Poetry Giveaway – Absolute Heaven

ChapbookAbsHeav(Ebook)

Absolute Heaven is absolutely free on Amazon Kindle from today until this weekend (May 22-26), if you’re feeling brave for some unadulterated weirdness from the bowels of Hell and beneath. Objectively, this is a very strange book. I birthed this monstrosity, so I don’t really see it as abnormal, but it is really out there and different. So, if that’s your flavor, or if you just want to own the whole collection, pick one up. It’s free in all regions.

Oh, and if you do read it, add it to Goodreads or write a review. It doesn’t have to be anything poignant, lengthy or gushing, just your honest thoughts are appreciated. 🙂

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Poetry Chapbooks Remixed

I’ve been dead sick for the past week, you know, the usual sabotage of my writing, so I haven’t got to post any updates or much of anything that I desired. But, a while back I had posted that I was taking my free haiku chapbooks out of print.
I want to thank everyone who read those, as haphazard as they were, as they all had over 230 downloads since April! How embarrassing! But I’m at least appreciative there was an interest in such an unconventional series! (I was going to insert a poor joke here that there wasn’t even a shirtless muscular man on the cover, but there actually was on MHz’s cover. Haha.)
I did leave the old edition of Infinite Summer up just so I would have a publication and keep my authorship on Smashwords.

What I’m digressing from, though, is that I’m re-releasing all four of them in early 2019 as full-length chapbooks. The haiku, title poems and original introductions will be included in a mega-compilation at the end of this year also, so they will be widely available in old and new form.

I don’t want to risk going on like a long-winded advertisement, so I’ll just say these have become rather personal to me. No, I really don’t like how they initially turned out, but I will like what they metamorphose into. I feel like you should make something you’re proud of, and it’s never too late to transform work to its full luster.

Visit Smashwords using this link and I’ll make a small commission. 🙂

Last Day for Haiku Freebies!

This is the very last day to get eBook copies of my haiku freebies, or at least the old versions. New versions, reimagined as full-length chapbooks, will be available by 2019. I’ve expressed my distaste for the originals pretty openly, though most of this was born from the way their design was mutilated by Smashwords’s formatting. The haiku themselves were quite fun to write, and seem to have been well-received.
Anyway, if you want something unusual to read – Cosmic Love, MHz, and Blood Ballet are all free. Infinite Summer is still listed as “name-your-price”, so can be gotten for either free or $1 USD. Blood Ballet and MHz are darker and more surrealistic, while the other two are more romantic. Take your pick.

https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/BloodRedVelvetBooks

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No More Dead Haiku

As of Nov. 21st, 2018 I am repealing some, if not all, of my horror-fantasy haiku freebies on Smashwords. Blood Ballet and MHz I am definitely taking out of print, but I’m on the fence about Infinite Summer. Cosmic Love will likely stay since it ended up being surprisingly popular on Goodreads, but it will be updated to match the new rewrite.
These were experiments to toy with poetry formatting and how quickly I could scrap up a cover piece by myself. You want to know anything for your own book in future, feel free to ask.

If you enjoyed reading the haiku back when I posted them on this blog, don’t worry, the old versions will stay there (see below). New, shimmering versions will appear in Absolute Heaven, my upcoming mega-compilation.

Why am I taking them out of print? Well, to be blunt, I fear they’ll scare people away from my serious work, even being free works of obvious dubious effort. I keep being stricken by this notion they will come back to bite me.
There were a lot of egregious issues I missed with the initial Blood Ballet and MHz. Much to my personal chagrin, all of the haiku books combined have totaled over 200 downloads.

Don’t get me wrong, there was a lot of heart and thought that went into my haiku books, and at least on Goodreads they met a mostly warm reception, but they just sadden me now. I have over 11 poetry collections and novels to focus on and nurture, these just shouldn’t have been published individually when I should’ve worked on those instead.

If you are passionate with the urge to read the old versions of Blood Ballet, Infinite Summer, MHz or Cosmic Love for whatever madness you harbor, the downloadable eBooks will still be on my Smashwords page until Nov. 21st. I will also post the list of haiku from them I published on this blog, so you can read them whenever you wish here. Just follow the posts, there are about six for each book. The only one of the old versions that will no longer be available online whatsoever is MHz.

Beginning of Cosmic Love
Beginning of Blood Ballet
Beginning of Infinite Summer

💖MHz💖 – Free Haiku eBook on Smashwords!

MHz(Complete)(c)SMShuford

MHz (Megahertz) is the concept of ambient abandonment and industrial decay gone fully chaotic. Like the other compilations I’ve done, a large portion of these haiku were cut from permanently unborn poems never to see the light as a full piece, but it would’ve been such a waste to never allow them to say their most important statements. You can download a free copy or read it early online here:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/834970

It’s also listed on Goodreads if you want to offer a bit of feedback, and will be appearing on this blog piece-by-piece. MHz is going to be part of my upcoming poetry book, Absolute Heaven, which is massive (for poetry, anyway) and will actually be available in physical form as paperback!

Ironically, while it began as my least favourite, MHz has grown somewhere along the way to be one I really like, and I hope you like it as much. 🙂

💖MHz💖 – Release Date and Sample Haiku

MHz and Absolute Pressure – two sets of haiku breathing from the same lungs. Chaotic, obsessive and industrial, these poems pump out the hallucinogenic fumes of dreams.

MHz is the next-to-last free haiku eBook I will be publishing for awhile. Inspired by Japanese horror, cyberpunk art and ambient music, it’s definitely one of the stranger compilations. In tone, it’s a mix of lonely fluorescence and metallic nightmares.

It will be out either May 31st or June 1st on Smashwords and Kobo in all formats. A friendly reminder that you can get new versions of all of my haiku compilations as free downloads here.

They can all be read on my blog as well, and are tagged by their titles. MHz, along with the other haiku and a multitude of other poems are being compiled in a large omnibus called Absolute Heaven later this year, if you want to add it to your list. I am giving away a certain number of digital review copies through Goodreads if you want to request one. Anyway, here are the sample haiku as well as the sketch for the cover:

Underneath the ground
You will always feed me from
The plateau of blood
——
He comes bearing fruit
Iron, rust in the juices
Loose poisons, strange thoughts
——
Concerto of teeth
Interlude of barbed briar
Visions of starving
——
A severed ghost head
Grinding the strings of plasma
In gears of the clock

 

MHz(Line)(c)SMShuford

 

“Étude for a Ghost” – Haiku VI

[Originally published as the second half of Infinite Summer.]

51—
A rabbit’s lost tail
There waits a blood-toothed bear here
Hungers patiently

52—
Infidelity
Serpentine gourds hold for me
Dawning amnesia

53—
Somewhere a lung floats
Disembodied but laughing
Violet stains I hear

Continue reading ““Étude for a Ghost” – Haiku VI”

“Étude for a Ghost” – Haiku V

[Originally published as the second half of Infinite Summer.]

41—
Month of solitude
Warm blood, brittle meat of leaves
Drains down scrawny legs

42—
Hum of glass roaches
Uneternal drone of death
My organs slumber

43—
Teeth clatter like pearls
Radiant tendrils of oil
Dissolve my promise

Continue reading ““Étude for a Ghost” – Haiku V”

“Étude for a Ghost” – Haiku IV

[Originally published as the second half of Infinite Summer.]

31—
Braids of snow white hair
Serpent chains ride tundra wind
That lifts her higher

32—
Funnel of ivy
I fall into cursed garden
Eternal evening

33—
Phantom skull I hold
Listens to occult wavelength
Ponders black magic

Continue reading ““Étude for a Ghost” – Haiku IV”

“Infinite Summer” – Haiku III

21—
Wintergreen landscapes
Agoraphobe sees them pass
From between shutters

22—
Sapphire tentacles
Vine, thorn and leaf throttle me
In my prison swamp

23—
Ingrown deity
Sopping pustules reflect none
Of the love you preach

Continue reading ““Infinite Summer” – Haiku III”

“Infinite Summer” – Haiku II

11—
Rust-cracked dahlias
Circle sacrificial pit
God opens her eyes

12—
The lurid solstice
Dreams’ orgy alights the woods
Unfiltered heaven

13—
These industry towns
Harbor of black, steel sorrow
Mollified in glass

Continue reading ““Infinite Summer” – Haiku II”

“Infinite Summer” – Haiku I

1—
Smothered by sunbeams
A century spent scalded
Infinite summer

2—
Noteless songs released
Deflowered branches I break
To weave my death pyre

3—
Marsh bilge coats my heart
Ferns spiral, sea grass mildews
Mold moons orbit me

Continue reading ““Infinite Summer” – Haiku I”

💖Infinite Summer💖 – Free (or Name-Your-Price) Poetry eBook Release

InfiniteSummer(Complete)(c)SMShuford.png

Sorry about the delay, but Infinite Summer is finally out today. Technically it was finished April 29th, but there was just a short delay in publication. Download or read a copy here, you can get it for free if you want (type in 0 when it asks you your price) or pay a small amount to support the author. 🙂 Recommended reasonable prices would be $0.50-$1.00 USD.

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/823386

Or if you would prefer to wait, like the others I will be releasing it bit-by-bit to read here on my blog as well. Feel free to add it on here on Goodreads as well as a quick addition to your reading challenge.

I imagine some probably wonder why I publish singular collections of haiku like these. It’s namely for fun and for publication practice – also a bit of digital painting practice with the covers. I find creating digital art both frustrating and progressive, if that makes any sense. It’s the future, yet is counter-intuitive to the chaos of artistry – you really have to be aware of what you want to make beforehand. Mistakes are easier to correct in some ways with digital, yet if you realize them too late, patching them is actual hell.

I definitely want to publish more traditional and experimental poetry that has more depth to it in the future, but for now, these are free and especially for you.

All of my haiku are totally free, but if you want to help support my project, please consider donating or at least sharing my Patreon or Ko-fi pages. I don’t like to rely on very much social media to spread the word about my work, so any help is welcome and appreciated!

💖Infinite Summer💖 – Release Date and Sample Haiku

Infinite Summer is a love that peaks and dies like the sun’s warmth. Mystical and melancholic, these haiku express the deep agony of love and memories lost to the golden enchantments of midsummer, and broken by the decay of winter thereafter.

Infinite Summer is a new haiku mini-book of mine, and so soon. Its release date is likely to be April 29th, for name-your-price on Smashwords and Kobo – meaning you can download it for free or pay a small amount to help out the author. The rest of April and May will be a very important time for me, as they also mark the beginning of several more serious works, which of course I plan to share tons of lovely notes and tips on to help out fellow writers. Anyway, here are the samples for this collection:

Smothered by sunbeams
A century spent scalded
Infinite summer
——
Marsh bilge coats my heart
Ferns spiral, sea grass mildews
Mold moons orbit me
——
Reaper, slave to hearts
Cinnabar scars create him
Kiss of blood undone
——
Étude for a ghost
She reins dried tears of despair
Song born in waters

Download free copies of my other haiku here on Smashwords.

“Cosmic Love” Art by a Friend

Today I just wanted to show this lovely, vivid sketch done by one of my Goodreads friends, inspired by one of my Cosmic Love haiku. If I’m not mistaken it was this one:

Cathedral ruins
On a granite pillar waits
Time-corrupting imp

Anyway, I thought this was amazing and was rather flattered that my brain-rambling poems could inspire someone. 🙂 You can check out more of Tom’s awesome drawings here.

“Paradox Phenomena” – Haiku VI

[Note – Contains moderate dark content, such as violence, themes of depression, and imagery that may be sensitive or disturbing to some. Originally published as part of Blood Ballet.]

51—
Phantoms of morbid
Trickle in like discontent
Into vampire house

52—
Hidden in willow
A blank paper face peers toward
A distant child’s corpse

Continue reading ““Paradox Phenomena” – Haiku VI”

“Paradox Phenomena” – Haiku V

[Note – Contains moderate dark content, such as violence, themes of depression, and imagery that may be sensitive or disturbing to some. Originally published as part of Blood Ballet.]

41—
Organs churn a life
In secret beneath the grass
Softly, a heart beats

42—
Tufts of fine cirrus
Encase me as I escape
Mechanized coma

Continue reading ““Paradox Phenomena” – Haiku V”

“Paradox Phenomena” – Haiku IV

[Note – Contains moderate dark content, such as violence, themes of depression, and imagery that may be sensitive or disturbing to some. Originally published as part of Blood Ballet.]

31—
Inverted teeth smile
Imperfect as undying
Buds of nature’s womb

32—
Internal coffin
Narrow cave of fruitless dreams
Bare isolation

Continue reading ““Paradox Phenomena” – Haiku IV”

“Blood Ballet” – Haiku III

[Note – Blood Ballet contains moderate dark content, such as violence, themes of depression, and imagery that may be sensitive or disturbing to some.]

21—
Innocent bondage
Pink lips speak sensual pain
Juxtaposition

22—
Smothered in the sand
Crushed in the hourglass cinch
Like salt and mica

Continue reading ““Blood Ballet” – Haiku III”

“Blood Ballet” – Haiku II

 

[Note – Blood Ballet contains moderate dark content, such as violence, themes of depression, and imagery that may be sensitive or disturbing to some.]

11—
My hesitant trust
You steal always, you dissolve
Me like a fruit fly

12—
Rosin pool of shame
Autumnal drops of forest
The portal of roots
Continue reading ““Blood Ballet” – Haiku II”