CLOWN IN A CORNFIELD is a Bram Stoker Award Winner!!

Am so unbelievably thrilled and honored to share that Clown in a Cornfield has received the 2020 Bram Stoker Award for “Superior Achievement in Young Adult Novel” at this weekend’s awards ceremony. Huge thanks to the HWA, its administration and voting members, and everyone who’s picked up the book either in hardcover, ebook, or audiobook. And everyone who’s pre-ordered the upcoming paperback.

Since this was an online-only event (it’s usually an actual awards banquet with dressing up, nice food, table centerpieces, etc.), I was asked to record an acceptance speech beforehand that would be played in the event the book won. You can watch the full ceremony here on YouTube, with the YA category being announced around the 34 minute mark.

Upon watching the speech back, I realize I neglected to thank Jesse Vilinsky for narrating the audiobook version. So many readers have had Kettle Springs brought to life through Jesse’s wonderful performance, I’m so grateful to her.

Thanks again to everyone who helped make this dream a reality, I’m feeling very blessed and can’t wait to share what’s next with all of you.

Clown in a Cornfield is a Bram Stoker Award Nominee!

Update: Unsure how long this will last, but the hardcover of Clown in a Cornfield is currently half off on Amazon.

Huge news! Very honored that Clown in a Cornfield has been nominated for a Bram Stoker Award in the “Superior Achievement in a Young Adult Novel” category. I can’t thank the voting members/jury of the HWA enough. But also want to extend those thanks to everyone who’s picked up the book, told a friend, requested it at their local library, or reviewed it online. The support this bloody little slasher has received from the horror community is truly humbling. Thank you.

If you haven’t read the book yet, it’s available in hardcover, ebook, and audiobook, from Amazon, Bookshop, Barnes & Noble, and wherever else books are sold.

And will you get a load of the other nominees!? A stupendously stacked list this year in all categories. Congratulations to my many friends and colleagues who’ve had their work selected. And further congratulations to some of the spectacular work on the preliminary ballot that could very easily have moved forward. It’s been said elsewhere, but… 2020 wasn’t exactly a great year by most (pretty much all) measurements, but it was a helluva year for horror fiction.

Not to be too self-promotional (or to be exactly the right amount), I’ve talked about/recommended a bunch of this year’s nominees on my YouTube channel, which updates weekly (usually on Saturdays). And plan to talk about a bunch more books in the near future. Please go check out the channel by clicking one of the thumbnails below or click here to subscribe so you never miss a video.

Over the last weeks and months I’ve been getting a lot of “what’s next?” messages. And while I can’t announce anything now, know that I’m working hard on book(s). At the same time, I’ve been asked to contribute short stories to some cool magazines/anthologies. One of those is Centralia, a shared universe anthology with Brian Keene (The Rising), Cullen Bunn (Harrow County), Heath Amodio, Michael Patrick Hicks, and Brian Quinn (Impractical Jokers). That’s in paperback on amazon and Bookshop, and in ebook on amazon.

Another is Beyond the Book of Eibon. Which is a Lucio Fulci tribute anthology with a number of amazing authors on the table of contents and a cover by internet phenom Trevor Henderson. There was a Kickstarter campaign for this one that’s already over/met its goal, but the publisher still has some (extremely limited) copies for pre-order here. It’s a shame that this will be such a limited print run, because I’m particularly proud of my story in here. Hopefully I’ll be able to have it reprinted somewhere more accessible in the future.

So that’s all for announcements and housekeeping, I guess. Will have some news about my next book *very soon* but in the meantime, if you’ve read Clown in a Cornfield and are anxious for a new novel, have you tried checking out my backlist? All available in paperback and ebook, with most available as audiobooks as well.

CLOWN IN A CORNFIELD Praise, DARK CRYSTAL Announcements

Clown in a Cornfield is OUT NOW in Hardcover, ebook, and audiobook. Buy it now at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Bookshop, or Books-A-Million. Or keep reading to be convinced.Screen Shot 2020-06-22 at 6.15.24 PM

Whoa! Heck of a line-up. The above advanced praise for Clown in a Cornfield debuted as part of an article on Bloody Disgusting detailing the book and upcoming film adaptationEach of these authors (and Mr. Clive Barker on the front cover), has had an enormous influence on me and I am overwhelmed and grateful for their kindness.

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Bloody Disgusting isn’t the only media outlet that’s been good to the book (though they were doubly good, Meagan Navarro put Clown on this summer reading list). The book has received a *starred* review from Library Journal. Thanks so much to critic Becky Spratford, unerring champion of horror in libraries, for that review, and for inviting me to write a short piece for LJ’s July issue.

Not only that but the book received a *second* starred review from Booklist that said: “This pitch-perfect horror experience can be enjoyed as pure entertainment for its fun retro slasher style, but teen readers will also fully appreciate the sly underlying social commentary.”

And Kirkus says: “Cesare’s twisty prose and believable, easy-to-root-for characters makes this blood-drenched tale of extreme societal unrest disturbingly plausible. Dark humor peppers this clever homage to retro-horror classics, and Cesare barely lets up on the gas once the bloodletting begins.”

Wow! I thought slasher fans would enjoy but I’m blown away that *critics* like the book! As I’ve said in previous posts, but really can’t be overstated: sales help me out so much. The book is available on AmazonBarnes & Noble, through your local indie bookstore using Indiebound, and on Bookshop, where indie bookstores get a percentage of your order.

But not all the big news I’ve had recently involves midwestern murder clowns. I’ve got two great announcements that involve another world and another time:

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YES! Recently detailed in this article on io9, I’ve written the words to The Dark Crystal Bestiary: The Definitive Guide to the Creatures of Thra, an upcoming (October) hardcover art book.

Illustrator Iris Compiet sketched and painted over a thousand individual pieces during production of this book and there are *hundreds* of them in these pages. Her work is truly mesmerizing, as you can see in these preview pages.

There are even a few creatures that have never before been glimpsed in either the classic film or TV show, and Iris consulted with the legendary Brian and Wendy Froud (who wrote the foreword) to make sure the look was as “legit” as possible.

I’m so proud to be part of this and thank The Jim Henson Company and publisher Insight Editions for trusting me to be a member of this creative team. Pre-orders are on Amazon, Bookshop, and wherever else you buy books.

But the Bestiary isn’t my first visit to Thra.

No, the 4-issue arc of the BOOM! Studios/Archaia comic I scripted (from a story by Netflix showrunners Jeffrey Addis and Will Matthews), with art by the amazing French Carlomagno, is being collected up into one beautiful hardcover edition.

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The Ballad of Hup & Barfinnious tells the complete origin story of the fan-favorite podling paladin Hup. This action-packed story is one part road movie, one part con artist yarn, one part comedy, one part earnest examination of heroism, and ALL PARTS Dark Crystal. You can pre-order it on Amazon, Bookshop, directly from the publisher, or call your local comic shop and ask them to hold you a copy.

Outside of some mildly frightening imagery, the Bestiary and the Ballad of Hup & Barfinnious are 110% totally cool for younger readers.

Clown in a Cornfield is a Young Adult novel but, uh, maybe don’t give it to your 10-year-old. Best to aim teenagers and higher with that one, I don’t need the angry letters.

CLOWN IN A CORNFIELD up for PRE-ORDER! And DARK CRYSTAL Comics!

Buy Clown in a Cornfield on AmazonBarnes & NobleBookshop, or Books-A-Million or keep reading on to be convinced.

First things first, I mean, have you seen this cover? WOW!

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Yes. I lost my mind when my editor at HarperTeen shared the cover for Clown in a Cornfield for the first time. That illustration is by Matt Ryan Tobin. If that name sounds familiar, Tobin’s a slasher phenom who’s done work for Mondo and Death Waltz. Cover design by Jenna Stempel-Lobell, who’s done a ton of iconic covers.

Then there’s the matter of that Clive Barker cover blurb… which, if the cover itself didn’t plunge me deep into madness, those words certainly did. Beyond honored to have someone who’s so heavily shaped who I am as a horror fan (and a person) say such kind things after reading my book.

A few more incredible authors (and filmmakers!) have read early copies of Clown and have been nice enough to share words and I want to share them with you now, but… we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

The book’s not out until August 2020.

But it has recently been made available for pre-order.

And if you just balked at the idea of buying a book months out from release… believe me, I understand, but pre-orders are a huge help to authors. No matter where you choose to shop, pre-orders help build analytic leverage at online retailers, can increase the size of initial orders at big stores, and can help your local brick-and-mortar indie bookstore know what’s something they should be keeping in stock.

So, as August approaches and I get to talk even more about Clown in a Cornfield (don’t forget, it’s already being developed as a feature film by Temple Hill Entertainment), the most valuable thing you can do to help me spread the word is to pre-order your copy and encourage your friends to do the same.

I’m intensely proud of this… slice… of slasher madness. Pre-order is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, through your local indie bookstore using Indiebound, and on Bookshop, where indie bookstore get a percentage of your order. HarperCollins also has a directory of additional retailers and links on their website.

Thank you. And wherever you pre-order, keep your receipt and keep your eyes here on this blog or my Twitter, because I’m working out a special way to reward the folks who’ve pre-ordered.

Okay. Thanks for listening to that sales pitch! Now: more news!

Yes, you may have heard me talk about it (like on this great episode of the Cinepunx podcast), but I’m getting the opportunity to work on one of my favorite properties of all time: Jim Henson’s The Dark Crystal!

BOOM! Studios has officially announced that, with issue #5 of The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, artist French Carlomagno and I start a 4-issue arc focusing on fan-favorite character: Hup. This arc is from a story by Netflix showrunners Jeffery Addis and Will Matthews, so it’s super legit. We’re not going to have podlings wielding chainsaws or anything!

DarkCrystal_AgeResistance_005_Cover_Main_PROMO.jpg  Issue #5 drops in January, #6 in February (etc.) and they’re already listed in Previews and can be requested at your local comic shop or ordered from your favorite online retailers, or direct from the publisher. Like novels, pre-ordering comics is a super nice thing to do for creators.

If you’re a fan of my horror novels and don’t think this is for you: believe me, you will still find something to enjoy in this arc! French’s art is incredible and we’re getting to tell a story that feels intimate and funny but still *very* Dark Crystal.

*Update*: Dark Crystal: The Ballad of Hup & Barfinnious is now available to pre-order in hardcover on amazon or Bookshop. This will be out in October and collects all four issues.

That’s it. That’s all the news I’ve got. How are you?

Clown in a Cornfield Announced! 🤡🔪

Update: Buy Clown in a Cornfield on AmazonBarnes & NobleBookshop, or Books-A-Million or keep reading on to be convinced.

Adam, where you been? You used to be so prolific but it’s been years since your last book.

I’ve been busy busy busy, and I’m so thrilled to be able to share this news with you:

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Yes, my next novel is called Clown in a Cornfield. It was announced last week in Publishers Marketplace, then Publishers Weekly (you can read their coverage here) and it will be out summer 2020 from HarperTeen. As you can probably imagine, I’m a little overwhelmed at the news and thankful to everyone who’s reached out to wish me well.

I can’t say much about the book beyond sharing the synopsis, but yes: it is a teen slasher. One of my favorite subgenres, possibly my very favorite. I’m incredibly proud of the book. It’s scary, funny, action-packed, and modern as hell. Temple Hill Entertainment (the YA adaptation powerhouses responsible for The Maze Runner, Twilight, The Hate U Give, and many others) is handling the film and TV side of things. Fingers crossed on that front.

I’m so looking forward to getting this in your hands and I beg your indulgence in the coming months as I spread killer clown emojis far and wide.

🤡🔪

TRIBESMEN Returns!

That’s right. My Italian cannibal possession opus Tribesmen is back in a brand-new Black T-Shirt Books edition. Featuring a gorgeous new cover by Matthew Revert, snazzy paperback layout by Scott Cole, and an Author’s Afterword by me, Adam Cesare.

The new ebook and paperbacks are right here. If you’re more of an audiobook person, Joe Hempel’s wonderful reading is on Audible.

This is the novella that started it all and I hope that those of you who haven’t yet checked it out will go give it a chance. I’m also aware that MANY of you have already read Tribesmen and are like: “Stop blogging me about reissues, Adam. Go write a new book!” You’re not wrong! While I’ve been working on various projects (one of them a new novel!), I’ve been focusing on bringing out my backlist in these “author preferred” editions, getting them “in house” while I prepare for Phase II of my career. Doesn’t that sound ominous?

As with all my books: leaving a quick, honest review on Amazon (Goodreads helps too, but pretty please cross-post your reviews on Amazon) helps me get the word out and does a lot to drive sales. It is immensely appreciated.

So what else have I been up to? Well, outside of some stuff I’m NDA’d up the wazoo about, I’ve been trying to stay regular on my YouTube Channel. I’ve put up probably a dozen videos since the last newsletter went out, but a good recent one to start with is probably my Top 5 Scream Factory Releases countdown. Click that subscribe button under the video to stay current:

One last note, I know that a few people who visit the blog are indie authors or associated with indie publishing, so I’ve got to say something quick.

If you’re looking for book design, layout, and/or cover services: my buddy Scott Cole has recently gone freelance and would love to talk with you about your projects. Not only an author, Scott’s laid out every Black T-Shirt paperback release. If you own any of these books: you can tell that his work is a cut above the rest. Too often I’m sent books for review where the writing is great, but the author or publisher were like “design schmesign, I can do this myself” and their books look… uh, not great. You can get in touch with Scott through his Twitterwebsite, or reach out directly to 13visions@gmail.com to inquire about rates. He’s a good author, a good dude, and a master at design/layout. Tell him Adam sent you.

Our Dark Lord, Whispering in Your Ears: SUMMER JOB Hits Audiobook!

Hey all! Happy (almost) Halloween!

Leaves may be falling, but don’t you wish it was a little warmer? Aren’t you already longing for summer?

Well, one of my most acclaimed novels, The Summer Job: A Satanic Thriller, is now beautifully produced audiobook narrated by Stacey Glemboski!

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I’ve been overjoyed by the response to Matt Godfrey’s readings of Video Night (over 130 ratings and reviews on Audible! Have you left one?) and Exponential. But while those novels were a perfect fit for Godfrey’s sultry baritone, The Summer Job demands a more feminine touch. Godfrey referred me to Stacey Glemboski (much like Con Season, Tribesmen, and Zero Lives Remaining narrator Joe Hempel referred me to Godfrey), who, I have to admit, absolutely leveled me with her performance.

Glemboski’s reading and vocal cast of characters is eerie, thoughtful, soulful and sometimes downright scary. I can’t think of a better narrator for this book. A book that Bloody Disgusting called “The textbook definition of a nail-biter... Cesare’s best novel yet.” and LitReactor hailed as having  “one the best and scariest openings to a horror novel I’ve ever read…The rest of the novel is equally great.”

While Summer Job has done well, it hasn’t achieved the sales success that Video Night has, and for a long time that’s kind of bugged me. While I’d never say one of my books is better than the other, I will say that The Summer Job feels more personal, a full articulation of the folk horror/satanic panic vibe I was going for.

I hope that this audiobook brings the novel to a whole new audience and gives it a second chance at the limelight. And whether it’s your first exposure to the book or you’re revisiting it in audio: I need your help. Buy the book, spread the link far and wide and be sure to leave a quick rating and review once you’ve listened. It’s hard to overstate how much reviews help books like this get discovered.

And, because it’s really flattering, I’ll end this blog with one more blurb, this one from Complex: “Cesare’s latest is a knockout…There’s a potent retro vibe running through Cesare’s work, in general–he’s the closest thing literary horror has to its own Jim Mickle or Ti West.”

Oh, and one more thing: if you were planning on listening to this book shirtless, maybe don’t. Cover yourself with the official Summer Job T-shirt, designed by creepyguy wunderkind Trevor Henderson. You can grab that here.

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Now go listen!

Exponential: Crushing Bones in Surround Sound

Very happy to announce that Exponential: A Novel of Monster Horror is now a beautiful new audiobook narrated by Matt Godfrey.

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For the unfamiliar, Exponential tells the age-old tale of a bar full of misfits and losers who must contend with an ever-expanding gelatinous monster if they want to live to drink another day. Since its initial paperback release, the novel’s been one of my most well-reviewed books and I hope that this audio rendition will introduce a whole new audience to this tender piece of monster fiction.

This is the second time that Matt Godfrey’s brought one of my novels to life and I think this one may be even better than his incredible work on Video Night.

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And while Matt’s a stellar narrator, don’t forget that Tribesmen, Zero Lives Remaining, and The Con Season are also available as audiobooks, narrated by the maestro Joe Hempel.

As with all of my books, whether you buy and enjoy them via paperback, ebook, or audiobook: reviews are the best way to help more people find them and love them. If you like a book (not just mine, any books, really) please leave a review on Amazon (or Audible, in the case of ebooks). Word of mouth keeps people like me writing and there’s no better feeling than hearing my work is appreciated.

If you’ve already read Exponential and are wondering when I’l have *brand new* material available, the answer to that is: right now.

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I’ve got a short story in an incredible shared-universe collection called Welcome to the Show: 17 Horror Stories – One Legendary Venue. Author and editor Matt Hayward put this thing together and the list of talent on display is unreal and humbling. Being included in an anthology with a great table of contents is one thing, but there’s something a little more special about knowing that all of our stories are linked, are part of a larger whole. There are original stories by Brian Keene, Rachel Autumn Deering, Jeff Strand, Mary SanGiovanni, Bryan Smith, John Skipp, and many more. I’m pleased to share the pages with these authors and my Black T-Shirt Books brothers Matt Serafini and Patrick Lacey.

The paperback and ebook are out now from Crystal Lake Publishing and are doing well (as of writing this, it’s one of the best-selling anthologies on all of Amazon).

What else is new? Well, not much, busy working on top secret projects and all that, but I did get a chance to talk about my experience at Scares That Care Weekend 2018. And more importantly, got to talk about all the great books, movies, and pins I picked up at the show. You can watch that convention rundown/haul over on my YouTube Channel (but you already knew that, because you’re a subscriber, right?).

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Summer O’ Slashers

Hey all.

How’s things? Things are good with me. Finishing up a number of projects that are going to keep me hyped up from 2019 and beyond, but can’t quite talk about any of that yet. I will say that the Video Night audiobook is continuing to slay. I think a lot of that is down to Matt Godfrey’s awesome performance. If you’ve listened to it and could leave a quick review on Audible: we’d appreciate it.

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But enough about me, this last week there were two big book releases from the Black T-Shirt crew.

First is Triple Axe by Scott Cole. This is out from Grindhouse Press, one of the absolute best cross-genre publishers in the bizarro scene. It’s hilarious and profane and I cannot recommend it more as a weird, mind-expanding slasher beach read.

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Next is a reissue of Matt Serafini’s Under the Blade. This remastered, updated edition of Serafini’s taut, frightening, and twisty slasher-thriller is now available in paperback and ebook.  But don’t take my word for it, Brian Keene said: “Echoes of horror’s paperback glory days, but spills new blood with a modern protagonist and style. I loved it!”
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And even though it came out a few weeks ago, we can’t forget to mention Pat Lacey’s horror-movie-themed novel Bone Saw, out now from Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing.

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So those are my big recommendations while you’re waiting for the next Adam Cesare book to drop (and believe me, I’m waiting too, but the wait’s going to be worth it). Like *all* authors, Matt, Scott, and Pat really appreciate (and most times financially benefit) when you leave a quick Amazon and Goodreads review of their books when you’re done.

If you’ve been neglecting to keep up on my YouTube videos or (gasp!) haven’t subscribed to my channel, I’ve been having a lot of fun sharing movie and book reviews over there. Here are a couple of my recent faves:

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Go Go Black T-Shirt!

Probably showing my age here (both how old or how young I am, depending on your perspective), but growing up I had pretty much every action figure, every Zord, every morpher, from the original Mighty Morphin Power Rangers series. Giant robots, teen hijinks, monsters: the show was definitely my aesthetic. Especially since at the same age (and continuing to today) I was a huge comic book fan and it was one of the few places to get a live-action superhero fix.

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Which is why it’s doubly sweet to have a story in BOOM! Studio’s Mighty Morphin Power Rangers 2018 Annual. The book hits comic shops Wednesday, April 25th. If you’re interested in grabbing a copy, be aware that stores *will* sell out, so call your shop and ask them to hold your book, if at all possible. The annual features five stories that connect to the larger Shattered Grid event that’s been going since Mighty Morphin Power Rangers #25, and it’s a massive crossover arc that features shocking character deaths (and a few shocking alternate universe heel turns). The story I scripted involves the the cast of Power Rangers in Space and was illustrated by the incredible Hyeonjin Kim, with colors by Joana Lafuente and letters by Ed Dukeshire.

If you’re a fan of my fiction but not big into comics or the Power Rangers: I still think you’ll find a lot to enjoy in this issue (though I was kind enough to be allowed to play in the Saban Brands’ sandbox, the high-stakes nature of Shattered Grid meant that I got to do some very… on-brand things in my script). But I also have to say: if you’re a comics reader who’s not checking out BOOM!’s Power Rangers line then you’re missing out. Lead writers Kyle Higgins and Ryan Parrot (on the prequel spinoff book Go Go Power Rangers) are creating a user-friendly series that appeals to die-hard fans but at the same time stands alone for casual fans and tells incredibly compelling superhero stories (for example, there’s a standout issue where you meet the failed ’60s Vietnam-era Power Rangers team, great stuff). I’m very grateful to everyone at BOOM! for the opportunity.

Please head to your local comic book store and ask for (nay, demand) the issue. Or, you can order a copy (I think) direct from the publisher. Or, if you’re really not into physical media, then there’s always Amazon/Comixology.

So, that’s about it for news, aside from the Video Night audiobook (narrated by Matt Godfrey) still selling like gangbusters. Have you picked up your copy yet? Please do, and when you’re done leave a review on Audible and Amazon.

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We’re closing in on the magical 50 review/ratings number on Audible, and reviews and word of mouth is how both Matt and I keep the lights on. When you’re finished with that, might I recommend some of my other audiobooks (the rest of them narrated by the wonderful Joe Hempel), ebooks, or paperbacks like Zero Lives Remaining, Tribesmen, or The Con Season?

Other than that, I’ve been keeping busy with writing the new book (it’s close to finished, any day now), and with keeping my YouTube channel updated with a new video every week. Some recent thumbnails are below, click them to check out reviews for They Remain, Ghost Stories, and a list of reading recommendations you might want to bring to your book club.

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