Keeping it Nasty!

Attention all writers interested in the Nasty! anthology:

I figured I'd reiterate some specs of submitting to this project. Out of respect for our time and ourselves, let's get on the same page here. (For a refresher, here are the GUIDELINES.)

1) People who contribute must identify as female. This anthology is about the female experience. I'm not looking for cis-gendered dudes explaining how we, as women, feel about living our lives.

2) I'm looking for non-fiction essays. While I have no doubt there is a lot of heart in what you wrote, if it doesn't fall under the category of non-fiction, it probably won't fit in this book. There are plenty of anthologies out there that will take fiction, so please, read the guidelines before you submit.

3) Be aware that my time is valuable. Submissions should contain the requested subject line (or it might get lost in my inbox), and should contain one essay as a word/word-compatible document attachment. DO NOT send me a link to your blog and have me "take [my] pick."

4) This is a charity anthology that is offering pay. I am paying for this project out of my own pocket. So please, bring your A-game. 

5) If you can't follow the guidelines, your submission will be automatically rejected.

A tremendous thank you to every one who has shared, submitted to, and talked about this project. Dozens of essays have already been emailed in, and we still have three weeks to go. Thanks for keeping it Nasty!

Call for submissions. Nasty! A KSP anthology

Calling all women who are nasty!

Cover designed by Matthew Revert

Cover designed by Matthew Revert

Submission Guidelines:

Seeking radical non-fiction essays that provide crucial commentary on what it’s like to be a woman today. Bold stories from fierce women who are not ashamed of who they are and what they do. Detailed journeys about coming to terms and embracing your sexuality, your body, yourself. Being so comfortable in your skin, you sometimes strike fear in the hearts of those who do not understand. Tell me a story you think needs to be heard; a story only you can tell. Because space is limited, I’m looking for the strongest piece you've got. Submissions are open to any female-identifying person. Queer, trans, and women of color are strongly encouraged to send something in. 

 

This is a charity anthology. 100% of proceeds will be donated to Planned Parenthood. 

 

Word count: 1000-5000 words

Deadline: August 31st, 2017

Pay: $100 and Contributor Copy (pay can be donated upon authors request)

Submit: tiffanyscandal@gmail.com

Subject Line: Nasty! Anthology

 

A confirmation email will be sent within a couple of days of receipt. We will then respond to all submissions with a yes or no by September 15th, 2017. If you have not heard from us about what you’ve submitted by September 20th, please contact us.

 

Anthology projected for a Winter 2017 release from King Shot Press.

Movie Review: The Neon Demon

I recently watched the Neon Demon. The theater was empty.

I wasn't sure what to expect of the film. It has a cool name and poster. I heard someone mumble that it was probably the Black Swan about the modeling industry. Also, my dude is a Refn fan and we had nothing else to do that night. So there's that.

The review below will contain my thoughts about the film, which will more than likely contain spoilers. If you're not into that, I thank you for reading this far and invite you to leave the site and enjoy your day. You've been warned.

The movie opens up with this shot. I was immediately impressed with the blood and gore, and the colors and composition were stunning. It turned out that this was simply a photoshoot, but also a foretelling of the events to come.

Jesse, played by Elle Fanning, is a 16 year-old orphan who made her way to Los Angeles to become a model. She's got a look that draws a lot of people in. She looks sweet, innocent, but there's something underneath it all that makes people wonder. She wins over the love of photographers and designers, and inspires the jealousy of her peers. Basically, bitch is going to have to watch out, right? Jealous women can do some awful things, and knowing this was a thriller, I was anticipating things like bleach in the shampoo bottle, slicing up designer gowns that are about to be modeled in, putting acid in the toner water, etc. But this movie drags out the tension and delivers in a very unexpected and refreshing way.

Thrillers about Hollywood are kind of played out. Maybe I'm just jaded, but I've seen almost every trope and the most common one is that Hollywood is full of vampires. Industry people latching on to the livelihood/creativity of fresh blood and bleeding them dry to self destruction. There's a scene after Jesse and Sarah audition for a runway show, and Sarah, upset that she didn't get the job, smashes a mirror in the ladies room. Jesse goes to talk to her, gets scared, cuts her hand on broken glass, and Sarah latches onto Jesse's hand sucks her blood. I groaned because the vampire reference was too obvious, too literal. But I kept watching.

About halfway through the movie, Jesse realizes her power. The innocent cover slowly peels away. She is climbing right up to the top and "everyone else is just trying to be a second-rate version" of her. And because she's 16, she thinks she's invincible.

BUT, she's staying in a motel where the manager seems to be aware of renting to underage girls and treats its like fucked-up prime brothel/murder grounds.

AND, she dumps the one the guy that genuinely cares about her and doesn't really seek out the friendship of anyone except for Ruby who is not the person she thought she was.

AND, at some point, she becomes too conceited to recognize the danger she's in. And her arrogance becomes her downfall.

The later third of the movie gets gruesome, in a total mind-fuck kind of way.

Ruby tries to rape Jesse and later gets cozy with a corpse (I may have gagged a few times watching this scene). There's a blood bath (literally. Bathtub filled with blood). There's cannibalism. All while the film maintains bright and vibrant colors and features beautiful people who earn a living off of being beautiful.

This film felt like David Lynch and Alejandro Jodorowsky got together to make a movie based off of Beyoncé's Lemonade video where she says, "I can wear her skin over mine. Her hair over mine. Her hands as gloves. Her teeth as confetti. . . We can pose for a photograph . . . " Beautiful, sick, and super twisted. This is another "Hollywood is full of vampires" movie, but it's not as groan-worthy.

I'd watch it again.


Tiffany Scandal is the author of There's No Happy Ending and Jigsaw Youth. She is also the managing editor at King Shot Press. She currently lives in Portland, Oregon.

 

 

Memory Lane

Hi.

I was looking through old photos and stumbled across a few gems from behind the scenes of photoshoots. Shall we visit?

With Lyxzen and Doxie Suicide. Photo by Cherry Suicide.

With Lyxzen and Doxie Suicide. Photo by Cherry Suicide.

Look at us. Three ladies, modestly dressed. But we're probably looking at pictures of our buttholes. I'm not kidding.

Prior to this photo being taken, we had shot an experimental set for Suicide Girls. Cherry Suicide was traveling through Portland, and having worked with her a few times before, I was stoked to be able to be working with her again. So going back to the experimental part, I've been notorious for coming up with really obscure ideas for photosets. Just ask any photographer I've worked with. Getting naked in a bed or a shower is just boring, so I always try to come up with something a little, uh, more exciting? Anyway, sometimes my ideas are too far out there for some people, but sometimes, you get the right chemistry going and the product turns out amazing. Our photoset Doll Harem is a perfect example. I told Cherry that I wanted to shoot a photoset tribute to Andrew Blake's Dollhouse, a total arthouse porno that features gorgeous women and utilizes the concept of "living dolls," or, better put, uses women as props. So I called up two of my best friends who are also suicide girls, and we made magic happen.

Here are some edited photos from that experiment. (unedited versions can be viewed over at SuicideGirls.com)

Funny things to note about this set:

See that mirror in the second photo? If you look closely at our reflections, particularly in photos where the focus is on our bodies and not our faces, you can almost always catch us laughing.

Also, I didn't know this prior to the shoot, but Doxie has a really sensitive hiney. When Cherry suggested a photo where I spank Doxie, I complied with a few really hokey staged ones. Then I can't remember who said to go for a real one because the staged ones weren't coming out so great. Upon Doxie consenting, I went for one, and, oh that poor woman, I left a raised hand print on her butt cheek. I didn't even think that my hand struck that hard. But she was a trooper. We all had a laugh over it and continued the shoot.

The photos were shot at the Ace Hotel in downtown Portland in 2012.

 

Anyway, if you like reading about shit like this, let me know. I've got plenty of stories, and I'm happy to share.

Creep it real.

-Scandal


Tiffany Scandal is the author of Jigsaw Youth and There's No Happy Ending. Jigsaw Youth is now an audiobook that is narrated by Scandal herself, and is available now through Talking Book. Her modeling and photography have appeared both online and in print, mostly thanks to Suicide Girls, Auxiliary Magazine, Huck Magazine, and others. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

 

Listen to Jigsaw Youth

Hey.

Jigsaw Youth is now available as an audiobook. I narrated the book myself with the help of some fine people over at Talking Book. Click on the link for a preview, and if you dig it, you can buy the audio and have me read to you whenever you want. Check it:

JIGSAW YOUTH AUDIOBOOK LINK

Also, Ladybox Vol. 2 should be out at the end of this month. A bunch of badass ladies and myself plan to wow the shit out of you with our brand spankin' new chapbook collection. Here's the flyer with more details.

Image stolen from the Ladybox Books website.

Image stolen from the Ladybox Books website.

Okay. Back to writing.

Love and shit.

-Scandal


Tiffany Scandal is the author of Jigsaw Youth and There's No Happy Ending. Her modeling and photography have been published both online and in print, the most recent publications being Auxiliary Magazine and Huck Magazine. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

Updates

It's been a minute, hasn't it?

Umm. First, my short story "They Call Me Monster" will be published in the Eternal Frankenstein anthology (Word Horde Press). I'll be sharing a table of contents with a lot of super amazing writers. You can read more about it here.

 

Then, I was interviewed by Richard Daniels, author of The Nobody People, over at Huck Magazine. You can read about how to break into publishing Riot Grrrl style here.

Photos from a shoot I had over the summer with Yellow Bubbles Photography are now published in the latest issue of Auxiliary Magazine. I've uploaded some of my favorite shots into the Photos section of this website. Magical.

I've also just finished recording the audio for Jigsaw Youth, which will be an audiobook soon-ish thanks to the good people at The Talking Book.

King Shot Press also released two new titles. Marigold by Troy James Weaver and Noctuidae by Scott Nicolay. Both books are fucking awesome, and people pre-ordered the shit out of them. From the bottoms of our gross and grimey little hearts, Michael and I thank you for the support.

And, as if the above wasn't an exhausting mouthful as it was, I'm putting the final touches on my chapbook for the Ladybox Vol. 2. Box Set. I'll post sneak peeks once I can unbury myself from a pile of paper, glue sticks, and cat hair.

Oh, and I wrote two new chapters for a book that I really should have turned in to my editor a year ago. But they're good. Like, really good.

Sigh.

I'll be in Los Angeles at the end of the month. Be there for about a week and half. If we cross paths, ask me for a high-five because I'm sure my hermit-ass needs to readjust to socializing.

 

Keep it creepy.

<3 Scandal


Tiffany Scandal is the author of Jigsaw Youth and There's No Happy Ending. She's had fiction and non-fiction published in Living Dead Magazine, The Magazine of Bizarro Fiction, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, and a handful of anthologies. Her modeling and photography have appeared both online and in print thanks to Suicide Girls, Rise Tattoo Magazine, and Auxiliary Magazine. She is also the managing editor for King Shot Press, an indie publisher based out of Portland, Oregon.

Interview with Jeremy Robert Johnson

Jeremy Robert Johnson is the author of Skullcrack City. If you're just tuning in, check out my review of the book HERE.

 

Jeremy Robert Johnson is quick, funny, and lethal when given kid's toys that emulate any kind of weapon. Prior to the release of his debut novel, his fiction appeared internationally in numerous anthologies and magazines, and in 2008, he worked with The Mars Volta to tell the story behind their Grammy Winning album The Bedlam in Goliath. He's been blurbed by Jack Ketchum, Chuck Palahniuk, John Skipp, and David Wong (just to name a few). He's a man of many accomplishments, and I am honored to be able to share this interview you today. Ladies and gents, say hello to Jeremy Robert Johnson.

Tiffany Scandal: Skullcrack City is your first novel. Prior to that, you had a few short story collections published. How long did it take you to write your novel and what was the process like for you?

Jeremy Robert Johnson: I was plugging Skullcrack in Cemetery Dance magazine all the way back in 2006, and I even included an ad for the novel in the back of the print edition of my novella Extinction Journals, so it was a long time coming. My goal back then was to produce a book per year, but after the unexpected success of Angel Dust Apocalypse I kind of choked and got sidetracked taking these big steps into domesticity. Corporate gig, house, dog, kid, pants that fit, all that. So the original ideas and outline I had for Skullcrack went into cryo-stasis and little pieces got cannibalized into other works and other parts were identified as rotten and fell off, but I never stopped wanting to write the thing.

Much later I got an email from a publisher who had noticed my book We Live Inside You was selling alongside their most popular books, and they asked me if I had anything longer to send their way. So I said sure and signed a contract and within around 24 months I had a much larger, crazier novel than I’d ever planned. The first draft was written in fits and bursts, with the work being done whenever I wasn’t slammed by my primary and totally unpredictable role as a stay-at-home dad.

Process-wise, it wasn’t too glorious—a lot of time sitting in my office or hotel room chairs typing while in a fugue state, or wondering what my family and friends were doing, trying to remember what the sun looked like, realizing how batshit insane the book was, saving the Word file, and then drinking myself to sleep wondering how to make all the disparate elements of the book fit together as one big story.

Sometimes I had pizza and donuts. But not enough of the times.

TS: Skullcrack was originally slated to be released on a much larger press. But after some things fell through, it ended up finding a home through Indie Lit powerhouse Lazy Fascist Press. What are your views on small presses versus large presses? Any advice to writers contemplating where to sub their work?


JRJ: The first publisher I was working with had a flashy salesman who convinced me they were much larger than they really were, that they were headed into big box distribution and working with film reps in L.A. and all that, but when the curtain was drawn back it turned out I’d have been better off just self-publishing. And I feel very lucky that I was able to extricate my book from that situation.

So I guess I don’t have enough real large press experience to be able to pin down the differences, but I do know that on the publishing front it’s helpful to be pragmatic about the nature of your book and its potential audience. I had a very smart friend in NY who read Skullcrack and told me, “We sell squares and circles here, and you sent me an octagon. The Big Five publishers won’t know what to do with this. The book’s going to do well, but you have to go indie.”

I think it’s wise to take a serious look at each of your works and say, “Who publishes this kind of thing? Who’s their general audience? Do they treat their authors well with respect to the work itself, royalty rates, and publicity? Do I love this publisher and read multiple books from their press? Does their distribution mode match what I believe this book can accomplish in the marketplace?” All of which sounds a bit cold and sociopathic, but when you talk about publishing itself, that’s a business. They’re not benefactors of the arts. They’re selling product. There are obviously a lot of indie presses in it for more than that, running in the red for work they believe in, but I wouldn’t say that’s the predominate mode. So you should always be checking off more positive fields than just, “Willing to Publish My Book.” And I was very excited about what I’d seen Lazy Fascist do with books from Sam Pink and Stephen Graham Jones and Brian Allen Carr, so I was over the moon about working with them, and they’ve been totally cool. They even gave my son a ridiculous armless dinosaur doll for Christmas. Lazy Fascist is great.

(Buying books directly from authors is not only a great way to support their craft, but it also ensures that you get great inscriptions like the one photographed above. Photo from his book release party at Powell's Books)

(Buying books directly from authors is not only a great way to support their craft, but it also ensures that you get great inscriptions like the one photographed above. Photo from his book release party at Powell's Books)

TS: Skullcrack City has made it onto a lot of very impressive Best of 2015 lists and is up for quite a few awards. Has all of this positive recognition sunk in yet? Is it adding any pressure to future work?


JRJ: I know I’m supposed to go into Artiste Mode here and say, “I don’t give a fuck about the audience and awards will always be a sham until Ellen Burstyn gets her Oscar for Requiem for a Dream!” But honestly, it’s been really fun and gratifying. I’m glad people are feeling Skullcrack and I appreciate the recognition. I put a lot of time and energy and heart into that book, and it’s always so hard to reach any kind of audience in publishing, so, yeah…it’s been cool.

The pressure has arrived behind the scenes. It turns out that after an indie title does well, the NY publishers start thinking they might be able to sell one of your octagons. So there have been some really great opportunities and I’ve taken a few of them and there are signed contracts and delivery dates I have to honor now. The pressure is significant.

TS: I hear that Skullcrack City has been optioned for film. Are you able to share any details about that?


JRJ: Nope, not at the moment. My friend Robert Brockway reminded me I was messing with the mojo by talking about it. I’ve had my heart broken with this kind of thing before. One adaptation had a great script and vision behind it and then the director broke up with the producer and things fell apart. Another time we were two weeks out from the first production meeting on a feature-length Hollywood adaptation, with the star, director and producer attached and stoked on the project, and then the director got picked for a dream gig directing an adaptation of a NY Times Bestseller. That film made over $300 million dollars and now the director is attached to not one, but three major studio adaptations, which is to say that the odds of him coming back around and making this smaller, edgier film from my work is about nil. So no more news from me on a Skullcrack movie until some film company makes an official announcement.

I can say that we’re only about two months out on the completion of the Pandemic Pictures adaptation of my short story “When Susurrus Stirs” and that the director (Anthony Cousins) and effects master (Ryan Schaddelee) are doing amazing work on that project.

TS: When scrolling through the internet, your name and book pop up regularly on suggested feeds. How much time do you put in getting yourself out there?


JRJ: Not as much time as I should. My blogging game is non-existent, my Tweets disappear into some kind of digital vacuum, and on Facebook I mainly talk about beer and weird shit my kid says. If I’ve done anything right it’s that I’ve said yes to a lot of print and podcast interviews since 2005, and I’ve spent a lot of my own capital getting copies of my books out to cool reviewers. Other than that, it feels like I’ve been very lucky on the Amazon algorithm front—them tying Angel Dust Apocalypse to House of Leaves and We Live Inside You to John Dies at the End probably brought me more readers than anything I’ve ever done.

 

TS: Did the transition from publisher to writer in any way shape your views on the writing/publishing industry?

JRJ: Absolutely. I have much more respect for the challenges and frustration publishers face, and that empathy keeps me from being fussy about anybody I work with now. And I also got to experience intense disillusionment at twice the speed you’d get from only working as a writer, so I got that going for me. And, knowing the work that goes into designing a book, I can really appreciate the beauty of a properly laid out novel or perfect cover.

Side note: Within a week of putting Swallowdown Press on publishing hiatus, I stopped grinding my teeth at night. Take from that what you will.

 

TS: What's next on your agenda?

JRJ: Actual writing, which is great since I’ve had a bad habit of taking 4-5 years between books. Now I’m devoted (and contractually bound) to that book-a-year schedule, whereas in the past I was hooked on a kind of dilettante behavior where I pretended attending conventions and hosting readings and talking about my existing books on the internet was the same thing as being a writer. But it ain’t. So I’m about to activate my Anti-Social and cop some pizza and beer and donuts disappear from the world for a while. And when I return I’ll have a massive beard and some new fucked-up stories and maybe diabetes, but I’m looking forward to the work.

 

 

There you have it. Jeremy Robert Johnson, everyone. If you like anything that you have read here, check out his work.

EBSITE

SKULLCRACK CITY

MAZON AUTHOR PAGE

Keep it creepy.

<3 Scandal


Tiffany Scandal is the author of Jigsaw Youth and There's No Happy Ending. She sometimes takes photos, poses for photos, and paints in her spare time. She lives in Portland, Oregon with three black cats.

Review: Skullcrack City

Jeremy Robert Johnson is a fucking wizard.

No one else writes about the apocalypse or parasites quite like he does. While some of the content he writes about makes me cringe ("The Sharp-Dressed Man At The End Of The Line"), the stories he constructs are so mesmerizing and full of fantastic social commentary to ruminate on, you kind of just keep on reading and are left craving more. So when the release date of Skullcrack City finally came around, I knew I needed to have this book in my hands.

Skullcrack City is not a book that can be neatly categorized. Combining elements of Sci-Fi, Horror, Bizarro, Crime -- you've got this, at times morbidly funny, story about a Hex-junkie who used to work in a bank until he found himself in the middle of this massive conspiracy and now needs to run/fight for his life as the end of all humanity looms on the horizon. The books tackles addiction and a whole lot of self-reflection:

"If you're anything like me, Hex may not actually be beneficial. You might think you've found the Light and the Truth and then you wake up the next day the notepad is your living room is filled with tic-tac-toe games and in your bathroom there's a mound of hair gel with clear bite marks and a post-it reading, "WE CAN END THIS!""

I'll admit it, the first third of the book, while enjoyable to read, took me a long time to get through. I kept putting the book down every chapter or so because "I didn't have time," but when I wasn't reading the book, I kept thinking about it. So I'd pick it up again, was evenutally able to breeze through the rest of it in two days. The final third of book is a masterpiece.

"You think you're better than human only because you're less. You want to live forever and you never lived at all. Is that what keeps you up at night, destroying things you don't understand?"

Skullcrack City is a journey that fucks with your mind and plays with your heart. I don't know what else to say other than you need to pick up this book and read it for yourself.

Pick up a copy today!

If any of the above tickles your fancy, come back tomorrow for an exclusive interview with the author himself. I promise, it'll be fun.

 

Keep it creepy.

-Scandal


Tiffany Scandal is the author of Jigsaw Youth and There's No Happy Ending. Her modeling, photography, and paintings have appeared both online and in print. She currently lives in Portland, Oregon with three black cats and a whole lot of dead things. 

Lazy Fascist Review #3

Hey.

I have a new short story published in the latest issue of the Lazy Fascist Review. I'm published alongside literary powerhouses such as Nick Mamatas, Daphne Gottlieb, Allison Floyd, Tania Terblanche, and Nathan Carson (who's band Witch Mountain is currently on tour with Danzig). It's a fun issue, so please go check it out.

You can snag your very copy HERE.

Cult Of Loretta

Last month, I had the privilege of reading at Kevin Maloney’s book release party for Cult Of Loretta (Lazy Fascist Press) here in Portland. Having heard Maloney read before, I knew I wanted, nay, needed a copy of his first book. So I picked one up at the party.

Book available now in print and kindle format. You can purchase your copy HERE

Book available now in print and kindle format. You can purchase your copy HERE


Cult Of Loretta is super fucking good. It haunts you. Anytime I had to put this book down, I would find myself itching to pick it up, wanting to know what happens to Loretta and the doomed men that keep falling in love with her. An otherwise ordinary girl who had the power to ruin even the best of friendships. A girl who makes Helen of Troy seem like a fucking amateur.

Maloney writes some damn good characters — broken people who accept that the world is awful and either embrace the path of slow self-destruction or stew in a growing bitterness.

“I saw who she actually was — an extremely angry woman in her mid-to-late 40s in a pantsuit from Nordstrom trying to control the chaos she saw everywhere in the world, mostly inside herself. I saw that she’d never be happy and that no one loved her and that no one would ever love her because she’d been broken a long time ago and that whatever was left of her just wanted to break the spirits of children making obscene gestures involving giant imaginary penises.”

The pain in the pages is real. Love is the worst drug there is (although screw sounds pretty damn awful, too). When you get hooked so bad you can’t think straight. When you do stupid shit over and over again or put up with repeated cases of bullshit because you think you found “the one.” But when you’ve been kicked down enough times and start to grow desensitized to the pain, shame, and lost sense of worth, it gets to a point where all you can do is laugh. Cult Of Loretta is a perfect example of a tragicomedy.

“Another night, we got so high I broke into our next door neighbor’s house and stole their television so we could watch The Simpsons. I asked Loretta where I should put it. She said on top of the TV, which is how we discovered that we already had a TV.”

This book blew me away. I hadn’t been this moved by a book since Juliet Escoria’s Black Cloud (Civil Coping Mechanisms). Maloney is a brand new force in the Indie Lit scene. Can’t wait to read more by him.

Keep on writing, and I'll keep on reading.

-Scandal


Tiffany Scandal is the author of Jigsaw Youth and There's No Happy Ending. Look for her upcoming live readings in San Francisco and Los Angeles.

The Monitor

Rad new press in The Monitor today.

"From the Ladybox imprint I recommend JIGSAW YOUTH by Tiffany Scandal. The photographer and Suicide Girl wrote and designed this aggressively self-affirming novel in which Latina Isobella “Ella” pushes her way through harrowing marginalization and heartbreak to find a way to survive and thrive on her own decided punk terms. Powerful."

Photo of the page where The Monitor loves hard on Broken River Books, King Shot Press, and Ladybox Books. <3

Photo of the page where The Monitor loves hard on Broken River Books, King Shot Press, and Ladybox Books. <3

-Scandal

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