Archive for the Fiction Category

COMING SOON: “The Morbidly Obese Ninja”

Posted in Bizarro Authors, Bizarro Books, Bizarro Fiction, Fiction, Uncategorized on March 24, 2011 by carltonmellick

Features: a world where people cosmetically alter their bodies to look like Japanese anime characters, cyberpunk assassins hired by electronics corporations, and a 700 pound ninja who uses his grotesque excess weight as a deadly weapon.

Brian Keene & J. F. Gonzalez sign with Deadite Press

Posted in Bizarro Books, Fiction, horror, Publishing on January 26, 2011 by carltonmellick

urban gothicclickersclickers2

If you haven’t heard the news on Monday, hardcore horror writers Brian Keene and J. F. Gonzalez have signed with Eraserhead Press’s cult horror imprint Deadite Press. The press will be re-releasing multiple books by these authors, starting with Urban Gothic by Brian Keene and the first two books of the Clickers series by J. F. Gonzales, Mark Williams, and Brian Keene.

Keene is not only one of the coolest fucking writers out there in horror, he has also been one of the biggest supporters of my work and bizarro fiction in general for the past decade, so I’m really excited to see him working with Deadite Press. As many of you know, I design all the covers for Deadite (including the ones pictured above) and with these upcoming releases I hope to give these writers the badass presentation their work rightly deserves.

For more information, go to Brian Keene’s blog at:

For more information on this year’s Deadite Press releases, go here:

In 2011, Deadite Press is going to kick some serious ass.

Out now: “The Vegan Revolution …with Zombies!” by David Agranoff

Posted in Bizarro Authors, Bizarro Books, Bizarro Fiction, Fiction, Publishing, zombies on September 10, 2010 by carltonmellick

When there’s no more meat in hell,
the vegans will walk the earth.

vegan rev

If you are a zombie fan or a vegan you need to check out this book. Published by Deadite Press, the cult horror imprint of Eraserhead Press. I urged “punk horror” author David Agranoff to write this book because I thought it was a book that needed to be written. No one in the world could have written this book but David. I’m not a vegan, but you don’t have to be a vegan to like this. It’s just a good horror comedy that pokes fun at hipsters, Portlanders, juggalos, zombie fans, and even some aspects vegan culture. Oh, and it also pokes fun at the whole “with zombies” trend in literature that started with Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. The main character works at a zombie publishing house and is copyediting the next big zombie mash-up: Of Mice and Men and Zombies.

More information:


“Like Shaun of the Dead with vegans and hipsters. A hilarious zombie comedy. I loved it!” – Carlton Mellick III

“Destined to become a favorite among zombie fans and vegans alike.” – Gina Ranalli, author of Praise the Dead

“This witty novel celebrates everything I love about vegan Portland and kills everything I hate!” – Jess of Portland’s Get Sconed vegan blog.

Presenting Stress Free Food! Animal suffering is a thing of the past. Hipsters can now enjoy bacon without guilt. Thanks to a new miracle drug the cute little pig no longer feels a thing as she is led to the slaughter. The only problem? Once the drug enters the food supply anyone who eats it is infected. From fast food burgers to free-range organic eggs, eating animal products turns people into shambling brain-dead zombies. Not even vegetarians are safe!

In Portland, Oregon, vegans, freegans, abolitionists, hardliners and raw fooders have holed up in Food Fight, one of the country’s premier vegan grocery stores at the vegan mini-mall. There they must prepare for their final battle to take back the city from the hordes of roaming undead. Will vegans filet the flesh-eaters or will they become zombie chow?

When there’s no more meat in hell, the vegans will walk the earth.

Get it at

I really like the book. I also love the trailer for the book. It looks as if this could have easily become a movie.

I highly recommend checking out the trailer here:

Here’s some shots from the shooting:

The cast of characters, including David Agranoff on the far left and bizarro author Jeff Burk as the freegan on the far right.


freegan death
The freegan death scene

Werewolf anthology featuring “War Pig” now available for pre-order

Posted in Bizarro Books, Bizarro Fiction, Fiction on June 27, 2010 by carltonmellick

My story “War Pig” will soon appear in the werewolf anthology “Werewolves and Shape Shifters: Encounters with the Beast Within” edited by the one and only John Skipp. This story (about 6,000 words) is the one that I described as a steampunk version of Fight Club with werepigs. Of course, it’s actually more like Death Sport than Fight Club and there’s only one werepig, but there is also a werebear, a were jaguar, werejellyfish, and a werebulldog, among others. It’s personally one of my favorite short stories I’ve written in a long time. I hope to write more like it.

This anthology also includes fellow bizarros Jeremy Robert Johnson, Cody Goodfellow, and Nicole Cushing, as well as Chuck Palahniuk, Neil Gaiman, HP Lovecraft, George R R Martin, Kathe Koja, Francesca Lia Block, Charlainne Harris, Joe R Landsdale and a ton of other amazing writers.

Here are the contents:

THE OTHER SIDE – Count Stenbock
FIRE DOG – Joe R. Lansdale
PURE SILVER – A.C. Crispin and Kathleen O’Malley
GIFT-WRAP – Charlaine Harris
UNLESS YOU CHANGE – Francesca Lia Block
FORGIVEN – Eric Shapiro
IL DONNAIOLO – Brad C. Hodson
WEREWOLF 101 – Mercedes M. Yardley
MANDIBLE – Alice Henderson
FAR AND WEE – Kathe Koja
BRAIDS – Melanie Tem
THE SKIN TRADE – George R.R. Martin
STRANGE SKIN – Bentley Little
BREAK-UP – Richard Christian Matheson
THE BETTER HALF: A LOVE STORY – Scott Bradley and Peter Giglio
PLASTIC FANTASTIC – Dieter Meyer and Maxwell Hart
WARM, IN YOUR COAT – Violet Glaze
HOWL OF THE SHEEP – Cody Goodfellow
PIECES OF ETHAN – Adam-Troy Castro
WHEN SUSSURUS STIRS – Jeremy Robert Johnson
WAR PIG – Carlton Mellick III
DISSERTATION – Chuck Palahniuk
SWEETHEART COME – Alethea Kontis

It will be released September 22nd, but you can preorder it on amazon here:

This anthology is a followup to the zombie anthology, “Zombies: Encounters with the Hungry Dead,” which includes my story “Lemon Knives n Cockroaches.”

You can get this one now at

Special Bizarro Issue of The Pedestal Magazine

Posted in Bizarro Fiction, Fiction, Publishing, Uncategorized, Writing Related on April 22, 2010 by carltonmellick

The masterful bizarro author D. Harlan Wilson will be editing a bizarro issue of The Pedestal Magazine. Here are the submission guidelines:

The Pedestal Magazine invites submissions for a special issue of Bizarro fiction to be edited by D. Harlan Wilson. Flash fiction between 250-1000 words will be considered. Loosely speaking, “Bizarro” is an umbrella term encompassing different kinds of weird, absurd, horrific, uncanny, and/or grotesque speculative fiction. Literary and experimental forms are strongly encouraged. Do not submit work that is simply weird for weird’s sake; also avoid toilet humor and boyish antics. We are looking for purposeful Bizarro that is dynamically written and thought-provoking. Payment for accepted stories will be $.08 per word. No reprints. Submission period will run from April 28-June 14. All submissions will be received via the submission form provided on The Pedestal Magazine website:

Submission Call for “Christmas on Crack”

Posted in Bizarro Books, Bizarro Fiction, Fiction, Publishing, Writing Related on April 15, 2010 by carltonmellick

I’m looking for stories for an upcoming bizarro Christmas-themed anthology called “Christmas on Crack.”

What I’m looking for: very weird children’s Christmas stories for adults. I’m especially looking for fucked up versions of classic Christmas stories like Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, Twas the Night Before Christmas, a Christmas Carol, etc, but something completely original would also be welcome. I want these stories to be funny, imaginative, surreal, trashy, clever, and not at all appropriate for children. Think of Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas meets Lloyd Kaufman’s Poultrygeist. The weirder the better, the trashier the better, the funnier the better. Surprise me.

Note: I would prefer if the stories were told in a narrative style similar to that of a children’s story. Think of The Faggiest Vampire meets Sausagey Santa. That’s the kind of thing I want to see, but better. But a good story is a good story no matter what style it’s written in.

Length: I’d like stories that are 3,000-12,000 words long.

How to submit: I actually don’t want you to write anything until after you contact me. Pitch me an idea for your story first. That way if I’m not interested then you don’t have to go through the trouble of writing it. I am only going to respond to story ideas that interest me, so if you never hear back from me it probably means that I think your story ideas are completely lame and you shouldn’t have even bothered to try. Well, either that or other pitches better caught my attention.

Send an idea (or three) for a bizarro Christmas story you’d like to write for me to:

Deadline: I will be taking pitches until May 15th 2010 or sooner if I find enough ideas that I like.

Honorable Mention

Posted in Fiction on April 12, 2010 by carltonmellick

My story “Lemon Knives ‘n’ Cockroaches” published in Zombies: Encounters of the Hungry Dead got an honorable mention in Ellen Datlow’s Best Horror of the Year.

If you haven’t read this anthology I recommend it.


Zombie Story

Posted in Fiction on July 14, 2009 by carltonmellick

Recently, one of my never-before-published short stories was accepted into an anthology. The story is “Cockroaches and Lemon Knives,” which is a not-really-that-bizarro zombie story about people living within the walls like cockroaches to survive after the zombie apocalypse.

The anthology is “Zombies” (published by Black Dog and Leventhal). It is edited by John Skipp, who was the co-editor of “Book of the Dead,” which anthologized all the greatest zombie fiction ever published in the history of literature. “Zombies” anthologizes all the greatest zombie fiction ever published in the history of literature that didn’t appear in “Book of the Dead.” I’m proud to have a story included in this. If you don’t know John Skipp, I highly highly HIGHLY recommend checking out his co-authored book “The Emerald Burrito of Oz.” It’s seriously one of my favorite bizarro books and it’s not even categorized as bizarro. It is like a weird modernization of Oz. Really fun to read. It kind of reminds me of that mini-series “Tin Man” only ten billion times better (because Tin Man was pretty weak).

Here are some of the great writers who will be appearing in this anthology with me:

Stephen King, Ray Bradbury, Robert Bloch, Theodore Sturgeon, Poppy Z. Brite, Neil Gaiman, Max Brooks, Joe R. Lansdale, Kathe Koja, Robert R. McCammon, Jack Ketchum, George Saunders, Dennis Etchison, Leonid Andreyev, W.B. Seabrook, Steve Duffy, S.G. Browne, Justine Musk, Adam Golaski, Mehitobel Wilson, Les Daniels, Steve Rasnic Tem, Steven R. Boyett, David J. Schow, Eric Shapiro, John Skipp and Marc Levinthal, Cody Goodfellow, Lisa Morton, Terry Morgan and Christopher Morgan, Douglas E. Winter, and Adam-Troy Castro.

I will let you know once it comes out.

“Candy-coated” a short story by me

Posted in Fiction on July 2, 2009 by carltonmellick

It’s my birthday today, so it’s made me think of a story I wrote around my birthday last year. (It was critiqued at the Clarion West workshop the day before my birthday.)

If you haven’t read it yet, the story is called “Candy-coated.” It was published in Vice Magazine around Christmas time in their last all-fiction issue. You can still read it online here:

There is also an audio version you can listen to on that page, read by the woman who does the voice on the PA at Whole Foods. I recommend reading it first and then listening to the audio, because it is funnier that way.

If you like it, let me know what you think.

Here’s a sample:

“Knob Tyler thinks he’s the strongest, toughest, most badass motherfucker on Mill Avenue. Unfortunately, Knob has a lollipop for a head. This makes him not quite as badass as he thinks he is.”