Brimstone Press today announced the launching of a new, glossy, horror-related magazine, Black: Australian Dark Culture. This will be a major national magazine with wide distribution and, hopefully, wide appeal. It will focus on all things dark: from movies, music, and books, to politics, witchcraft, fashion, comics, gaming, true crime, bizarre medical cases, and much more.
I’ve known about this for some time as I’m in it, being featured through an Author interview, some film and book reviews and a five-part story sequence under the general title “Moments of Dying”. See the end of this post for an extract from the first part of the sequence, “First Moment of Dying”.
Apart from that, editor-in-chief Angela Challis and Managing Editor Shane Jiraiya Cummings have shown considerable class in their book productions and the advance information they sent me looked fantastic — classy, professional and thoroughly ambitious.
So what is it about?
Angela Challis describes the magazine as a revelation and one of the few genuinely new offerings at news stands.
“Crime dramas are the most popular shows on TV, horror movies are flooding video stores, and paranormal books are incredibly popular. Everyone is drawn to the dark side … and there is clearly a demand for dark-themed entertainment, but until now, there has not been a publication that caters to the enjoyment of all things dark. Black will fill this expanding and increasingly popular niche,” she said.
Shane Jiraiya Cummings views the magazine as a vehicle to explore the darker side of the human spirit, as well as pop culture and entertainment.
“Almost everyone loves the villain, and Black caters for that, but dark culture is more than just scary movies and brooding anti-heroes. Black addresses serious social issues that many consider taboo like alternative lifestyles, euthanasia, and political censorship – such as China’s ban on supernatural movies and literature in the lead-up to the Olympics, which we’re covering in our launch issue,” he said.
As well as the giddy thrill I can feel emanating from all you out there at the prospect of all that Robert Hood material, Black magazine has somehow managed to secure a brand-new Stephen King story — an Australian exclusive — from his upcoming book Just After Sunset. I know, that news is much less exciting than all the Hood stuff, but let’s face it, it’s good to do the old guys a favour every now and then, just to bolster their egos.
Apart from Stephen King’s story, the first issue includes:
- Heath Ledger as The Joker in the upcoming Batman movie The Dark Knight: the fateful role that may have led to his death.
- M. Night Shyamalan on his new movie The Happening.
- China’s Olympic ghost ban.
- Stephen King’s Dark Tower series.
- A glimpse into life as a dominatrix.
- A tour through Brisbane’s necropolis.
- Interviews with Australian authors Robert Hood, Marty Young, and Nathan Burrage.
- Plus competitions, news, fiction, opinion pieces, and an extensive HorrorScope review section!
Contributors to issue one include Gary Kemble (staff writer), Rocky Wood, Chuck McKenzie, Josephine Pennicott, David Carroll, Leigh Blackmore and Margi Curtis, Mark Smith-Briggs, Bella Dee, Dr Carissa Borlase, James Doig, and more!
Black magazine will be on sale nationwide from July 14.
This is an exciting project and one we’re all hoping will be a great success for the Brimstone Press crew.
So subscribe now!
• Black magazine website
Extract from “First Moment of Dying” by Robert Hood
Outside, the world was waiting.
Inside, the silence was as cold as guilt.
A woman’s corpse lay on one of several occupied gurneys, in preparation for the pathologist’s scalpel. An off-white sheet partially covered her; she was in her mid-twenties and plain in death, despite the nakedness of her upper torso. Whatever desire she’d inspired in life had become irrelevant now. Dull abrasions, dried blood, and unhealed wounds decorated parts of her forehead, left cheek, and shoulder. Her throat had been cut. Her right breast bore dark blotches—the imprint of cruel fingers.
In that moment, a word was insinuated into the silence: it was the susurration of a foot on dirt, the creak of a branch touched by wind, the sigh of a dying breath.
The woman’s dead hand twitched as the airborne vibrations of the word entered through her fingertips. Quickening spread up her arm and into her chest, slowly and painfully; it ground through atrophied muscle with a will more inexorable than decay. Finally, her chest heaved, straining with the effort of life.
The woman’s eyes opened.