“In the forthcoming film adaptation of Brian Keene’s DARK HOLLOW, the part of Adam Senft will be played by Bubbles the Cat, age 4 months.”
I’m Brian Keene and this is the 259th issue of Letters From the Labyrinth — a weekly newsletter for fans of my work. Previous issues can be found here. If you’re reading this via email, and you’d like to leave a comment, just click that link. I’m always happy to hear from you.
Bubbles was supposed to be adopted out with the other kittens. Mary and I had agreed to keep Stripe and Dallas, but the other five kittens were all supposed to be adopted out to good homes. And they were. Bubbles was the last, and I was in the process of vetting homes for her, when Mary’s niece visited for a weekend and fell in love with the kitten, and named her Bubbles, and begged her Uncle Brian to keep Bubbles here, so that she could play with her when she visits. And since Uncle Brian is a softy when it comes to his niece…
…that’s how we ended up keeping three kittens instead of two.
Bubbles’ new favorite thing is to climb to the top of this life-sized Hylinus statue and perch there. (The object above her on the statue is a mask that a group of High School students presented me with, and it hangs from one of the satyr’s horns).
The statue itself was made by director and SFX-wizard Paul Campion (who in addition to directing films like THE DEVIL’S ROCK and my own THE NAUGHTY LIST also helped design the Balrog in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy, among other things for films like CONSTANTINE, etc.).
Paul made the statue of Hylinus back in 2013, when it looked like a film adaptation of DARK HOLLOW might get greenlit, and we needed to create a teaser trailer. The statue was used in the teaser trailer, which you can watch here. Unfortunately, the movie never got greenlit, so that teaser trailer — along with the statue — is all that exists.
Now…building that statue was an expensive endeavor. And when Paul asked if I’d like to have it, I discovered that getting it shipped here from England was an even more expensive endeavor. It came by cargo ship, and then via tractor trailer to my front door. Far as I’m concerned, it was worth every penny. As I said above, one of the satyr’s horns is adorned with the mask. The other horn sports a hat that Paul Tremblay bought for me after I was released from the burn unit. (Tremblay was the first non-local person to visit after that). All three things are sentimental to me, and the statue looks even cooler with the hat and the mask. At Christmas, we decorate him for the holiday. When people visit — especially non-horror industry people — he is always a topic of conversation.
And now, he is a very expensive and foreboding cat toy.
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SUBURBAN GOTHIC has been causing quite a stir amongst readers of extreme horror since its release in paperback and e-book. I suspect there will be a whole new stir now that it is available in audiobook. Click here to start listening!
And this seems like a good time to update you on forthcoming audiobooks:
CLICKERS II is in production right now, narrated by Chet Williamson.
DEAD SEA is also in production.
THE DAMNED HIGHWAY will be entering production soon, hopefully narrated by Mark Meer. If you were lucky enough to catch the stage adaptation of THE DAMNED HIGHWAY then you already know that Mark is the absolute perfect choice to narrate the book.
ENTOMBED, URBAN GOTHIC, THE SEVEN, THE CAGE, CLICKERS III, EARTHWORM GODS II: DELUGE, and THE RISING: DELIVERANCE are all next in the queue after those three, all slated for release in 2022.
I’d hoped to narrate SUNDANCING, END OF THE ROAD, and THE GIRL ON THE GLIDER myself this past year, but Dave Thomas was going to be my sound engineer for those, and as you know, Dave is in home hospice with terminal cancer.
I’ll do them eventually, but not for a while.
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Speaking of Dave, Mary and I have visited with him and Deena several times. He’s surprised that he’s still here. All of us — Dave included — had expected him to have passed on by now. He and Deena are very grateful to have been granted this extra time together, and they are making the most of it, having long talks and going for occasional drives to look at the leaves. (Dave can’t walk, so getting him from the wheelchair to the car is a factor). They’re hoping to drive up here to our house the weekend after Thanksgiving, if Dave is still here.
I’m grateful that one of my best friends has been given this extra time with the woman he loves. But I also know that he’s exhausted and miserable, and I hate the thought of him lingering. I also hate the knowledge of knowing how much hospice care is costing them monthly. Here is the link to the GoFundMe. If you can help out with a spare ten bucks, it will be appreciated.
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This is Chuck Norris, signing a stack of exclusive special order Scares That Care prints.
We at the charity are proud to offer this ONE TIME special signing by him. Limited to only 100 pieces, this 11x14 print will be autographed, numbered and was witnessed in person by a representative of JSA (James Spence Authentication) with a label attached verifying authentication.
Chuck graciously signed them this past week, so they are available! Click here to get your copy.
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Currently Reading: The Spirit Archives Volume 3 by Will Eisner
Currently Listening: Various U2 albums
Currently Watching: Young Guns and Young Guns II (my thirteen-year-old is finally getting into westerns).
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Work this past week was focused on PROJECT CASTLE and catching up on email.
I also signed a contract for a Lettered Edition of WITH TEETH, which will be forthcoming from Thunderstorm Books.
And I’m happy to announce that Crossroad Press have obtained the paperback, ebook, and audiobook rights to CLICKERS NEVER DIE by Stephen Kozeniewski and Wile E. Young. Look for it next year.
Work this coming week will also be focused on PROJECT CASTLE, although it will be a shortened work-week, as Mary and I will drive to New Jersey on Wednesday to spend Thanksgiving with her family. I’ll come back home Friday (because the kittens are too little to be left alone for longer than that). Mary will return home the following week.
Lifetime Subscribers should start receiving new packages within the next two or three weeks.
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This Week’s Book Recommendation. It’s available for pre-order right now.
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Before we depart, I’d like to take a moment to say two things.
First of all, I want to thank each and every person who has purchased a copy of THE SEVEN, be it in paperback or ebook, and for taking the time to review it, talk about it on social media, etc. Seriously. This novel is important to me, and I’ve been nervous about how it would be received by the public. The early reaction from Patreon readers was positive, but the general public can sometimes be a different thing. I’m incredibly grateful that folks are enjoying it.
Secondly, I want you to know that I appreciate you regardless of whether or not you’re buying my books right now. As I Tweeted earlier in the week, I went grocery shopping and bought the same exact things I buy every month, and rather than the $350 it usually costs, the same items and quantities were now slightly over $500. Inflation is a bear, and we are about to be bear food. Times are absolutely tough, and I recognize that not everyone can afford to buy books right now. Know that I appreciate you, regardless.
Hell, just by reading this free newsletter, you’re supporting me. And hopefully something I’ve said here supports you in some way.
Like DeNiro says in Brazil, “We’re al in this together.” Maybe it doesn’t feel that way, given the worsening political divide and all of the tribalism and nationalism sweeping the globe, but those of you who have been reading me for a long time know that I don’t participate in any sort of tribalism other than the Horror Tribe. My politics and personal code have confounded my friends on both the Left and the Right for many years now, and I don’t see that changing. I’ve never been a joiner and the older I get, the more I eschew any sort of label. Regardless of who you are or what you believe, I believe that we are still in this together, and I believe that we will come through the other side. I believe that we have to do so. To not do so is to face extinction. I don’t know what it will look like on the other side, but I’ll gladly face it with you.
So…that’s it for this week. Take care of yourselves, and each other. An advance Happy Thanksgiving to those of you who celebrate it. I’ll see you back here next Sunday.