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Things Are Getting Weird Out There!

... so why not get weirder? How you ask? By downloading the first full issue of Weird Whispers from the Nightscape Press webstore FOR FREE (or on Amazon for your Kindle for 99 cents )! Yes, it's really late. And yes, Issue #2 will be available soon too. No, the paperback edition still isn't ready. Yes, it will be soon as well. Don Noble is working on the full cover spread still but it's not his only project currently. But yeah, we were going to kick off the first issue for 99 cents but decided with the current state of things, it would be better to just give it away for all you fellow social distancers out there during this whole Covid-19 outbreak craziness. We very much hope you enjoy this first full issue and that you will consider subscribing to the first year of Weird Whispers  in eBook or trade paperback! In other Weird Whispers news, we just got the contract back for a brand new story by Shannon Barber! We'll update as we solidify which issue Shannon's
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Weird Whispers Story #6: A Regime of Marching Faceless by S.L. Edwards

A Regime of Marching Faceless by S.L. Edwards I’m far too afraid to wonder how they removed my face. This place is dark, full of hidden ovens. I know I have no face because I've seen the others, walking about with smooth, noseless mannequin heads. If I look carefully I can see the grey smoke poking through the corners of this dark place, the red light of hidden fires. When people vanish, we mutter to each other: “The fires opened up. And ate them whole.” When the fires emerge, some just stumble in. Before I can blink, the walls are closed and dark again. The screams from behind them sound as if coming from behind a gag, panicked and wild but somehow stifled. These tunnels beneath the city are always burning. In the world above, you can see their traces in the thick vapor pouring out from tall black towers, tombstone smokestacks that mark this network of secret factories.

Weird Whispers Story #5: Pieces of Gold by Priya Sridhar

Pieces of Gold by Priya Sridhar From the private journals of Her Royal Highness Morana Meriwether Auric, Dowager Empress of Aurelian, Written during the Year of Monkshood Waxing Crescent 30: I was awakened by a knock. These days, I cannot sleep well, not since I read the telegrams from the front. My son had insisted I return to my home country, so that I could hold onto the estates in our name. I had wanted to bring the children, so that they would be spared, but he said that would be cowardice. The Auguries must stand strong and united in the face of insurrection. Why did I not take them? Vincent waited as I put on a dressing gown—an old silver one, embroidered with flying swans—and opened the door to receive him. He knew not to disturb me unless it was an emergency.

Weird Whispers Story #4: The Irrational Dress Society by Farah Rose Smith

The Irrational Dress Society by Farah Rose Smith “The other shape If shape it might be call’d that shape had none Distinguishable, in member, joint, or limb; Or substance might be call’d that shadow seemed; For such seemed either; black he stood as night; Fierce as ten furies; terrible as hell; And shook a deadly dart. What seem’d his head The likeness of a kingly crown had on.” - Paradise Lost , 2.666-73 PROLOGUE The long-disbanded Irrational Dress Society was an organization founded in 1912 in St. Petersburg, on the banks of the Neva. It described its purpose thus:

Review: In Dreams We Rot by Betty Rocksteady

Title: In Dreams We Rot Author: Betty Rocksteady   Publisher: Trepidatio Publishing, an imprint of JournalStone  Release date: October 18, 2019    Bugs, Botany, Bodies: The Three B’s of Betty Rocksteady By S. L. Edwards Confession time: I have been a fan and friend of Betty Rocksteady since I first entered into the scene two years ago. The first authors you come to know when you come into the field are those you share a table of contents with, and Betty and I ran in very similar circles. We where both frequent contributors to Turn To Ash , though she managed to outpace me. For very good reason. I was absolutely thrilled when her story “Dusk Urchin,” made it into Justin Steele and Sam Cowan’s Looming Low , as clear a sign as any that Betty had made it. And when you talk to fans of Betty’s, it’s quite clear that they like the person as much as the writer. Her fondness for cats, dyed hair and old cartoons are notorious. 

Review: The Serpent's Shadow by Daniel Braum

Title:    The Serpent's Shadow    Author: Daniel Braum   Publisher: Cemetery Dance Publications   Release date: July 1st, 2019 Review by Jennifer Griffin Ahhh the Christmas of 1986! What were you doing? I was a freshman in high school and it was our first Christmas with my pup Buffy (Mom had surprised me that summer with her). But I digress. Christmas 1986 is a special one for Dave and his family. His Dad was able to arrange for them all to go to Cancun, Mexico for the holidays. Dave and his sister Regina have just started college. They are used to having things and getting what they ask for. In short they have been brought up with money. Something most of the locals do NOT have despite the booming tourist trade.

Weird Whispers Story #3 The Maid from the Ash: A Life in Pictures by Gwendolyn Kiste

The Maid from the Ash:  A Life in Pictures by Gwendolyn Kiste Illustration by Luke Spooner T he Maid from the Ash: A Life in Pictures Museum of Postmodern Art Limited Engagement Thank you for joining us at the opening of The Maid from the Ash: A Life in Pictures . This program will guide you through each of our eighteen exhibits. For the sake of other visitors in the museum as well as for your own safety, we caution against any use of photography, flash or otherwise. During the installation of this collection, we learned too well that some of the photographs prefer if you don’t stare too long. So please keep this in mind and do be courteous during your stay with us. Exhibit 1: “The Maid from the Ash” (Polaroid Instant, Forensic photographer)

Weird Whispers Story #2 Parturition by Kurt Fawver

Parturition by Kurt Fawver Illustration by Luke Spooner P renatal Nora and I moved to the suburbs so we could have a baby. We dearly loved our old downtown apartment, nestled as it was in the heart of a neighborhood brimming with trendy restaurants, specialty goods boutiques, and microbreweries, but after seven years of marriage our lives had grown too expansive for a one-bedroom shoebox that was already filled to bursting with memories and mementos. Our bookshelves bowed under the strain of our triple-stacked hardbacks. Our clothes spilled out of our closets and into plastic boxes that we hid under our bed. And our dogs—two short-haired Chihuahuas—engaged in territorial snarling and snapping at one another practically every day. The apartment itself had also fallen into ill repair. Its tile and carpet had suffered innumerable stains, the robin's egg paint on its walls had faded to a sallow off-white, and even the ceilings had begun to succumb to a creep

Weird Whispers Story #1 Pro-Life by Todd Keisling

Pro-Life  by Todd Keisling Illustration by Luke Spooner K aren’s talking to me again even though I haven’t grown a mouth. Her day at the clinic didn’t go as planned, someone caught her digging through the bin of biological waste and she had to lie about losing a piece of jewelry, and somehow that’s my fault. I’m not growing fast enough, she tells me. The ritual should’ve worked by now. I should have arms and legs. Teeth. A fuzzy head of hair. Eyes as bright as stars in the sky. I don’t have a mouth to tell her she’s an idiot for complaining to a pile of goo. I can’t tell her I didn’t make up the rules. Eleven candles for the eleven points in the Tree of Life, lines of salt to connect them, the summoner’s blood to express their devotion, and the most important ingredient: human flesh. There’s nothing in the scripture that says how long this process takes. The human elders who communed with the Void in the early days of man weren’t given specific instructi

Review: Sing Your Sadness Deep by Laura Mauro

Title: Sing Your Sadness Deep Author: Laura Mauro Publisher: Undertow Publications Release date: August 6, 2019 Your Sadness a Lovely Song By S. L. Edwards Laura Mauro is a master. And not a quiet one either. Resting at the firm intersection of literary fantasy and horror, Mauro’s fiction invokes Neil Gaiman, Salman Rushdie, O. Henry and Saki. And yet, despite being reminiscent of this medley of my favorite writers, Mauro’s stories are clearly her own and her characters are her own. There were many, many great weird fiction collections published this year. But you cannot miss this one. You simply cannot. I won’t allow it. For the most part, Sing Your Sadness Deep consists of longer stories. This gives the reader time to know Mauro’s characters, who are remarkably deep and memorable. The longest story, and in my humble opinion the clear standout of the collection is “Looking for Laika.” This is not to diminish the other stories, which I

Rough Draft Review: Luminous Body by Brooke Warra

Title: Luminous Body   Author: Brooke Warra Publisher: Dim Shores Release date: October Robert S. Wilson is the Bram Stoker Award-nominated editor of the 2018 This is Horror Awards Anthology of the Year, Ashes and Entropy, and an author of weird, fantasy, horror and science fiction. His stories have been published in Vastarien: A Literary Journal , the Journal Nature , Daily Science Fiction , Factor Four Magazine , Darkfuse Magazine, among others. He is currently writing an ongoing chapbook serial titled Hex: A Novel of Cosmic Horror .

Surveying the Weird: Snow Weirds the World

What is the weird? Is it a song, is it a dream, is it a vision or a ghost? What is the weird? Is it a way of life, a way of dreaming, a way of seeing the corners of the world? Supernatural, natural, horror or not? What is the weird? Come with me, follow me into the shadows beyond the city. Here is where the weird lives, out in the ruins of the world. And here we will survey the Weird and Weird Fiction, digging in deep for each of these articles in Weird Whispers Digest.  I’m not going to try and plant a flag, and I’m not going to define the weird as this or that or a genre or subgenre a community or movement. That is not the purpose, no. The purpose of these articles is to act like a vision, a seer, an anthropologist who digs in deep to the messy heart of it all, and comes out the other side maybe knowing something new, or maybe knowing nothing at all, but in the end still having experienced something. Something numinous, something dreadful, something that will never leave you

Review: Song for the Unravelling of the World by Brian Evenson

Title: Song for the Unravelling of the World Author: Brian Evenson Publisher: Coffee House Press Release date: June 11, 2019 Songs for Unmaking by S.L. Edwards Few modern writers make as careful use of the economy of words as Brian Evenson. Like a few of you reading this review, I was unfamiliar with Evenson and his writing until this year. I had read a few of his stories in anthologies, and having read a single author collection (now two) I firmly believe reading a stray story in an anthology is a wholly different experience than reading an entire Evenson collection. So many good stories are like revisiting old friends, or admiring the architecture of a favorite house when being reread. You may notice a technical detail, may stop and smile and exclaim “how cool” when you notice a trick the author has pulled off.  Revisiting Evenson is having an entirely different conversation with this friend, and visiting a house that was comforting and familiar until the

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