Monday, May 27, 2013

Straight from the Mouth of 'Shadows Masters' Jeani Rector


I am one who embraces technology. It is not going away, as much as some of us wish for “the good old days.”

But really, were the good old days really that good?

I used to punch out manuscripts on typewriters that are completely unforgiving. Remember White-Out? What a mess. And you were never sure if your ribbon would successfully type over the blob that a liquid eraser would make.

Today? Type away! Be productive! No interruptions about your creative process! Let your imagination go free and your typing will follow. Make a mistake? Your word document will send you a squiggly-line underline warning, and you can go back after you are done to make simple corrections.

Technology is the great equalizer. Professional writers and newcomers can compete on (almost) equal ground. And there are a lot of very talented lesser-knowns in the world.

That’s where I come in. As the editor of The Horror Zine, an online magazine, I showcase talented newcomers in the same venue as famous, professional writers.

The result is the book titled SHADOW MASTERS: AN ANTHOLOGY FROM THE HORROR ZINE. Fear casts a long shadow, and shadows take many shapes. From the award-winning The Horror Zine comes a wicked brew of spine-tingling fiction. Featuring never before published works from best-selling authors such as Bentley Little, Yvonne Navarro, Scott Nicholson, Melanie Tem, Elizabeth Massie, Earl Hamner, Simon Clark, Cheryl Kaye Tardif, Ronald Malfi, Lisa Morton, Jeff Bennington, JG Faherty and many others, this amazing collection of works also includes a Foreword from Joe R. Lansdale.

But what is a typical day in the life of an ezine editor?

I am a morning person, so I am up with the roosters (although I don’t have any chickens; I have lots of songbirds that wake me up). First thing is always coffee. Then when that kicks in, I go to my computer.

I have an office in my home. That is because although I work at home, I treat The Horror Zine like the business that it is. I even have a business license with the City of Sacramento. The Horror Zine is official!

First on the agenda is to check submissions. There are always submissions because The Horror Zine has become pretty well-known, with over 30,000 hits every month. I like to take my time and look for the positives in every submission of fiction, poetry, and art.

If the work has potential but “not ready for prime time,” I work with the author/poet/artist to see if we can polish it. Most submitters are willing to work with me to better their product.

And if I reject, which unfortunately happens a lot, I like to tell the submitter why. It does no good to simply say their work is “not a good fit.” I used to submit fiction to online zines, and feedback was rare. When it happened, I greatly appreciate it. I figure I can extend that service to others.

Next is email. I have to keep up with requests for interviews, book promotions, Facebook, book and film reviews, questions, and yes, friends! I need to remember not to neglect my friends.

And third comes the website. It takes me an entire month to create The Horror Zine website, one page at a time. I start with the Morbidly Fascinating and Oddities in the News Pages, move on to our Special Page (reserved for famous folks), go to Art, then Poetry, then Fiction.

I am a busy lady! And lately I am trying to squeeze in a personal life.

I feel all my efforts are well worth it. I want to bring creativity, talent, and fascination into the world. I believe The Horror Zine achieves my goals. If you have not yet visited The Horror Zine, please see

While most people go to Disneyland while in Southern California, Jeani Rector went to the Fangoria Weekend of Horror there instead.  She grew up watching the Bob Wilkins Creature Feature on television and lived in a house that had the walls covered with framed Universal Monsters posters.  It is all in good fun and actually, most people who know Jeani personally are of the opinion that she is a very normal person. She just writes abnormal stories. Doesn’t everybody?

Jeani Rector is the founder and editor of The Horror Zine and has had her stories featured in magazines such as Aphelion, Midnight Street, Strange Weird and Wonderful, Dark River Press, Macabre Cadaver, Ax Wound, Horrormasters, Morbid Outlook, Horror in Words, Black Petals, 63Channels, Death Head Grin, Hackwriters, Bewildering Stories, Ultraverse, and others.

Purchase SHADOW MASTERS from Amazon (paperback) and on Kindle

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