Creepy Craft Corner

by Angela Sylvaine

Welcome to “Creepy Craft Corner,” which features HWA members who are also artists, crafters, makers, or creators. I hope to provide you, the reader, with the tools and inspiration to try creating something new!

I am obsessed with podcasts, especially anything true-crime, spooky, or writing related. But what does it take to produce those wonderful auditory treats that magically appear on my phone each week? Robert Ottone and Brenda Tolian are here today to tell us!

Welcome, Robert, tell us a little about what you write and any upcoming projects you’d like to promote.

I am the author of Her Infernal Name & Other Nightmares and People: A Horror Anthology about Love, Loss, Life & Things That Go Bump in the Night, as well as a contributor to multiple anthologies and websites. I regularly blog over at spookyhousepress.com, which is the home of my small-press publishing company. I am also hopelessly addicted to instagram.com/robertottone, and scream into the void over on twitter.com/robertottone. I also have gotten back into the true crime game over at my website voicesfromgilgo.com.

My novella, The Girl in the Floor is available on Kindle Vella amazon.com/kindle-vella/story. My collection is also available at amazon.com/dp

What creepy craft or creation have you decided to share with us today? 

My creation is my very raw, self-produced, nonprofit true crime podcast, Voices From Gilgo. You can find it on most podcast platforms. It essentially was a passion project and was, in some respects, my first foray into horror, as this is a true-life horror story. I promise you it’s very raw, as it was self-produced and was a passion project after I had surgery that prevented me from teaching for a few months.

From there, I’ve been able to do a slew of lectures about the Long Island Serial Killer for a bunch of different libraries and local venues here in New York. I have a bunch lined up for this summer, they’re all free, and they’re all for wonderful institutions, so, keep your eyes peeled for dates as they are announced and register!

What instructions or tips do you have for our readers who might be interested in trying this craft for themselves?

I think, if you’re interested in launching your own podcast, it’s worth really dedicating time to the audio quality of what you’re trying to produce. Admittedly, mine is very raw, and I’ve taken some hits for my modulation, especially when it comes to the musical interludes. Overall, there is a lot of relaxation that comes from editing audio, and there’s actually a lot one can get from crafting the story of whatever they’re doing in audio script format. I found telling the story of the Long Island Serial Killer, along with my own personal theory as to what happened to be exhilarating in a way that was challenging, but in a good way.

Next we welcome Brenda. Hi, Brenda, tell us a little about what you write and any upcoming projects you’d like to promote.

I write and love horror. I recently signed on with Raw Dog Screaming Press who will publish my Blood Mountain soon. I also have a story coming out in the Denver Horror Collectives Jewish Book of Horror and am a featured poet in the 2021 HWA Poetry Showcase (Vol. VIII). I also paint, make music and teach High School English full time.

What creepy craft or creation have you decided to share with us today? 

Well, Joy Yehle and I love books. We are astounded by new writers, academic and indie writers work, but realized they did not get the same spotlight as more well-known writers/ creators. We decided to start a casual podcast to chat with the creators that we found interesting. This place would be safe, casual as before stated and a place to explore both the writer and their work. I think we succeeded in this endeavor, and we certainly have fun speaking to creators. We don’t make a dime doing it but sometimes you just do a thing, because you love it- That is what the Burial Plot Horror Podcast is to me-us!

What instructions or tips do you have for our readers who might be interested in trying this craft for themselves?

Everyone can make a podcast-in fact I do this with students in my High School. First write a plan- Who/ what is it for? Why? Start out simple use a service like Buzzsprout.com or Anchor.com. How long will it be- 15 min, 30, an hour? Do you need waivers? My best advice is to do your research and look at popular podcasts that you like. What are they doing that you like? What do you think you could do better? Most importantly have fun! My Co-Host for a while kept calling me her Co-Horse which became a great joke on the show. We have a heart for diving into the darkness of horror in all its shades of night and dragging our audience with us. Mostly they don’t scream!

Thank you so much to Robert and Brenda for sharing their expertise with us this month! I hope it inspired you to create. 

Until next month, keep it crafty, HWA!

Angela Sylvaine is a self-proclaimed cheerful goth who still believes in monsters. Her debut novella, Chopping Spree, is available now. Her short fiction has appeared in multiple publications and anthologies, including Places We Fear to Tread and Not All Monsters. You can find her online angelasylvaine.com.

Special thanks to our logo creator, Maria Abrams abramstheauthor.com

Note: Due to an overwhelming response from talented creators, I am not currently accepting new submissions for Creepy Craft Corner. I will post in the HWA newsletter and on Twitter when I reopen to submissions. 

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