BlackWyrm Publishing–the company that released Michael Williams’s recent novels Trajan’s Arch (2010) and Vine (2012) as well as many other compelling works of fantasy, horror, and science fiction–has signed my novel Burning the Middle Ground and expects to bring it out late this year or early in 2013.
Burning the Middle Ground mixes horror and dark fantasy in a tale of a small Southern town torn apart by a supernatural conspiracy. Five years after tragic murders divide Kenning, Georgia along religious lines, Ronald Glassner, a web journalist from New York, arrives to write a book about the tragedy’s sole survivor, Brian McCullough. Homicidal house pets, enucleated corpses, and menacing apparitions soon help Ronald understand that there’s something much bigger going on in Kenning, something connected to the town’s First Church and the imposing Reverend Michael Cox. With Brian, Brian’s girlfriend Melanie Grayson, progressive preacher Jeanne Harper, and police officer Winston Beecher, Ronald embarks on an investigation that takes them all into a nightmarish plot that will change the entire country.
The novel is one of several works I’ve written (but not published) set in what my small circle of reader-friends has called the “Fincher universe,” or, in the mold of Joss Whedon, the Fincherverse. H.P. Lovecraft is more the inspiration here, with a fair helping of Stephen King, but I’ll gladly accept any favorable comparisons to the contemporary master behind Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Cabin in the Woods.
At the dawn of the 20th century, Dr. Allen Fincher, a Harvard professor whose work became increasingly arcane until his mysterious death, published a red-bound book called The Alchemy of Will. His last work, The Fate of Man’s Essence, was never (as far as anyone knows) completed, but the Alchemy revealed enough of Dr. Fincher’s occult knowledge to make him an intellectual outcast. Fincher’s book also set a century-spanning series of events in motion, events that begin to culminate in Burning the Middle Ground. My novel stands on its own, but if all goes well, it’ll be the first of a series, presently titled The Last World War, dedicated to following the Fincher conspiracy to its potentially apocalyptic conclusion.
I’ll post more information about Burning the Middle Ground‘s publication as it becomes available. Gradually, I will expand this site to include a lot more about the novel and about Dr. Fincher’s dark legacy.