Next Stop—

Interested to learn more from Mark Steensland? 

Here’s a little piece about Rick Hautala, NECon, and his new collection AUTUMN PROSE, WINTER VERSE.

Plus, check out the link to the short film “Lovecraft’s Pillow” that was played in a handful of festivals around the world: http://ow.ly/E5J150kmKla 

“In 2006, during a conference at Ithaca College in upstate New York, I was standing in the auditorium lobby, waiting for the doors to open, when my eyes lingered on the badge of a guy who just happened to share a name with the author of Night Stone. I introduced myself and discovered–to my surprise–that it really was Rick Hautala. Since we were both attending solo, we sat next to each other, starting a conversation that lasted until his death in March of 2013.

Over our too-brief time together, we collaborated on all sorts of scripts, films, novels, and stories, one of which (called “Lovecraft’s Pillow”) is included in this collection. I can say without qualification that Rick was the best friend I ever had. I often told people that he was more of a brother to me than my blood. And if you had the great good fortune to know him, you understand exactly what I’m talking about.

It was Rick who introduced me to NECon, and then to everyone there. Thanks to Rick, Chris Golden helped get my middle-grade novel Behind the Bookcase to an editor at Random House, and, thanks to Rick, F. Paul Wilson gave me a cover blurb when they published it. Thanks to Rick, Richard Chizmar produced our best short films: “The Ugly File,” based on the story by Ed Gorman, “The Weeping Woman,” based on the story by Paul Kane, and “Peekers,” based on the story by Kealan Patrick Burke. Thanks to Rick, Pete Crowther saw “Peekers” and loved it. And now here I am, writing a blog entry for PS Publishing as they send my short story and poetry collection into the world. I hope some of what I’ve done in these pages honors all of those who helped me get here.

Did I forget to mention the name of the conference where I met Rick? No, I didn’t forget. It’s the best part of this tale, which is why I saved it for the end, to make it one of those stories that proves truth is stranger than fiction.

It was the first Rod Serling Conference. Of course it was.”

Now available for pre-order.

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