New release from William Cook – Blood Related + #FREE #BOOK

New release from William Cook – Blood Related + #FREE #BOOK

Hi everyone  – hope all is well with you and life is going swimmingly. I have some exciting news to share today. Finally, the redux version of my debut novel, Blood Related, is available in both print and EBook exclusively through Amazon (U.S. & U.K. links below). After getting the rights back from my previous publisher I decided to self-publish through my imprint, King Billy Publications. With much research and debate I decided to go for it! I had it professionally edited and formatted, I cut and trimmed and shaped it, into a more fast-paced, tension-filled, thriller novel. I am very happy with the results and hope you guys will like it too. If you’re uncertain, check out the free preview on Amazon to get a taste for the novel. Hopefully you’ll enjoy it enough to leave a review which would be a great help (wink, wink). I have set the price low for the first month on Amazon ($2.99 – Kindle, $12.99 – Amazon print) so get in quick before it goes up at the end of August.


I have had the good fortune to receive some fantastic blurbs/reviews from some of the leading authors in the Horror and Thriller genres. This is what Graham Masterton, best-selling author of The Manitou and The House That Jack Built, says about Blood Related: “William Cook tells a gruesome story with a sense of authenticity that makes you question with considerable unease if it really is fiction, after all.” Joe McKinney is another best-selling author who read Blood Related and offered this fantastic blurb: “This man is simply scary. There is both a clinical thoroughness and a heartfelt emotional thoroughness to his writing. He manages to shock as well as empathize, to scare as well as acclimatize, yet beneath it all is a well read intelligence that demands to be engaged. I loved Blood Related. Ordinarily I hate serial killer stories, but William Cook won me over. He is a unique and innovative talent.” 

 bloodRelated ebook

Here is the blurb and the new links for the book. Remember if you get in quickly you can get the book now at the discounted cost before it goes up end of August:
For over two decades, Detective Ray Truman has been searching for the killer or killers who have terrorized Portvale. Headless corpses, their bodies mutilated and posed, have been turning up all over the industrial district near the docks. The remains of young female prostitutes have been the killer’s victims of choice, but now other districts are reporting the gruesome discovery of decapitated bodies. It seems the killer has expanded his territory as more ‘nice girls’ feel the wrath of his terrible rage. This horrifically disturbing tale of a family tree of evil will embed itself in the mind of the reader, long after the last page has been turned. A crime thriller in the vein of other power-packed thrillers like Thomas Harris’s ‘Silence of the Lambs’ and James Ellroy’s ‘Killer on the Road.’

Meet the Cunninghams . . .
A family bound by evil and the blood they have spilled. The large lodging-house they live in and operate on Artaud Avenue reeks of death and the sins that remain trapped beneath the floorboards.

Meet Caleb Cunningham . . .
Caleb is a disturbed young man whose violent father is a suspected serial killer and mother, an insane alcoholic. After his Father’s suicide, Cunningham’s disturbing fantasy-life becomes reality as he begins his killing spree in earnest. His identical twin brother Charlie is to be released from an asylum and all hell is about to break loose when the brothers combine their psychopathic talents. Eventually stepping out from the shadows of his murderous forebears, Caleb puts in motion his own diabolical plan to reveal himself and his ‘art’ to the world. He’s a true aesthete. An artist of death. His various ‘installations’ have not received the status he feels they deserve, so Caleb is expanding his ‘canvas.’

Meet Ray Truman . . .
A tragic cop whose personal demons won’t let him rest. Overworked and underpaid, Truman is tenacious as a pit-bull. He won’t rest ‘til he’s brought to justice Portvale’s infamous serial killer. His battle with his own demons gives him the strength to chase the shadows and to cut corners when necessary, as he embarks on the hunt of his life. His search leads him to the Cunningham’s house of horrors. What he finds there will ultimately lead him to regret ever meeting Caleb Cunningham and the deviant family that spawned him. The hunter becomes the hunted as Truman digs deeper into the abyss that is the horrifying mind of the most dangerous psychopath he has ever met.
Warning: R18+ contains adult content + graphic violence & psychological horror.

bloodRelated Master







Did you grab your copy? Great (and thank you).

Anyway, in other news, I have just lined up the next mob of authors for my popular interview series – ‘Secrets of Best-Selling Self-Published Authors.’* The first series, including authors: Matt Shaw, April M Reign, Mark Edward Hall, Russell Blake, William Malmborg, Matt Drabble and Michaelbrent Collings, was such a hit that I will continue it for as long as there are best-selling self-published authors out there (long may it last). As a result of the success of the first series I have edited and compiled the interviews into a book that will be released early August. Along with the original interviews, there is a significant essay written by myself and in-depth analysis of each author’s tips and their individual success stories. This book is essential reading for any author who is thinking about venturing into self-publishing and for self-published authors who are looking to lift their game and increase their sales and online presence. It will also be of interest to fans of these authors and anyone interested in the process of writing and/or self-publishing. Check out the interviews here and stay tuned for the opportunity to pre-order on Amazon. The new line-up of best-selling self-published interviews, includes the following fantastic writers: David Moody, Iain Rob Wright, Armand Rosamilia, Michale Bunker, J Thorn, Jeremy Bates, Michael Bray and Michael Thomas. The next run (yes, there will be more) I hope to bring you more successful female self-published authors.

*Personal invitation: if you are a best-selling (paid, not free rankings) self-published author and would like to be part of this project, please leave a comment below or email me here.


Thanks again for reading my blog/website and I hope you take advantage of the various things on offer today. If you haven’t subscribed already to this site, please do so now and receive a FREE copy of my popular collection of macabre tales, ‘Dreams of Thanatos.’ Just click on the image below or click this link here.

Book Insert

As a final bonus, here’s another freebie for you. Have a great week.



Fast Train To Hell . . .
From the belly of the swamp issues forth a visit in the middle of the night from a force as dark and unimaginable as hell itself. Poor pig-farmer Abel Laroux, must battle the demons of his past as well as the nightmarish reality of the present, as he confronts a devilish visitor who has come to collect on an outstanding debt, inherited by Abel from his forefathers.
Bonus Features: Includes an excerpt from the author’s novel, ‘Blood Related’ + the long poem ‘The Temper of The Tide’, in its entirety.
Warning: contains adult content + themes of supernatural & psychological horror.


Until next time.


#Amazon#FREEKINDLE  #Horror  #Kindle  #mystery  #novel#psychologicalthriller  #thriller  #ThrillerNovel  @Amazon, Amazon, Blood Related, Secrets of Best-Selling Self-Published Authors,


New ‘My Books’ page and update


Hi everyone – time to update my publications page/s. I have recently added a My Books page where you can easily find a display of all my current titles. I will update this page as more come to hand. I am also preparing a new page especially regarding all the anthologies and magazines where my work has appeared (will do a new post when it is ready to go live). Both pages will have live links and excerpts to make it easy for anyone who wants to check out my work. A heart-felt thanks to all of those who have taken the time to read this website/blog and especially to those of you who have taken a chance on a newbie author and actually purchased my work. If you have read something you like please spare a moment and drop a review on the appropriate Amazon page – it really helps a lot to raise my profile and encourages me greatly to continue this crazy occupation and produce more work for you to read. Thanks again.

William Cook


“Dark and deeply disturbing.”
– Jonathan Nasaw, author of Fear Itself and The Girls He Adored.

“Blood Related is a nasty but nuanced take on the serial killer genre. Cook’s bruising tale of twin psychopaths who are as cold as mortuary slabs is not for the weak-kneed.”
– Laird Barron, author of Occultation and The Imago Sequence.

“A thought-provoking thriller.”
– Guy N Smith, author of Night of The Crabs and Deadbeat.

“Great – Riveting – Amazing – take your pick. I just read William Cook’s Blood Related for the second time. Both readings were followed with one thought, Wow. A horrific crime-filled tale of terror that makes us understand why we lock our doors at night, Blood Related is by far the best read I’ve experienced in years.”
– John Paul Allen, author of Monkey Love and Gifted Trust

“Blood Related is a terrifying psychological thriller. William Cook is an author to watch.” 
– Mark Edward Hall, author of The Lost Village and The Holocaust Opera.

“William Cook makes serial killer fiction exciting again! Expert narrative, bursting with flare, originality, and enough passion and brutality that even a real-life serial killer will love this book . . . and it’s twisted and complex enough to make you question your own sanity after the first intense read.”
– Nicholas Grabowsky, best-selling author of Halloween IV and Everborn.

About Blood Related

A novel of 383 pages.

Meet the Cunninghams . . . A family bound by evil and the blood they have spilled.

Meet Caleb Samael Cunningham, a diabolical serial-killer with an inherited psychopathology, passed down via a blood-soaked genealogy. Caleb is a disturbed young man whose violent father is a suspected serial killer and mother, an insane alcoholic. After his Father’s suicide, Cunningham’s disturbing fantasy-life becomes reality, as he begins his killing spree in earnest. His identical twin brother Charlie is to be released from an asylum and all hell is about to break loose, when the brothers combine their deviant talents.

Semi-finalist in The Kindle Book Reviews – Indie Book of the Year 2012 – Mystery/Thriller category.




About Dreams of Thanatos

DREAMS OF THANATOS: Collected Macabre Tales

Dreams of Thanatos is a collection of macabre short fiction from William Cook, the author of the novel Blood Related. Demons, murderers and ghosts roam these pages although the most horrifying aspect Cook describes, is the dark soul of humanity. Whether writing about the horrors of modern life, or things that go ‘bump in the night,’ Cook’s writing is always “intense” and often “visceral” in his portrayal of the macabre. Included in this collection of fifteen stories is a novelette (Dead and Buried) and the origin story (Legacy: The Eternal Now and Thereafter) behind the novel, Blood Related. 


“This man is simply scary. There is both a clinical thoroughness and a heartfelt emotional thoroughness to his writing. He manages to shock as well as empathize, to scare as well as acclimatize, yet beneath it all is a well read intelligence that demands to be engaged. I loved Blood Related. Ordinarily I hate serial killer stories, but William Cook won me over. He is a unique and innovative talent.” – Joe McKinney, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of Flesh Eaters and Dog Days




About Corpus Delicti

Corpus Delicti: Selected Poetry, is an eclectic collection of verse selected from over twenty years of writing. Nearly 200 pages of poetry that deals with darker aspects of life in a philosophical and experiential manner. While many of the poems are of a darker nature, readers will also find uplifting poems that counter the more taboo subjects in Corpus Delicti.

A reader’s review:

  1. 0 out of 5 stars A Poet’s Heart Gives a Strong Pulse to the Poetry

May 25, 2014 by Anthony Servante

Format:Kindle Edition

“Corpus Delicti by William Cook is an extravagant challenge. It is at once an abundant selection of poems on a wide range of topics while it is also individual little gems that captivate the reader. One might say that each poem has its own job, its own vision that leads one to the next poem, and so on. If anything, its greatest feature, its size, is also my one criticism. I see three books here, a trilogy, in one volume. But that’s good news for poetry fans: you get three books in one, close to two hundred pages of gems to appreciate one by one. This is not a book to devour in one sitting. It is to be savored slowly, over multiple readings, perhaps three to four poems at a time. I tried random readings and sequential readings, and both work equally fine, with only a subtle difference in reading experience. It is not often that a book of such magnitude of thought and word reaches the modern reader. Purchase Corpus Delicti with confidence that you will have a year’s worth of reading joy and introspection. And if you come to read William Cook from his fictional work, then you are in for a treat. Fans of Blood Related can enjoy these little intellectual challenges to the mind in the same way we enjoyed Cook’s toying with the line between fiction and nonfiction with his serial killers in Blood Related. The pulse of poetry is as strong as the poet’s heart in this very large compilation of poems.”


“William Cook is an uncompromising horror writer. Be prepared to slink down the underbelly of the world as visions are revealed that can’t be unseen. Strong stomachs required here folks!”
– Rocky Wood, President of The Horror Writers Association and Stephen King biographer.

“William Cook – writer, poet, artist, editor. This talented man has no illusions about the horror that is human nature. His exploration of torture, murder and mayhem combines the scientific precision of a scientist dissecting a specimen with the creative flair of a sculptor working with words. Something tells me that he is just getting started and we’ll be seeing a lot more of his dark crafts in the future.”
– Anna Taborska, author of For Those Who Dream Monsters, director of The Rain Has Stopped, Ela, The Sin, My Uprising, A Fragment of Being




About Death Quartet

DEATH QUARTET (A Selection of Short Horror Fiction & Verse) is an eclectic miscellany of stories, poems, and ephemera, wherein the subject matter relates to the study of homicide and the aesthetic portrayal of such an act. In other words, themes of death and murder abound in this horrific collection brought to you by William Cook, an up-and-coming indie author of macabre fiction and the novel ‘Blood Related.’

Amongst the selection of four short stories you will find the never-before-seen ‘origin story’ that generated the novel ‘Blood Related’. A stand alone story in its own right, ‘Legacy: The Eternal Now and Thereafter’ rounds off DEATH QUARTET and gives fans of Cook’s novel Blood Related a chance to see where it all began. Make sure you read it with the doors locked.

From Blinded by the Light:

“The tip of the sharp blade pressed hard on Patrick’s lower eyelid. A tear bubbled and fell from his twelve-year-old eyelashes, gathering in the indent caused by the presence of the knife, before running the full length of his young face and falling onto his white t-shirt. His dad’s breath smelt bad, real bad – like something had died inside him and was stinking him up big-time. Patrick stood on his toes, his father’s muscled forearm pressing hard against his chest, pinning his scrawny back against the kitchen wall. Patrick stood as still as possible, cross-eyed with fear, his gaze never left the glint of the knife’s blade in his face. His father gave the tip a slight twist and Patrick felt a stab of pain as warm blood traced the path of his tears to drop on his t-shirt. Patrick’s breath hitched and all he could think to himself was – “this is it! Dad is gonna kill me. He’s gonna kill me. He’s gonna . . .”



About Dead and Buried

DEAD AND BURIED: A Supernatural Young Adult Thriller

A Novelette.

Ever been bullied? Ever been murdered? Ever been dead and buried? Ever been a ghost?

Donny is sick of everything, at home and at school. Most of all, he hates the bullies who have made his life a living hell. Strange things have been happening in the Cox household – Donny’s mother has mysteriously disappeared and his drunken father has been acting more strangely than usual. Donny’s little brother Max is relying on him to find their mother and to protect him from all the things little kids need protecting from. The local gang of thugs is intent on making Donny and Max’s lives as miserable as possible. They will resort to almost anything to make the Cox brothers’ suffer. What the bullies don’t consider, is the possibility that their cruel actions will have consequences far beyond their realms of imagination. 

A supernatural coming-of-age story that deals with the consequences of bullying.

Recommended for mature Young Adult readers 16yrs +
Contains scenes of violence and low-level supernatural horror.
“This man is simply scary. There is both a clinical thoroughness and a heartfelt emotional thoroughness to his writing. He manages to shock as well as empathize, to scare as well as acclimatize, yet beneath it all is a well read intelligence that demands to be engaged. I loved Blood Related. Ordinarily I hate serial killer stories, but William Cook won me over. He is a unique and innovative talent.”
– Joe McKinney, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of Flesh Eaters and Dog Days



About Creep

(Short Story – approx 8,500 words + Novel Excerpt from Blood Related)

Be careful who you get into a car with, even if that car is a taxi! A dark story of a young girl’s date with death. CREEP is a story that will leave you on the edge of your seat until the gripping climax which is unexpected and will leave the reader cheering for more. Serial Killers don’t always get away with murder, no matter how hard they try.

CREEP, is the first story in an exciting and gritty new psychological thriller series. Cassandra: Hunter of Darkness, is a hero to the victim and a merciless angel of death to the evil ones. A killer of killers, she strikes fear into the hearts of those who get their kicks off hurting others. Join Cassandra on her quest for justice and revenge as she begins her journey into the dark underbelly of serial murder and takes care of business as only she knows how.

A reader’s review  

“5.0 out of 5 stars A New Horror Mythos Begins  

May 18, 2013 by Vincenzo Bilof

Format:Kindle Edition

An origin story drenched in blood, “Creep” is an excellent precursor to an intriguing premise. By reading the title and the story synopsis, readers will know what to expect from this tale, but Cook’s method of introducing his new brand of madness is where the intrigue lies.

Cassandra’s development is the result of the detailed writing that Cook uses to capture the sensory deprivation and overload; emotions broil over in stomach-churning revelation. The story is a moment of self-discovery for Cassandra; with so many torture movies and stories on the market, the audience is quite familiar with this scenario. However, this story is the chrysalis; Cassandra’s physical and emotional transformation is revealed through the amount of detail Cook pours into the environment around her. On the literal level, “Creep” offers visceral scares and bestial symbolism to explain Cassandra’s moment.

Read by itself without any further context, “Creep” stands by itself well enough. It’s a quick read if you allow yourself a quiet, dark place to read with low light. Cook continues to improve as a writer; there are still some moments / actions that are characterized through “telling” rather than showing, but this remains a personal preference of mine. Personally, I don’t think Cook necessarily has to include this origin story in the upcoming novel; it can be referred to in scattered flashback moments, because this is rather a complete episode in Cassandra’s life.

Considering what the story is designed to achieve/explain, Cook delivers upon his promise: the terror is personal and life-changing for Cassandra, and he explains why with well-crafted imagery and moments of revulsion.

Side note: Cook included one of my favorite scenes from his highly recommended novel, “Blood Related.” There’s enough entertainment value in this package to turn lovers of serial killer horror into William Cook fans”


About Devil Inside


Devil Inside is a short horror story that will leave you wanting more. Graphic and descriptive, the tale winds itself around a young boy who discovers that when you make a wish, you better make sure you really want it.

Horror, Violence, Supernatural, M15+

Short Story + 4 x Poems + Excerpt from Blood Related (novel).

A reader’s review 

“5.0 out of 5 stars Edge of My Chair Horror

December 21, 2013 by Diane J

This review is from: Devil Inside (Kindle Edition)

I am very picky about my horror. I have been hooked since I read Poe in High School. William Cook is one of the best writers in this genre that I have read. From the minute I began reading Devil Inside, I was drawn into the world and mind of the young main character, Jacob. The story builds in suspense and mutilations flawlessly, ending in an exceptionally gratifying outcome, at least for me. William is a master of the genre. I am going to get every book, story and poetry piece he has written and indulge in a blood bath of intense, unrelenting fiction. Bravo!”

Interview with Dutch Speculative Fiction author, Mike Jansen

 Here is an interview with talented Dutch author Mike Jansen, friend and colleague with James Ward Kirk Fiction. Please make sure to check out the links section and delve into Mike’s interesting and varied literary world. He has some interesting things to say on writing from an EU perspective. Enjoy.

Author - Mike Jansen

Author – Mike Jensen


Interview by Arie Lodder

This interview was triggered by the two books Dutch writer Mike Jansen published recently. In March he published The Failing God, the first book of his fantasy series ‘Chronicles Of Cranborn.’ A few months earlier he published his short story collection Ophelia In My Arms. You might think that’s enough for a man to handle, but Mike is also editor at Dutch publisher ‘Verschijnsel’ and at ‘JWK Publishing’, he has been pushing new writers to publish digital media and he is coaching several new writers. I sincerely hope he will not burn-out, because I desperately want to see him finish his fantasy series.



1) Mike, let’s talk about your short story collection ‘Ophelia In My Arms.’ Before I read this book I had the impression that you were primarily a SF writer. But the majority of the stories in this book are Horror. And now your first novel appears to be Fantasy. How do you see yourself as a writer? Apart from the obvious answer “a good story is a good story,” that is.


The real answer is: I like to be versatile. I love a good Science Fiction story, but I can also write Horror and Fantasy or cross-overs of each of these genres. It’s really a matter of what story I want to write at a given point in time. Sometimes I write for specific themed contests or anthologies and that sometimes requires you to write outside of your comfort zone. A good thing, really. I consider myself at the beginning of my writing career, so every story I write is in fact a new experiment, a new way of looking at specific writing issues, from world and character building to psychological and emotional development. And I like to write with some of my fellow authors, for their own unique perspectives and specific ways of writing stories or coming up with ideas. Ophelia was really the result of a request from my US publisher to collect a number of my stories into an anthology. I thought that was a brilliant idea and when I showed it to Roelof Goudriaan (Verschijnsel), my Dutch publisher, he immediately opted for a Dutch version. The first novel being fantasy. It was a decision to write either a Fantasy novel, for which I had a lot of material ready, or a space opera sci-fi novel or a weird cyberpunk/dystopian novel. I chose the Fantasy novel, which I’m now writing the third part of. In the mean time I’ve also developed plans for a bizarro/horror themed novel and a techno thriller.


2) Were all the stories already available in English or did the book need extra translation work? And what role does English have in your career? Did you write in English right from the start?


Some of the older stories were only available in Dutch. I had to translate them, but that’s not a big issue these days. Most of the stories in Ophelia in my Arms I wrote in English first. Whenever I write a story these days I try to create a translation as soon as possible. Double the work, but it’s nice to be able to answer a request for a story with: “here, this seems suitable.” Apart from writing stories, I have a lot of international work that requires me to speak English, mostly at high business level, write offers, documentation and contracts. So my English gets polished more or less continuously. The first story I wrote in English, for an English language contest, was ‘The Day the Sea turned to Jelly’, which received an honourable mention in the Australian Altair Magazine launch competition. That was 1998. Later on I renamed it ‘The David Effect’, which sounded better, although I really liked the ‘pulpy’ feel of the original title. I think it wasn’t until 2012 that I started to write directly in English and I’ve reached the point that most edits that are returned to me contain only very minor adjustments.


3) You mentioned that you like to write with fellow authors. The only co-operative project that I am aware of is the story ‘Retrometheus’ that you wrote with the late Paul Harland and that won the prestigious King Kong award 1992 in the Netherlands. What more work did you do with other writers and is anything available in English?


In the early days I did indeed work with Paul Harland on a few stories. I also wrote with other authors, we did some workshops, tried improving our skills. Some may be familiar, some less so. With some I worked on stories, with others we just critiqued each others work. People like Paul van Leeuwenkamp, Peter Kaptein, Max Hirschfeld, Martijn Kregting, Sophia Drenth, Jaap Boekestein, Michael del Pino and more recently Michael Blommaert, Edward van Egmond and Maarten Luikhoven. That’s of course just the Netherlands. In the US I’m currently a member of several writer groups and what I did in Holland in the early days I’m now repeating over there. Funny thing is I cooperated a lot with those last three guys last year (2013), specifically to participate in the various contests. Some of those stories are now available and will find their way to Dutch magazines and/or anthologies, some will be translated and will appear in English language publications. There’s some information on my site about the writing process:


4) There are 13 Horror stories in the book and 8 SF stories. And there are 10 poems. Why did you include these in the book? Were they meant as a nice intermission or are you a poet as well? In other words, is there a chance that you will publish a dedicated poetry book one day?


The poems are not really poems, to be exact. They’re exercises in writing minute stories. The longer ones are less than 420 characters (size of a FB update), the smaller ones are exactly 5 lines of 5 words each. I also have some that are less than 140 characters (size of an SMS/twitter update) I included them for the intermission, yes, and selected those that fit the overall theme of the collection. I’m not sure if writing these small stories makes me a poet. What I do know is that writing them takes only a few minutes mostly and that they help get the creative juices flowing. If I wanted to create a collection of those I could fill up a nicely sized book already, maybe add a few dozen more to give it real substance. I think it’s more a matter of ‘when’ than ‘if’ it will come.


5) I read many anthologies. Seldom, less than once a year, I find a story that really stands out. Which for me means that the story is well executed, breathes lots of atmosphere and keeps singing in my mind long after I have read it. One of the last stories in your book, ‘The Copper Oasis’, is such a story. What exactly constitutes an excellent story for you?


First of all, I’m happy you enjoyed ‘The Copper Oasis.’ Reactions to it are mixed and, I must say, understandably so. It’s not a story that adheres to the golden rules of writing a good story. It wasn’t written to show off a great plot arc, because there isn’t any real plot, character development is limited and the characters never get into any real problems. But the world, I’m told, is beautifully created. So why did it win a prize? Why were the jurors excited about it? That brings me to the actual question you asked: for me an excellent story is one that makes me think and wonder and look at the world through different eyes. If that story is then also well written and is beautiful enough to draw me in and keep me there, it’s a winner for me. In ‘The Copper Oasis’ I asked a very simple question: ‘Would a mechanical man, a robot, with human-like brain capacity, develop a sense of loneliness after guarding a desolate world for many thousands of years?’ As a premise that sounds simple, but turns out you need to take many things into consideration, especially in the format of a short story. Funny fact: I wrote the story with the music of Ennio Morricone in my ears. People sometimes come up to me and tell me they could almost hear the music while they read the story. For me that’s a big compliment.


6) In ‘The Copper Oasis’ chemistry plays a major role. Is that part of your work or educational background? If not, is your education or work helpful in any way?


Part of the chemistry is based on research. Part is based on education. When I was in high school, my career choices were chemistry or IT. I finally chose IT, mostly because I perceived the bigger challenge there. And I guess both interests were helpful in writing the Copper Oasis.


7) Your Fantasy novel, ‘The Failing God,’ has just been published in English. It is the first of the five-book series ‘Chronicles of Cranborn’. Does this mean that we will not see any more SF from you for a long time coming?


No, it does not mean that at all. I write one fantasy novel a year in that series. But I have material for a few Sci-fi and Horror novels as well as techno thrillers. In addition I write many short stories for magazines and anthologies. In all I write about 250-300k words a year, or more, so that’s enough for two or three novels a year. Expect a lot more from me in the coming years, in all different genres.


8) That’s good news for the readers, who don’t like fantasy. In one of the major newspapers there was an item with the title ‘Science Fiction, is it something of the past?’ One of the viewpoints was that SF is no longer interesting because science is now all around us. That could be one of the reasons reader attention has shifted towards Fantasy. What are your views?


My view may be somewhat different than the view expressed here. I will agree that there is less ‘technical’ Science Fiction around, the kind of stories that regale of the beautiful sciences and technologies that will push humanity forward in leaps and bounds. I will agree that there are more Fantasy books than ever before, in all shapes and sizes. But there is still Science Fiction around and lots of it too. The nice thing about Science Fiction is that the field is so incredibly broad that some of the stuff being written today may not even look like Science Fiction at all, yet still is. ‘What if?’ is still one of the most powerful questions humans can ask and as long as a writer is capable of asking that question and is willing to investigate the possible answers, Science Fiction will remain alive and kicking. My opinion, of course.

The fact that more readers these days seem to favour Fantasy is a different realization altogether. I don’t think that having ‘science all around us’ is detrimental to the interest for science. In fact, I would expect the opposite. What I think is happening is that Fantasy addresses different markets than the original Science Fiction readers, who were, by and large, white, male and American, who grew up in the time of the Cold War, the race for the moon and boundless investment in hard sciences, both in research and in education. But that is only a small percentage of the worldwide population. By searching for new markets, publishers quickly found that women and in later years young adults could also be voracious readers and they tailored their search for new authors to that part of the population. Is there an easy way to prove that statement? Go to a book store. Look for the Romance section. Don’t be surprised to find the Fantasy and Young Adult sections really close by. Don’t be surprised to find much the same colour settings, pictures and themes on the covers of all these books. Now think it through. Again, my opinion.


9) You are involved with two publishing houses, as far as I know. And you are coaching new writers in various ways. How do you combine all of this with writing several books per year?


Yes, I assist Verschijnsel ( in Belgium and JWK Fiction ( in Indianapolis, US. And yes, I also help out new writers. And I do write some 250-350k words per year. I can make this work through strict focus on my family, my work and my writing. That’s what I do, not much else. Let’s put that in perspective: 1000 words per day. That’s not spectacular. And I usually write in what I call ‘edit mode’, meaning that most of my work is ready for publishing when it’s delivered to the publisher’s desk. Writing in ‘edit mode’ is what makes the difference. I rarely (need to) rewrite and if I do it’s no more than once, based on input from various readers.


10) This interview is for Europa SF. The purpose of this site is to present European SF to the world. So far however contributors seem more concerned about conventions than about presenting the writers of their countries in such a way that the rest of the world will notice that European SF is something special, well worth reading. What should be done to move to a truly European SF scene?


I do not claim to know the exact situation in Europe, but I’ve been around for a while and I’ve seen conventions and initiatives to promote genre, books and authors. In Europe we have a large diversity in culture and languages. It means we have many distinct and unique voices in genre as well as mainstream literature. The problem is that there is no single European market that allows you to reach millions of potential readers. In sharp contrast to the English language market, which is well over half a billion people. This problem isn’t new and it’s quite universal in day to day dealings within the EU. Because the markets are small and local, the easiest way to congregate for people is through local conventions, usually safe, cosy, with often the same people from one convention to the next. It’s also detrimental to the interaction between cultures and languages, as you create an ‘incrowd’ of genre lovers. Publishers are not helping either: they are more likely to select ‘safe’ English authors who have already sold many books. Risk aversion is a common theme with publishers nowadays. It’s these and many other small things that hinder a truly European SF scene. If we look at the USA, we see author associations like the SFWA and the HWA and many more that provide services to their members and help authors, artists and publishers organize to optimally reach their markets. Now, the US model is not the end-all of scifi organizations, but a European version of these associations might help organize the European authors, artists and publishers and provide a launch platform for organized initiatives. Such an association could raise funds to organize a European prize for European authors, which in turn generates interest in European fiction. It will still require ways of crossing language and cultural boundaries, but those can be handled piece by piece, in small increments. This organization could deal with European publishers to point their attention at new and exciting writers in the market today. And I’m sure there are many other things these American organizations do that Europe could learn from. There are many details to work out, but I think a European SciFi organization styled after HWA/SFWA might be a great, first step towards a strong European writing community.


11) That is definitely good advice that people who favour a European SF scene should think about. These were my questions so far, Mike. Thank you for this interview. Is there anything else you want to share with your readers at this point?


Yes, there is one thing, a request. My free stories have been downloaded thousands of times and I hope people enjoyed those. However, maybe 1 in 200 leaves a rating and 1 in 500 writes about how much or how little they enjoyed my work. So my request is this: if an author gives some of his work away for free and you, the reader, enjoy that work, leave a rating, or even a remark. Authors love that sort of thing and it helps them to perfect and polish their work even more.



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Mike has published flash fiction, short stories and longer work in various anthologies and magazines in the Netherlands and Belgium, including Cerberus, Manifesto Bravado, Wonderwaan, Ator Mondis and Babel-SF and Verschijnsel anthologies such as Ragnarok and Zwarte Zielen (Black Souls).

He lives in the Netherlands, in Hilversum, near Amsterdam. He has won awards for best new author and best author in the King Kong Award in 1991 and 1992 respectively as well as an honorable mention for a submission to the Australian Altair Magazine launch competition in 1998. In 2012 Mike won awards in the SaBi Thor story contest, the Literary Prize for the Baarn Cultural Festival and the prestigious Fantastels award for best short story.

More recent publications included various English language ezines and anthologies, among which several publications with, Encounters Magazine and others. For a full list please refer to Mike’s site:

Mike’s debut novel, The Failing God, is available in English, while an anthology of his short stories title Ophelia In My Arms, has also been published by JWK Fiction.


Source –

Call for help. Independent Horror trembles with financial crisis!

Please Help! This is not just another call to help fund an anthology or pay for someone to go to a con or raise some dough for whatever – this is a desperate plea from an indie press that has published and supported new talent in the horror industry for the past decade. Here is the video that my publisher Nicholas Grabowsky has done to help raise some much-needed support. Please view.

Nicholas Grabowsky was one of the first people to give me a break and is a staunch advocate of the underdog – probably to a fault, as can be guessed by this plea for help. This company doesn’t make money for profit, they make money to pay their authors and to stimulate interest in independent horror authors as much as possible. Not a sound business model I know, but it’s because whatever Nick does he does with heart and gives it everything he’s got. I know why BBS is struggling – things are tough and there’s not much money in horror unless you’re one of the big boys or girls at the top of the heap. It’s also because Nick probably needs to employ some merciless publications manager to slash some titles, drop some authors and aim for the mainstream, while he spends his days selling wares at conventions and bookstores etc – but he would never do that. One he can’t afford it and two, he’s too damn loyal to his authors and too committed to his dream. He just can’t “restructure” or be ruthless. Like I said, he has a heart. As we all know, good intentions and being nice seldom pays the bills and that is why you need to take a look at this fundraiser. This is not just about bailing Nick out of the crap or propping up a dead-duck, this is about Independent Publishing as a whole, in particular – the Independent Horror Publishing World that most of you reading this are part of.

Please support the project and get fantastic rewards in returnThere is a need for publishers like Black Bed Sheet Books because they are cornerstones in the industry; they do there best to stand on sometimes shaky foundations by which self-published authors launch their own careers/businesses and measure their own success against, yet they are different – it’s not just about the individual, it’s about the collective creative and financial welfare of the authors, and it’s about the readers who read them, because they like what Black Bed Sheet produces.

Are you a publisher, an author, a book designer, an editor . . . ? Could you need some help one day in this amazingly cut-throat world of dog-eat-dog financial stresses? Support your colleagues-in-arms; for the cost of a book or a TV Dinner, help ensure that an active member of the independent publishing community, who provides readers with so much great material and horror authors with a career platform, does not fall to the wayside because the rest of us sat around and did nothing to help. It won’t take much to help lift Black Bed Sheet books to its feet again and propel it forward to provide many more writers with career jump-starts and all those readers with countless hours of good solid horror enjoyment.

Every pledge receives something in return and, once again, Nick has let his generosity dictate these fantastic rewards are well worth some loose change. Please help. Please dig deep and share this with as many people as possible. Thanks for reading and long live Independent Horror.Best wishes

William Cook
(A proud Black Bed Sheet Books Author)

— with Nicholas Grabowsky.

Black Bed Sheet Books, Indiegogo, Funding, Horror, Indie, Independent Horror Publishing, Publishing, Financial Crisis, Help

What people are saying about ‘Blood Related’ (Review, Thriller, Amazon, Goodreads, Bookworm’s Bookmark)

Blood Related by William Cook: 5 of 5 Stars

Goodreads Synopsis:

For over two decades, Detective Ray Truman has been searching for the killer, or killers, who have terrorized Portvale. Headless corpses, their bodies mutilated and posed, have been turning up all over the industrial district near the docks. Young female prostitutes had been the killer’s victims of choice, but now other districts are reporting the gruesome discovery of decapitated bodies. It seems the killer has expanded his territory as more ‘nice girls’ feel the wrath of his terrible rage.

Meet the Cunninghams… A family bound by evil and the blood they have spilled. The large lodging-house they live in and operate on Artaud Avenue reeks of death, and the sins that remain trapped beneath the floorboards. Ray Truman’s search for a killer leads him to the Cunningham’s house of horrors. What he finds there will ultimately lead him to regret ever meeting Caleb Cunningham and the deviant family that spawned him. The hunter becomes the hunted, as Truman digs deeper into the abyss that is the horrifying mind of the most dangerous psychopath he has ever met.
Click to go to Goodreads Review

Blood Related by William Cook
My Review: 5 of 5 stars

Blood Related is a psychological roller-coaster. I couldn’t put it down. The nature or nurture theme comes across strongly. Reflective of Caleb and Charlie Cunningham’s disturbing family background and the outcome of what could be only described as twisted parenting. Parents (Ella and Vera’s) poison continues to bleed into the adult lives of two brothers. The madness of their crimes is chilling, and persistence of Ray Truman whose goal is to bring them to Justice – leads the story into an endless horror fest for the reader.

The Cunningham’s childhood home becomes a house of horrors. Spine chilling gore and the insight into the mind of a serial killer kept me hooked. In my mind’s eye I could imagine the carnage, sense the emotions, with that feeling of watching a horror movie at every twist and turn, I wanted to look away, but couldn’t.

Buy a Copy now from Amazon

William Cook has a talent of making the story come to life. And if this is your choice of genre, then you are in for a treat.
No Spoilers Intended

Debbie Allen (see all Debbie’s reviews)
Check out Debbie’s cool blog – click on the image above

Reblogged from the fantastic Bookworm’s Bookmark

Review, Debbie Allen, William Cook, Blood Related, 5-star, Horror, Thriller, Bookworm’s Bookmark


FREE – DEATH QUARTET (A Selection of Short Horror Fiction & Verse) is an eclectic miscellany of stories, poems, and ephemera, wherein the subject matter relates to the study of homicide and the aesthetic portrayal of such an act. In other words, themes of death and murder abound in this horrific collection brought to you by William Cook, author the novel ‘Blood Related.’

Amazon Review:
“5.0 out of 5 stars Murder Can Be Fun January 11, 2014
By Marianne – Format:Kindle Edition|Amazon Verified Purchase
This collection of creepy stories, disturbing poetry, and other scary stuff is just what the doctor ordered. That is, if your doctor wants you to have nightmares!! William Cook never fails to please, and he is right on target with this one. It’s a unique mix of different items; stories, musings, poetry, and quotes, all combined to raise the horror bar waaay up there. However, I must admit: basements and cellars are now completely and totally off limits for me. Thanks a lot, William Cook!!”

ImageAmazon Review:

“5 Star Review – Poetry and Fiction: Tastes of Horror January 7, 2014
By Diane J – Format:Kindle Edition

I had to give this book a five because every piece in it was excellent, although I did have my personal favorites. There are quotes from authors, psychiatrists, psychopaths, and others that generally lead us into one of the four stories. But first, the poetry is, as you would expect, dark, disturbing and dangerous. I found it very unsettling, which for my chosen genre, is a good thing. The stories are all well written and cover a wide variety of the underbelly of humanity. Don’t get me wrong, while I found them all gut wrenching and disturbing, the two that stood out for me were Blinded by the Light and Dead Aesthetics. The protagonist in the first story I listed is Patrick, a young horribly abused child who knows too many secrets and is punished severely for that knowledge. His world is so bleak and horrific, you will be completely drawn into it and won’t put the book down until the story is finished. The second story is obviously from the very twisted mind of an incredible author. My God, what can I even say? The subject matter is NOT for the squeamish and if you do read it knowing that fact, have a pail at the ready. The graphic imagery is grotesque beyond belief. But if you love your horror as nasty as it gets, this is a 100% winner by a brilliant writer.”

U.K. –

U.S. –

DEVIL INSIDE by William Cook. FREE now for Kindle


“Devil Inside is a short story, but it draws so many threads together, explores so many dark emotions, that the reader is left satisfied, yet wanting more. It’s a great story of evil and horror. It’s also a great lesson about how we are raising children today and why some of them take a dark path. They have seen so little light, they know it is safer to walk in the dark, no matter what monsters may lurk there.”

Horror, Violence, Supernatural, M15+

Short Story + 4 x Poems + Excerpt from Blood Related (novel).