Cinder House is live! And it's free for a few days! Check it out.
What starts as a lighthearted Maine vacation takes a strange turn when Steve Lowell discovers there might be a reason no one has visited the Ashford guesthouse on the east end of Oldharbor in decades. He ventures north to escape the stresses of his life, but soon finds that his life might be something he will have to fight for amid a shop of horrors.
Cinder House tells the tale of a wealthy family with a dark history and the guileless young man who uncovers something that has remained hidden for a long time.
It’s a modern take on the classic horror narrative that brings it back to the understated ghost stories of Sir Walter Scott, Bram Stoker and L.P. Hartley. Cinder House is a quick read that delivers a definable plot, a sense of terror, and a clear resolution. But at Cinder House’s heart are noticeable literary influences along with themes that elevate the “horror”.
There are also undertones of Vonnegut’s work in the story. Cinder House makes some subtle and some not-so-subtle references to Slaughter House Five and the burning of Dresden at the hands of the fictional Roger Ashford’s grand creation. Had I taken it a step further and brought the narrative to Tralfamadore, I would contemplate submitting Cinder House into Vonnegut Kindle Worlds. But in its current state, I think it stands on its own foundation. I'm hoping it will be the first of an anthology, as I'm already halfway through a somewhat related follow up short.
And it’s free for a bit, so check it out!