Author Richard Klu Delivering Moments of Awe One Story at a Time

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KluOver on GoodReads I joined the 2017 Reading Challenge and pledged to read 30 books this year. So far I’ve read 14. A bit behind the pace of two books a month to reach the goal, but many of those books were read this summer. It was a very good season of reading and as promised, here is one of my summer reads.

I picked up Moments: A collection of Flash Fiction and Short Stories by Richard Klu after I saw a review by an author that I like and a recommendation in a Facebook group I belong to. It’s a collection of short stories so I thought it would be a great poolside read. Well. Let’s just say my neighbors who were at the pool with me may now think I’m a little nuts.

I couldn’t help it. At the end of most of the stories I sighed, ooowed, aaawed, and said things like, no freaking way and good one. I know you are thinking, that’s fine it’s a good story, but I said it all out loud. I caught some of my good neighbors from the corner of my eye, and I was getting some weird looks, but I don’t really care!

Some of these stories are so darkly beautiful and written more like prose that I thought about printing them out, framing them, and hanging them on the wall. Reading this book was like those nights when a nightmare or strange dream wakes you, and then you fall back asleep right into another one. I love when I finish reading a book, and the story (in this case – stories) keep popping into my thoughts long after I close the covers (or swipe to the end in this case).

I got to chat with Mr. Klu about his writing and wanted to share with you!

Thank you so much for taking the time to talk with me! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

My name is Richard Klu, and I am from western Michigan. Always an artist at heart I write to explore. You can find 3 of my free shorts here.

I grew up in Grand Rapids Michigan and still reside there with my 3 dogs, 3 cats, 23 fish, and 1 wife. Yes, it’s a lot of animals in our little 2 bedroom house, but it keeps things interesting. Blame my wife, they were all her idea.

I have been a Store Manager, a Cook, and various kinds of Salesmen as well as having owned my own business for a little over a year. All the while I’d neglected one of the few constants in my life, writing. Actually, I can thank my wife for that. As much as she hates me ignoring her for hours on end as I type away, she did encourage me to make an attempt at writing enough books to make a living.

On my blog I am sharing stories and what I’ve learned to better help other writers and to keep myself motivated. I primarily write cosmic horror. Similar to the style of HP Lovecraft although I am in the process of creating my own world starting with a short story collection called “Cabals of Blood” which focuses on cults around the world praising ancient deities long lost to modern society. This collection will include 3 planned book series which will be released between 2017 and 2018.

Thank you for the gifts! I’ll be checking those out!

You said writing has been the one constant in your life, why do you find it so attractive?

I like writing because it exercises creativity and gives my mind something to work on. Writing makes me happy even when it ends badly for the characters.

Yes. Things ended badly for some of your characters!

Why do you write in the horror genre?

I didn’t know I was writing horror until someone told me. It’s just kind of where I landed and how I think. To me, a lot of what I write isn’t horror until I am editing it. Then I realize where the story landed. I aim to write things that are interesting. They happen to end up being horror.

I think most people reading this blog would agree that many interesting things are horror related.

Some of the stories in Moments: A collection of Flash Fiction and Short Stories are quite scary. What kinds of things scare you?

Drowning, cancer, and being trapped underneath a weight or buried alive. I used to have a nightmare that I couldn’t move and was in an empty space with no gravity. Almost like space without the stars. In this place, I had something burrowing into my back and up my spine. Thankfully that nightmare has been gone for some years.

Wow! I knew I liked you!

You said that you blog to keep yourself motivated. I struggle in that area, and some fellow writers have suggested a writing ritual to keep things moving. Do you have any unique writing rituals?

No. I write whenever there is free time. Rituals would slow that down.

Hooray! Someone in my camp! I’d love to sit down with my favorite beverage and listen to great music to write, but I have to grab it when I get a chance.

Your book Moments: A collection of Flash Fiction and Short Stories has a broad range of stories: disturbing, interesting, shocking, and spooky! Where did you, or do you, get the ideas for your stories?

Most of them came to me while I was in college and day dreaming during math class.

You should send your Math professor a copy of your book just to show that you were productive in his or her class!

You already mapped out some of the things you have in the works. What can we look for next?

Cabals of Blood is my next collection. It is a group of short stories. Cosmic horror similar to H.P. Lovecraft. I also have 3 books, 1 a trilogy mapped out in the same world.

Where can we find out more about you and your work?

https://richardklu.com/

On Twitter https://twitter.com/Richard_Klu_  @richard_klu_

and on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/RichardKluAuthor/

Excellent!

Thank you for your time and darkly wonderful stories! I look forward to more.

Readers, I finished this book several weeks ago and still can’t stop thinking about it! Grab a copy and check it out for yourself! Until next time Never Turn off the Lights!

 

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Pandora’s Box of Horror Challenge

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284px-Opened_up_a_Pandora's_boxThis was really more of an exercise put forth by a member of Women Writer’s Group on facebook. Several folks submitted their one-word horror story and those submissions were compiled into a list. The challenge was to use all of the words in a 500 word or less horror short story. A great way to stretch the old gray matter!

The words: laundry; Shh; spiders; failure; assault; moist; slice!; exhole; freakotomy; disco; underground; procrastination; stoic; writing; parasitic; boredom; suffocating; rats; bbbbbreathe; politics; Monday; child abuse; infanticide; if; war; Alzheimer’s; truth; Shvitz; life; diarrhea; alone; mother-in-law; darkness; infinite; traffic; debt; disease; forgetfulness; blood; clowns

Here is my attempt.

When my exhole left me alone with these two screaming brats, he also left the gift that keeps on giving, my disease ridden mother-in-law. Despite her forgetfulness, she is as least good for laundry duty which is more than I can say for the exhole or his kids.

When I first saw that jerk at the disco twenty years ago I should’ve kept walking. Maybe I would have married that stoic accountant that I dated before the exhole. Maybe he only talked politics and I might have died of boredom, but at least I wouldn’t be stuck with these parasitic dependents. I wouldn’t have had a marriage that was an infinite war. Well, I suppose it wasn’t infinite was it?

I’ve spent my Monday writing in my journal and cleaning up shit. The baby’s I can kind of understand but the mother-in-law? Her Alzheimer’s medications must have given her diarrhea for the third day in a row. She must be forgetting to pull her pants down to use the toilet, that’s the only way it could get so bad. No wonder he took off.

When he first left I could only shvitz over all our debt and the suffocating needs of these people but after some procrastination I have a plan. In all truth, I am looking forward to my freedom after I complete the freakotomy.  If I don’t finish it this darkness will never leave me. I hope that this time it sticks.

It was surprising how moist her throat felt after the first slice! A sharp odor of iron assaulted my nose as her warm blood cleansed my hands. After many failures, that was one way to cure her of her fear of clowns! The baby was much easier, no fears to overcome.

It’s not child abuse if I’m freeing everyone, right? Infanticide, maybe. But abuse? Never! I’ve prepared a place underground for them where I cleared away all the spiders. Little June was always afraid of them. I guess she’s cured of that too. The place is well away from traffic and will be so peaceful. If the rats stay away it will be perfect.

She is the final piece to my plan. I smell her before I see her in the chair covered with her own filth.

“Please, don’t do this. We can figure this all out. You don’t need to do this,” her voice grates on my ears.

“Shh.”

“Please. Please untie me. I can’t bbbbbbreathe!”

“Shh.”

“Please, I don’t even know who you are. What do you want? You can’t just break in here and do this! Where are my babies!”

I hesitate for a second. The Alzheimers is making it hard for her to understand. I’m moved by compassion to end this.

For the moment, the silence releases us all.

The End

It felt like mental gymnastics to get all those words in there (did you guess mine was spiders)! If you dare to open Pandora’s box further, you can see more submissions at https://www.facebook.com/PandoraBoxOfHorrors