Friday, January 30, 2009

More Anthology News: Shivers 5 and Harlan County Horrors!

I just recieved news on a couple of anthologies that I'm involved with that you folks might be interested in...

Shivers 5: The fifth installment of Richard Chizmar's highly-acclaimed anthology series is now available. My story Cumberland Furnace, a backwoods tale that has its roots in a genuine Tennessee ghost story my grandmother used to tell when I was a kid, is included, along with 23 other stories by Graham Masterson, Mick Garris, Chet Williamson, Simon Clark, John Skipp & Cody Goodfellow, Al Sarrantonio, Rick Hautala, Scott Nicholson, Kealan Patrick Burke, and many others. Shivers 5 is being offered as a perfect-bound trade paperback.

You can order your copy of Shivers 5 at

Harlan County Horrors: This anthology edited by Mari Adkins will explore the mysterious and off-kilter region of her native Harlan, Kentucky. She's invited some first-rate writers of dark suspense along for the ride, authors like Alethea Kontis, Debbie Kuhn, Earl Dean, Geoff Girard, Jason Sizemore, Jeremy Shipp, Maurice Broaddus, Robby Sparks, Stephanie Lenz, Steven Shrewsbury, T.L. Trevaskis, and yours truly. My story is The Cerebral Passion, an old Ron Kelly favorite that I've retooled for this particular collection. The creepy cover artwork for HCH is being provided by Billy Tackett, the artist who did the cover for Fran Friel's Mama's Boy & Other Dark Tales, my favorite short story collection of the past few years.

Harlan County Horrors is scheduled for publication by Apex Books in October of 2009.

I hope y'all will check out these two anthologies and what they have to offer. If you haven't had a chance to read my short fiction, this would give you two good examples... along with alot of other great horror fiction by some of the best authors in the business today.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Somewhere South of Hell: An Anthology of Southern Horror

As some of you may or may not know, I am currently in the process of editing an anthology of Southern horror tales for Full Moon Press. This collection will be titled Somewhere South of Hell and should see publication sometime in mid-2010.

Somewhere South of Hell will feature the best writers of horror and dark suspense from the South (or with strong ties to Dixie). So far the response I've recieved from interested contributors has been right encouraging. Here is a list of who I have on board so far:

Joe R. Lansdale
Brian Keene
Alan M. Clark
Alex McVey
James Newman
Deborah LeBlanc
Scott Nicholson
Bryan Smith
Elizabeth Massie
Stephen Mark Rainey
Bev Vincent
Nate Southard
Jason Brannon
John Hornor Jacobs
Mari Adkins
Joan Turner
Randy Fox
Mark Justice
Donn Gash
Ronald Kelly
Alan M. Clark and Alex McVey will be providing the artwork for this volume, and Alan will also be providing a story for the collection. At the present time, Somewhere South of Hell is closed to outside submissions, but that may change in the summer of 2009 as we grow nearer to the deadline of October 31st. I still need stories from writers originating from Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, and Florida.
My goal with this anthology is to compile the very best collection of Southern-Fried horror to see print in years. With the dark talent that I have assembled above, I think we have an excellent chance of doing just that. Keep your eyes open for updates on SSOH in the coming months!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Thunderstorm Books To Publish "The Sick Stuff"

I'm pleased to announce that Thunderstorm Books will be publishing my mini-collection of extreme horror stories, The Sick Stuff, in April of 2009.

The Sick Stuff will be a small collection of seven short stories hailing back to my short-lived "splatter-punk" period in the early 90's, when cutting edge horror was made popular by the likes of Skipp & Spector, David Schow, and others. It will contain three previously published stories, as well as four grisly, gut-wrenching tales that are making their debut appearances in this special collection, including the much anticipated "Mojo Mama" and "The Abduction".

Publisher Paul Goblirsch and I have been secretly editing and honing this collection of "splatter-hick" stories during the past two and half months and now, finally, it is time for the big announcement! The Sick Stuff will be Thunderstorm Book's second title in their unique Elemental series. Along with the seven stories, it will contain striking cover artwork by Zach McCain, an introduction by James Newman, and a closing afterword by ol' Ron himself. The limited edition will contain the same, along with a creepy-crawly signature sheet by Zach and an additional article by Paul Little of Full Moon Press on "Collecting Ronald Kelly".

The Sick Stuff will be limited to a press run of 250 copies of the trade edition and 52 copies of the numbered limited. You may preorder your copy now at the Horror Mall at or directly from Thunderstorm Books at

A friendly word of caution to y'all... The Sick Stuff is a bit stronger and harder to stomach than my usual tales of Southern-Fried horror, so if you end up mortified, disturbed, and thoroughly disgusted... well, don't say that I didn't warn you!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A Rocky Start to a New Year: LOW,PNP, and RSV

When I think about starting out the New Year, I picture a thoroughbred racing horse standing at the starting gate of the Kentucky Derby. Ready for a smooth stretch, but braced for the inevitable rough spots along the way. That's kind of the way it is for me. I hope for the best, but know that hard times are in the cards somewhere within the span of the next twelve months. This year has been kind of like that eager racehorse, nostrils flaring, ready to go. Then the doors of the gate swing open, I take a few galloping steps, and, POW!... I step smack-dab into a big ol' pothole.

Don't mean to complain, but the past week has been a rocky one. First, I return to work at my nine-to-five job (or technically six-to-two-thirty, if you want to be picky) and find that nothing has changed on that front. Things are still dismally negative in the automotive service business (my company electrocoats automotive parts for companies like Honda and Toyota) and there has been scarcely enough work arriving at the plant to keep the lines working half a day. This week alone I'll get in two and half days and put in for two and half worth of vacation time to make up the difference. At work we call this annoying "lack of work" LOW (in a way it almost feels more like AWOL).

This continues a precarious trend that has thrown the Kelly household in a vicious cycle of financial strain. Being off the entire month of November due to Ryan's injured leg (unpaid time), returning for two weeks to lots of LOW (partially paid time) and then staying home for two weeks during the holidays due to plant shutdown (unpaid time again) has led to a frustrating case of PNP (Pinch 'n Pennies) for us here at home. But like Merle Haggard sang in that old Christmas song, I knew that "if we made it through December, we'd be fine".

Then along came January and -- BAM! -- it just seems like more of the same, with no end in sight. On top of that, two of my three kids -- Makenna and Ryan -- have suddenly come down with RSV ( Respiratory Syncytial Virus), a viral illness that affects the lower respiratory system in young children. Apparently this was passed on to Ryan from a baby at daycare, then on to Makenna by him. Needless to say, there is much hacking and coughing and snotty noses, making the Kelly house seem more like a hospital ward. And I've been here for the past day and a half, playing Dr. Daddy, passing out shots of Children's Tylenol and Robitussen, wiping away a Niagara Falls worth of yellowish-green snot, and washing my hands in anti-bacterial soap nearly to the point of scrubbing the hide plumb off of them.

So this has been a less-than-favorable start to a brand new year for ol' Ron. I've been LOW, PNP, and dealing with RSV.

But, being the positive guy that I am (really I am, despite what this post seems to indicate) I know that, eventually, things will get better. Just in the past two weeks a couple of writing projects have surfaced that were unexpected; ones that have me downright excited. And, as February looms nearer, I know that the PNP situation will get better with a generous tax refund (now with three young'uns in the dependent square) and perhaps even a stimulus check sometime in the future (Mr. Obama, if you can pull that off for me, I'll feel a whole lot better about you sitting in the captain's chair in that big white house up North).

Anyway, that's how the first couple of weeks of 2009 have been for yours truly. Sitting here at the house, my wallet holding three dollar bills and a few crumpled WalMart reciepts, and ugly blobs of of dried snot decorating my black Marvel superhero t-shirt.

I know, deep down inside, that it's bound to get better. It is, ain't it? Please, someone -- anyone -- tell me that it's gonna get better...