Manuscripts Burn


"Manuscripts don't burn"
- Mikhail Bulgakov

Hi, I'm horror and science fiction author Steve Kozeniewski (pronounced: "causin' ooze key.") Welcome to my blog! You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Amazon. You can e-mail me here, join my mailing list here, or request an e-autograph here. Free on this site you can listen to me recite one of my own short works, "The Thing Under the Bed."

Friday, July 21, 2017

Scares That Care Weekend IV or Bust!

Hey everybody!  If you're going to be in the Williamsburg, VA area this weekend, you absolutely need to stop by Scares that Care Weekend IV.  It's going to be packed with celebrities like Jeffrey Combs, the cast of "Friday the 13th," Joe Lansdale, and many more.  I'll also be there at a table with Steven Shrewsbury and I'll have all of my books available to sell.  And, most importantly of all, it's all for a good cause, with all the money the charity collects this weekend going to a burn victim, a breast cancer survivor, and a pediatric cancer survivor.  Hope to see you there!


Friday, Saturday, and Sunday July 21-23

Double Tree by Hilton
50 Kingsmill Road
Williamsburg, VA 23185

Saturday 9:45 pm - "This Is How We Do It: A Discussion on Self-Publishing" (M)
Sunday 11:15 am - Reading and Q&A with Ralph Bieber

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

RIP Romero

My reaction to George Romero's death this past Sunday has been subdued.  I didn't immediately jump on Facebook or Twitter to state my feelings.  I hope that hasn't given me the appearance of not caring.  I guess I've just been having difficulty putting words to my feelings and thoughts.

First of all, there's the usual basket of caveats which attend celebrity death: I didn't know the man personally, his work naturally lives on, it's difficult to sort the artist as a person away from his art.  But without delving into that rather shallow well of sewage which haters sometimes make us do when we lose a beloved celebrity, it's important for us as fans and creators in the zombie genre to acknowledge the man who literally, nearly single-handedly, created that genre.

There are few people we can say that about.  Neither King nor Lovecraft nor even Poe invented the horror genre.  Arthur Conan Doyle didn't invent the mystery.  But George Romero invented the zombie, in its modern form, practically out of whole cloth.

As authors we often dream of leaving an impact on the world.  We dream of success, sales, awards, name recognition.  In our wilder dreams we imagine being a titan like J.K. Rowling, Stephen King, or, yes, even Stephanie Meyer or E.L. James.  We may also even hope to do something new and memorable.  But it's very rare to imagine that we might create a genre ourselves.  J.R.R. Tolkien did it, perhaps.  Jules Verne maybe did it.  And George Romero did it.

The idea of the dead rising is as old as man itself.  But the zombie, the modern flesh-eating conception of it, is George Romero's.  His and his alone.  I owe him a debt.  So does Max Brooks, John Skipp, Mark Tufo, Lucio Fulci, Peter Jackson, Robert Kirkman, George R.R. Martin, Brian Keene, and everybody who's ever included a flesh-munching corpse in his book or movie.  That alone would be a contribution worth celebrating.  But George gave us more.

George gave us an eye for satire.  He gave us a political conscience.  He gave us independent filmmaking as it exists today.  He gave us terror and delight in equal portions.  Following in the footsteps of Herschell G. Lewis, he helped to bring us explicit gore in film.  He also gave us "Bruiser," which, the less said about, the better.  (But I like to think that's the kind of joke George would've appreciated - I would've left it out of this tribute if I didn't.)

George gave the world a lot, and, unfortunately, benefited from it very little financially.  It irked him, obviously, and I can only imagine how much it must irk to create something like the zombie and to midwife gore in cinema, and see so little return on it.  So, perhaps it's especially incumbent upon us to celebrate the man, to remember him, to venerate him.  He gave us a lot and got screwed a lot.  That seems to be the way of it.

And at the end of the day (and dawn and night) he gave us a monster.  He gave us a monster that we can project all of our modern-day fears onto.  He gave us a monster that will not go silent to the grave, literally or metaphorically.  I suspect a hundred or five hundred years from now the zombie will be seen as the definitive monster of our era, the same way we now look at the vampire as the definitive monster of medieval Eastern Europe or Frankenstein as the definitive monster of the 19th century.

So George will...well, he won't live on.  But he'll certainly have a life after death.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Episode 124 of The Horror Show With Brian Keene is dedicated to THE HEMATOPHAGES

Hey everybody!

While I was enjoying my lunch of Tom Yum mixed with chili (jealous?) a friend texted me and said he'd never heard an episode of "The Horror Show" dedicated to a single book before.  I wracked my brains and although one episode took a long look at Paul Tremblay's A HEAD FULL OF GHOSTS, I think, for the most part, he's right.

So I'm especially honored to have an entire episode of the world's premiere horror podcast devoted to my latest novel THE HEMATOPHAGES.  Take a listen.  I really think you'll enjoy it.

(If this embed isn't working for you, the direct link to Project Entertainment is here and The Horror Show website is here.  Oh, and you should probably give their FB page a like.)

Friday, July 7, 2017

Shore Leave 39 or Bust!

If you live in the Baltimore, MD area make sure to stop by Shore Leave 39 this weekend! Sci-fi author Mary Fan, fantasist Elizabeth Corrigan, and myself will have a table in the dealers room all weekend. Books are just $12 apiece or $10 apiece for more than one. I'll also be busy speaking at panels all weekend (see the schedule below for more.) Hope to see you there!


Friday, Saturday, and Sunday July 7-9


Hunt Valley Inn
245 Shawan Rd.
Hunt Valley, MD 21031

Friday 4:00 pm - Salon A - "Public Face on Social Media"
Friday 7:00 pm - Hunt - "If I Had a Publishing Empire" (M)
Saturday 11:00 am - Chase - "Your Writing or Your Life" (M)
Saturday 3:00 pm - Chase - "The Role of Science Fiction"
Sunday 12:00 noon - Chase "The Devil's in the Details"
Sunday 1:00 pm - Derby - "Chasing Our Tales" (M)
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