Category Archives: Author News

Some pictures of some of my recent stories in print

Hey everybody, M. here,

I have had a few stories come out over the past few months, and it just struck me that I have not yet posted pictures on this blog of the physical copies. I should have a contributor copy of the new Startling Stories on the way soon, which contains my most recent story PHARMAKON, PHARMAKON, and I’ll share some pictures of that one when it lands. But before that, here are some pics of the publications containing my other most recent work to come out in print (or get reprinted):

First off, here is Professor Feiff’s Compleat Pocket Guide for the Intergalactic Traveller on the Move, which contains my story A DAZZLING WORLD.

The story is one which, as I mentioned over on Facebook a while back could probably be considered a “green goo” story, albeit one that depicts an infinitely more multi-colored apocalypse than what the moniker green goo conjures (or, for that matter, “gray goo,” the theoretical nanotech problem from which the term green goo is derived).

And did I mention that the central xenobiological conceit in this story is an insect that maybe, maybe has never before appeared as the foundation of a sci-fi horror story before? Though don’t get me wrong, I am very hesitant about actually claiming to be the “first” of anything in fiction at this point in human history.

Anyway, going any deeper into what exactly is going on in A DAZZLING WORLD would amount to dropping significant spoilers, so if you want to see what ostensibly non-scary insect I wrote a scary story about, pick up a copy of the anthology and dig into it.

I’ve been making my way through reading this one myself, and I am finding that it contains a fun and wildly varied array of stories about equally varied flora and fauna, alien and otherwise. At the end of each story, you’re already wondering what the next weird animal, plant, or combination of the two is going to be, and it keeps it moving.

Second, here’s a picture of the hardcover edition of Lovecraftiana: The Magazine of Eldrich Horror Omnibus #5, which came out in July. As you can see it’s a titanic tome, so big that it makes the first three volumes of Edward Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire look almost modest by comparison. It contains four 2020-2021 issues of the magazine, and thus contains a reprint of my story AFTER THE AFTER PARTY, which originally appeared in the 2021 Candlemas 2021 edition.

I gotta say this big volume looks nice as hell on the shelf, it’s pretty austere looking even on top of the stone-serious looking HPL there on the cover. And the inside layout is really nicely done as well.

So grab yourself a copy if you happened to miss the Candlemas 2021 issue, or even if you didn’t (I have heard people talking about actually collecting the big volumes because they look so substantial on the shelf).

And as I have mentioned here and elsewhere, I am slated to have two stories appear in Lovecraftiana next year; first up will be my Lovecraft Mythos story THE STUDY OF WORMS early in 2023, which is brimming with weird science, occult ritual, thrilling adventure, and blood. Then later in the year, my eschatological romantic dramedy SOMETHING MISSING will hit the shelves. That one takes place mostly in a suburban mom-and-pop restaurant and has a lot of stuff about metaphysics and hermeneutics in it. So get ready.

More on both of those and more coming soon, take care everyone!

SOMETHING MISSING on the way in Lovecraftiana in 2023

Hey everybody, M. here,

If you’ve been following my announcements here you might already know by now that early next year, my story THE STUDY OF WORMS will be appearing in the Candlemas issue of Lovecraftiana: The Magazine of Eldritch Horror. I am happy to say that I just signed a contract and now have another story slated to appear in Lovecraftiana later in the year. My story SOMETHING MISSING has been accepted for publication in the Lammas Eve issue, which should be out in the summer of 2023. I’m calling that story an “eschatological romantic dramedy.” More on what that entails later! And of course, if you want more of my Mythos mayhem while you’re waiting for these next two, don’t forget that you can still pick up my madcap Lovecraftian rom-com AFTER THE AFTER PARTY in the Lovecraftiana Omnibus #5.

INCREDIBLE art for PHARMAKON, PHARMAKON in the 2022 issue of Startling Stories

For those who have not yet seen it, I wanted to share this absolutely AMAZING illustration by award-winning artist Vincent Di Fate for my story in the new issue of Startling Stories. As you can see, it’s done in the style of the great Virgil Finlay, one of the most esteemed illustrators of the original pulp era. So if you want to see what this intense man-vs-monster showdown is all about, snag yourself a copy of the magazine in print or e-book format and give this one a read.

Art from the 2022 issue of Startling Stories, for the story “Pharmakon, Pharmakon” by M. Stern. Illustration by Vincent Di Fate.

And along with my off-planet adventure starring an offbeat investigator, PHARMAKON, PHARMAKON, you’ll find a mindblowing lineup of other brand new, pulse-pounding science fiction from John Shirley, Mike Chinn, Adrian Cole, and many more, not to mention more amazing original art, exclusive interviews, and some unearthed gems from the original pulp era. So grab yourself a copy today! Get into it! get startled!

Startling Stories #35 out now!

Hey everybody, M. here,

The 2022 issue of Startling Stories has arrived on planet Earth! I’m truly thrilled to be returning to the pages of Startling with my story PHARMAKON, PHARMAKON, about an off-beat, off-planet investigator tasked with tracking down the source of a bizarre mind-warping, space-bending malady that could endanger all human life on planet Rygiat, where magnetism flows like the wind.

It’s a fun story, chock full of the following: Action! Deduction! Aliens! Adventure! Weird machines! Good vibes! And as you can see from the BONKERS AMAZING cover below, you can expect plenty of other top-notch sci-fi scorchers in this issue as well:

I should have some more updates about this issue forthcoming, but don’t wait for me — grab a copy and get into it!

(And if you’re looking for something on the darker side after PHARMAKON, PHARMAKON’s dose of optimism, don’t forget to check out my tale of obsession, aesthetics, and buckets of bugs, A DAZZLING WORLD, in JayHenge Publishing‘s new xenobiology anthology, and my madcap Lovecraftian rom-com AFTER THE AFTER PARTY, recently reprinted in the Lovecraftiana Omnibus #5).

More to come soon, take care everybody!

A DAZZLING WORLD now out in Professor Feiff’s Compleat Pocket Guide to Xenobiology…

Hey everybody, M. here,

Happy to say that my new story A DAZZLING WORLD is now available in the new anthology from JayHenge Publishing, Professor Feiff’s Compleat Pocket Guide to Xenobiology for the Galactic Traveller on the Move. You can see the cover of the anthology below. Good stuff!

What can you expect from this archaically-titled tome? My story is a work of grim if colorful sci-fi horror about an insect not generally regarded as scary, and about the spirit of the Age of Reason giving birth to its obsessive obverse — I think? Check it out and judge for yourself!

And you can also dig the work of a wide array of other contemporary authors exploring weird flora and weird fauna from this planet and beyond — I haven’t checked out any of the other stories yet but I can only imagine there are some wild ones.

As I mentioned before, I am super excited to be appearing in a JayHenge anthology for the first time — I strongly encourage you to pick this one up right here, in whatever format you so desire and see what it’s all about.

Spent the wee hours of the morning wrestling with WordPress to make this post happen and now it’s time to get my day started. More news should be on the way soon, take care everyone!

Two new stories on the way!

Hey everybody, M. here,

It’s been a very busy and once again unremittingly hot week over here at M. Stern Headquarters, so I am just now sufficiently hydrated (mostly with coffee, but hey liquid is liquid as they say) and getting around to posting this update.

I’m happy to share that I got a couple of acceptances last month and now that the contracts are all signed I can spread the news. First off, my short story SONG TO… will be appearing in the upcoming cosmic horror anthology Strange Aeon: Hopeful Monsters, the third in a yearly series by MKeaton Presents.

And my short story A DAZZLING WORLD will be appearing in the Enlightenmentishly-titled anthology of weird flora and fauna forthcoming from JayHenge Publishing, Professor Feiff’s Compleat Pocket Guide to Xenobiology for the Galactic Traveller on the Move.

I’m thrilled to be in both of these and can’t wait for them to hit the shelves — more updates to come on these ones here (and over on Facebook) as things develop.

Take care everyone!

AFTER THE AFTER PARTY reprinted in Lovecraftiana Omnibus #5

Hey everybody, M. here,

Just a quick note to let everyone know that the new omnibus edition of Lovecraftiana: The Magazine of Eldritch Horror is now available on Amazon in paperback, e-book, and — for the truly hardcore lover of big books and weird tales — hardcover. This one collects four full issues from 2020 and 2021, and includes my ribald romp of a cosmically horrific rom-com AFTER THE AFTER PARTY. Snag yourself a copy over on Amazon; it’ll look good on the shelf next to all your other eldritch tomes, and give you a ton of Mythos madness and cosmic craziness to warp your mind with.

And since you’ve got Cthulhu on the brain right now, I should also mention that we’re slowly but sure creeping closer to my return to the pages of Lovecraftiana with a tale a bit different in tone from AFTER PARTY — my upcoming story THE STUDY OF WORMS, which is slated to appear early next year. It’s a story of weird science, elder gods, obsession, adventure in odd dimensions near and far, and a bunch of other mindbending goodness. Just you wait!

Anyway keep an eye out for that one and follow me on Facebook for more updates!


M. Stern slated to startle again in Startling Stories #35!

Hi everybody, M. here,

Just a quick update to let everyone know — I signed the contract the other day and I am thrilled to announce that I will be returning to the pages of Startling Stories for the next issue with my science fiction story titled PHARMAKON, PHARMAKON. As always I’m tempted to reveal way too much about this one but no! I’m keeping this zone as spoiler free as possible. Should have more information on the magazine for you here (and on Facebook) as it gets closer to go-time. Take care everyone!

New interview about beauty in horror up at Black Gate!

Hey everybody, M. here,

“Beautiful and Repulsive Butterflies: An Interview with M. Stern” now up at Black Gate. Photo by: H. Lindberg

What beauty is there to be found in the grisly, gross and gruesome world of horror? Author and editor S.E. Lindberg has been asking authors of weird horror, sword & sorcery and other sub-genres this question in an ongoing interview series published over at Black Gate, and I was recently honored with the opportunity to add my two cents.

It was a super fun question to kick around, and on top of digging into a bunch of my beautifully horrific favorites and trying to figure out what makes them tick, I also got a chance to go in-depth discussing one of the images in my story “Birth” which appears in Weirdbook #44. I hope the resulting interview makes for a fun read — check it out here!

I should also add that it is well worth your while to dig into the rest of the series for a range of unique takes on the topic, including perspectives from genre fiction mainstays like Darrell Schweitzer, John C. Hocking, and John R. Fultz.

Take care everyone!

Cosmic Horror Monthly #19 is here! (and other recent developments…)

Hey everybody, M. here,

Just a quick recap of what I’ve had going on lately. For those who have not yet seen this in all its print glory, I got my copy of Cosmic Horror Monthly #19 in the mail right as I was ringing in the New Year (which is to say, hiding in my apartment while the New Year happened around me).
As you can see from the picture, this is one damn fine looking slab of weirdness as promised, and I can verify that the ominously pulsating innards are just as impressive. Of course I’m biased and think you should pick it up for the sake of having a copy of my flash fiction tale of ghastly gourmands and suffering shoggoths, “The Singular,” immortalized in print. But there’s plenty more to recommend: this issue contains a hotly anticipated Laird Barron story featuring his Coleridge/Robard duo making their debut in a new, medieval, possibly post-apocalyptic, definitely gory segment of his multiverse, Geoff Gander‘s tale of an artist inspired all the way to madness by an artifact that demands sacrifice, a slice of classic-style esoteric weird fiction with a capital-W From Erik McHatton, flash fiction from Matt Bliss that infuses the Santa Mythos with the grim, eldritch horror of the Cthulhu Mythos, and more! So grab one of these if you haven’t — supplies are limited!

Two M. Stern Stories On Tangent’s 2021 Recommended Reading List
In other news, a week or two ago I was thrilled to receive word that I have two stories appearing on Tangent Online’s 2021 Recommended Reading List. Both “Payload” from Startling Stories #34 and “Birth” from Weirdbook #44 made the yearly list, which this year consists of 235 short stories, 53 novelettes, and 12 novellas selected by the critics at Tangent from the gazillions of genre fiction stories they read and reviewed throughout 2021. Much thanks to all those who dug the stories and congrats to everyone else who made the list!

Anyway that’s all I got right at the moment — follow me on Facebook for up-to-the-minute announcements, shenanigans, observations, and the occasional meme. And you can also sign up for my email list somewhere on this blog (and maybe some day I’ll actually start sending emails out to that list.)

Happy New Year and here’s wishing everyone well in the deuce-ought-double-deuce. Take care!