Something very radical has been brewing for a while to help someone in need and preserve another’s memory. Horror author/metalhead Dustin LaValley has been suffering from life-threatening Crohn’s/IBD issues while Metal Maniacs cofounder/former editor Katherine Ludwig lost her battle with non-hodgkin’s lymphoma earlier this year, leaving an irreplaceable void in the community.
This inspired the benefit poem/short story anthology The Healing Monsters. It will be released by Despumation Press, and man oh man, look at the muscle they got to make it worth your while:
“Edited by Despumation Editor-in-Chief Kriscinda Lee Everitt and journalist/author Shawn Macomber, [it] includes stories and poems from JR Hayes (Pig Destroyer), Jessica Pimentel (Orange is the New Black/Alekhine’s Gun), James Newman (The Wicked/Ugly as Sin), Mike IX Williams (EYEHATEGOD), Stephanie Wytovich (Hysteria: A Collection of Madness), Jeremy Wagner (Broken Hope/The Armageddon Chord), Ryan McKenney (Trap Them), Adam Cesare (Video Night/Tribesmen), Karyn Crisis, Billups Allen (Corn on Macabre/The League), K. Allen Wood (Shock Totem), Andrew Bonazelli (Disposed of/DTV) Matthew Widener (Cretin/The Liberteer), Tim Deal (Shroud), John Edward Lawson (The Troublesome Amputee/Truth in Ruins), Brian Serven (Backstabbers, Inc) and others.”
And the cover of this very radical thing has been done by none other than Decibel’s own Sean Frasier who, according to the co-editors, created, “a transcendent image that exceeded our expectations.” From the press release:
“‘My first pitches for the cover of The Healing Monsters were all sketches of assorted monsters assisting a corpse-painted fellow in need—lots of tentacles, lots of claws and fangs,’ Fraiser says. ‘It wasn’t until Shawn suggested a heavy metal take on the caduceus—the recognizable Greek symbol often used in the medical field—that it really clicked. ‘Gateways are a prevalent image in metal, and they almost always lead to somewhere sinister,’ he continues. ‘But here I wanted a gateway leading somewhere calm—a blue sky hiding behind the smoke and fog; a sanctuary from the doom and gloom.'”
The book will be out officially in April, and if you were wondering if that handsome devil on the cover has a name, he does: Cornelius Darski.