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FROM DUSK TILL CON writer, IRA GANSLER, is asking for YOUR help in crowdfunding his upcoming independent horror novel , THE THINGS IN THE DARKNESS. Read the novel's prologue inside!







Hello to everyone in the community of horror fans!  My name is Ira Gansler.  I am a reviewer for From Dusk till Con.  In addition, I maintain my own horror review blog, The Rage Circus Vs. The Soulless Void.  I am the screenwriter for one of the segments of the upcoming horror anthology, Scarewaves and an avid horror fan myself.  Not that long ago, I set about a life-long goal of mine to write a horror novel.  In a way, this novel has been in the works for twenty-two years.  If first started writing variations of the story at the age of 11 after reading my first horror novel that was not found in the kids' section of the public library.  Reading Stephen King's The Shining made me want to be a writer.  However, it would not be until about a year ago that I would succeed in this goal.


Although I had some vague ideas of what would make a great horror story, I really didn't have the maturity or life experiences to write good horror.  I would periodically put my pen to paper, but usually gave up quickly after when the story failed to come together.  This most recent attempt was a completely different result.  I found myself drawn to the characters and thrust into the story in the same way I hope my readers will.  The whole thing came to life and, in the end, I found myself with a story that I would want to read as a horror fan.  So I believe that is enough about me, let me tell you about the story.


Kevin Tremmel is at peace with his life.  He has a family that means everything to him, a career he believes in, and the rough patch in his life seems to have come and gone.  Everything is going great until the night when he dies in a car accident.  Kevin is brought back on the operating table and falls into a coma.  When he awakens, he has changed.  He is fighting urges to act on both brutally violent and sexual images that haunt his waking and sleeping hours, and he is starting to lose the fight.  Kevin is not sure whether the trauma of the accident has caused a mental illness to take hold or if he brought something back with him from the brink of death.  Either way, something is taking control of him and he is quickly slipping away to become a violent servant to the things in the darkness.


This novel has something for every horror fan.  The focus is on the internal struggle Kevin Tremmel finds himself in, and there is a heavy focus on the horrific atmosphere as he continues to deteriorate and does not know where to turn.  The focus on atmosphere does not mean that there is not a sufficient amount of blood and action for fans of terror.  If you don't believe it, check out the prologue to the story:



It is absolutely necessary, for the peace and safety of mankind, that some of earth’s dark, dead corners and unplumbed depths be let alone; lest sleeping abnormalities wake to resurgent life, and blasphemously surviving nightmares squirm and splash out of their black lairs to newer and wider conquests.

- H.P. Lovecraft

At the Mountains of Madness


“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep.”

Bible (Old Testament) Genesis1:1^2




If one were to ignore the source of the bleeding from the gash at the top of her head to its progression past her eye, the trail the blood made down her face almost looked like a tear.  The thin, red line was caught in her eye lashes, causing it to drip down the corner of her eye and along her cheek.  That single tear of blood was only the first thing you might notice.  Backing up and taking her all in you might find yourself thinking of her as HE intended. She was beauty spoiled meant to serve as a tribute to the darkness.  At the moment, it was this representation that mattered and this alone.



She had long since given up try to plead, reason, or even question what was happening and that was good.  Her pain and screams did not matter to him, only the destruction of all that she represented.  She was a representation of promise and possibility.  She was the hope of choosing the right path.  She was the possibilities before the wrong decisions were made.  She was the bright, shining future that stood out as a reason to persevere and struggle against all things in one’s path.  It was the empty promise of those things that he was bringing to light with every cut.  He was revealing the darkness that lay beneath all the lies.  Something didn’t seem quite right though.



He looked over his work again and realized the problem.  The cuts were too neat.  The slices were too intricate and intentional to truly represent the chaos that ruined promised hope.  Ruined hope should show as the blunt, brute force that life wielded.  If there was a God, he mused, it was not that He was out to ruin and cause pain; it was simply that he had long since ceased to care.  He had tired of humanity and thrown it aside like a child throws aside a toy that is no longer in favor.  He had left it dirty, used, and devoid of purpose once he was done with it and the result was never neat or tidy.  The result was the chaos and the things that thrived in the darkness and these were messy and imprecise by their very nature.



It was with this realization that he put down the scalpel and looked over his table.  The knife, the straight razor, the saw – all of them were still too intentional.  The linear damage they inflicted was not chaos in any form.  It did not speak of the emptiness that needed to be expressed.  These were the tools of a sadist.  He was not a sadist.  He reminded himself again that he took no true pleasure in her pain.  He simply was trying to spread the message of the emptiness that had consumed him and make people realize how easily dreams shattered.






Shattered was the key.  Shattered dreams made clear by shattered bones.  Bones protruding from shattered flesh and torn muscle.  



He looked over his tools again and immediately dismissed them all.  Instead, he went back into the house and moments later returned with renewed purpose.  He thought to himself, “this is what I should have been using all along.”  The woman’s eyes remained glazed over and she showed no reaction as he lifted the large hammer.  As he swung downward, her gaze did not even move to him or to follow his actions.  He thought she was beyond feeling any of what she was going through.



As the hammer came down with all the strength he could muster, he found that he was wrong.  The sound of shattering bones revealed that his purpose was not the only thing that had been renewed.



Her screams were renewed as well.





This is only the beginning of what I have in store for you.  At this time, I am running a funding campaign on Kickstarter, which is going very well!  The project was 100% funded within four days of launching.  With the deadline looming, we are continuing to exceed our original goal.  The story is already written and being professionally polished to go to print.  Every extra dollar made will go into further improving the technical aspects of the book and publicity so that it can reach as many people as possible.  I would love to have even more people on board with this exciting project!  So, check out the Kickstartersite and join us on this journey into the macabre.  Make your pledge to the darkness today!



For more info on contributing to the THE THINGS IN THE DARKNESS crowdfunding campaign, please visit: