Sometimes, being alone is a wonderful thing. Time to think, to reminisce, to prepare for what comes next. Other times, it’s a brutal nightmare; the sheer lack of human interaction sending one into what feels like an endless downward spiral.
Colp’s sixth collection, Solitude, contains fifteen stories, each of which provides a portrayal of what it is like to be alone; whether that be through the eyes of an old man wandering the halls of a retirement community late at night, the actions of a soldier traumatised by war or the thoughts of a young lady who truly feels that she has no one.
Gypsum Sounds Trails
West Moreton, Arizona, USA, 1874.
A tumbleweed twists and turns on Main Street as Boone Markwell and the rest of the Markwell Gang head for the saloon and the liquor that waited within. The day is long and there is much to be done before the sun sets behind the mountains. On the other side of the road, the shopkeeper bows his head, opting to stare at the dusty ground than make eye contact with the gunslinger. A dog barks in the distance, followed closely by a woman's yell, and Boone feels his finger slip to the butt of his revolver; the movement smooth and instinctive. For Gypsum Sound Trails, we invited some of our favourite collaborators to write their own western centred in and around the fictional Arizonan town of West Moreton and its inhabitants, including the infamous Markwell Gang. Each story reflects the style of its author while helping create a realistic western community.
Please ring bell if the desk is unattended. The hospitality industry is one that I rely on quite heavily. I like to travel, I like to eat out, and prefer to take public transport as opposed to driving anywhere myself; particularly in a busy city like Sydney. These people just make things so much easier, and I feel that sometimes we end up taking them for granted. So, thank you. Thank you to anyone reading this who may have served me a meal, made me a drink or driven me home at the end of a long night.
Thuggish Itch’s fifth collection, Hospitality, features sixteen short stories from some of our favourite authors. From haunted hotels and tainted lunch buffets to an unwanted guest in a restaurant fish tank, each story pays homage to the industry.
Through a Wine Glass Darkly
by Robert Allen Lupton
Through a Wine Glass Darkly contains fifteen tales of horror, mystery, humor, and science fiction previously published between 2016 and 2018, including the award winning short story, "Swim with the Beavers," and three stories that received honorable mention status in the Writers of The Future Contest. Also included are six drabbles originally published in the Horror Tree anthology, Trembling with Fear - Year One. A drabble is a story of exactly 100 words. One new story, "Cruising with Eddie" is included in this volume. Scary, evocative, whimsical, and funny - all at the same time. Fill your glass, sit in front of the fire, and enjoy the book. You might want to keep the lights on.
My wife and I watched a monster movie back in December, right around Christmas time. Normally, that wouldn’t have been my preferred film genre of choice, but it had been a long day full of food and family and, for whatever reason, this one managed to hold my attention. About midway through, at that climatic part where they finally reveal the monster fully for the first time, a thought hit me. Why are these monsters never really that big?
Big is home to a collection of stories that feature large, enormous or gigantic characters and concepts and, in this situation, it is most definitely a case of bigger is better.
On a visit to one of the parks in the north of the country, my father and I lined up to ride a roller coaster that had been themed around a 90’s action film. It was the ride of the moment, one of those ones where you sat hanging on the outside rather than sitting inside an enclosed car, and it seemed like every man and his dog had lined up with us.“You two can’t get on," said one of the ride workers. "Too tall. Your feet will scrape along the concrete, or it’ll take your leg right off.”This comment stuck with me over the years, and at times I would wonder just what would have happened if we had managed to sneak onto the ride. Nothing good I imagine.Thuggish Itch’s Theme Park is a collection of sixteen short stories that delve into the weird, wonderful and sometimes dark world of carnivals, fun fairs and theme parks. Lower your lap bar, strap yourself in, and prepare for the ride…
A Little Bit of Nonsense
At least once a year since I first started writing, I have put together a story that once finished, I simply file away in a folder entitled ‘Completed’ where it is never seen or heard from again. Not because they were bad, but because they were just so different that there was nowhere else to put them. They would be devoid of a genre, a theme, and would sometimes read like an alcohol-infused dream. But they were good stories all the same. One day, I got to thinking 'maybe other authors out there have stories that are just too weird to fit conventional themes?' It turns out that I was right...A Little Bit of Nonsense contains exactly that: a handful of short stories that are otherwise to obscure and too nonsensical to find a home anywhere else. Enjoy.
Wrestling had always been a part of our childhood; there was just something about it that captivated the imagination. The action figures, the VHS tapes, the multitude of posters and the t-shirts that made up the bulk of my teenage ensemble. There was even a time when I found myself wrapping up a foe with a figure four leg lock…
Suplex contains twelve wrestling stories, from twelve writers who (I’m guessing) had childhoods similar to my own. I hope you enjoy them.
Devils, demons and the idea of Hell have always featured prominently in the horror stories that I found myself reading as a teenager or the films I still delve into on a rainy day. I’ve always found it quite amazing how differently the leading man, Satan, is portrayed depending on the creativity and beliefs of the creator.
Thuggish Itch’s Devilish collection features, in no particular order, thirteen of our favourite tales, each of which provides a different take on the mythology, the red man himself and all of his minions.
There is a reason they call it science fiction. A reason why so many horror stories are based around our discoveries; both past, present and those that we may make in the future. This collection features ten stories, each of which provides a take on a modern-day scientific concept – from the undeniable issues surrounding global warming to our fruitless attempts at cold fusion. Prepare to be amazed.
Sky's The Limit
The sky has always fascinated me. The more I learn, the more questions I seem to have. Free radicals, refracting light, the knowledge that, if you travel high enough, everything will eventually give way to the blackness of space - each fact makes me more and more curious about what might be going on up there. There are stories wrapped up in this knowledge, plenty of stories…
Colp's latest collection, Sky's The Limit, contains twelve of these tales. Each story presents a unique perspective on our atmosphere and the effect that it may have on the people living, day by day, on the land down below.
Viva Las Vegas
Las Vegas, Nevada: a city with so much to offer and so much to hide. The Mirage with its hellfire and brimstone. Paris with its ceilings painted in a continuous day. The rhythmic and hypnotic motion of the Bellagio’s fountains. A city with everything one might want and then some.
Thuggish Itch’s first collection, Viva Las Vegas, contains sixteen horror and sci-fi stories from sixteen inspired authors, all of which delve beneath the city of Las Vegas’s bright lights and serve up a glimpse of what may lie within.
The Passage of Time
Time is a difficult thing, a constant, yet one that we can bend and manipulate as easily as rolling the clocks forward or backwards each year for daylight savings. It ticks away each day, the minutes and hours passing unnoticed and unrecorded until yet another sunset brings the night. This passage, that’s the scary part - the lost opportunities, the forgotten memories and the spectacular moments that you’re unlikely to experience ever again.
Colp’s first collection contains thirteen stories from thirteen different authors, each of which explores in its own way the idea that time, no matter how we approach it, will continue to pass and that sometimes there may just be a little something that we can do about it.
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