February 15th! We are halfway through the month, folks.
Today will be our third look at Bizarro Pulp Press’s 2021 lineup. Every week in February, we have showcased a different title we’ve acquired for the Journalstone imprint. Last week, we showcased what has to be one of 2021’s biggest Bizarro releases, THE RUN FANTASTIC. Before that, we gave everyone a look at the highly-anticipated collection of horror poetry, LOST LETTERS TO A LOVER’S CARCASS.
This week, we share with you Kyle Wright’s IN CONTROL, a tightly-wound novella exploring body and psychological horror.
Let’s start with the below cover art:
The cover for IN CONTROL is a collaboration between Don Noble and Nicholas Day.
IN CONTROL is Kyle Wright’s debut novella (his work has appeared most recently in After Hours Press, Subterranean Blue Poetry, and Bleached Butterfly), and we were happy to pick his story up for inclusion in Bizarro Pulp Press’s 2021 roster of titles. Wright’s tale is definitely for fans of unreliable narrators and stories that aren’t afraid to get a little gnarly.
Here’s a brief synopsis, followed by an excerpt:
Katherine is an average twenty-something with all the usual stress and anxiety: school; money; her soul-crushing job. But something else plagues her. It is as if something is lurking … inside her
Strange hallucinations, slips of reality, and dangerous urges drive her to the edge of sanity. No one believes her, from doctors to her own closest friends, and as she begins to research, a horrific answer looms closer than she can expect.
On the floor, next to the tub, Katherine sees the dancing and slithering of a snake as it coils toward her. Red, yellow, black, the thick wet-looking animal streaks toward her with surprising speed. Instinctively, Katherine blinks, and when she opens her eyes again, the snake is nothing more than a tangled phone cord. Motionless, limp. But it had looked so real. She rubs her eyes hard, and opens them; before her is a dark shape, faceless, tall and thick and definitely male. Stopped, breathless, tottering on the edge of the light, living shadow. Something in the figure’s hand squirms. The figure steps toward Katherine, still impossibly covered in shadows even wading through the candle’s light, Katherine can just make out it was a man, not much else, he kind of looks like her old gym teacher, Mr. Brooks, or her childhood best friend’s dad, or Burt Reynolds. The man raises his hand and tosses the squirming shape toward Katherine, who instinctively flinches. In the moment her eyes flick closed, she sees a million possibilities of what is hurtling toward her. She hears the splash of something landing in the tub, feels the chaotic thrashing of water moving, of little limbs flailing in all directions. Maybe tentacles, maybe razor fingers, maybe it is some kind of fish with teeth or baby reptile. Maybe it was poisonous. Maybe it was a small cat or child. Maybe it was—
Katherine opens her eyes to face whatever is in the tub with her, whoever this faceless attacker is, and she sees an empty bathroom. Candle flames sway gently as if a quick breeze has come and gone, but nothing more. The water in the tub with Katherine is empty, but agitated into a slight frenzy, colliding in little ripples and waves. Katherine’s heart begins to slow, she can suddenly hear her own ragged breathing. What the fuck was that?
IN CONTROL comes from Bizarro Pulp Press and Journalstone in September, and should go live on or around the 24th. We will be sure to post any updates and pre-order information. As always, we look forward to hearing/seeing what people think of the titles we acquire, and we are always happy to see stories connect with readers.
Next Monday (Feb 22nd), we take a look at the last of our acquisitions for Bizarro Pulp Press, the creature-feature horror novella from J.B. Rockwell, CRIMSON KING. If you like your bulls to be gigantic and more than a little murderous, then you are in luck! It’s a doozy of a book and it’ll be perfect fodder for an October release. And after the CRIMSON KING showcase, we’ll drop a line or two about what we want to see for Bizarro Pulp Press in 2022, and when we might be open to submissions.
Meanwhile, March is right around the corner. If you keep up with us on social media, then you’ve probably seen us mention being knee-deep in production for Hailey Piper’s upcoming novel, QUEEN OF TEETH. We are finishing work on that title, this past weekend, and on March 1st, we will give you a look at artwork for the hardcover release, as well as that book’s exclusive interior art. As well, March 1st will be the first day you can pre-order this title (as well as Don Noble’s PULP TRASH and Nicholas Day’s OCTOBER ANIMALS).
QUEEN OF TEETH will be available for pre-order as two limited hardcover editions:
- $55.00 standard hardcover (available for pre-order from March 1st thru June 30th)
- $75.00 deluxe numbered hardcover that will include a custom slipcase, signature sheet/art print, “READ HORROR” sticker and card, and a Rooster Republic bookmark. THERE WILL ONLY BE 15 DELUXE EDITIONS AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE.
Of course, there will be more info to come over the next couple of weeks but, for now, this is all the news we have! We can tell you that QUEEN OF TEETH may be one of the most beautiful books we’ve produced, but we had to meet the challenge set by Hailey Piper’s story. Body-horror romance, a dash of SCANNERS with a hint of AKIRA and just a smidge of GODZILLA, plus… you know, that really scary thing, LOVE.
QUEEN OF TEETH will knock your socks off.
Anyway, we’ve rambled quite enough. Thanks for reading!