An Open Letter To Those That Hate Your Love

This whole thing, to say the least, has gotten out of hand.

For the greatest portion of my life, I have felt like a nobody. A real loser. There often seemed to be a level where I knew I could be, and I was constantly looking at it from afar like it was a forbidden love. I lived with a constant broken heart.

And no solution I had to offer was acceptable. Shutting out my family and friends. Food replacing love. Attempted suicides. Convincing myself I wasn’t a good person. I had cast myself into solitude because I thought people like me didn’t deserve what “normal people” called happiness.

I grew tired of that feeling though, and I stopped talking about doing it. Stopped with the excuses. Stopped feeling sorry for myself. Learned to accept I was good enough to tell my own damn story. And all it took was someone who made me believe in that again.

Thank you Ren. N4.

And so, picking my dreams back up off the floor, I trusted myself like I did when I was a kid, and then my friends noticed the change, and they put their full support behind me. They were there at the finish line. Hell, they were part of the finish line.

Thank you John and Liam. My oldest friends.

Momentum picked up, setbacks were now just that, and I started trusting others for the first time again. With a single knock on the door, I was welcomed into the Horror Community.

Thank you Shawn and Dusty.

And now I was here. I was writing more, learning, and more importantly, gaining friendships that I treasure deeply.

Thank you to all my friends on social media. You know you who you are.

You took your trust, transmuted it into encouragement, and gave it to me. Made me believe in myself to the point where I actually accomplished things I thought I would never do. Reach levels I didn’t even see.

Now, here I am, about to launch a new book with seven of these people…

Thank you Anya, Shawn, Adrian, Charity, Baylea, Dustin, and Liam

and I let two individuals make me feel like I didn’t matter.

A nobody. A real loser.

Though they have already been outed in the public by people defending me, I still refuse to acknowledge them here as I have been and will continue to do so.

Say what you want about me, but those seven authors have worked too hard to have their work be undone and/outshined by this. They all deserve better.

So, here is what happened:

I left the Twitter group the first time because Jill (not real name) illustrated the symptoms of several dangerous and destructive social disorders. That and Jary (not real name) constantly posting cringeworthy, sexually charged, and often homophobic joke responses toward everyone, many of which could easily be considered sexual harassment. I wasn’t comfortable in the group, and I wanted to avoid confrontation at all cost to avoid drama. And for a time, it worked.

But then, several months later, I was put back into the group without my permission along with others who had left. We were all very confused and angry, and I wanted to confront Jill, but I was warned to just let it go out of fear of starting drama.

So, for a second time. I left the group, and then I blocked Jill to keep this from happening.

A mere two days later, I am told by others still in the group if Jary and Jill think I left because of the video?

Video?

Yes, it seems during an episode of a podcast I have, Jary had laid into me a bit about having asked him if he was interested in doing the anthology I was fixing to announce and never asking again…you know…the public submission that was open for months, announced multiple times, and retweeted by Jary at some point. He then proceeded to make homophobic jokes about an unaware author who had just started following them, and then closed the show out by making fun of my voice.

Jary was then blocked. And I moved on with my life, continuing to write and do commission artwork. I had taken the higher road. Soon I had even heard an apology was issued on their show.

But recently, and for what reasons I am still unsure of completely, Jill and Jary decided to announce a new guest was coming on the show.

Joe Appleton aka Joe Asshole. (Joe=Bo, Apple=Chappell, Ton=Weight). Bald on top. Round on bottom. Upside-down head. High pitched voice. Small genitalia. Has no family. No friends. Will be eating two microwave turkey dinners alone for Thanksgiving. Made a shitty video to promote his book, Month 12.

Suggested he should hang himself with Christmas lights.* Fuck ’em.

[*EDITOR NOTE: I have received word from a third party that Jary and Jill are adamant that, in the deleted video that you can no longer watch on their channel:

“The Christmas light hanging was not actually stated. [JILL] and [GARY] both said that they were referring to hanging it off a penis and not suicide.”]

In series of moments, I had forgotten all those people. All I could hear were two.

That is the power of bullying.

Part of me thinks I was being made fun of for the sake of entertainment. Another, because they are upset our friendship ended, and our paths diverted simply because of differences. But the act wasn’t a childish statement or bargaining chip. I wanted to move on.

So with this, I am doing just that. I am deciding to not let them get to me. I won’t stop writing. I won’t leave social media either. There are too many wonderful people I am honored to call friend I would be forced to leave behind.

I won’t do any of it, not even to out and attack these bullies. Hell, I just wrote a story for The Grey Rooms about this subject.

No. I want to remind people that bullying happens to adults as well, and it is all too commonplace in the horror/writer community. We grow jealous of each other’s successes instead of being happy for them. We disagree about how things should “truly” be done and try to impose our beliefs onto those “like-minded” around us, choosing to stifle and criticize differing and/or original ideas. And if we express dislike or resistance at any time, suddenly we’re weak. Our passion is not legitimate.

We aren’t beautiful and unique, but we are snowflakes apparently.

All because I grew to realize I couldn’t call them friends anymore, and they couldn’t grow up at all.

But their actions have already had negative repercussions for their own work. And even now it continues because others are seeing their actions. And when they go to hide them, people see them more. And where I thought two people had taken something from me, I was ignoring my family. I was ignoring Ren and John and Liam and Shawn and Gavin and Dustin and Adrian and Chris and Anya and Baylea and Charity and Tapia and S.R and Colin and Madeline and Silvia and Jesse and the hundreds of other people who have called me friend, supported me, bought my books, retweeted a positive thought.

Been an actual friend.

I let two people get to me and forgot all the good in my life. Bring me back to a place I haven’t felt since middle school.

I let them stop ME.

Bullies don’t have to have that much control over you, especially as an adult. You don’t have to put up with it because you’re worried you’ll be embarrassed.

“…we’re all terrified of embarrassment. That’s why we’re so… dead.” – Archie (John Cleese) – A FISH CALLED WANDA

No one should be afraid to be proud of their work. To have an opinion that differs from others. To do something different when what is considered correct is only a guideline. And no one should be afraid to recognize when they’re uncomfortable in a social situation and want to leave. That’s being an adult. And if they argue they deserve an explanation?

You say you deserve respect.

It has already been done by Kendall Reviews and Aphotic Realms, but we’re asking all publishers, reviewers, podcasts, everyone, to post this message on your social media to commit to stopping bullying at your gates:

We celebrate HORROR at _______, we do NOT support/condone anyone being HORRIFIC to one another.

White or Black, Gay or Straight, Fat or Thin. We all die with a grin. It costs nothing to be nice.

Let’s #PromoteHorror & each other

#antibullying #benice

Now, to go hang with my friends and play games, have Thanksgiving dinner with my family, and get ready to launch the new book with my writing family.

To those that hate your love, love their hate.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE!

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Behind the Door

I was very honored to be a part of the first episode of Behind The Doors, the podcast where the cast and crew of The Grey Rooms discuss the episode for the week, “Look Alike”. I was fortunate enough to be surrounded by creators Jason Wilson and Brian Black, along with voice performers Holly Linden and (our week’s guest host) Graham Rowat. I had such an amazing time talking about the episode I wrote, and you can watch and/or listen to the episode below.

The Grey Rooms Podcast: Behind The Door – Episode 1: “Look Alike”

The Grey Rooms Podcast: Behind The Door – Episode 1: “Look Alike” (VIDEO)

Haven’t listened to the episode yet? I got ya covered.

The Grey Rooms: Room #1207 – “Look Alike

Happy Halloween From Room 1207

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Art by Cassie Shaver

It’s Halloween, and The Grey Rooms Podcast has a treat for everyone.

The third and final release before the main season is here, and I’m fortunate enough to say that the story “Look Alike” was written by me.

But WOW, was I blown away by the finished product. You can listen to it in it’s entirety below. (Headphones highly recommend). Then when you’re done, head over to their site www.thegreyrooms.com for the other episodes or gain early access and all sorts of goodies over on their Patreon page.

 

Room 1207 – Look Alike

The following people must be thanked for elevating my story well past what it deserves.

Cassie Shaver – Artist

Jason Wilson – Creator and Audio Designer

Brian Black – The Tour Guide of The Grey Rooms

Holly Lindin, Graham Rowat, GabeTemplin, and ChristinaWilson – The amazing voice talent behind this episode.

To you all, I love you and cannot thank you enough for gifting this experience to me. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do.

Happiest of Halloweens. Oh, and be careful whose face you wear.

By Year’s End Update

So yet again, I’ve been away a while, but with good reason.

BY YEAR’S END, the YEAR 47 anthology, is almost done.

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We’ve all been working hard to bring you the absolute best stories from before the 47th year in the New West.

Alongside my contributions, you’ll get stories from:

Anya Stanley, the queen of horror articles and now contributing writer to Fangoria magazine.

Shawn Lachance, set to rebirth horror-writers into Horror Canada come January.

A.A. Medina, co-owner of Aphotic Realm magazine, Author of SIPHON, and co-host of The Purple Tongue Podcast.

Charity Langley, author of WICKED INTENTIONS.

Baylea Hart, author of THE LOG HOUSE.

Dustin Scyler Yoak, co-owner of APHOTIC REALM and co-host of Geek-Men & The Masters of the Thundernerds podcast.

And Liam Gil, formerly of Roundabout and It’s All Over, making his writing debut.

What can you expect on November 27th? Well…

The best part? You don’t have to Year 47 first. So pick your path, talk a walk with us, and keep watching here and http://www.yearxlvii.com for more.

Overdue Updates

Ok. I admit it. I lost track of time here on my site.

BUT I’m here now to give you some updates as to what I’m working on and have been since my last post.

First off, the Year 47 anthology has it’s authors! After going through all the submissions, I have picked out the best of the best. I plan on doing a video announcement soon. In the meantime, they are currently being edited. Can’t wait to brag on these fantastic writers.

Second, I’ve been doing a podcast with Aphotic Realm’s Dustin S. Yoak entitled Geek-Men and the Masters of the Thundernerds. Our goal is to talk about all the things you love without all the hate. Link is in the, well, LINK section.

Also there is a link to The Grey Rooms Podcast, which I have a contributed story there launching very soon. I’d get in on the ground floor now because I honestly believe it’s the next big podcast. Listen to one episode (with headphones) and you’ll hear why.

Other than that, I’m doing some artwork for a children’s book, and am already planning (and writing) my next book. But that will be announced Soo enough.

That coupled with even a few more secret projects, I hope you understand why I’ve been so busy.

But until the next post (which is either soon or another apology), Stay Tuned, and thanks for sticking with me.

Love you guys.

– Bo

Year 47 Anthology Update

Just two months left, submissions are coming in, and it gives me a chance to give an update as to what is going on behind the scenes. But instead of writing it out, I wanted to make it more personal and tell you myself. So please, enjoy the video, check out the submissions page here, and get your stories in by August 1st.

 

A STOLEN GLANCE

A Stolen Glance

by Bo Chappell

In silken seas she slumbered
Celestial reflections from invisible love
Across a mirror
A silver river, running sharply into an ivory valley
A singular point not meant to be shared
Even here I go unnoticed
Yet forever shall I reign
God’s love washes over the alabaster range
To find me idle
Beside a river no longer silver
In waters no longer cold
Yet resting in the open
I will not cast a shadow
Despite my mark
I’ll never be known

©2018

Yesterday Was Different

I haven’t written anything in a while, but I felt compelled to write about something that happened yesterday that jump started me into writing this.

I know a lot of you have been worried about my absence, and I don’t know what to say to that as I didn’t know I had made that kind of impact in your lives. So, I think you guys deserve an update for your concern, and I appreciate your support during all this without ever needing to know why.

After I had a very successful work month in February, I set aside March to take a break and have some me time to refuel for future projects, including the Year 47 Anthology.

As if Clark W. Griswald had planned it, this vacation didn’t work out.

A whole bunch of personal stuff came to a head all at once. My health took a dip, I hit some financial trouble, and I had to finally admit to myself I wasn’t going to be happy continuing in the relationship that I’ve been in for nearly a decade with my best friend. My only relationship.

I had enough sense to know my depression was going to invade my world like Poland, but I didn’t expect you guys would notice my pattern change. Several of you called me out to ask what was wrong, and I had to admit that I needed to step away.

Since then, it only got worse, and I didn’t talk about it because I didn’t want to burden anyone, especially my friends in the community who have their own issues and need to stay focused. I’m not about bringing negativity into lives if I can help it. I’m getting to old for that nonsense.

I did the only thing I could that kept away those thoughts of removing myself from the equation. I put myself in parentheses and shut out everything else. Become a variable to solve later. If nothing else, become a remainder.

I didn’t have anyone I could really discuss my history with in person aside from the one who I was asking to leave. I only ever had four people in my life who I could be open with and have a chance at being understood.

One was a mentor in a counciling program many years ago who I had the utmost respect for and felt I received the same. But he retired and hit the open road on motorcycle to see the world. I miss Dan tremendously and hope I’ll somehow find him again one day. But, if not, I hope he’s happy.

My kid sister was always easy to talk to as well, but she got married to a military man and moved away. Her career keeps her busy. Barely responds to text, and I’m lucky to see her a few days out of the year. Not much time for serious talk.

My buddy Zack and I have shared tears as well as laughs, and I know he’d take a bullet for me. But every since he moved and started school, it’s hard for me to engage him or anyone about my problems when it’s not in person. But he does try. Probably the most.

And it’s none of their faults because they’re doing what I so desperately want to do, which is live.

But the fourth? Up until recently, I had planned to share my life with her. But it isn’t working anymore. This isn’t about her though or trashing her because it isn’t like that. I still love her, and she gave me the happiest moments of my life. We just don’t work anymore.

I am not happy anymore.

So here I am, still in the midst of all this, the fog only getting thicker and the night only darker. The moon escaping my view.

I’m utterly lost, but I need to keep moving, even though I don’t want to take another step.

I won’t lie and say I haven’t thought about suicide again. I’ve been away from that thought for a while now, but never long enough.

But I take another step.

I either can’t sleep or sleep the day away, having godless nightmares where I can feel the bottom. Where I’m short of dying, only to wake and wonder why I’m still alive.

But I take another step.

I try and write, read, draw, watch, play, anything to distract myself from the darkness yet find numbness.

But I take another step.

Even after an unexpected talk with another writing friend (Read Silvia’s post Here), I didn’t know if I was going to be capable of writing anything new again.

But yesterday happened.

I would preface this story if I knew how to, so I’ll simply start.

The day was stressful from the get go with an apartment inspection coupled with some serious naseua and drowsiness. When I was able to finally take a nap, nightmares again. Ones dealing with the harsh break-up I’m still in the middle of ending.

I decide that, after a few more minutes of degrogging, I’ll go out for a while, which I never do.

As the day goes on, that’s when it happens. The reason for writing this.

I met someone. I don’t “meet” people. I’m not that type of guy. I don’t have “game” and I never touched the dating scene to begin with. I met my former fiancée online. I’m 35 years old and a sad 35 at that.

But there I was, suddenly talking to this beautiful girl so beyond my league, one of my hunky, alternate universe selves had to have been wondering what the hell was going on in his timeline.

Short, black hair. Stunningly cute, round face with these thick, black frames on that made her only more adorkable. Short-cut, banana yellow jacket. She kinda put me in mind of Jubliee from X-Men only in her 30s. No, I didn’t tell her that. Probably wanted to, but didn’t.

I don’t remember how our conversation ever really got started, but it was going great. We were laughing. My attempt to derail it by hinting I’m not interested yet still flirting (which is most certainly not me) wasn’t ending the kismit moment. I even had the nerve to comment on her voice, which I was in love with from the start. I said something about how it’d be nice to hear it again or something, feeling like an embarassed ten year old boy flubbed Shakespeare. But I caught a smile that told me I did alright.

But that’s why I’m here. That was the absolute best I have felt in a long time. I was genuinely happy.

But I can’t remember what her voice sounded like.

I can’t because as soon as I expressed that admiration, I woke up from that exact same nap as earlier. I struggled to remember her, but she faded into that alternate universe.

And as I tried to remember her, I felt this sadness that I was causing her pain as she was trying to remember herself. Remember me. That, as I was trying to hear her voice one last time, I was doing her more harm than good.

So I stopped trying and “let her go” which is a stupid, fucked up thing to write, I know. I can’t imagine how it is to read it. All this in less than a minute.

My brain has been fucking with me royally for almost my entire life, but that one hurt. I know it was just a dream, but goddamnit, I was happy. I can’t even remember the last time I had a good dream. I didn’t need to be tricked into thinking about love again.

Am I mourning the loss of a fictional woman? No. The last thing I need is that obsession. I’m mourning the loss of the happiness I had gained in my 35 years on this planet. And in the end, my brain may have been trying to help me, though not in the most healthy way.

This week, I redo my lease papers. In a few weeks, I’ll be living by myself, which I have never done extensively. I’ll be a single guy, way out of my prime, having to rebuild from less than what I had before, mentally and physically.

Why write all this and be this open? Cause I simply don’t have any more bottles to store this stuff anymore. I need to try something new. Mistake? I don’t know, but I don’t have much to lose at this point anyway.

So I’ll take another step until something more substantial stops me permanently.

If you want an opportunity to work with a fucked up writer like myself, I am still looking for submissions to the Year 47 Anthology. Picked up submissions get paid (I have the money set aside. No worries). If you’re interested, just click here for info.

I have no idea how to feel about this, so tell me how you feel about it below. And if I should be emvaembarra by this post, do tell me so I can take it down for the love of all that is good and decent.

And if you’re still reading, I love you. Thank you.

The Book No One Found

Last year, for the one year anniversary of my book Year 47, I made 10 gift sets to be given out that included a signed book, bookmark, cd soundtrack, poster, train ticket, and telegram.

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That wasn’t everything though. I love Easter Eggs, and that prize pack has quite a few, but there was one I was waitng for someone to find.

Except no one did.

See, I hid this book online. It’s even on Amazon right now, just not on my author’s page. You have to know what it’s called to find it. But that doesn’t matter because it was free on site. All anyone had to do was find the link hidden in the prize pack.

Except, again, no one did.

I forgot about it after a while, but then I’m suddenly reminded of it during all this anthology talk. “Maybe I’ll throw a clue out there”, I thought to myself.

Problem was the file in the link mysteriously vanished at some point off this site, meaning the link is now dead, and I can’t replace it because of the datestamp on the file name upon upload. Reroute it? Sure would, except that costs money to upgrade my site. Money I don’t have. But don’t worry. I won’t ruin where it’s at. If you find the hidden link or any other Easter Egg, share it with me on Twitter @infrafan and I’ll update this post later.

UPDATE

Here was how to find it:

Now that all of that is out of the way, I’m going to go ahead and give it out like I wanted. It’s short and meant to be a companion piece to Year 47. It is HIGHLY suggested you read Year 47 first because this is a book of deleted and alternate sequences, including a discussion of the ending. It also has a preview of the anthology with a short poem I wrote.
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You can download a free PDF of it here or if you are feeling supportive and generous, you can buy it on Amazon for Kindle. Need another format? Request it and I’ll try and whip it up. After you’ve read it, let me here your thoughts.