The Apollyon Letter

WhiteMaskedFigureI initially received  this photo via email.  It had gone to spam, since the address seemed a bit dodgy, and over the top in its attempt to scare me into clicking the photo — awarningtoall@gmail.com.  Since there was no message, I simply deleted it, figuring it was some sort of mal-ware despite its unnerving appearance.  However, a few days later, I received it again and it contained the following message:

Your world is distorted and spiraling ever further into chaos. This is by your design. You have failed to understand the purpose of your existence, and it is not for me to explain. It was your responsibility to evolve into something more than an all-consuming swarm of self-absorbed locusts. That is at an end now. I have worked silently, detected, yet unknown, hidden in plain sight and murdering benevolently. I gain no solace from my work, nevertheless, I must continue before you commit suicide, collectively and completely.

Before I continue with this first letter – the first of many to come – I want you to be clear on a few simple points. There is no point in trying to ascertain my identity or find me in any way. You will waste your time, because you cannot find me with the limited capabilities of your feeble minds. In addition, those of you who are unfortunate enough to be on my list, you cannot hide from me. You make my work easy through your insipid need to be noticed – tweeting, status updates, checking in, photos, blogging, and “selfies”. I can pluck you off the streets or out of your bed in the dead of night and there is no stopping me. My experience is vast in the art of observation and extermination. My purpose is very clear and I have no doubts about my mission. Doubt is a human characteristic. I am more than human. I know you because I began just as you do, wandering listlessly through existence without the faintest of ideas on purpose. Knowledge comes through experience, trial and error. Now, I can see things you are unable to see. I can see things you don’t want others to see – things you don’t want me to see.

You think your darkest deeds, secrets and wishes stay hidden within the thin space between your ears, yet it is recorded on the fabric of space and time for all eternity. Once something is known, it cannot be unknown. This is a fundamental law of the universe, just as I now embody one of its laws – all things must die. I can see the thoughts on the record of the cosmos, then follow the trail of putrid breadcrumbs that lead to those who most deserve punishment. The only law constraining me is that my punishment must be equal to the deed for which I will punish you. I am not the cruel one, I merely a product of your actions. Since the dawn of humanity, I have been among you. I chose to reveal myself now because your world is ending. Many will die, and not just by my hands. I watch your news and see that you are quite astute in the art of killing. The pity is that you kill at all. The evil ones kill on a whim as by-standers look on like soulless zombies, recording the atrocious acts on their electronic devices, for the same selfish reasons you do anything else in your empty lives – to attain a fleeting moment of notoriety on the internet or the evening news. This is the very reason your world will end, more rapidly than you can imagine. I have written this in the hopes that perhaps knowing these facts will change your ways, though I remain skeptical.

People from every aspect of your failed society litter my list, which I prioritized by the severity your immoral acts. Crimes against the pure and innocent I deal with swiftly and innocuously. I used to empathize with your race, but that has left me now – all that is left is pity. The more I observe, the more I find that single smudge of black floating in your soul, a scar of the deed you committed against another. These shards of darkness sing to me across time and space. Eventually, I will come for you unless you find a way to expunge it from your being, and make an act of true contrition. However, I must warn you that the only god that can save you is the god within yourself, which you refuse to see. You look to the heavens with empty eyes and hearts, begging for forgiveness from an entity who has long since ignored your disingenuous atonement. From this lack of hope, I am born.

There is no heaven or hell. Life is a cycle of birth, death and rebirth. When the end does come, some will survive to rebuild. It will be their responsibility to learn from your mistakes, and perhaps I will slumber once more — but humanity has not allowed me to do so in a very long time. There are those among you who ensure that I have a constant supply of letches to eradicate from this world. You stray from the simple path easily, and you willingly destroy yourselves every moment of the day. You have unwittingly created the weapon of your mass destruction, and you are too blind to see it, even as you read this with skepticism and contempt in your heart. Your arrogance, your technology and your belief systems have brought us to this brief moment in the history of existence where the world will face its ultimate demise.

Why do I continue my work if the world is truly ending? The answer is very simple, even for you. I will pave the way for those who have remained true to themselves and realize their purpose. There are fewer and fewer of you left. You allow the licentiousness, debauchery and narcissism of others to dirty your souls, and only you can purge this from your being.

Those of you who have received or read this missive are targets for my list. As I said, I do have pity, for those who deserve it. It is through these series of letters that I will assist you in cleansing the darkness from the depths of your heart.  You can begin by looking into the mirror. Stare into your eyes and see your soul as I see it. There, the deed will reveal itself, if you truly wish to see it – however, most of you will dismiss this. Once you stare into the darkness in your soul, you will see me staring back at you. It is at that moment that either your mind will accept this and make amends or you will punish yourself by retreating into the waiting arms of madness, imprisoned within your mind.

Spread this message, or do not. My job will continue. Now that you know I exist, you may think twice before evoking further maliciousness against others. If you do not, you should not be surprised when a stranger approaches you from the shadows to force your atonement, and witness the cruelty of which I am capable.

Apollyon

Has anyone else received this email? Seems like some sort of creepypasta to me. I haven’t emailed the person back because it could just be some marketing scheme, or a nutjob looking to find someone to mess with. But, if you have received it, please put a comment below.

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Blog Tour: Great Minds

sleep-tight_826049Greetings, Dreamers!

Mark Meier, a fellow writer, asked me to join a blog tour last week.  I am very grateful to be recognized by my colleagues and be asked to join in the fun!

Before I answer the questions for the tour, I’d like to introduce another blogger/writer with amazing insight and ability, Victoria Craven.  Victoria runs the blog, The Autodidact in the Attic, which focuses on the macabre, horror and a wide variety of intellectual stimulus.  Here is her bio:

V.L. Craven lives with her husband and pets. She writes fiction—both short and long—and reviews of books, films & art, as well as essays, articles and interviews with all sorts of interesting people.

She’s always appreciated the darker side of life, which is the focus of her blog The Autodidact in the Attic, (see also its Facebook page). TAitA has reviews of books, films, art, apps and games (and interviews with creators of those things) that will appeal to people with an interest in the macabre or gothic.

Other Ways to Interact with Her:
On Twitter: @vlcraven
On Tumblr: vlcraven.tumblr.com
On Goodreads: V. L. Craven

She will be posting her answers to the blog tour questions next Monday, so do yourself a favor and check out her amazing site.

Now on to my answers:

1) What am I working on?

I am always working on a variety of projects simultaneously,  that’s just how my brain works.  Right now,  I am doing a serial short story on this blog, writing Book II in the Waking Dream Series — The Unkindness — and I am involved in a collaborative series with two other authors (details to come later this year).  My Waking Dream Series is the primary focus and I am always doing research as the it covers alternate history, philosophy, and science.

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I write novels and short stories.  My short stories tend to be very dark.  My favorite short stories are the ones I write in Lovecraftian style.  I am no Lovecraft, mind you, however I have enormous respect for his creations and imagination.

The Waking Dream series is really a mixture of many genres, so it is very hard to put it in any one box — I am not a fan of being pigeonholed.  The Waking Dream Series is an attempt to blur the lines between fantasy and reality.  Much of the subject matter is based on years of research.  I have always been fascinated with the paranormal and the supernatural — specifically the potential of the human mind.  The Waking Dream is my attempt to present a plausible framework for readers to suspend their disbelief and explore their own lives.  Life is a dream, if you really think about it.  We always have control over how our lives go, no matter the situation.  And once you believe that, you can do anything.

The Waking Dream series has elements of horror, paranormal, supernatural, romance, dystopia, apocalyptic events and fantasy.  It is very dark.  One of my fans put it, “It’s the Matrix meets The Stand”.  The first book is my Fellowship of the Ring. It is the twilight before the sun sets on our world. The subsequent books will descend further into the darkness of reality and the human mind.

One final note, there are many things hidden within the stories and novels, tying them together as well as giving avid readers something to discover within the text.  Everything in the Waking Dream Series is carefully calculated.  What have you found hidden within the story?

3) Why do I write what I do?

I love to create worlds.  The Waking Dream is, as I mentioned, an attempt to impart all I’ve learned about the human condition and get the reader to explore and create their own dream.  The world seems to be at an impasse, and we are not moving forward as we should from a philosophical sense.  While the Waking Dream is fiction, there are elements of truth in ever sentence I write — the things I believe to be true.

I write the Lovecraftian stories because I want his legacy to continue, as well as many other authors.  Being able to create a story that emulates the master gives me a sense of humility.  Many writers have walked in his footsteps, but his personal commitment to his craft is something to be admired, respected and remembered for all time.

4) How does my writing process work?

I don’t have a specific process for writing.  When I feel like writing, I write.  And because I have a wide variety of projects I am working on at any given time, I choose the project to work on that most suits my particular mood.  I believe that an author needs to be prolific to be successful.  Very few authors become successful with one book, or even their first book.  The more work you have out, you have a better chance of being discovered by new readers.  It is a snowball effect.

One thing I do tend to stick to in any project is that I usually begin with an illustration.  Next to writing, illustrating is one of my favorite hobbies.  I have over 50 illustrations for the Waking Dream,  as well as maps.  I want the Waking Dream to be similar to the Cthulhu Mythos so that other authors can contribute their own stories to the ever-growing Waking Dream Universe.

I hope that you’ve enjoyed this little excursion into my writing career.  Perhaps you’ll be interested in reading my work, which is listed on the right side bar.  Please be sure to check out Victoria Craven’s answers next Monday on her blog.

Happy Monday!

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Back again and here to stay!

Greetings, Dreamers!

I just wanted to update you all on my status as of late.  The Flu that I had for two weeks, completely destroyed my rhythm of writing and my daily life.  It is only now that I am able to get back into the swing of writing again.

I have a bit of news to relay.

1) Waking Dream: The Unkindness has been pushed back for obvious reasons, and I think we are looking at a late spring release.  This book will be much more involved that the first, and truly sets the stage for the rest of the series.

2) I will be no longer doing serial stories on the site, as it has presented an editing and continuity nightmare.  I will be finishing “The Shadow of the Soul” as a single post in the near future.  I am also working on a short story for submission to magazines,  that will not be published on the blog — “The Darkling Imp at Twilight”

3) I am very excited to tell you that I have been asked by two best-selling authors to work with them on a new mystery series.  There will be 12 books in all, and I will be writing two of them!  More details to come on that once everything has been agreed on.

I will work on “The Shadow of the Soul” over the long weekend, and have it done for you hopefully by next week!  I will also be giving a synopsis of my new short story series, “Tales from the Supernaturalist”.  This series will be written in Lovecraftian style, with “The Darkling Imp at Twilight” as the introduction to our would-be hero, Zachary Tyler.

Thank you all for remaining loyal to my blog in my absence!

Unkind Update 2

UnkindnessGreetings, Dreamers!

I have been asked by several fans  when Book II, The Unkindness, will be available.

At present, I am over a third of the way through the manuscript, and editing has begun chapter by chapter.

I am still on target for February, but I am not ready to set a definitive release date.  However, I will keep you updated as I progress.

As an indication, my editor started reading Chapter 1 and got so involved in the story that they forgot they were supposed to be editing.  So I take that  as a good sign that the story will suck you all in.

In the mean time, you can still get Lost Haven for .99 cents on Amazon Kindle.  I am also preparing it for other devices now.  And the price will be the same across all platforms.  I will also be releasing The Case Study and The House of the Dead Timbers in these formats.

And if you have not read Waking Dream: Devlin, you can read the reviews on Amazon, hear and see interviews about it by selecting one from the Interview menu at the top.  Take a chance and visit the town of Devlin.  I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

Though Lost Haven was meant to be a stand alone story, it is really just Book 1.5 for the series, giving the reader some insight into the more esoteric aspect of the series, and sets up a completely separate plot line that I will explore in other interludes.

Again, thank you all for your support!

Have a wonderful New Year!

Lost Haven

HavenGreetings, Dreamers!

I have released Lost Haven as a Kindle Book, all assembled for your reading pleasure!

Again, it is a novella, and it is a stand alone story that happens between Book I and Book II in the series.

I know that many of you have been reading the story, but I decided to release the book on Kindle to gain a larger audience than my blog.

I have decided to curtail language in my future books so that this series can appeal to both adults and young adults. Book I has one small section with language, however, it is nothing that young adults have not already been subjected to. The world is not perfect, and I am not Mary Poppins.

The underlying story of the Waking Dream is about understanding that we all have the power to change the world to what we want. And I know that will begin with our children.

You can read this novella and decide whether or not the Waking Dream is for you. Its not for everyone! But, I assure you, you can’t truly be a Dreamer until you see what lies ahead.

Happy reading, my friends!

The House of the Dead Timbers

HouseOfDeadTimbersGreetings, Dreamers!

I have published The House of the Dead Timbers on Amazon, only on Kindle with some edits and a little bit of expansion in unclear passages.

I wanted to offer it for less than 0.99 cents, but Kindle has a limit unfortunately.  It is novelette length, about 30 pages, and 12,000 words.  I’m very happy with the quality of the work, and all the wonderful support I got while writing it.  The inspiration for the story came from the cover drawing, which I did many years ago.  I always had the story in my head, but Waking Dream became my focus for a very long time.

If you have already read it, please take a moment to pop on Amazon and give it a review.  All reviews, good and bad, help me become a better writer.  I am already working on a second piece that will pick up where the story left off.  I am working with Amazon to get the story into their Kindle Singles Program to gain more exposure for my work.  So any support from you, my friends, would be greatly appreciated.

http://www.amazon.com/House-Dead-Timbers-Michael-Hibbard-ebook/dp/B00GG1TV1Q

New Review for Devlin!

DevlinGreetings, Dreamers!

I have a few bits of information today.

First, I just received an awesome review from Victoria Craven of Autodidact in the Attic — an amazing writer in her own right.

You can read the full review at Waking Dream: Devlin Book I by Michael Hibbard.

She absolutely got what I was trying to relay in my work, and that gives me hope that the book will start to catch on.  Yes, it is a quick read.  I wanted to introduce the world before getting into the details.  This first book is meant to tease you, because I am going to perform a trick on you, the reader.  I say to you that I am going to make a rabbit vanish into the hat, but at the end, I’ll do much more than make him return again.  Your mind will be left wondering, forced to look into yourself and find your own magic.

Here is an excerpt:

“There’s a bit of Poe and quite a bit of Lovecraft about the thing. A compelling plot, multiple inventive characters and situations and some rather gross moments (in a good way) made this one a winner. I’d definitely recommend it to fans of dark fantasy.

Devlin itself put me in mind of a grown up version of Hogsmeade. Just because you didn’t get your letter from Hogwarts doesn’t mean you can’t be Awakened to your particular ability–that can happen at any time in your life. So take heart!

The events of the book take place in the autumn and there’s magic and the lifting of the veil in a very big way so it’s the perfect book for this time of year.” – V.L. Craven

But wait, there’s more!  Starting next week, I will start posting a series of articles about the philosophy behind the Waking Dream, but it much more than that.  I am going to create a framework that will merge science and religion, creating a new philosophical framework, and drawing from the work of Dr. Erik Andrulis‘, of Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, scientifically irrefutable “Theory of the Origin, Evolution, and Nature of Life” — which I urge you to read, both his theory and his blog.  I have entitled this new philosophy as Mism, the Merging of all isms.

And just one more thing, my book will be reviewed and I will be interviewed on Elaine Charles’ radio show about the Waking Dream and Devlin the weekend of October 27.  Details will come as to times and what local station you can hear it, and links to the podcast.

Thank you all for helping me write this book, and make the Waking Dream a success.  It is for you, because we need a little magic and hope in this world gone awry.

Waking Dream: Devlin Excerpt Released!

DevlinOkay, all of you who have been so patiently waiting on something to read to see if you’re even going to like my book, I have released the prologue, which is entitled The Crier at Twilight.

The PDF File is located at the following link: http://michaelhibbardauthor.com/WakingDreamPrologue.pdf

This full excerpt will set the stage for the novel, and help you understand what is to come, and how the Way of the Weird came to be.

Please offer feedback to me on what you read if you read it.  I am writing these for you, and not for me.  As I get feedback, I will adjust the novels.  This is how I learn to be a better writer, and to give you an adventure you’ll want to read again and again.

 

 

How to Change the World (Part 3)

The Sun in my HandGreetings, Dreamers!

Today, I’d like to continue our series on how we can change the world by introducing you to the source of our life on our great planet, Sol, our beautiful sun.

Every day, I visit a wonderful website called SpaceWeather.Com.  I do this because it has all the information we need to know on the health, and temperament of our sun on any given day.  Many of you may not know that 2013 is the year of the Solar Maximum, which marks the peak of a 12 year cycle our sun experiences.  This solar cycle is explained as the intensity of electromagnetic activity on the surface of the sun.  It is measure by many key factors: number of sunspots, number of solar flares, number of coronal mass ejections. This year has been a very active year, as we have seen many flares and CMEs hit the Earth.  These flares and CMEs can disrupt satellites, radio signals, cause amazing Aurora in the north and south pole, and if strong enough, it can wipe out every electronic instrument on the planet.  Every second, the sun puts our more energy than we have used over the course of human history.  Humbling isn’t it?

Regardless of your religion or creed, for all intents and purposes the sun is what keeps us alive — without it our planet would be cold, lifeless and barren.  We are fortunate enough to have a young sun, which is relatively calm, and provides us with more energy than we could ever consume.  So, the real question is, why aren’t we moving towards complete and total dependence on the sun?  There are several varied answers to that — big oil, the coal industry, the natural gas industry, lobbyists, politics, but most of all, fear of change.

No matter what you hear on the television, or read online, or in the papers, our fossil fuel supply is vanishing at an alarming rate.  We will not survive if we do not start harnessing the power of this magnificent source of energy — the same energy that all life thrives on. So changing our world is going to involve our sun, rather than trying to escape the inevitable.  We already have the greatest nuclear power planet available to us.  Why would we attempt to duplicate what the universe has already perfected and given to us for free?

This brings me to my next point about the sun.  We were not meant to hide all day in the house, we were born under the stars, and our bodies require sunlight. Besides the mental benefits of being among nature and out in the sun, we also require sunlight to produce vitamin D.  Most people do not know this until they get their check up and find that they have low levels of Vitamin D, which has many benefits to our health.

Today is summer solstice for the Northern Hemisphere.  Today is the perfect day to step out into the sunlight and bask in the healing light.  We are tilted closest to the sun today, and its the perfect opportunity to receive a warm kiss from our life-giving friend.  Time to get our from behind that computer, step outside and just live in today’s moment.

I will leave you with this question today:  How do you plan to celebrate the sun today?

The Book of Tristan

I.

I am Tristan, servant of the Weird and the Creator — the Crier at Twilight. To all the Dreamers, I must warn you of the untruths you are being taught to believe. Awaken your Weirdness so that you can assist in changing the world, our Waking Dream.

II.

My friends, I am compelled to write this missive and urge you to Awaken to the truth of our reality, that the universe is nothing more than a Waking Dream. Some of you have already embraced this notion, as I have proselytized this before in a previous life. Now it has become urgent that you awaken and believe the words I write. Certain individuals, the False Teachers, have infiltrated this reality, and have been actively misleading you and the Sleepers, swaddling you in banality they have created to mask the coming storm. They are everywhere, and you will not know them to see them, for they are hidden among us in plain sight — Immortals and wicked Dreamers.

III.

Those who have Awakened, already know the truth of the Waking Dream, and embracing the Weird will allow you to survive the days and years to come. The coming twilight heralds the end of this civilization — it is inevitable. The Beast walks among you, and we can only hope that he will unwittingly serve our cause by wrenching the sin from the hearts of these False Teachers before they destroy everything — achieving their goals. It was the Creator who unleashed the Beast and the Angel into the Spaces Between, to affect balance in the world, but these plans have surpassed their ability to exact retribution for the infractions against the Logos of the Weird.

IV.

Though I cannot provide you exact guidance on finding these False Teachers, I can give you advice on who to be wary of. They exist in positions of great power across the world, but that is not to say that all of the powerful people in the world are to blame — some work with us. You must believe only things your own Weirdness can ascertain. Since the first Sleeper arose from the last Great Transformation and the Immortals and Dreamers began to return, a plot was born from the mind of a single, insidious Immortal — but I do not know which one. He and those he has mentored have infiltrated these positions of power, meticulously misleading you into forgetting your place in the Waking Dream and effectively relinquishing your control over its design. We now live in the Dream he and those like him have created, and as you can see it is quickly becoming a nightmare.

V.

You have allowed your governments to run amuck through indecision and polarization the False Teachers have seeded among you. The Sleepers have been particularly susceptible to lies, and misinformation, and the False Teachers have used them to elect their minions into places of power within all the world governments, slowly weaving their lies into the fabric of our collective Dream, causing it to become unstable. This is not to say that all politicians are a part of this clandestine plot, because there are some who continue to work tirelessly towards a better world and dream, but they are mired beneath the lies and actions of these nightmarish minions. There is no way to stop the juggernaut of these political machines. This dark cancer has spread through the entire body of the political system, the best one can do is to avoid drawing their attention. And though I plead for you to heed my words, exposing myself to them, I gladly sacrifice myself so that you might be enlightened. Even now as I write this, I have only a few short hours before I will be found and silenced.

VI.

The media has become as corrupted as the governments. And again, there are exceptions, however the voices of those speaking the truth are drowned out by lies and accusations. Those who speak the truth are eventually silenced, or made to be thought of as insane. We are only allowed to see the news that they decide. The news is not of the people, it is the news of the False Teachers, leading us down the path of war, hate and destruction. The news has led us to believe that we are powerless and we should fear one another. There is evil in the world, my friends, however, there is also goodness. The television is not meant to be your sole source of experience. Abandon it, destroy it, ignore it. Explore your world through your own senses, and not the sense of those who are misleading you.

VII.

The time for religion has ended. Religion was created by the Sleepers to try to understand their purpose in the Waking Dream. They have no will of their own, and the minions of deception have infiltrated every aspect of their leadership. Only a precious few have tried to lead us all to a path of peace, but as history will show you, they were all murdered for speaking of the simplicity and elegance of a unified world. Religion has caused more strife on this world than any other aspect of human existence. It has polarized every country, neighborhood and family. There is no separation between religion and the governments. Religion is a tool of control. I tell you openly, my friends, the Creator did not intend for us to wait for his will to be known. He is the Creator of the Universe, we are the creators of the Dream. And when the Creator was finished with our Universe, he continued on to other places in the multiverse, creating other universes for other Dreamers to be born within. This simple truth can be realized by the fact that no one religion can agree on the role of the Creator. Religion has become a catalyst for hate and has ruined the first tenet of the Weird — Coexistence. This is not to say that the gathering of people together in fellowship is the problem. The problem comes when religion tries to say that one is more right than the other. The time for religion, as I have said, is over. We must be thinkers, philosophers and, of course, Dreamers.

VIII.

With all that being said, it is important to understand that no action can be taken against any of these False Teachers. The only way to defeat their seditious aims is to stop listening. You must take responsibility for your own life — look, listen, learn. Each of us has a Dream to pursue, and if the Dream is within the confines of the Logos of the Weird, it is good. If we stray from the elegance and simplicity of the Logos, we then become evil. Do not chastise unbelievers, nor should you try to sway others. Like will always attract like, and as the storm subsides, you will find one another and rebuild. You must awaken, realize the dream and believe. Once you have done that, you will be able to salvage the remains of our civilization, usher in a new age of humankind, and hopefully, defeat the powers the wish to destroy us all.

Be well my friends and we will meet again in the Spaces Between.

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