Following the events of Concrete Christmas, Slaughterdozer is out of commission and transported to a secret Globoshame facility where he can be studied and held securely captive. All of that will change when a wannabe actor and two-bit criminal, Chance McAlister, is forced to take a job with one of Charles Busk’s companies to pay penance for attempting to rob his distant in-law. Chance never anticipated he’d be coming face-to-face with a monster of living concrete or that his coworkers would be grade-A douchebags, but life works out that way for him. Seeing The Doze from a different perspective, that of a relatively innocent bystander with no love lost for Globoshame or its CEO, Charles Busk, Stepek provides readers with a glimpse of just how inhuman Slaughterdozer appears from the outside–and how human he can still be. Will The Doze escape from his confinement? Will McAlister work off his debt to Globoshame? Will you just read the damn story and find out for yourself?
You can pick up Stalk of Shame and the other Godless League titles by going to http://www.godless.com or by downloading the Godless app to your mobile device of choice. The link is below:
Our second installment of The Doze cements the character as the Godless League answer to The Hulk or The Thing. Much like those two Marvel Comics characters, The Doze is a tragic figure, transformed into a monster through no fault of his own, plagued and motivated by loss and betrayal. Seeking vengeance against the man who manipulated him and took advantage of his illiteracy, ultimately destroying his family, The Doze sees an opportunity with the Christmas parade celebrating the new Globoshame development that’s arisen where his home used to be. As Stepek splashes the pages with blood and concrete, with over-the-top carnage, we find ourselves thrilled that The Doze might finally achieve the revenge he deserves. Unfortunately, he’s not the only one with some surprises in store, and Stepek leaves us with a cliffhanger ending that will surely leave readers waiting with tingles of anticipation to see where he takes us next. As with the five previous Godless League installments, I can’t help but find myself wishing that Stepek, Baltisberger, and Leitner will find a comic book artist capable of converting these tales into one giant graphic novel. It would be amazing to see these tales on display in the format most fitting, possibly even finding a new audience in the process.
The second installment of The Doze series was released as part of the AntiChristmas event at http://www.godless.com for December of 2021. You can pick it up for yourself by going to the website or by downloading the Godless app to your mobile device of choice. The link is below:
There was no doubt that Ryan Harding would bring the first Fucking Scumbags Burn In Hell season to one Hell of a conclusion. But the way Harding expertly ties it all together, bringing us around full circle, defies even the most liberal expectations. The story of Agent John Kessler, celebrity FBI profiler, is a fascinating and convoluted one. The Profile isn’t solely a story about Kessler, though. It’s the tale of an insidious serial murderer we’ll refer to as The Usurper. Of course, it’s also a story about Sonny Hooper. It would hardly be the Hoopiverse without Hoop making an appearance. I can’t say anything more. As much as I’d love to dive into this and provide a more detailed description of the things I loved about this installment–and there is an awful lot–I have to keep my mouth shut because I don’t want to ruin the fun for anyone else. I will say that the conclusion of this story is one Hell of a captivating, edge-of-the-seat sequence that will leave the reader breathless and dizzy–desperate for more. Thankfully, we have season two to look forward to, and the paperback collecting the whole of season one–including an additional bit of icing on the cake from Drew Stepek himself and an introduction from the always spectacular Rayne Havok. It’s worth mentioning, of course, that Harding didn’t create this in isolation. None of these phenomenal authors contributing to the Hoopiverse did so without the guidance and tutelage of the maestro, Drew Stepek. As outstanding members of the orchestra, they each brought their own flair and their distinct characters to the page, telling us the stories they developed. Like Hooper himself, Drew worked behind the scenes to help everyone bring the individual scumbags to their fitting conclusions, setting the stage for everything that was to come. I suppose, in the end, we should all just call him Hoop.
This final volume of the first season was released as part of the AntiChristmas event at http://www.godless.com and you can pick it up for yourself by going to the website or by downloading the app to your mobile device of choice. The link is below:
Amy is a spoiled, entitled, petty, and manipulative monster of a woman. It seems only fitting that she’d find her way into the Hoopiverse with Dani Brown’s The Scratching Post. Arguably the worst quality Amy displays is her solipsism. Her inability to recognize other people as independent, separate beings with perspectives that aren’t her own, manifests in a sort of delusionally cynical outlook and a lack of object permanence. For Amy, other people are only ever motivated by the same things that motivate her. That viewpoint might be less pronounced if she didn’t also surround herself with vapid, terrible people who only serve to reinforce the way she sees things. Thus, if everyone is motivated by the same things, it’s altogether too easy for Amy to see others as nothing more than playthings to be used for her perverse amusement. For years, Amy got away with being a god-awful person, catered to by her mourning parents and pandered to by her social circle, but then Hoop moves in next door. As Amy’s carefully constructed world of gaslighting and self-deception crumbles around her, there’s no way a reader won’t take pleasure in the revolting and nefariously appropriate comeuppance she experiences. Dani Brown brings her deliciously wicked and vile imagination to the table in bringing to life what has to be one of the most disgusting miasmas a reader can imagine. You’d be hard-pressed not to smell hints of the corruption wafting from the screen as you read the descriptions she provides. Like the other installments in the Hoopiverse, we get to witness Hooper forcing empathy onto the monstrous people he sets his sights on. While it isn’t true empathy, being subjected to the experiences of those they’ve hurt, it’s a befitting analog that serves the purpose of showing these hideous men and women the harm they’ve caused in the only way they’ll understand, when it’s hurting them. You’ve got to hit the sociopath where it hurts, and Hooper’s got the skills that pay the bills.
You can pick up The Scratching Post as well as the previous installments in the Fucking Scumbags series by going to http://www.godless.com or by downloading the Godless app to your mobile device. The first season of tales is soon to be collected in a single paperback release if you prefer to wait for a physical book to love and caress with your nasty fingertips, but I recommend picking these up in the meantime. The link is below:
The Trap House provides us with a story of squandered potential, pissed away by an inconsiderate jackass. We’ve all known people who peaked in high school–or sooner–who never evolve past that point, and who can’t seem to recognize that the rest of the world has moved on around them. Get ready to see that taken to an extreme. Lil Snap was seemingly a golden child, with a great future ahead of him, until he tripped over his own ego and shit the bed in a spectacularly public display of ignorance and bigotry. Of course, one can never be too sure just how accurate that recollection is, seeing as how the character is a selfish psychopath with delusions of grandeur. With everyone turning their backs on him out of self-preservation and dignity, an embarrassing altercation in a check-out lane shatters the last vestiges of humanity in the vile cretin. Enter Hooper, with a deal that’s too good to be true. For someone accustomed to expecting everything handed to them, there’s no consideration that it can’t be that easy. The punishment in this installment is one I didn’t see coming until it had already been enacted. It’s become a thrill, trying to figure out from the narrative which direction the comeuppance will take, but this one hit me out of the blue, even though the clues were there.
The Trap House is Drew Stepek’s contribution to the 31 Days of Godless event at http://www.godless.com, released on his birthday of October 21st. You can pick it up for yourself by going to the website or downloading the app. The link is below:
Peter Caffrey brings us a new tale of scumbaggery, and with it, a new glimpse of what Hooper is capable of in Freak Fuck. We meet Doctor Oliver/Doctor Fairweather just as he’s transitioning from one name to another, setting up shop in a new country. Our fly-by-night plastic surgeon dedicates his life to preying on the insecure and vulnerable, promising beauty and restoration of youth, only to take whatever he can swindle from his prospective clients/patients. As the story progresses, we discover that the good doctor has a great many unsavory and horrific appetites, the greatest of which being his desire to experiment on unwilling subjects, crafting monstrous perversions of natural, human beauty. When his accomplice nurse fails to arrive for work, Nurse Hooper arrives in just the nick of time, ready and willing to aid the man in his larceny and misdeeds. This is not the Hooper we’ve come to expect, and, arriving on scene as Hooper does, it sets a whole different tone to the interactions between scumbag and arbiter, showcasing Hooper as one who can adapt to whatever the circumstances require. Caffrey’s addition to the Hoopiverse brings us one of the more extreme and vile scumbags we’ve had the pleasure of seeing meet his fate, and Hooper seems to be a bit more hands-on in the application of judgment this time around. I wasn’t sure how this one would play out, and there were so many directions it could go, but Caffrey provides us with quite the unsettling, yet one of the most well-deserved punishments so far in the series.
This installment of the Fucking Scumbags series was released as part of the http://www.godless.com 31 Days of Godless event. You can procure this–and the other installments–by going to the website or by downloading the app to your mobile device of choice. The link is below:
Hell Week introduces us to Tailor, President of the Sigma House fraternity, just as he’s about to cross a line from which he’ll never come back. Let’s face it, though, Tailor was an irredeemable and monumental piece of shit long before he ever approached the line he’s careening toward. You’re sure to feel just like I do, thinking Hoop can’t show up fast enough. Tailor and his inner circle of fraternity brothers pride themselves on degrading women in every conceivable way, but they appear to especially enjoy drugging and raping impressionable and insecure younger girls from their college. Alone with Nicole/Melanie/Pig Dolphin as she’s rapidly losing consciousness, Tailor discovers that taking everything up a notch might be the only way he’ll be able to get off this time. Already a monster, he doesn’t flinch as he passes the point of no return, in the process, destroying multiple additional lives with casual cruelty and disregard for anything approaching humanity. This kid should have been on Hoop’s radar for a long time before the events of Hell Week. Spoiled, narcissistic, cold-blooded, and lazy, the best that can be said about Tailor is that he’s apparently handsome and that he comes from wealth. Thankfully, with Hoop’s intervention, Tailor manages to do something good, unintentionally taking out the trash as he receives his comeuppance. Lewis Kelly is a new name for me, as I’m sure he is for many of you, but his is a name you’ll want to be watching for. I do not doubt that we’ll be seeing a lot of good material coming from this up-and-coming writer. Hell Week is a worthy addition to the Hoopiverse, and Lewis is a worthy author to have been included.
This title is available September 15th, 2021 on http://www.godless.com or through the Godless app, available on your preferred mobile platform. The link is below:
If like me, of the two major vampire films released in 1987, you prefer the Kathryn Bigelow directed Near Dark over Joel Schumacher’s The Lost Boys, Knuckle Supper is the vampire novel for you. The Lost Boys may have had the audience and the soundtrack, but Near Dark had the brutality, originality, and grittiness that befitted the monsters at the heart of the story. Knuckle Supper carries that tradition into 21st-century horror literature. Stepek writes vampires the way one might expect from someone who wants to take the monsters back from the L. J. Smiths and Stephenie Meyers of the world, restoring them to the darkness and underground where they belong. It’s difficult for me to describe what he’s put together in these pages that race past the reader at a rapid-fire pace. Knuckle Supper is, in effect, Anne Rice meets Irvine Welsh, Near Dark meets Requiem for a Dream, and a little bit The Warriors meets 30 Days of Night. If that doesn’t intrigue you, I honestly don’t know how else I can try to describe it without just reading the book to you, and we know I’m not going to do that. We meet RJ and Dez as they’re preparing to murder a pimp in the home they’re squatting in, a steadily depreciating house once belonging to a former child star turned heroin addict. RJ, Dez, and the rest of the Knucklers aren’t your typical Hollywood vampires, even though they live in Los Angeles. Blood isn’t their only addiction. They need heroin to survive. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as spiking a needle into their veins to get their fix. They need blood to carry the high into their starving, desiccated internal organs. Enter the pimp they’re about to have for supper. The (almost) 13-year-old prostitute carelessly tossed into the bathroom is all but forgotten as RJ and Dez make a mess of the place in their desperate chase for a fix. Against his better judgment, and displaying more humanity than his peers, RJ decides not to kill the young girl. This act of uncharacteristic decency is how Bait becomes part of his family. It’s also how everything begins to spiral out of control, ultimately bringing RJ face-to-face with The Cloth, an organization he’d dismissed as nothing but a vampire’s boogeyman, and the painful truth at the core of what RJ actually is. Drew Stepek introduces readers to a Los Angeles populated by a different sort of gang, consisting of a wholly different kind of gangster from what we’ve become familiar with from popular culture. The city is divided up between tenuously allied gangs of vampires, each feeding and dealing on their own turf. Brutal, far from immortal, and impulsive, Stepek’s vampires are prone to massive errors in judgment, and it’s only a matter of time before the flimsy alliances fracture and violence ensues. There’s more to this story than drug addiction and graphic violence, though there’s plenty of both. There’s also a depth and character to this story that underscores the superficial, splattery elements of the narrative.
You can obtain a copy of Knuckle Supper as well as the sequel, Knuckle Balled, by going to http://www.godless.com or by downloading the Godless app to your preferred mobile device: The link to this title on both Godless and Amazon are below:
The Doze takes the unrelenting violence and satisfying splash of gore and viscera from the previous two Godless League installments and runs headlong into a concrete wall with it. Of course, this concrete is the fluid manifestation of Jack Slaughterdozer. If you’re trying to figure out just what sort of superhero The Doze might be, think a little bit Sandman, a little bit Green Lantern, maybe a touch of Venom, and a whole lot of Hulk–plus just a smidge of Lennie Small, for those who read Of Mice and Men. The Doze can transform himself from an already dangerous man into a giant formed of living concrete, able to transform himself into seemingly anything he can imagine–and his imagination for causing damage is virtually unlimited. When assholes from Construction Mercenary Union Local 222 show up to demolish Slaughterdozer’s home in the landfill on behalf of Globoshame Construction Corporation, all hell breaks loose in the most graphic, over-the-top manner one could imagine. I’m pro-union, but these guys deserve what’s coming to them. Running counter to the excessive violence and concrete climax, there’s a story of tragedy and pain, with the loss of Slaughterdozer’s family and the painful cost of illiteracy. Stepek takes readers on a rollercoaster of highs and lows that shouldn’t even be possible within such a short tale, but he guides us masterfully through the loops and whirls, and we reach the end exhausted and fighting back tears.
You can pick up The Doze, as well as the other Godless League titles, by going to http://www.godless.com or by downloading the Godless app on your mobile device. The link is below:
If you haven’t already heard about May Cause Unexplained Ocular Bleeding, this post is for you. If you’ve heard about my new book, but you don’t know whether it’s something you’re interested in, this post is also for you. Essentially, this post is for anyone and everyone. Tomorrow morning, August 18th, my second collection of short fiction becomes available in digital formats at http://www.godless.com for the low price of $2.99, which is $1 cheaper than it’ll be in digital format when it goes live on Amazon on Friday, August 20th. It will also be available in paperback on August 20th for the low price of only $8.99. Check out this cover, designed by the fantastic Drew Stepek.
That design alone should be enough to whet your appetite. If you’re one of those style over substance sorts, that cover layout should be all it takes to convince you that you need this in your collection. Of course, you’re in for more than a fancy-looking cover when you pick up a copy of this book. Not only does this collection include the sleeper hit, Horseplay, from Godless, but it contains nine additional short stories that are sure to make my readers uncomfortable as often as it entertains them. Not only that, but I have made certain to include a brief note that details the inspiration behind each of these tales of terror and tribulation. Some of these notes are more worthwhile than others, but I wanted you–my readers–to know me a little better when you came out of the experience than you might have on your way in. Here’s the description from the back cover of the paperback edition:
I didn’t know how to react when Carver Pike provided me with what I must admit is likely to be the best blurb I could ever hope to receive. Any comparison to a writer of Gaiman’s caliber is going to be flattering–and also impossible to live up to. I’m going to hope that I don’t let my readers down when I turn out to be nowhere near the author Neil Gaiman happens to be. Adrian Ludens not only provided a fantastic blurb, but his keen eyes also caught little bits and pieces of editing that had slipped through the cracks along the way. After staring at the same stories for so long, one becomes inured to faults and flaws that might ruin the tone of a story. It’s a sort of editing blindness that creeps in and destroys otherwise fantastic manuscripts. Had it not been for Mr. Ludens taking the time to read the stories with a critical eye, I might have missed a handful of mismatched tenses and incorrect words.
You can, of course, purchase this title from http://www.godless.com or through the Godless app tomorrow. The link is below:
You can also hold out until Friday the 20th, to pick up a copy at the following link on http://www.amazon.com