in 2024.
You can preorder it right here.
The Last Night in the Damned House is now on audiobook! These are ghost stories that definitely benefit from being read aloud. Much of the farmhouse trilogy that makes up the first third is based on real experiences from a haunted house in the community I grew up in. Hope is a great four-part story that was once on Reddit’s r/nosleep, and of course all of these stories lived on Wattpad briefly. They’ve changed quite a bit since then, and I can’t for you to experience them as read by the always epic Geof Sturtevant.
I was recently invited to submit a story in an epic anthology. Something Bad Happened is edited by the great Jennifer Bernardini, and the cover is by Wayne Fenlon. Bernardini created a journal with an opening line on each page to help jumpstart stories for horror authors. Each tale begins with one of these sentences. My story focuses on a final girl who tries to break the cycle and finally free herself from a stalking slasher, while also examining the killer/final girl dynamic. It was a fun one to write! I am absolutely outclassed in this anthology, people. Seriously, I have a story in the same anthology as Angel Krause, Bill Davidson, Cindy O’Quinn, Rayne King, Yolanda Sfetsos, Adam Hulse, Ross Jeffery, Laurel Hightower, Brian Bowyer, J.B. Taylor, Steve Stred, Jaime Hernandez, and R. Reyes. It’s also illustrated, how fucking cool is that?!