Now What?

Welcome back friends!

This update is going to be waaaaayyyy shorter than last weeks super colossal mega insanely huge update!

Let’s dive in!

The Night Crawls In

My collection – The Night Crawls In arrived September 1st! It was released specifically to fund the 1st Annual LOHF Writers Grant. Preorders went swimmingly and I’ve been so amazed at how many folks have already purchased a physical!

So here’s a few follow ups/FAQ’s if you well

#1 – none of the sales go to me. On September 15th, the first winner will be announced and I’ll be sending them their Grant! They’ll also receive a special Hardcover edition of The Night Crawls In!

#2 – all sales from release date and here on out go towards future Grants from The Night Crawls In. Us Indie Authors have incredibly detailed sales reports at our disposal. So when I get paid out my royalties, whatever sales from TNCI are from that will be put into the paypal account for it.

#3 – the book is set up for Matchbook, which means if you buy a physical copy, you get the ebook for free!

#4 – there is a three cent difference between proceeds from the ebook and physical. The ebook produces $2.08 while the physical produces $2.11.

#5 – the physical and ebook files have been updated. So an apology to Alex aka findingmontauk1 as I someone missed adding his name to the LOHF team. That has been updated. I’ve also updated it because as of September 1st, the LOHF team added Audra, so I’ve added her there as well! I wasn’t aware of this at all before hand! So both are now listed!

So if you haven’t snagged it yet;


100 Word Horrors 3 Anthology;

You may have seen me post about this, but Kevin Kennedy’s 100 Word Horrors 3 Anthology is now available as an ebook, with physical coming shortly. I have two stories in there, but just look at the list of authors on that table of contents! Go snag it!



October 1st is now coming fast, crazy I know! My depraved novella Ritual will see the light of day then! As I mentioned before, no preorders for this but I’ll keep you posted about when everything is live!


First up my latest Tunes From the Crypt over on Kendall Reviews was featured;

{Feature} Steve Stred’s Tunes From The Crypt #6

This one focuses on Roadrunner and heavy tunes. Good stuff.

As for what I’m jamming;

Killswitch Engage – The Signal Fire feat Howard Jones

BOTH KSE SINGERS ON ONE SONG! YES PLEASE! I’ve always preferred Howard’s voice, but Jesse is coming around. This song rips.


Above & Beyond with Seven Lions – See the End

Great new track from A&B. They keep delivering such emotionally catchy EDM. Love it.


Nasty – Realigion

I recently discovered this band Nasty. Hardcore/Punk/Thrash. Heavy stuff. Hard to really define their genre. I’ve been jamming this album daily, really dig it. So here is the full album stream.


My Facebook Author Page;

RIP to my Facebook Author Page. As most of you know, Facebook is making it harder and harder for pages to be seen. If you’re not paying FB cash to boost the post, it’ll often get buried. I don’t do much marketing and I’ve never been a massive self promoter, so the page just kind of sits there and then on Friday’s I share the blog. If you’re friends with me on Facebook you’ll see the blog anyway and I share it on Twitter and Instagram.

It just feels like a massive overkill to have this whole other page. At one point it made sense to have it, as my athlete page when I was sliding. I was sharing pics and videos of training and behind the scenes stuff that folks never really see.

Now – not so much. I do have a private readers group that I’m going to keep. If you want to join, I’ll be sharing a link on the authors page or just DM for it. I’m going to do some exclusive stuff just for the readers group, but it won’t be like a patreon thing.

By the end of September the author’s page will be gone.

If you’re wanting to stay updated and that’s the page you follow – if we’re not, send me a friend request on FB, or follow the readers group!

Next Week;

Wrapping this up – next week will be blog free. I’m away at a work thing from Friday to Sunday.

So, I’ll see you here again on the 20th!




End of Summer HUUUUGGGEE Wrap Up!

Hey all! Happy Friday!

This one’s gonna be a fun summer wrap up and as Auryn says; “IT’S GONNA BE HUUUUUGGGEEEE!!!!!”

First things first – Promo plugs

The Night Crawls In

The Night Crawls In

The collection drops on SEPTEMBER 1ST!

Pre-order links are up and running – have you preordered yet? The paperback version is now live and also able to be ordered!

US Link


Canada link

UK link

Pre-orders have picked up nicely!

Remember – this is to support the 1st Annual LOHF Writers Grant!

There is still time to apply;

2019 LOHF Writers Grant

OK – Fun stuff!

Writing Update;

Ritual – release date October 1st, 2019

Ritual Cover

Completely finished and has already had some reviews coming through. This novella is brutal, brutal, brutal. I’ve had one reviewer call it depraved, one called it perverted and one person messaged me and said it reminded them of the hellish places Woom from Duncan Ralston went. I won’t be doing any pre-orders on this one, so watch for it October 1st!

Piece of Me – release date December 1st, 2019


I am 75% done my final read through/writing updates before sending it to Sodergren for copy edits. This thing is a crazy beast. Dark, sad, cold, and dare I say – a love story with hope? YUP!

Scott: A Wagon Buddy Tale – release date TBA 2020

Scott Cover

My awesome friend, Becca kindly hosted the cover reveal for this as well as why I decided to write it. If you did miss that, check it out here;

Guest Post: Steve Stred Discusses Why He Wrote Scott: A Wagon Buddy Tale + Cover Reveal!

As for where I’m at with it, it’s off with a few beta readers and I’ve had some feedback returned already. Think this one’s gonna surprise some folks!

The Window in the Ground – release date TBA 2020

The Window in the Ground cover

Similar to Scott, this ones with a few beta readers. Excited to hear what they think about this one.

The One That Knows No Fear – release date TBA 2020


I haven’t really given this one any love recently. Originally it was going to be co-written by me and Mason McDonald (my frequent cover designer) but at some point Mason said for me to just finish it up as he wouldn’t have the time to fully dedicate to it. So Mason will supply an introduction instead. I need to finish re-writes and then off to a few beta readers.  This one is a lot of fun and features a stunt man who just doesn’t die.

456 Blatchford Drive – release TBA 2020

I’ve previously written about this gruesome haunted house story told over a number of decades. Originally it was an idea I had where each decade would be written by a different author. Sadly all three authors who originally jumped on board have all had to step away. So earlier this year I decided to write it myself. Cover art is almost complete and I’ll share it once done.

I’ve decided to make this a collector’s edition. There will be some physical copies for family, close friends and my super supporters who always buy my stuff. Then there will be 5 hardcovers and 15 paperbacks available and that’s it. No ebooks. I’ll give more details as it gets closer to finishing, but at this time, if this is something you think you’ll be wanting to snag – message me and I’ll get you on the list.

Sodergren/Stred Project – release TBA possibly 2020, possibly 2021

We’ve alluded to this project and it is quietly in the background noise. I’ve written about 7500 words on it, but its been sitting for a bit now. I’m not sure where David’s at, as we’re focused on different parts of the same story, but me and him chat most days and it’s occasionally mentioned haha! It’ll happen, but I can’t guarantee when.

YA/Fantasy Project – release TBA 2020

This is the first I’m mentioning this in public – I’ve discussed it in private with my usual folks. I’m 10,000 words into it already, and just loving it. Loving it. I came up with an idea to do this YA release specifically for my nieces, nephews and son. The stuff I normally write is far too gory for them to read for many years. So this is a collaboration between me and all of them. They all gave me specific bits and they’ll all be credited as writers with me, so this is going to be fun. I think folks who read YA/Fantasy stuff will also dig it.

Mason has created an amazing cover, I just have asked for one thing to be tweaked and once that is, I’ll be sharing it, as well as a full synopsis.

Daisy Doll – short story, release TBA

I’m currently about 1500 words into a fantastically grotesque short story. I’m only mentioning this because it’ll be hopefully featured in an “author sampler” release that I’ve been chatting with someone about. If that doesn’t pan out – you know you’ll get it at some point here!


Contest – so there’s still a few days left to go enter this amazing contest that my buddy Glenn aka thehellbound_heart on Instagram is hosting. I’ve donated a bunch of ebooks for this – so if you are on Instagram – go find his account, find this photo and enter! Contest ends at the end of the month!




This weeks jams are brought to you by indie folk love. At least that’s what I consider this music. These four tunes are also songs that have deeper emotional meanings for me.

First up is two from Canadian band The Strumbella’s.

We Don’t Know

This is simultaneously the saddest song but also the most uplifting song for me. Really dig it. It has a very ‘Arcade Fire’ feeling.



I think this is The Strumbella’s best know song/most popular song, but again, I find this song so uplifting and just makes me smile while I cry.


Phillip Phillips – Home

I think this dude was on American Idol? Maybe? Sure – google says he was. I’ve never watched American Idol, although my really good friend Shane was on Canadian Idol when it first started. I used this song in a video I made back in the day for an update on our dog OJ, after he was paralyzed. It just felt so perfect and fit really well.


American Authors – Best Day of My Life (Dog Edition)

It was recently National Dog Day, so I felt it was timely to use this song with this version for our feel good tunes. I used it also at one point for an OJ update. I can’t believe the big goof ball turns 10 in a month!


Summer update!

Ok, so wrapping this HUUUUUUGGGGEEEE update up with a brief run through of what we did this summer. We try to have fun when we can, and with Mr. Man having just turned 3 (!!!!!) and starting play school on Tuesday, here’s some of what we did!

New Pool

His Pop’s (it’s what he calls grandpa Peter) got him a new pool! It has an elephant snout which is perfect for spraying!


Poppa’s Memorial Trip

My grandpa passed away at the end of last year, but his memorial was in the summer to make travel easier. We drove back to Nakusp, staying in Trail at my sister’s, Nakusp and then stopped in Radium on the way back to visit my wife’s cousin. It was a fun trip, even it was a bit rushed.


(Auryn telling me to walk deeper into the water. This was at the cabin we stayed at on the Arrow Lakes.)


(Me, my nephew Layne and Auryn being sprayed by my sister, Jodi. Good times!)

Big Machines!

Of course we spent a lot of time playing with big machines!


(My wife snagged these for free off of an upcycle page!)


We went to a massive Dinosaurs Alive thing here at the Expo Centre!


(Auryn wasn’t too keen on riding the dinosaurs)


For his third birthday we hit up the zoo. It was our first time back since the renovations had been completed!


(Pops and Auryn watching the reindeer. Auryn was very intrigued that they were fighting.)


So this past Monday, the 26th was Auryn’s 3rd birthday. It’s so surreal to have a kid, and watching him grow and develop is amazing.

As you’ve seen before, he’s big time into big trucks, fire trucks etc etc. He’s a huge fan of Paw Patrol and every time he sees the massive Marshall Fire Truck at Walmart or anywhere he stops to admire it. So we knew that would be the perfect gift for him for his birthday.


This is the exact moment of the box opening and he fully realizes just what was inside!


And this is him trying to get me to hurry up and open the box already!


So lastly on the birthday front – Auryn absolutely HATES the happy birthday song.

Here he is last year on his 2nd birthday.


In this first picture you can see he is just realizing what song is starting to be sung.


Photo #2 here shows his full enjoyment of this beloved birthday jingle.


This year my wife made delicious cup cakes and when we brought them out, with some candles for him to blow the out already lit, he was… EXCITED!


(Actual photo evidence!)

He thought it was awesome! He even blew out the candles!


So there we have it. My HUUUUUUGGGGEEEE summer wrap up post.

Big things coming friends! Hope the summer has treated you well and fall brings smiles and great memories!



Hellboy turns 3!!

Happy Friday friends. Today is a special post for me.

Our son Auryn turns 3 on Monday! Now – I’m doing this blog specifically for him. You see, we’ve already made him an email address, and we signed him up to get my posts. So some day, he’ll be scrolling through this and it’ll essentially be a neat time capsule for him!

So today’s post will be focused on what he’s reading, music he’s loving and a brief run through of his short life.

As many of you know – Auryn arrived with a bang. More precisely – no vitals for 6 minutes. That meant no oxygen, no blood pressure etc etc. Same with my wife.

Both were brought back from the beyond, so we’ve dubbed him Hellboy and one day maybe he’ll laugh at our dark, dorky humour.


*This was his first photo in the NICU.

Oddly enough – just yesterday I saw a friend on FB post about an almost identical experience from when their daughter arrived. I couldn’t believe it. I reached out and we chatted for a bit. Blew me away that someone else had experienced the same thing I did. I gave me a surreal sense of calmness and solitude that I wasn’t alone.

Since his arrival, Auryn has been a goofball. Loves to play jokes and scare people.


** Portrait of a contemplative 1 week old. Photo by my sister, Jodi.

What’s become very evident is his love of boy stuff. Motor bikes, construction stuff, big machines. When I get home each day he has to tell me everything he’s seen; “I saw two garbage trucks, a dump truck, a fire truck – in my alley!” He is one of the most animated conversationalists you’ll ever meet.


** His most popular picture. 8 months old. Look at that hunk.

He has always had a love of music, but HATES when other people sing. When we still lived in Calgary, I’d put him in his little bouncy chair and put on some music and see what he liked. He has developed a love of almost all genres! You’ll see that below in the selections.


** 1st birthday party! It was Where the Wild Things Are themed!

He has also always loved animals. He loves his dog OJ, but also adores his grandma’s two dogs, Bailey and Rosie. We had a zoo pass in Edmonton for a bit which he really loved! We’ll be spending a lot of time at the zoo again, now that the construction and renovations are complete!


** Being kissed by the sea lion at West Edmonton Mall.

Currently he has a number of favourite activities; loves playing Monster Trucks, going for walks to see big machines and buses, planting and gardening with mom and nan, building stuff with pops, playing with play dough, playing Paw Patrol, playing in his sand table with his big machines. He’s always on the go!


** Cheeky grin as he runs at the park!

We’ve been reading to Auryn since birth and in that time we’ve accumulated quite the library for him! You’ll see some of this current fav books here in a minute. But first another picture!


** The two of us at the (new then) Nakusp Pride crossing. Note the silly face he insisted on making!

What He’s Reading:


One of his favs – Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site features big machines working hard before going to sleep.


Bulldozer’s Shapes is another one in frequent rotation. He’s always so proud when he names all of the shapes.


Of course his favourite machine is Excavator’s – so this one is a big time fav. He’s getting really good with counting.


And of course Dump Truck’s colors! He loves dump trucks almost as much as garbage trucks, so this one is always a hit.

We also read a lot of super hero books (prefers Batman) and Paw Patrol stuff. Lately we’ve also begun to read some Blaze and the Monster Machine books.


Me and my wife listen to a really wide variety of music which has really helped Auryn develop the same love of pretty much every genre.

Above & Beyond

Auryn loves EDM and this Vegas EDC set from 2015 is bookmarked on our computer. He comes running as soon as the music starts.


Raise Your Glass – Memoir

My wife watches a few reality shows and one of them is called Vanderpump Rules. Auryn loves the theme song and will bust out of his play room when the song starts and then rush back in once it’s over.


Macklemore feat Skylar Grey – Glorious

My wife is a big Macklemore fan, and as such Auryn has developed a love of his music as well. I’m not sure if this is his fav Macklemore song, but it’s the one I hear played the most!


Knocked Loose – Mistakes Like Fractures

I’m a big Knocked Loose fan and as it’s frequently played on Sirius Liquid Metal, Auryn has heard this song a bunch. I even posted a video a while back of him head banging to this song.


Deez Nuts – Tonight We’re Gonna Party (Like There’s No Tomorrow)

As I’ve said before, I’m a massive DN fan. Me and him will listen to this tune and I’ll pick him up and start our own two man mosh pit in the living room!


Gecko’s Garage – Eric the Excavator

Not surprisingly, when he’s loving the kids stuff it’s usually about big machines!


Blippi – The Excavator Song

Auryn loves Blippi – a kids entertainer who teaches kids all about a ton of stuff. Of course the song about an excavator is the one we watch the most.


Alright. Well, that’s enough of that.

I can’t believe our little guy will be three and starting play school soon!


So to close this out – one day, when you end up seeing this post, just know me and your mom love you to the moon and back!

And clean up your room, put your toys away and eat your dinner!



PS – when you finally read this – just remember, I wasn’t always this old!

**Baby Hellboy was downloaded from Deviant Art and was created by ChocolateFrizz89

Scott: A Wagon Buddy Cover Reveal

Hey all – I always hate doing click through links, but I’m away from my usual computer to do updates, so I’ll add the link here.

The always amazing Becca kindly had me over to her blog for a guest post. Today I share a bit about writing Wagon Buddy as well as why I decided to write a sequel. Click the link to get the cover reveal for Scott: A Wagon Buddy Tale coming out next year, as well as the reasons for these two existing!

Guest Post: Steve Stred Discusses Why He Wrote Scott: A Wagon Buddy Tale + Cover Reveal!

August 16, 2019

Hey all! Another Friday is upon us! If you read last week’s blog post – you’ll get the tongue-in-cheek joke of the blog title!

I’m gonna keep this succinct today.

We are almost exactly two weeks away from September 1st, 2019.

That day is a big one. Why?

Well, not only does The Night Crawls In release, but that closes off applications for the 1st annual LOHF Writers Grant! From what I’ve heard the application response has been amazing, and truthfully I’m equal parts excited but equal parts saddened. Why?

Well – I’m excited that so many authors have applied and it shows that the LOHF gang both has a far reach but also that the number of horror/dark fiction/speculative fiction etc etc Female Authors out there is vast! That’s a great thing and can only get better.

I’m saddened though, because if you know me – I always want to help and do more. So I’m sad that we can only offer one grant. I’ve begun reaching out to some old contacts from my athlete days to see if they have any contacts for good fits for companies that might even be able to come on board for year two and beyond, to try and offer more grants for more authors. Fingers crossed.

As for pre-orders. I’m typically an upbeat person, but this has also been a bummer. Stalled since last week. So if you haven’t and are thinking about it – please do! And please understand that ALL proceeds from pre-orders will be going to this years winner and all further sales after release date will be going to future writing grants!

As for the content in the collection – I’ve been blessed recently to have a number of blogs host guest posts which have all featured drabbles and poems that will be featured in the collection.  I’ve compiled all of the links together – so take a minute to click the links, check out the content and please also follow those pages! All are ran by outstanding people!

Link 1:

Link 2:

Link 3:

Link 4:

Link 5:

As for pre-order links, you can find those here on the site under collections!


Also today, I’m featured over at author Erin Casey’s site! Erin invited me some time ago to be interviewed, so some of the answers to the questions are a bit older, but give it a read!


Lastly today, I’m going to share some tunes I’ve been jamming this week and call it a day!

Nevermore – And the Maiden Spoke

Nevermore is one of my personal favourite bands and I think their album ‘This Godless Endeavor’ is perfection. The follow up album ‘The Obsidian Conspiracy’ was stellar and featured the song ‘And the Maiden Spoke,’ which may very well be the best ghost story song ever written.

Lacuna Coil – Layers of Time

My wife used to be a fan of Lacuna Coil, though I never have been. Their singer Cristina used to get a ton of press in Revolver, but that magazine stopped being sold up here in Canada for a while, so I’m not sure if she’s still featured in it or not.

Saying that – the new single they’ve released ‘Layers of Time’ is an outstanding piece of heavy music. I was shocked at how much I dug it and I think this’ll garner them some love from old fans and make some new ones.


Motionless In White – Thoughts & Prayers

I don’t mind MiW. I wouldn’t call myself a fan, but they’ve had some solid songs. Maybe after this song I should take the time to delve into their discography? I don’t know. Maybe. Anyways, I’m digging this song, so check it out!


Sepultura – Sepulnation

Early this week I tweeted about the two distinct versions of Sepultura – Max vs Derrick. I personally don’t have a preference as I do view them as two different entities.

Sepulnation is a great track from a great album and really encompasses just how different of a vibe the singer change had on the band.


As for life – well, how insane is this;

3 years ago today we did our maternity shoot!


We had no idea just how insane life would be after this. Auryn arrived 10 days later and six months after this, we’d be moving to Edmonton and I’d be starting a new job.  I can’t believe we’ll have a 3 years old in 10 days and I can’t believe he’ll be starting playschool in September.

Speaking of Auryn – yesterday was a pretty big day for him.

Him and Pops (his grandpa) went for a walk and saw A FIRETRUCK! Other than excavators and dump trucks, fire trucks are the be-all, end-all for Auryn. He got to sit in the driver seat and even pretend to put out a fire!



When I got home I got to hear all about it!

Well that’s all I got. Have a great weekend!


Book Review: Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident by Donnie Eichar


Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident by Donnie Eichar

Length: 288 Pages

Release Year: 2014

Rating: 5/5

In 2013 I stumbled upon a movie on a now defunct horror streaming website called “The Dyatlov Pass Incident.” While the movie was low budget compared to the summer blockbuster extravaganzas we are used to seeing, the cinematography was outstanding, the acting was great and the story was phenomenal. It’s one of the rare movies that I’ve actually watched several times.

Watching it though triggered a lot of memories from when I used to read my Grandma Hankins copies of Weekly World News. I had heard of the 1959 incident where 9 experienced hikers, led by Igor Dyatlov, went missing and then were found dead.

Due to numerous reports that trickled out over the years, the incident developed a lore and a number of “reasons” have been put forth as too just what caused these hikers to perish.

Then last year I stumbled upon JH Moncrieff’s wonderful “Return to Dyatlov Pass.” Twitter and Bookstagram were yelling at me that I needed to read it, so I did and I loved it. For some reason I gave it four stars, but when I think back I don’t know why. That was such a great read, it should have been a five star rating from me. The book also renewed my interest in Dyatlov Pass and this book; Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident was recommended over and over.

Donnie Eichar followed a similar path to the Pass as myself. But where I decided to read about it, he decided to full on tackle the subject and took several trips himself to Russia and to Dead Mountain itself.

This is a great non-fiction read, each chapter alternating back and forth between the known facts of the tragedy in 1959; from the planning of the trip, to the group heading to the area and up to the day of them dying, and then back to Donnie’s present day search for answers. From meeting with the president of the Dyatlov Pass Society to connecting with the tenth hiker, a hiker who had to turn back early in the trip due to chronic medical issues.

Eichar doesn’t leave a single stone unturned and researches each possible cause of death to its fullest, finally coming across a plausible cause and then doing his due diligence by connecting with world leading researchers on the subject.

Whether you read this and book and agree or disagree with what Eichar ends up postulating is up to each reader, but what can’t be overlooked is that Eichar’s writing throughout is superb and the story flows incredibly well.

I ended up taking some time reading this, only because I would read one chapter a night or every other night. Each time I picked it back up I was immediately returned to the cold of the Kholat Syakhl slopes and I was excited every single time.

I thoroughly enjoyed this, as much as I’ve enjoyed “Into Thin Air” by Krakauer and I think this book has reinvigorated my love of non-fiction survival tales.


If you want to check this out yourself, please click on the link!

Some things about stuff!

Hey friends! God, I suck at trying to think about what to title these posts! How lame would they be if it was just August 9th, 2019.



This week’s a usual post of stuff. So let’s dive in!


I haven’t done a what’s been going on bit here for a few weeks at least. So, last night we had a massive thunderstorm over our house. LIKE DIRECTLY OVER OUR HOUSE.

Power went out for about thirty minutes.

Auryn starts playschool (which is essentially pre-preschool) in September and good grief does that blow my mind. To think he’ll be three in a few weeks just isn’t rational in my brain.

Overall, we haven’t been getting up to much. Hoping to hit the zoo here again one of these weekends! How’s your summer been?

LOHF Writer’s Grant:

I’ll be plugging this until the 1st of September when the deadline closes for applications! But seriously – I’ve heard the response has been amazing. If you haven’t yet, please apply!

For full details;

2019 LOHF Writers Grant

As, I’ve said – I’m launching The Night Crawls In to help fund this thing. Pre-orders have dried up completely. So if you haven’t yet – I’d love it if you would order it. Links are in the collections tab on my page here!

All pre-orders go towards funding year one. Every sale after goes to funding year two!

What I’m Reading;

FOE – Iain Reid. You may have seen my post about finding this book at Dollarama. Brand new hardcover for $3. I couldn’t leave it behind. This book has been on my list for some time. Well I finally started reading it and WOW!!! I’m about 75% in and so much is done with so little. I highly recommend you check this out.

Dead Aware: A Zombie Journey – Eleanor Merry.  If you’ve been reading any of my reviews, you’re probably aware of my personal distancing from anything Zombie related. I find the genre to be over saturated and I typically won’t seek out a Zombie book if I don’t have too. Saying that – I know just how friggin’ hard it can be to get your first book reviewed/featured and even harder when you are a female horror writer. I connected with Eleanor over on Books of Horror on Facebook. When she was looking for some reviewers for her first book, RJ Roles tagged me in her post and I readily agreed. So far so good. It’s a really nice take on the Zombie trope and while some similarities have to creep in from other books/TV shows etc, Merry’s voice shines through. If you are a reviewer, I’d love for you to reach out to Merry if you can fit it in. It comes out on the 23rd and the book can be read in a single sitting. I would have finished it in sitting #2 last night if it wasn’t for that storm, I would’ve finished it last night.

Ugly as Sin – James Newman.  Uhhhh a story about an ex-professional wrestler who has to help his daughter out. Yes please!

Flora & Jim – BP Gregory. I’ve only made it about 15% into this story, but so far it’s super intriguing. A bit post-apocalyptic, but the snow aspect always is enticing for me!

Dead Mountain – Donnie Eichar. I should’ve had this finished like a month ago, but I’ve been reading one or two chapters a night after my main reads. The retracing of the expedition is outstanding. This will easily be put into my top 10 all time fav non-fiction reads.

Books of Blood Vol 1 – Clive Barker. Yup, I have 6 books on the go. I’ve been trying to read one story a week from this tome, but lately have let it slip. The stories are absolutely outstanding, so I should get through 2-3 more stories this weekend.

This weeks tunes!

This week I’ve been listening to a bunch of hardcore and heavier stuff. Actually, that’s every week, but this week I’ve been wanting to listen to stuff that’s just full on throat punching heavy.

Kublai Khan – The Hammer

You want heavy? Look no further than Texas based Kublai Khan. Good lord do they make my rib cage thrum.


Betraying the Martyrs – Parasite

The new BtM song is a nice, quick slab of thick metal. These dudes recently suffered a fire that destroyed their equipment trailer. Not a fun thing to see! Glad no one was hurt.


Devildriver – Clouds Over California

Devildriver is a go to band for me for metallic, heavy-groove. They have a few misses in their catalog of releases, but when they hit, there’s no one better at getting the head banging and the wind-mills chopping.


Deez Nuts – Binge/Purgatory

Deez Nuts has been one of my fav hardcore bands since I saw them live. The name is misleading, as there’s no joking around here. They deliver time and time again.


Alright, well that’s all I got for this week.

If you are on Instagram – keep a watch out. I’m currently involved with one giveaway with my buddy @thehellbound_heart.

I believe a second contest I’m involved with will be announced today!


The Night Crawls In Preview!


Hello my FRIENDS! It’s FrIdAy!! Which means a new blog post!

This ones a goodie!

As previously announced – I’ve partnered with the fantastic crew over at the Ladies of Horror Fiction to facilitate the first annual LOHF GRANT!

Applications are open and for full details (why I decided to do this and partnering with them and funding and blah blah) click the link!

2019 LOHF Writers Grant

To help offset the first grants awarding – I’m releasing a new collection of Poetry & Drabbles (exactly 100 word stories) called “The Night Crawls In” if you haven’t seen the cover yet – here it is!

The Night Crawls In

Preorder links are live and we currently have 10 preorders! The release will come out September 1st!





Proceeds: all proceeds from the preorders will go towards funding the first grant. All sales after and in the future (including the physical copies) will go towards future grants!

The artwork was once again done by Mason McDonald, a great friend but also my usual cover artist!

NOW! How about I share the title drabble with you all?!!

The Night Crawls In. (A Drabble)

 The path rolled its way through the trees.  The branches overhead worked to create a claustrophobic enclosure.  If you listened close enough you would swear you could hear the sun yelling to be let in.

A thin sheen of sweat had developed on Casey’s forehead.  He’d slowed considerably the further he’d dragged his body along.

He’d stopped looking back at the trail of blood and flesh travelling behind him a few hours back.

He focused on the farmhouse, now only a hundred feet away.  He couldn’t wipe the sting from his eyes anymore.

The wolf kept pace, ready to pounce.


Hope that gets you interested! The collection will contain 33 drabbles and 17 poems!

Now I’ve had a few folks ask what they could do to get involved and help out. The response has been amazing and I’m so happy to see the horror community jump on this!

So how you can help;

  • Obviously pre-order! If you don’t read ebooks, the physical book will be available for September 1st and all first day sales will also go towards the initial grant.
  • Like any posts, share any posts, DM people you think would want to read this stuff
  • Tag authors you think would be interested in applying! I don’t know the number of applicants so far but I do know that there are already some applications and that’s amazing!
  • Do you have a blog and want to host a drabble or poem? Let me know! Message me here or DM on any of my socials! Gavin at Kendall Reviews and Mike at High Fever Books have already been kind enough to jump on board and offer up a post!

Now other business –


Today is the last day to snag a copy of Wagon Buddy, Jane: the 816 Chronicles or Left Hand Path: 13 more tales of black magick. A few weeks back I had YURI, Invisible and Frostbitten: 12 Hymns of Misery up as freebies as well.

It’s interesting to see the difference between the volume of downloads. Granted I typically offer up Invisible, Jane, Frostbitten and Left Hand Path as my most common freebies. I think those are good entry points into my catalog. This time I’ve decided to add two I usually don’t; YURI in round one and for the first time Wagon Buddy. I don’t believe I’ve ever offered Wagon Buddy before as a freebie and it shows.

For the first freebie – over the three days there were 352 downloads – 250 of those were YURI. Here’s hoping I can get 5-10 reviews from that.

So far – and it’s early on day two – there’s been 125 downloads – 100 of those have been Wagon Buddy. If I can get another 50 today, it’d be great to get another 5 reviews from that.

I’m going to skip over what I’m working on, as I’ve been sharing that a bunch lately and there isn’t much of an update. I submitted two short stories recently to two amazing places, so we’ll see how those fall. I received a rejection recently for a three hundred word piece of flash fiction, so that’ll see the light of day here at some point!


Kendall Reviews just featured the 5th edition of my Tunes From the Crypt. This was a soundtrack edition and the feedback’s been great. If you missed it;

{Feature} Steve Stred’s Tunes From The Crypt #5 – Soundtrack Edition

As for what I’m jamming;

Fit For An Autopsy – Mirrors

The new song from FFAA is devastating in the best way possible!


Fit For An Autopsy – Black Mammoth

Another tune from these guys!


The Interrupters – She Got Arrested

I’ve been doing a daily music post of Twitter and this was yesterdays. Love this album and this band. They are in Edmonton in October and I’ll try to get out and see them!


Stone Temple Pilots – Atlanta (Live)

Another of my Twitter music posts recently. This is one of my fav STP songs and hearing it performed live here gives me shivers. RIP Scott.


Well that’s all for now! It’s a long weekend up here in Alberta so I got Monday off! Not sure what our plans are but here’s hoping we get decent weather!


LOHF Writers Grant!!

Hey all! I’m back with a blog post – but this ones a slightly different one.

I won’t babble on about music and life and books.

Instead – I’m going to share the exciting news. The wonderful women over at Ladies of Horror Fiction have kindly partnered with me to announce the first annual LOHF Writers Grant!

That’s right – we are working together to award a writer who meets the criteria listed a grant each year to help them with their writing journey! Whether its to pay for a cover, editing, a class, towards a laptop or software or WHATEVER!!! It’s just a way to give back, help another writer and hopefully grow this year after year!

So for full details – as well as the announcement of a new book(!!!!) please click the link!!

Novellas & Cover Reveals!

Hey all! I’m back! After a brief hiatus of regular Friday blogs, I’m back this week to fill you in on what’s been going on and some awesome music I’ve been cranking!

But first – just a heads up, there won’t actually be a blog next week 😦 I know, my apologies. You see – my fantastic work place gives us our birthday day off from work with pay! Since my birthday is on the weekend this year, I chose the Friday to have off so that we can attend the K-Days parade and I’ll be checking out The Offspring kick off concert that night as well!

So let’s get this going;


If you look at my output of work, you’ll see that I have a number of novellas out;

Jane: the 816 Chronicles, Wagon Buddy, YURI & The Girl Who Hid in the Trees. I have four planned novellas already for next year, with a probably 5th as well. I love writing novellas and reading novellas. I love the one shot deal. I think readers also enjoy having the ability to sit and read an entire story in a few hours or less. It can break up any reading lags as well, if you are reading a 400-800 page book.

Going forward I’ll pretty much be solely focused on novellas. I have a novel coming out at the end of this year (see below) as well as a probably novel next year (hopefully) with David Sodergren. Otherwise between some collections, expect my stuff to all be between 60-100 pages long!


Since I got back from vacation it’s been a mixed bag of stuff I’ve been playing. Lots of old, lots of new and lots of in between.

Abbath – Outstrider

While I was away in BC the new Abbath album dropped. I listened to it as soon as I got back and WOW. Just outstanding work once again by the former Immortal frontman. I think I dig more of this album than the debut, but what a fantastic follow up. So far I’m thinking the title track is my personal stand out track but it’s hard to say as they all rip!

Killswitch Engage – Unleashed

Speaking of new tracks that RIP! Where the hell has this version of Killswitch Engage been? Since Howard left and Jesse returned on vocals I’ve found their output uninspired and derivative. But then this new track drops and it’s almost like Adam rediscovered his “The End of Heartache” music writing chops again. Here’s hoping the rest of the album delivers!


Upon a Burning Body – King of Diamonds

I’m late to the Upon a Burning Body game. I’d say I’ve tolerated their earlier stuff but never searched it out. Then “King of Diamonds” dropped on Liquid Metal on Sirius XM and wowsa. The entire album “Southern Hostility” finds the band scorching through ripper after ripper and the groove they’ve fallen into here is meaty and delicious.

Screaming Trees – Nearly Lost You

Screaming Trees is a band that I frequently revisit when I need some nostalgia feels. Them and Stabbing Westward. Screaming Trees were always on my periphery of bands growing up and when I was younger I just didn’t dig them that much.  Now with the advancement of time, I’m appreciating what they did more and more.


The Offspring – Days Go By

As I mentioned – I’ll be seeing The Offspring next Friday. The Offspring will always have a special place in my heart. Their song “Gone Away” is a song that many people will relate to for different reasons.  For me it brings me back to the summer that Sarah Jackins was killed in a car accident. The Offspring are one of those bands that even if you’ve never been a big fan, you’ll recognize most of their songs. They are apparently working on new music, but until then – here’s the title track from their last album.


What I’m Working On:

As always a whole bunch of stuff!

I do have a very exciting announcement coming with a fantastic group of people. I can say much more now, but I think it’s an amazing partnership and hopefully we can grow this to benefit a lot of folks!

Ritual – I’ve chatted about this novella a bit already. As I said up at the start, going forward Novellas will be my bread and butter! This one is about 75 pages long. I’ve not shared too many details or even a cover. So here’s a brief synopsis!

“Meet Brad. Quiet, unassuming, always on time. He lives his life enjoyably, going through the paces. Every week day the same. Every weekend the same. That is until Father reveals he’s the Chosen One. Now a deadline looms and Brad needs to make sure everything is just right. If they want to open the sky and live forever, everything needs to be perfect.”

This will be out in October. If you want a review Mobi – let me know!

Ritual Cover

Piece of Me – my probable last full length novel. I’ll never say never, but as I go through editing it already I’m missing the novella length of stuff!  I haven’t said a heck of a lot about this one. So how about this – another synopsis reveal! This is tentatively planned for an December release. I have said this before – but this takes place in the same world as my two short stories ‘For Balder Walks’ and ‘Poppa?’

“The snow begins to fall as another winter arrives.  Kari holds out hope that her husband and son will return. She knows that the creatures that lurk in the night are growing bolder, that the winter will be hard on her own, but still she holds out hope for their return. Then a mysterious figure arrives. He tells her they’re still alive. All she has to do is cross the mountains and the realm of the dead to be reunited. But can she trust what the figure says?”

This one is part horror, a touch of fantasy and probably the absolute closest thing I’ll ever write to a full out ‘love story.’ Closer than my short stories ‘Jim’ or ‘Mr. Tross.’


The cover is actually taken from a picture my father-in-law Peter took of a fire we were having at their place in Fort Mac! Mason modified it and voila!

Now let’s chat about two that I’ve not really discussed much. And because I’m feeling good and generous – let’s have two more cover reveals!

The One That Knows No Fear.


Cover art done by my usual partner in crime, Mason McDonald who is also doing an introduction. This is coming early next year.  Originally this was going to be a collaboration between the two of us and there are still parts in there that Mason wrote but has kindly said ‘take it and run!’

The title comes from line “Anger rideth with the one that knows no fear” from the Immortal song “Sons of Northern Darkness.”

Here’s Immortal performing it live!

Unofficial Synopsis;

The One That Knows No Fear is a coming-of-age cosmic horror novella. It follows a young boy who longs for his step-father’s love. One morning he discovers the stunt show ‘DAREDEVILS!’ and falls in love with the motorcycle riding stuntman The One That Knows No Fear. This stuntman defies death week in and week out on the show, somehow surviving each stunt no matter how outrageous it is. But the old saying goes – never meet your heroes. In this case you just might now want to see what’s under that helmet.

Can’t wait for you all to check this one out!

The Window In The Ground

Recently David Sodergren (aka paperbacksandpugs) tweeted that he’d beta read one of my books and he was super excited about it.  This is that book.

The Window In The Ground will be another novella out early next year.

Mason McDonald crushing the cover game for me as always!

The Window in the Ground cover.png

Brief plot;

On the outskirts of town sits a secret. One that the town has protected for centuries. If you hike through the woods you’ll find a signpost with some rules. Keep walking through the trees before you make your way up a steep hill.  Then you’ll come to a clearing. At the far end of the clearing is the town’s secret. You’ll be tempted to run and look down through the glass – but don’t. Things live down there and the townsfolk will do whatever it takes to keep the window a secret.

Scott: A Wagon Buddy Tale

That is the official working title for the second book in the Wagon Buddy world. I want to write that this will be the last of the Wagon Buddy tales but who am I kidding. I long ago said that I wouldn’t write a sequel to the first one!

Early feedback has been great. I have a working cover but we need to tweak a couple little things so I won’t share that yet. This will be a novella as well, released next year.

I’ve already thought about doing a super limited edition hardcover of both Wagon Buddy and Scott as a single release so I’ll keep thinking about that!


What I’m Reading:

I’ll keep this brief!

I’m currently reading;

The Drive-Thru Crematorium – Jon Bassof – digging this bizarro tale. It’s not up yet on Goodreads so I can’t share a link!

Hellrider – JG Faherty – about 25% into this and loved the build up here.

Dead Mountain – Donnie Eichar – look I’ll read anything about Dyatlov Pass, but this is outstanding.

The Spirit – Thomas Page – bigfoot book. That’s all you need to know what I’m reading it. I got this one with the old cover and digging it. I don’t read much paperback stuff so I’ll finish this up next week while flying to Peace River.



Life has been interesting. Some of you may have seen a bit about my tweets regarding some vague bullying that I occurred regarding my review of Same Deep Water As You. I’ve patched things up with the other parties involved, which was great.  I believe every person is capable of change and that actions will always speak louder than words. So I’m glad to move on from that unexpected bout of drama.

As well, I headed back to BC to where I grew up for my Grandpa’s memorial at the end of June/start of July. It was great to say goodbye to such an influential person in my life.

I hiked up the mountain behind his old house with my Uncle Butch and some of my cousins to spread his ashes along side my grandma’s and my aunt’s. It’s been some time since I hiked up an almost sheer mountain face and going up there on a hot day, limited sleep and almost no food in me was brutal and I had to sit and stop for some time when we made it to the spot because I was certain I was going to pass out!

Overall the trip was good, it was great seeing the family and while some things weren’t enjoyable, that’s always expected with family.

Lastly – July 21st is my birthday.  This year I’ll be having a few of my books free on Amazon. Invisible, YURI and Frostbitten: 12 Hymns of Misery will all be free so snag those for sure!

As well – for my birthday, I ask that in the lead up, if you can all do a random act of kindness. It can be something simple; smile at a stranger, hold the door open for someone, help someone out with their groceries. Just really anything that brightens someone else’s day. That would be swellsville!

Cheers and I’ll be back on the 26th!