Zoltergeist the Poltergeist and Other News

Hey, y’all. I have some good news and some “not-so-good?” news. How about the good news first?

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About two weeks ago, I published my fifth book, a whacko-absurdo-horror-comedy novel called Zoltergeist the Poltergeist. At about 55,000 words, it’s the longest book I’ve written to date.

From the back cover:

Jimmy Green is a middle-aged limousine driver and a devoted fan of the insane TV sitcom Zoltergeist the Poltergeist. Once when he was a boy, Jimmy had an impure thought about the lead singer of The Bangles.

After confessing his sin to a drunken priest thirty-five years later, Jimmy is sentenced to six months’ penance in an old, isolated house—dubbed Penance House—in the middle of nowhere in rural Ohio. There, sequestered from civilization, Jimmy must repent for his sinful nature or else endure the Everlasting Fires of Hell.

As if Penance House weren’t creepy, whack, and janked-up enough, Jimmy is forbidden to enter the room at the end of the upstairs hallway. Does something sinister lurk beyond its closed door? And what about that leprechaun he keeps seeing skulking around in the woods?

Lucky for Jimmy, he has all forty-nine seasons of Zoltergeist the Poltergeist saved to his laptop to distract himself from his unsettling surroundings. Toward that end, probably the only thing better than rewatching old Zoltergeist episodes would be a visit from the show’s enigmatic, titular star itself…

“The head honcho of the absurd, the governor of wackiness, the top dog of insanity is back! Intelligent and imbecilic, Douglas Hackle is one of the most unique voices in bizarro fiction. Watch out, ’cause Hackle’s brain tissue is coming to town in a sleigh carved out of mad puppets and pulled by alcoholic poltergeists. Dare to see what Douglasgeist Hacklegeist leaves in your socks!”

—Zoltán Komor, author of Flamingos in the Ashtray

“Zoltergeist the Poltergeist had me laughing, tittering, chortling, and popping out guffaws like nobody’s business. It even had me dancing for some reason—like I was listening to the hottest new bizarro track out this summer. Your kids are going to love it and so are you.”

—Luke Kondor, author of The Run Fantastic

Click the cover to go to the Amazon page.

Also, here’s a positive review of the book courtesy of Ben Walker and Kendall Reviews.

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Now for the “not-so-good?” news: I’ve decided to hang up the Douglas Hackle pen name (yes, it is a pen name) and cease writing and self-publishing bizarro books.

In practical terms, that means Zoltergeist the Poltergeist will likely be the final Douglas Hackle short novel. I also have a nearly completed bizarro short story collection—my third one—on my hands. I had hoped to publish the collection at the same time as Zoltergeist the Poltergeist, but wasn’t able to make that happen. I intend to publish it in a few months. For posterity’s sake, the collection will include a newly revised version of my out-of-print novelette “The Ballad of TERROR TINY TIM,” along with several new short stories. I expect this collection to be the final Douglas Hackle book.

So that will make six Douglas Hackle books in total. Not a bad little run, huh, BIG SAM?

I’m not quitting writing, but I am stepping away from it for a bit. Not sure when I’ll hop back in the writer’s seat, but when I do, it will likely be to try my hand at some other genres or styles while taking up a new pen name.

Nothing wrong with a little change, right? KnowwhutI’msayin’, BIG SNOOP?

To those of you who have enjoyed and supported my bizarro stuff over the years, I hope you’ll check out Zoltergeist the Poltergeist and the final collection.

Sincerely,

dh

Book Review: Terror Mannequin

An excellent review of TERROR MANNEQUIN courtesy of Zé Burns. And be sure to check more book reviews and author interviews at Zé’s blog: https://zeburns.com

Zé Burns | Blog

Terror Mannequin cover

Terror Mannequin by Douglas Hackle

Rating: 8.5/10

Terror Mannequin by Douglas Hackle is the reason why I read bizarro fiction, a blend of humor and the preposterous assembled in the perfect ratio. It’s one of those stories that makes you ask: “How did he ever come up with that?”

When I began reading, I thought the book seemed predictable. How wrong I was. Hackle launched me into his insane world where each paragraph was a startling revelation. Terror Mannequin lies on the nutso-bananas side of the weirdness spectrum, yet it is immensely readable. His writing style is neither too colloquial nor overblown, hitting a happy medium.

It is the story of Glont Lamont, his two “nephews,” and one crummy Halloween night. These nephews, in fact, are ancient beings, loathed by the town of Selohssa (spell that backwards). Both Tom Two (perpetually two years old) and the Membrane (name self-explanatory) are…

View original post 356 more words

[Review] – Terror Mannequin

Well Read Beard (aka Kevin Whitten) reviews TERROR MANNEQUIN for Dead Head Reviews.

Dead Head Reviews

By Douglas Hackle

*Minor Spoilers

Awwww, YEAH! (I feel that since I am submitting this for Dead Head Reviews, I need to tell you that I didn’t just throw an “Awww, yeah” out there for nothing – it is from the book.)

Look, I loved this book, and if I am honest, it was kinda unexpected. I don’t get a lot of laughs out of the stuff I read, but this book was absolutely laugh-out-loud hilarious. I would have called it a combo horror/bizarro going in. I have heard it referred to as absurdist; but for me, while it is absurd as hell and chock full of horror, it was a comedy. I found myself smiling throughout and laughing often, and you can ask my friends – I don’t smile a lot. Well, I don’t have friends either, but how else am I supposed to read all these books? That’s…

View original post 309 more words

Tales of What!?

I had the honor of providing the featured short story (“TERROR SARDINES in TERROR SAUCE”) for the inaugural episode of Tales of What!? Produced by modern Renaissance man Luke Kondor, Tales of What!? is a high production value podcast devoted to bizarro short stories. As far as I know, it’s the only podcast of its kind at the moment. As such, it’s something to be excited about if you’re a longtime reader or writer of bizarro fiction. And if you’re new to bizarro fiction or curious about it, the podcast should prove to be a great way to sample the varied styles of writers working in the genre.

iTunes – https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast…
Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/0CPanYw…

“TERROR SARDINES in TERROR SAUCE” is included in my latest short story collection, Is Winona Ryder Still with the Dude from Soul Asylum? and Other LURID Tales of TERROR and DOOM!!!

Early Reviews of TERROR MANNEQUIN

‘Sup, y’all? Hey, have you picked up a copy of my new novel, TERROR MANNEQUIN, yet? No? Well, if you’re on the fence about getting it, maybe one of the reviews cited and linked below can persuade you to drop down to the side of the fence that’s a lot more fun than the other.

TERROR MANNEQUIN_cover

Click image to go the book’s Amazon page.

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Livius Nedin, who has interviewed the likes of Mark Z. Danielewski and David Duchovny (yeah, as in Mulder!), and guest host Frank Edler got together and reviewed TERROR MANNEQUIN for the 467th episode of Booked. Podcast:

“Batshit craziness!…Genuinely funny in the most ridiculous way. I really enjoyed [TERROR MANNEQUIN], and I honestly think that if you’ve never read a bizarro book, this might be the one you should grab.” –Livius Nedin, host of Booked. Podcast.

bookedTM

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BookTuber Kevin Whitten, aka “Well Read Beard,” gave TERROR MANNEQUIN 5 stars, calling it “laugh-out-loud hilarious” and a great pallet cleanser for any horror fans who might occasionally find themselves all “horror-ed” out. Check out his video review of the book and maybe subscribe to his YT channel: 

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“To say that Terror Mannequin is a comedy would be to downplay the nihilistic tragedy of it all. To call it a satire of office culture—and Thomas Ligotti’s weird tales of same—is to minimize the often-gruesome horror at play…Yet, for all that bizarro fiction is often not my thing—and Terror Mannequin is often no exception—there are moments that are genuinely brilliant.” –From Orrin Grey’s review of TERROR MANNEQUIN at Signal Horizon:

https://signalhorizon.com/book-review-the-absurd-horrific-tragicomedy-of-terror-mannequin/

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 “Hackle isn’t afraid to get you clutching your seat with fear only to have you giggling in the next sentence, and vice versa. And because what you’re reading is so unapologetically peculiar, none of it feels out of place…In all, Terror Mannequin was an unexpected treat. Well worth a look (only don’t look at the jack-in-the-box…)” –From Ben Walker’s review of TERROR MANNEQUIN at Kendall Reviews:

http://kendallreviews.com/book-review-terror-mannequin-douglas-hackle/

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“…Terror Mannequin is weird, bizarre, humorous and very often horrifying, and despite the plot going to some incredibly strange and uncomfortable places, I enjoyed it immensely…All of the key elements of the [bizarro] subgenre are to be found within Terror Mannequin, but Hackle deploys them in a deft and sure manner, building up the weird and horrific elements slowly but surely until it reaches a gore-stained and near-incomprehensible crescendo that you can’t escape – and don’t want to regardless – because of just how damn good it is.” Click on the link for the full review. –From Adam Selby-Martin’s review of TERROR MANNEQUIN at The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Reviewer:

https://scifiandfantasyreviewer.wordpress.com/2019/11/11/terror-mannequin-douglas-hackle-review/

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And here’s TERROR MANNEQUIN’s Goodreads page, where more reviews can be found:

TERROR MANNEQUIN on Goodreads

TERROR MANNEQUIN Is Now Out!

Greetings, my TINY LITTLE HALLOWEEN BATS! It appears Tabitha King broke into my house, fished this out of my trash can, and published it. Thanks for believing in me, Tabby!

TERROR MANNEQUIN

An absurd horror-comedy, TERROR MANNEQUIN is my fourth book and second short novel. From the back cover:

Forty-year-old Glont Lamont is a longtime employee of Fun 4-Life Corporation, where he gets paid good money to play videos games, watch TV, get drunk, get high, devour pizza, ride the company roller coaster, take long-ass naps, and toss off like a madman in an insane asylum. There’s only one problem: Glont’s sick of his job! Nowadays, all he really wants to do is work long, grueling shifts 7-days-a-week doing any sort of awful, backbreaking, tedious, demoralizing, soul-crushing, severely undercompensated labor.

But with Halloween just a few days away, Glont has more important things to worry about than his workplace woes. Namely, he must take his two “freak” nephews out reverse trick-or-treating, which is a form of annual ritualistic tribute whereby the cruel townspeople force his nephews to walk door-to-door on Halloween night to hand out candy to people instead of receiving candy themselves.

And this year, the last stop on the trio’s reverse trick-or-treating itinerary is Fallingwater—built on a natural waterfall, Frank Lloyd Wright’s world-famous architectural masterpiece is now closed to the public and allegedly haunted by an evil supernatural entity known as TERROR MANNEQUIN

“Hackle may be the best absurdist story writer working today.” –Bradley Sands, author of Dodgeball High

“…the best bizarro absurdist in the business.” –Amy M. Vaughn, author of Skull Nuggets

Grab a copy here:

Paperback

Kindle

Is Winona Ryder Still with the Dude from Soul Asylum? and Other LURID Tales of TERROR and DOOM!!!

My new short story collection, Is Winona Ryder Still with the Dude from Soul Asylum? and Other LURID Tales of TERROR and DOOM!!!, is now available. Consisting of twenty bizarro-whacko-absurdo stories, including a dozen never-before-published pieces, this is my third book and my second short story collection—a spiritual sequel of sorts to Clown Tear Junkies. Among the reprints included in ‘Winona’ are three critically acclaimed stories I wrote specifically for The Bizarro Starter Kit (Red).

(Alright, so maybe that “critical acclaim” came courtesy of a pissed-off Hungarian-Egyptian lobster-saxophonist who likes to carve Chicken McNuggets into tiny busts of Antonio Salieri. But, hey, a strugglin’-ass mofo will take what a strugglin’-ass mofo can get, no??)

From the back cover: Continue reading “Is Winona Ryder Still with the Dude from Soul Asylum? and Other LURID Tales of TERROR and DOOM!!!”

THE HOTTEST GAY MAN EVER KILLED IN A SHARK ATTACK is Now Out…

Whew! Like 87 years ago or something, my first book, Clown Tear Junkies, saw its publication. After sundry delays, and for better or worse, my second book, The Hottest Gay Man Ever Killed in a Shark Attack, is now a thing in the world.

Click on the cover image for the Amazon link.

Continue reading “THE HOTTEST GAY MAN EVER KILLED IN A SHARK ATTACK is Now Out…”