October is, of course, the season to get spooked, and if you’re in the mood for a scare, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better option than The Dead Palace. The 150-page anthology contains ten tales of terror by the St. Louis-based creative team of writer Jim Ousley and artist Benjamin Sawyer. After first teaming up as members of the local comics collective Ink & Drink Comics, Ousley and Sawyer created (and successfully funded via Kickstarter) the short story collection The Rough + Tumble in 2015 with co-writer Oscar Madrid. The Dead Palace finds the pair concentrating on all things creepy, with a series of self-contained stories (some interrelated, some not) that approach the horror genre from a myriad of directions but always hit just that right tone of existential dread.
(Full disclosure: Ousley—a local musician and unabashed metalhead—is a semi-frequent contributor to this site, and The Dead Palace was edited by this site’s Editor-In-Chief, a.k.a. yours truly. The Arts STL freely admits its bias in this regard. It’s still a great book, I swear.)
To celebrate the book’s release, the Dead Palace team is holding a “Meet ‘n’ Creep” this Saturday, October 27th, at the Wizard’s Wagon (6388 Delmar Blvd. in the Loop) starting at 5:30PM. Far from just a simple book signing, the event also includes an appearance from horror filmmakers Eric Stanze, Jason Christ, and Jackie Kelly of Wicked Pixel Cinema (who will be selling and signing Blu-Rays of their new film In Memory Of), a “chamber of blood” by special effects company VFX, killer tunes from DJ Menace, and—we swear this isn’t a trick—free Schlafly beer.
Click on the flyer to read all the details and look below for gallery containing a preview of the book. | Jason Green