Karavansara

East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


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Rainy night on Halloween

I have been told true writers also write poetry.
I suffered for my art, now it’s your turn.

Rainy night on Halloween
Lonely and safely tucked in
Five old movies and hot tea,
cat, old blanket and no cares.
The countryside is quiet as dead:
something knocks
on this dark night
you won't trick it with a treat.

Or something.
Maybe I should stick to prose, after all.


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All set for Halloween

This morning, a rather surprised-looking delivery guy dropped in front of my door a crate containing a Kickstarter Exclusive box of Tales of Evil, the all-Italian horror boardgame designed by my friend Antonio Ferrara, and produced by his Escape Studios.

Tales of Evil is a boardgame inspired by books like It and TV series like Scooby Doo and Stranger Things – in it, you can play one in a gang of meddling kids, exploring an old dark house.
It is heavy on pop culture references and has its tongue firmly in cheek.

An interesting mix of boardgame, choose-your-adventure book, roleplaying game and alternate reality game, Tales of Evil is absolutely gorgeous and, in the English edition, is masterfully translated.
Just sayin’.

Now I know what we’ll do on Halloween night.


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Halloween in an old village

It’s the 31st of October, early afternoon. I’ve just put the chicken and potatoes in the slow cooker, and acknowledged the fact that a story I had submitted in June was rejected. It’s OK. This month I submitted 13 stories, more than reaching my quota.
The sky is battle-cruiser grey, and there is a faint mist that will probably get thicker as the day progresses.

I am taking a couple of days off. There’s a story I should finish but I’ll never make it in time for the deadline. Pity.
The last few weeks have been complicated, and now that the worst part is over, I can slow down a bit and have some fun.

Continue reading


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A Halloween reading list

Halloween, Halloween… it’s weird when you find yourself doing more posts about Halloween than you will ever do about, say, Christmas or New Year’s Eve.
It’s like Halloween has become the Web’s main festivity.
A festival of ghosts, spooks and dead people.
Seems fitting.

So, why not suggest a reading list for Halloween?
And considering we are cheapskates, why not a list of free ebooks?

Let’s see… Continue reading


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Last week before Halloween

It’s the last week before Halloween, so let’s see…

I have to finish and deliver a 12/15.000-words supernatural thriller (think Kolchak, but set in the present day), by the end of the month.
The story is already outlined and I have a fair chunk of story, but now I’l have to start working on a map of Memphis1 (don’t ask).

memphis-map

The deadline is the 1st of November, but I will have to close my story earlier because… Continue reading


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BUSCAFUSCO: Saints & Witches

santi e fattucchiere cover 2 smallI have just completed a story called BUSCAFUSCO: Saints & Witches, that was financed through a crowdfunding by my Italian readers.
Yes, it is in Italian.
It was a wild ride, and I’m pretty spent at the moment.
And yet, it would be fun to be able to translate and adapt it in time for Halloween. But I can’t really. Apart from the fact that it would be a rush job, the pact with the sponsors of my crowdfunding is that I will not publish the story until the 15th of September 2018.
So I might do it in English too for Halloween 2018.

Which leaves me with another problem: what could I do for Halloween this year?
Maybe an Aculeo & Amunet short, you say.
Or give it a try and finally launch that new series about a supernatural detective?

Ah, decisions, decisions!


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Halloween and its enemies

829066a5ad14b941837d543bf92e0f97Halloween is looming closer, and the usual choir of dissenters is tuning up to remind me and my countrymen that Halloween is a pagan festival and a foreign pagan festival to boot, and therefore we should abhor it.
Today somebody posted on my facebook wall a meme that reminded mi that November the First is Ognissanti (All Saints Day) and the Second is the Day of the Dead. The meme also reminded me of my roots, and closed with a patriotic call to respect our great nation (to wit, Italy).

To which I say, screw that. Continue reading