Day two of Self-published Author Appreciation Week and I want to kick it off with a post about Indie Presses. These guys don’t have the large budget that the “big 5” have. However, what they do have is passion and love for the horror community. Nobody sets up an Indie Press with the assumption that it’s going to make massive amounts of money. They do it to find that next story that strips the layers back from us, the next story that looks to tear down walls, they do it to give the marginalised a voice.
Just what is so special about Kandisha Press? Let me tell you – It is a women-owned independent Horror Press. I have read and devoured two of their anthologies to date and I have enjoyed every story that they have compiled. It’s women supporting women. Do not make the mistake in thinking that because these are stories written by women that they are going to be tame and reserved, these stories have serious bite. They are brutal, malevolent and sharp.
Established in 2015, the Sinister Horror Company is an independent press run by Justin Park. He uses the presses independent status to take chances and release stories from those daring to try something a little different. From unsettling modern gothic to soul-crunchingly bleak and extreme, the spectrum of the Sinister catalogue is varied, but the quality of their output is never compromised – something they have built a well-regarded reputation on. Sinister Horror Company has some of the very best horror releases that I have had the pleasure of reading. Join their mailing list and you get a free ebook, what’s not to love? From some well-known names such as Guy N. Smith to those lesser-known names such as Kit Power (who has an explosive narrative on every page) and Tracey Fahey. There is plenty for the avid horror reader to enjoy.
Established March 2015 – Bloodshot Books is a micro-press specializing in horror fiction, with a dash of science fiction, suspense, and thrillers. They are a relatively new press but are making huge waves in the genre. From stories about explorers finding all manner of creepiness in jars, boys trying to fight their horrifying destiny, and monsters that hide in the woods, ready to pounce, ready to strike. You can’t resist these pageturners.
Undertow Publications is a celebrated independent press in Canada dedicated to publishing original and unique genre fiction of exceptional literary merit. Since 2009 we’ve been publishing anthologies, collections, and novellas in hardcover, trade paperback, and eBook formats. Their books have won the Shirley Jackson Award; the British Fantasy Award; and been nominated for the World Fantasy Award.
Their “Contemporary Classics” line features highly collectable deluxe hardcovers in limited editions.
We are endearingly weird, and proud of it.
I am particularly looking forward to their future publication, The Ghost Sequences by A.C. Wise which is a new collection of horror short stories. That cover drew me immediately in.
Death’s Head Press is the brainchild of horror-obsessed friends, Jarod Barbee (CEO) and Patrick C. Harrison III (Editor-in-Chief). Jarod and Patrick look to provide the world with quality dark fiction anthologies, novels, and collections. The “dark fiction” they publish will include but is not limited to, horror, splatterpunk, bizarro, dark erotica, dark sci-fi/fantasy, psychological thrillers, and others.
READ YOUR WAY TO MADNESS!
Now, these guys have something so very special – their Splatter western stories are thee fucking best! They have the storytelling, the gore, the characterisation and the disturbed kind of plot I love!
Welcome to Grindhouse Press. We are a small press with the goal to publish six books a year with an emphasis on horror, extreme horror, transgressive fiction, sleaze, exploitation, dark humor, and general weirdness with a dark theme. If you are interested in submitting to Grindhouse please check our submissions page. If you are interested in our books please check out our online store or search for our titles wherever books, ebooks, and audio books are sold.
This is a push the boundaries type of press and it shows in their titles so far. Another publishing house that has became an insta buy.
Sliced Up Press was formed in 2020, with the goal of delivering peculiar horror fiction with an edge.
Our anthologies & short story collections include spoiler-free trigger warnings at the end of each book. These are to help people make an informed decision, and not to invite debate over the merits of our decision to include them. Any novellas/novels/standalone works picked up in the future will have blurbs that reflect the content, with the same considerations in mind.
We do not believe that books should have a rating system akin to other forms of media, but we do believe that offering extra information to help people decide whether a book is for them or not is a kindness to potential readers.
Any open calls for submissions will be posted on the Submissions page. Please do not enquire about publication outside of any open calls.
Horrific Tales Publishing was founded in 2011 by Graeme Reynolds with the intention of creating a publishing house that he, as an author, would ideally want to work with.
That meant ensuring that every book published was produced to the highest quality possible, and that authors were given fair contracts, payment terms and that royalties were paid promptly while keeping abreast of changes in the market to ensure that each title was marketed in the most effective manner possible.
With the money earned from the press’s first two titles, High Moor and High Moor 2: Moonstruck, the company was expanded to produce a limited number of top-quality novels each year from some of the genre’s most promising new authors. In 2016, the press will begin publishing premium novella titles from more established authors in addition to the core novel titles.
I particularly devoured A Song for the End by Kit Power. I was blown away his powerful narrative and edgy and quirky storyline.
Orenda Book is a small independent publisher based in South London. We publish literary fiction, with a heavy emphasis on crime/thrillers, and roughly half the list is in translation. We currently publish authors from fifteen different nations … and counting.
Orenda Books was founded by publisher Karen Sullivan in 2014, and our first books were published in 2015. In 2016, Karen was a Bookseller Rising Star, and Orenda Books was shortlisted for the IPG Nick Robinson Newcomer Award in 2015 and 2016. We won the CWA Crime & Mystery Publisher of the Year Dagger in 2020 and were a regional finalist for the Small Press of the Year Award in the British Book Awards in 2021.
Orenda is a Canadian First Nations word, which loosely translates to ‘the mystical power that drives human accomplishment’, and its provenance is a part of Ontario, Canada, where Karen has spent every summer of her life.
Orenda Books are predominately a crime/thriller small press BUT they have released one of the best horror series I have ever read – The Six Stories series by Matt Wesolowski. It follows an investigative journalist, Scott King, in the format of a podcast that features six interviews and looks at mysterious and twisted crimes and tries to see it from six different perspectives before making up his mind on the real story. Wesolowski really has a skill for making you check under your bed for monsters.
Wicked Run Press was founded by Mark Matthews and publishes both his own fiction as well as speciality projects and anthologies. Wicked Run has published stories by writers such as Caroline Kepnes, Kealan Patrick Burke, Mercedes M Yardley, John FD Taff, Max Booth III, Gabino Iglesias, and many others.
Mark Matthews is a graduate of the University of Michigan and a licensed professional counselor who has worked in behavioral health for over 20 years. He is the author of On the Lips of Children, All Smoke Rises, and Milk-Blood. He is also the editor of (and a contributor to) Lullabies for Suffering and Garden of Fiends. His next release, The Hobgoblin of Little Minds, is expected in January 2021. Matthews has run 13 marathons, loves Red Wing hockey and live musicals. He lives near Detroit with his wife and children. Reach him at WickedRunPress@gmail.com
Alyson lives in West Yorkshire, UK with her husband, teen son and four rescue animals. Her fiction has been published widely in print anthologies – DeadCades, Women in Horror Annual 2, Trembling with Fear 1 &2, Coffin Bell Journal 1, Stories from Stone, Ellipsis, Rejected ed. Erin Crocker)and in many e-zines, but most often on the Horror Tree site, in Siren’s Call and The Casket of Fictional Delights.
Demain published her 1940’s set noir crime novella, Maggie Of My Heart in 2019.
Currently she has stories in the Strange Girls anthology (ed. Azzurra Nox), Burning Love from Things in the Well, in two Gypsum Sound Tales anthologies:- Amongst Friends and Colp: Black and Grey and in Emerald Bay Books Horror for Hire: First Shift.
She has a story, set in Ilkley in the NHS charity anthology, Diabolica Britannica, which since its publication in July 2020 has been at the top of the Amazon best seller charts (for horror).
She has a poem in the upcoming poetry anthology, Air, from Tyche Books.
Her work has been read on BBC Radio, local radio, on several podcasts (e.g. Ladies of Horror), posted on YouTube and placed in and won competitions.
Steph lives in Southampton with her husband and occasionally one of their 3 children depending on the uni boomerang effect! She is a librarian and literacy specialist in a Southampton Secondary School.
Steph writes dark speculative prose and poetry and has been published in a variety of magazines and anthologies.
Her latest work includes the novella, Bottled, published by Silver Shamrock, who will also be publishing her novel, The Five Turns of the Wheel in October. She has recently been published in Flame Tree Press’ A Dying Planet anthology, the charity anthology Diabolica Britannica and is included in Silver Shamrock’s upcoming Midnight in the Pentagram. Her poetry can be sampled in the Horror Writer Association’s Poetry Showcase Volume 6 and upcoming Volume 7. She has collected a number of her published, and some unpublished, short stories in The Reckoning, her dark verse in Dark is my Playground, and flash in The Dark Bites, all available on amazon.
She is co-editor of Trembling With Fear, HorrorTree.com’s online magazine, co-hosts The Infernal Clock imprint with David Shakes and is part of the new Black Angel Press with Alyson Faye. She is an affiliate member of the HWA and can be found at https://stephanieellis.org and on twitter at @el_stevie.
Beware if you connect on Twitter, I share my favourite metal tracks quite frequently. If you like Slipknot, Behemoth, NIN, 3Teeth, Heilung, etc, you will have a friend in me!