Brian James Freeman

Author, Editor, Publisher

Author: Brian James Freeman (page 1 of 36)

New Halloween Carnival Series Page On Amazon!

I’m very pleased to report Amazon has also added a “series page” for the Halloween Carnival series to make it easier for you to find all of the books and see which ones you have and don’t have! Click on the image below to visit the page:

New Dark Screams Series Page On Amazon!

As you might recall, Richard Chizmar and I joined forces with the cutting edge team at Hydra, a division of Random House, to produce ten eBook volumes in our acclaimed Dark Screams horror eBook anthology series. Each volume collects stories by the best authors working in the business today and I’m pleased to report Amazon has added a “series page” for the Dark Screams series to make it easier for you to find all of the books and see which ones you have and don’t have! Click on the image below to visit the page:

Coming Soon! Czech edition of THE HALLOWEEN CHILDREN!

Later this month, Carcosa will be publishing a new hardcover edition of The Halloween Children for the Czech market! This was my first collaboration, with good friend and incredible writer Norman Prentiss, and this will be Carcosa’s first-ever hardcover AND it’s also the debut title in their new Halloween series! They loved Vincent Chong’s cover from the US trade hardcover so much that they licensed it for their market as well:

Just a general reminder, my Level 7 supporters on Patreon will automatically receive a signed copy of this new foreign edition whenever I receive my contributor copies. (I’ll be asking Norman to sign them, too!)

First Photos of PATREON STORIES: VOLUME ONE

Shipping later this month to qualifying supporters on Patreon will be an exclusive short story collection, Patreon Stories: Volume One, and here are my first photos of the signed trade paperback edition! I’ll post photos of the signed Limited Edition hardcover as soon as I have those, too.


Please visit my Patreon page to learn about the different rewards I’m publishing exclusively for my supporters. I’d love to see you there!

Thank you, as always, for your continuing support!

Read “A Mother’s Love” by Brian James Freeman Today!

A Mother's Love

This was one of the original stories I wrote just for Walking With Ghosts, but I also ended up sending it to Lilja for his Shining in the Dark anthology because I couldn’t say “no” to being part of that line-up and I had nothing else ready. The story has now been translated into 6 or 7 languages for other markets thanks to Lilja’s anthology, and seeing your name and story in another language never gets old (at least to me!).

“A Mother’s Love” can be read over on Patreon where readers can access more than a dozen of my stories immediately for a pledge of just $1 or more.

Please visit my Patreon page to learn about the different rewards I’m publishing exclusively for my supporters. I’d love to see you there!

Thank you, as always, for your continuing support!

Walking With Ghosts reviewed by Hellnotes!

Walking With Ghosts, my first full-length short story collection recently published by the amazing folks at PS Publishing, has now been reviewed by Mario Guslandi over at Hellnotes. Here is a small preview of this very good review:

Brian James Freeman is a well respected author of short stories in the field of dark fiction. His specialty is what we used to call “quiet horror”(the master of which was Charles L. Grant), meaning a type of horror fiction where the reader is disturbed and unsettled in a gentle, but deep fashion, without making use of gore, unnecessary violence, and graphic details. The exact opposite of so-called “splatterpunk” but, in the end, much more effective in producing shivers and fright… [These stories] are very good. So good that it’s hard to pinpoint the more accomplished, being impossible to comment in detail upon each one… A highly recommended collection.

This is just a small taste, and Mario takes the time to comment on many of the stories. If you still haven’t picked up a copy, please check out the review!

(Reminder: my  “Level 6” and “Level 7” supporters on Patreon will automatically receive both editions of Walking With Ghosts from my personal copies as soon as I have them!)

Please read more or place your order on the PS Publishing website!

Read “The Temperament of An Artist” by Brian James Freeman Today!

The Temperament of An Artist

“The Temperament of an Artist” is an extremely early story of mine, written in middle school and sent out on submission without any revisions because I was a young idiot who just couldn’t wait to mail a new story to the editors I found in the Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market. Sigh. I still owe a lot of them apology letters for sending them so many bad stories those summers when school was out.

Most of what I published in the 1990s is dead and buried in a folder on my computer for good reason, but at the time I was just having fun and trying to sell short stories like my literary heroes.

“The Temperament of an Artist” was the second story of mine to see print, published in a little paper zine in 1995 that doesn’t even seem to have existed if you search the web for information now.

I revised the manuscript a few times in high school and college, but still, I was surprised to like this one as much as I did when I opened the dreaded “old stuff” folder while considering the contents for Walking With Ghosts.

It’s not great, but it’s kind of fun, I think. Especially if you put yourself into the head of the wildly optimistic thirteen-year-old kid who wrote it while believing his work could set the world aflame.

“The Temperament of an Artist” can be read over on Patreon where readers can access more than a dozen of my stories immediately for a pledge of just $1 or more.

Please visit my Patreon page to learn about the different rewards I’m publishing exclusively for my supporters. I’d love to see you there!

become a patron

Thank you, as always, for your continuing support!

Walking With Ghosts — First Copy From the UK Has Arrived!

Walking With Ghostsmy first full-length short story collection, is being published by the amazing folks at PS Publishing and my first copy arrived this past week. Here are a few  photos I took very quickly the other day of this beautiful book they’ve produced:

(Reminder: my  “Level 6” and “Level 7” supporters on Patreon will automatically receive both editions of this book from my personal copies!)

Please read more on the PS Publishing website!

READING STEPHEN KING to be published by Independent Legions in Italy!

Good news on the foreign rights front: a translated edition of READING STEPHEN KING will be published in Italy by Independent Legions in late October 2018!

Here is the Preorder Link and you can see the awesome cover right here:

Rejections SUCK! (Update on Cemetery Dance magazine submissions)


This is part meditation on the publishing business, part update for the authors who currently have stories under consideration for Cemetery Dance magazine, and at the end is a mea culpa.

We received 1,750 submissions this summer to fill 20 or maybe 25 slots in upcoming issues of Cemetery Dance magazine.

Approximately 50% of the stories have been read once, 25% have been read twice, and 25% have been read at least three times. Our goal is to have at least three members of our trusted first-reader team read each story before making any decisions about where the story goes next.

That said, you probably noticed above how many submissions there are for so few slots, right?

In this situation, there are always very good stories an editor has to pass on because you simply don’t have room. There will even be some GREAT stories you have to pass on because they aren’t quite right for your readership (wrong genre, etc) or for other reasons that might sound stupid to the author (already bought something too similar in theme, storyline, etc).

Ultimately, you buy the stories that hit you the hardest (in the gut, the heart, the head), were effortless to read (pulled you in from the first line and carried you through to the ending as if walking through a dream), AND also work best for your target market.

What this means is: I’ll be sending rejections to 1,725 or so authors who sent their very best work and have their fingers crossed that the work will spark a fire for us. I have to say: “Sorry, this isn’t for us.”

From watching Facebook, Twitter, and other places, I know most of the authors whose current submissions didn’t make the cut are taking it in stride and often with good humor. That’s the perfect attitude and I have to admit it took me a while as a writer to get there. Every rejection felt extremely personal to me in the beginning.

For those who do still take a story rejection personally, I completely understand. You worked hard on that story! I try to remind writers that a story rejection is not personal. It’s not a criticism of your writing ability or you as a person. There are simply so many good stories and so few slots. If you keep writing and pounding on doors (or forging your own way to reach readers, but that’s a topic for another day), you’ll get where you want to go in time.

So, we all know form rejection letters SUCK. Yet, you cannot send 1,725 personal replies. You’ll never get anything else done. But some kind of rejection letter is necessary, so the author can close out the file on the submission and target the next available market. (All while hopefully grinding away at the next story, too. Remember Alec Baldwin’s ABCs: Always. Be. Creative-writing.)

Last night it was time to send the first rejections for this batch of submissions and I decided to try to transform our standard rejection note into something at least a little more encouraging:

Dear [Author],

Thank you for sending us “STORY TITLE” for consideration.

We appreciate the opportunity to read your work, but unfortunately this one isn’t for us.

Please note we received more than 1,750 submissions for approximately 20 slots, which means a lot of very, very good stories are not making the cut. (There are even some great stories that just aren’t right for our market.)

Please keep on writing, revising, and submitting to the very best markets you can find. It can be an arduous journey, but a fulfilling and rewarding one as well. And with each new story you write, you’re honing your craft. No effort at your writing desk is ever wasted.

We wish you the very best of luck with your work.

I’m not an inspirational writer and that’s the best I could come up with on short notice, but I felt it was at least a little better than a cold, sterile “not for us, sorry” message.

Unfortunately, when I was rejecting a group of stories, the system glitched — or I glitched — and some authors were sent the letter two or three times. Or maybe more. Sigh.

Dammit and dammit were my first two thoughts when I realized what happened. And then I followed that up with another dammit for good measure.

That said, most of the authors who responded to the multiple messages handled the situation with a good dose of humor and grace IF they mentioned it at all.

There was also this guy:

Hey, I cannot blame that reaction. I’ve been there, although I try really hard to walk away from the keyboard and think about whether that sort of reply is how I want someone to remember my name in the future. (I’m much better at this than when I was a kid and I still feel dumb for all of the time spent BROODING over rejections when I was younger.)

My hope is that anyone else who also received multiple copies of the letter last night will take heart in knowing their story was read and considered seriously, we don’t enjoy sending rejection letters, and we especially didn’t mean to “rub it in” that a story didn’t make the cut.

My apologies go out to any authors who were extra bummed about the notification when it just kept showing up in their inbox like some kind of zombie rejection email rising from the grave. I can definitely imagine how annoying it would be for that same message  to just… keep… coming.

For those still waiting for an answer on this year’s submissions, we’re moving forward as fast as we can while still seriously considering each and every story. The process will take some time. If your story sells elsewhere in the meantime, please let us know. We’ll congratulate you and kick ourselves for not reading it sooner!

If your story doesn’t make the cut this time, please keep writing, keep revising, and keep pushing your work forward.

Best wishes,
Brian James Freeman
Cemetery Dance Publications

P.S. I should also apologize to my mother-in-law, who is the sweetest lady in the world and always hated when her kids used the word “sucks.” Sorry, Dori!

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