FINALLY! “The Imaginings” in paperback. SIGNED AND PERSONALIZED!

What’s news for horror writer Paul D. Dail?

Dail_Cover_CO2_Finale- cover 500 px

click here for description

Hmm… let’s see… what’s new with me…oh yeah…

The Imaginings is finally in paperback! (and I don’t use exclamation points lightly)

It’s been longer than I care to admit since I started on this project and the ensuing complications (or the fact that I might have gone bass ackwards on more than a few things in regards to the publication of my first novel)…BUT NOW IT’S DONE!


- 5 1/2” x 8 1/2” trade paperback (334 pages)

- It can be purchased at Amazon and Barnes and Noble, but I’m going to make you wait on those links because…

- I’m selling hand signed editions with a personalized message (*optional) at for just $17, which includes standard USPS ground shipping. Continue reading

What Makes a Good Bad Guy? Part 2: Turning the “Shadow” into flesh and blood

What’s news for horror writer Paul D. Dail?

Not much since last week (maybe this is why I don’t post more frequently :) )

I submitted a short story to another market I’m excited about. Deadline is end of March. Send out those good thoughts for me.

And finally got started on edits for my next novel.  It’s slow going, but I’m optimistic.

But now, without further ado…

What Makes a Good Bad Guy? Part 2: Turning the “Shadow” into flesh and blood

Image from Flickr Creative Commons

Image from Flickr Creative Commons

In Part One of this article, I discussed the theory that one possible reason so many writers (and readers/viewers, for that matter) enjoy the character of the “bad guy” is because he/she/it represents what Swiss psychologist Carl Jung called the Shadow archetype, our opposite side of the Self we project to others.

However, while the Shadow may be the opposite of the Self, it is not completely alien. A well-crafted villain has to have something to which we can relate. They can’t be the nefarious, mustache-twisting man in black who does evil (read: eee-vul) just for the sake of evil. Well, they can be that villain, but then there’s less internal conflict in the minds of your readers. If you can create a “bad guy” that people actually like, they’re going to have a harder time doing the easy thing: cheering for the hero. Continue reading

What Makes a Good Bad Guy? Part 1: Hate the sin. Love the sinner.

What’s news for horror writer Paul D. Dail?

After much longer than I had originally intended, the print copy of The Imaginings is actually a print copy… kind of.  Currently in the proofing stage, but it was pretty cool to be able to hold my first novel in my hands, to be able to flip through the pages.

Click here for a sneak peek at the cover.

Click above for a sneak peek at the cover.

Shouldn’t be long now. I’ll keep you posted.

Still shopping around a couple short stories that I’m pretty excited about.  Now just hoping to find a publisher who will agree.

Also working on the early stages of a couple other stories as well.

And, uh… ahem… yeah… still trying to get started on the edits for my next novel.

But now, without further ado…

The following is a re-print of a piece I wrote a couple years ago for Suite101, a site for informative articles of a myriad nature. This article was under their “creative writing” section, but I tried to make it entertaining to the average reader as well. The result was a two-part piece that reads much like Stephen King’s On Writing.

Not that I consider myself on par with Stephen King or anything.

In fact, I’ll take this moment to officially purport neither to be an expert in this field or a strict follower in my own writing of all of the things I suggest here all of the time. Continue reading

Why I Really Like Kurt Vonnegut… or … Selected excerpts from “Cat’s Cradle”

What’s news with horror writer Paul D. Dail?

I finished my next novel!

Ahem… Okay, so it was just the first draft. And I actually finished it closer to two months ago (whew. Where did last month go?). But hey! The first draft is done!

And I’m superstitious and paranoid enough that, unless we’re talking over a beer, that’s all I can give up at this point. However, I will say that I’m feeling great about the potential, even in its first draft state. And I believe enough distance has passed that I’m ready to start editing. Wish me luck.

I’ve also been editing and submitting some shorts to pro markets. Really wanting to get moving toward my HWA (Horror Writers Association) membership. And hey, a little money would be okay too.

vonnegutBut now, without further ado…

I know Kurt Vonnegut is not for everyone.

Putting aside that it’s most popular these days to hate Orson Scott Card for his beliefs, not that long ago Vonnegut was criticized for being misogynistic throughout his writing career and apparently making some crazy comments toward the end of his life.

Continue reading

Pet Sematary vs. The Mist: Which Stephen King movie is harder on parents?

What’s news for horror writer Paul D. Dail?

Recently I passed 70,000 words on my WIP–the industry standard for minimum length of a novel.  And I’m still going.  Time to bring this baby to a close.

But I thought this merited a quick break to give some love back to my blog.

So without further ado…


Not long after my daughter was born, I discovered that Pet Sematary had made its way to the top of our Netflix queue.

Before it could be sent out, I moved it way down the line.  Since then (over three years), the Netflix instant movies have become more of the way my wife and I view movies (in those rare moments when we can actually watch a movie), so it has taken almost all of this time for Pet Sematary to make its way back up (and now it’s on instant too).

My son was born a little over a year ago.  I pushed the movie back again. Continue reading

Please bear with me. I’ll be back.

What’s news with horror writer Paul D. Dail?

Well, I haven’t died in case you were wondering.

Nor have I abandoned my blog.  I think about it quite regularly actually and keep a tab open on my browser all the time to remind myself that I need to do something here.

You should see how many tabs I have open all the time as reminders.

I do have some great ideas for blog posts, but I got sidetracked a few months ago as I was upgrading my teaching license.  Then summer hit and I remembered that I was also writing another novel.  And I’ve started some part-time freelance writing this month.  And I try to remember that I also have a family who generally enjoys having me around.

So if you haven’t unsubscribed, don’t do it yet.  I think I’ll have some things you’ll enjoy reading in the near future.  I just need to get my feet back under me first.

Until then, hope you’re all enjoying your summer.

Survival Plan or Cyanide Pill: Which would you choose?

What’s news for horror writer Paul D. Dail?

The main thing going on currently is the Somewhere in the Shadows giveaway which is going for 14 more days.  This is a pretty good one.  The top winner will receive all books from all of the contributing authors for Somewhere in the Shadows.  It’s a Rafflecopter giveaway, which means you can get multiple entries for various reasons (i.e.- following the authors on Twitter, tweeting about the contest, following their blogs, etc…)

To enter the giveaway, click here

To read my foreword and a brief review of Somewhere in the Shadows, click here.

But without further ado…

So I had an interesting conversation with a colleague the other day.

Actually, it was my wife and I who were having the conversation with a fellow faculty member at lunch when the topic of the end of the world came up.  Yeah, it was a weird lunch, and I’m not sure how we ended up on that topic.  I think it was when my wife asked the history teacher if it was just our current state of the world that seemed so polarized, or if mankind had cycled through this type of mentality like it cycled through so many other things.

castleTowerOr maybe it was when the history teacher mentioned the planned community known as The Citadel in Idaho.  For a simple description of what this community (read: “compound”) will be about, there is a banner at the top of their website saying “Get an Assault Rifle before it’s too late.” Continue reading