New Story: Night Stories

Well, I did it – I got through the second round of DarkFuse magazine’s Tiny Terrors Tournament which means there are only two rounds to go.

My latest 50-word wonder is now up for your vote, standing opposite Evan Dickens for a chance to make it to the final.

This has been such a fun experience, easing me back into my writing with baby steps, but adding that particular frisson that only comes from being in deadly (albeit literary) combat with another human being.

Some come along, check out our respective wares, and cast a vote for whomever you want to see make it to the finals.

The story and voting links are available HERE – voting closes at midnight (Eastern Standard Time) on 2nd March 2017.

An Interview with Gill Hoffs

Today’s interview, as part of Women in Horror Month is a little bit different, in that her major releases in her career have not been horror novels, or collections, but rather a pair (soon to be a trio) of non-fiction books on 19th Century shipwrecks.

So, why include her in this season of sisterly slaughter? Well, first of all, she’s one of the nicest people I know, and any chance to chat with her is a delight. Secondly, she’s one of the few FB writing buddies I’ve made over the years that I’ve actually met in meatspace. Thirdly, and most importantly, her non-fiction books are at least as harrowing and any fictional horror.

Ladies and gentleman… Gill Hoffs.



Kevin G. Bufton: It’s Women in Horror month, so I guess the first place to start is this: limitations of genre aside – do you classify yourself as a horror writer?

Gill Hoffs: I class myself as a writer first and foremost, and I write all sorts of things. Long, short, fact, fiction, the lot. Some of what I write, however, I would class as True Horror, and that includes The Sinking of RMS Tayleur: The Lost Story of the ‘Victorian Titanic’ (Pen & Sword, 2014, 2015) and The Lost Story of the William & Mary: The Cowardice of Captain Stinson (Pen & Sword, 2016). I feel very strongly that as someone who researches and writes about long-forgotten shipwrecks and the people involved with them, it would be dishonest and cowardly of me to shy away from the gory details. These poor sods experienced some truly awful events – skulls smashed or pierced by poles, noses torn off, hands and arms chopped with hatchets, giving birth while up to their waist in water on a sinking ship… If I choose to tell their story then it has to be warts and all, not some sanitised version with the rough stuff glossed over. What would be the point of that?

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Bufton on Books: ‘The Lost Story of the William and Mary: The Cowardice of Captain Stinson’ by Gill Hoffs (2016)

Author: Gill Hoffs
Title: The Lost Story of the William and Mary: The Cowardice of Captain Stinson
Released: 2016
Publisher: Pen and Sword
Format: Kindle, 176 pages
Type: non-fiction
Genre: history

The emigrant ship William and Mary departed from Liverpool with 208 British, Irish, and Dutch emigrants in early 1853. Captained by young American Timothy Stinson, the vessel was sailing for New Orleans when the ship wrecked in the Bahamas in mysterious circumstances.

Instead of grounding the ship on a nearby shore or building rafts for the passengers, Stinson and the majority of his crew sneaked away in lifeboats – murdering at least two of the emigrants with a hatchet as they did so – and reported the ship sunk with all on board lost. But the passengers kept the ship afloat and two days later were rescued by heroic wreckers as the ship went down.
Now, over 160 years on, the tale of the two murdered in Bahamian waters and the hundreds who escaped thanks to kindly wreckers can finally be told. Stinson is no longer getting away with murder.

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New Story: Like a Glove

Very pleased to announce that I made it past the first round of DarkFuse magazine’s Tiny Terrors Tournment.

This means it’s a new week and a new piece of nanofiction to pull in the readers’ votes. My story for the quarter finals is called ‘Like a Glove’ and is definitely closer to the nasty side of the horror spectrum, when compared to my previous offering.

That said, I hope that you’ll take the time to read it, that you enjoy it, and that you’ll vote for it.

The story and the voting links are all available here.

An Interview with Jessica McHugh

My latest interviewee for Women in Horror Month is a writer I have long admired.

Kevin G. Bufton: It’s Women in Horror month, so I guess the first place to start is this: limitations of genre aside – do you classify yourself as a horror writer?

Jessica McHugh: Without question. If I start a story without plotting first, it almost always leans toward the horrific.

KGB: What first drew you towards horror?

JM: Nightmare Theater had a large impact on me when I was very young. Most of the weekly horror movies scared me, but I couldn’t stop watching. When I was in fourth grade, I wrote my first horror story: a short, god-awful tale about a supernatural killer named James. Soon after, I read my first Stephen King book, and I was doomed from there.

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Bufton on Books: ‘The Train Derails in Boston’ by Jessica McHugh (2016)

Author: Jessica McHugh
Title: The Train Derails in Boston
Released: 2016
Publisher: Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing
Format: Kindle, 346 pages
Type: novel
Genre: horror


Rebecca Malone has problems. Not just the alcohol. Not just her husband’s inane attempts at writing a bestselling novel, their teenage daughter’s promiscuity, or her certifiable mother. Not even her lover, who wants to take her husband’s place in Cherrywood Lodge, the famous estate she now calls home. Her biggest issues start the moment she discovers a chest of ancient mahjong tiles in the basement of her new house, causing her life to spin out of control with hallucinations, sexual deviances, and grisly murders. Is the mahjong game haunted? Or are Rebecca’s problems part of a different game, started before she was born?

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An Interview with Jeani Rector

I’m back, and I’ve brought with me the owner and editor of one of the finest horror webzines out there – The Horror Zine (and I’m not saying that because she’s published one of my stories!). Ladies and gentlemen, the inimitable Jeani Rector.

Kevin G. Bufton: It’s Women in Horror month, so I guess the first place to start is this: limitations of genre aside – do you classify yourself as a horror writer?

Jeani Rector: Basically, I classify myself first as a horror editor, next as a writer. Two of my books are historical fiction (with a dark side….bubonic plague and the Salem Witch trials). So they are not just horror, but historical.

I classify myself first as an editor because that takes up the majority of my time. It takes me an entire month to complete every issue of The Horror Zine on line. In fact, I begin a new issue the very day I upload a current issue!

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New Story: They Prayed for Rain

As mentioned in a previous post, my 50-word piece of nanofiction ‘They Prayed for Rain’ has made it to the first round of DarkFuse Magazine’s Tiny Terrors Tournament. Sixteen authors, including your humble scribe, facing off in a single elimination tournament to crown the master (or mistress) of micro-horror.


The brackets are up here, As you will see, I’m up against the very-talented Theresa Derwin. Please take a couple of minutes out of your day to pop over, read our respective tales, and vote for whichever you think is the best, to advance it to the next round.

Deadline for voting is 23:59 EST, on 17 February 2017.


Bufton on Books: ‘The Best of Jeani Rector’ by Jeani Rector (2015)


Author: Jeani Rector
Title: The Best of Jeani Rector
Released: 2015
Publisher: The Horror Zine Books
Format: Kindle, 323 pages
Type: collection
Genre: horror

‘The Bus Station’
‘The Golem’
‘The Janitor’
‘Love Story’
‘Cold Spot’
‘Apartment 17’
‘Flight 529’
‘The Dead Man’
‘The Famous Film Star’
‘The Boogeyman’
‘Urban Legend’
‘Under the House’
‘A Case of Lycanthropy’
‘The Freegans’
‘The Hole’
‘A Teenage Ghost Story’

Queen of Horror Jeani Rector is well-known for editing the critically acclaimed, international ezine called The Horror Zine. She knows how to deliver spine-tingling horror.

Now she delivers the most terrifying short story collection of all, her own original work. In this book, she presents the very best fiction, hand-selected for its content of sometimes gruesome, sometimes shocking, and always frightening stories. Here you will find deliciously dark work written by an expert in shivers. Guaranteed to scare!

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A brief writing update…

Just a quick note to announce that my first bit of fiction for the year – a 50-word piece of nanofiction called THEY PRAYED FOR RAIN – has been accepted by DarkFuse magazine, qualifying me for their Tiny Terrors competition.

Some big names from the scene there – Tim Waggoner, Michelle Garza, Adrian Shotbolt, and the like – not list of which is my opponent for the first round, the very-talented Theresa Derwin.

This is going to be fun!