Many of you know that for about a year I ran a live reading horror reading series called Cult Fiction. It happened in a dimly lit bar and featured a quartet of horror stories by local Chicago authors, read by local Chicago actors, with covers created by local Chicago artists.  Afterwords there was usually a band. Sometimes there was performance art. There were always s’mores. It was pretty badass while it lasted.

Sadly, the live series died.  Of course, that’s not enough to keep a good cult down! The corpse is festering into something new.

Cult Fiction will switch from a live show to a quarterly magazine.  Same format, mostly. Four loosely themed stories from four local authors. We’ll be adding covers and spot  illustrations for the stories by local folk. We’ve lined up a fantastic artist, Neal Morrison, for an ongoing serial horror comic. We’ll and be showcasing different creepy artists features as well.  As much content as possible will be by Chicago based contributors (or originally from Chicago). Issues will be available in full magazine sized print or e-book.

We’re still in the “rotting skeleton clawing through the coffin” phase of the project. Even so, we’ve wrangled stories by original cultists Brendan Detzner, Frank Stascik, and Eric Cherry. A website is in the works and within weeks we should have writers guidelines up for future issues. I’ve got a hellishly good hit list of authors I’m going to be tapping for stories (just as soon as I finish gathering their hair for voodoo dolls). Who knows, maybe we’ll even get some of those actors back to record stories for podcasts on the website.

I’ve met a lot of really good (deranged) authors and pretty amazing (twisted) artists in Chicago. The whole purpose of this project is to showcase them in an casual collective sort of format and then share it with other warped souls.

If all our machinations proceed as planned you should see the fist issue of Cult Fiction Quarterly drop this Spring!