Wednesday, June 17, 2020

"Open House on Haunted Hill" is live at Diabolical Plots!

Today I'm proud to present "Open House on Haunted Hill," one of my favorite stories I've ever written. It follows the loneliest haunted house in the world, which is just desperate for someone to live in it. It's just gone live at Diabolical Plots.

I can't overstate the outpouring this story has gotten so far. This is the most acclaim and attention any story of mine has received at launch. The kind words from readers, fellow authors, editors, and agents has affirmed all the work I put into this little house.

This story began as a joke at World Fantasy in 2018. I was trying to explain to other writers that I love Horror, and read and watch it all the time, but I don't write much of it. If I wrote a haunted house story, it'd be about one that wanted to help its occupants live comfortably. This got a lot of laughs, but also a lot of requests for me to please actually write that.

Well folks? I did.

Along the way, I was blessed by some keen beta readers and cheer readers. A special thanks goes out to all of them: Natalia Theodoridou, Michelle Ann Fleming, Merc Fenn Wolfmoor, Nat Sylva, Cass Williams, Ariel Harris, and Leigh Wallace. The editor at Diabolical Plots magazine, David Steffen, also helped me work some kinks out of the ending. To edit is divine, right?

You can read "Open House on Haunted Hill" for free by clicking this link.


  1. Thank you John.
    I loved it. And will probably go back and read it again when I get home from my busy day.

    1. Thanks so much, EC! I'm curious what will stand out for you upon a re-read.

    2. I guzzled it first time round, knowing that I 'should' be getting ready to head out. Once I had started I couldn't stop. I too will be interested to see what stands out when I revisit.

  2. I have been back. I have reread it. And loved it as much on the second and third readings. I am intrigued by '133 Poisonwood Avenue would be stronger if it was a killer house', and can see painful analogies. Evil and cruelty are indeed strong.
    I am hoping (rather a lot) that this house gains strength from the gentle kindnes it shares. And that the family returns and basks in that love for a long, long time.


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