Friday, September 26, 2008

Diverse Tales

When Clive Barker say’s “Nicholas, I salute you!” the rest of us need to take notice

Creativity is a force we think we have, or at least some of us wish we had, well, Nicholas Grabowsky owns it. Consider this, author, actor, singer, songwriter, and tutor, which includes novels, screenplays, poetry and songs...WOW.

His journey of writing the short story goes as far back as elementary school and years later went by the pen names of Nicholas Randers (and occasionally Marsena Shane) but in the mid-nineties, the horror writer we know as Nick Grabowsky emerged.

His list of titles include Halloween IV, Sweet Dreams Lady Moon, The Rag Man, Nancy, Diverse Tales, Tale of the Makeshift Faire, Shocker II (for Wes Craven, though never produced), The Wicked Haze, Diverse Arcanum, a series of self-help books, scripts, poetry and short stories. 

In 1995, he moved from Southern California to Sacramento, and in 2003, founded a publishing/promotions organization Diverse Media.    

     A couple of note worthy points, his novel The Everborn was awarded the 2005 Predators & editors top 10 finisher, and with the Halloween novels he is helping to establish Mike Myers as an American horror icon.

His novel Diverse Tales published in 2004 with 13 short stories is an honor to review. Did I say 13 stories, oh yeah; I failed to mention there is more, as an added bonus a collection of poems and thoughts. His writing style is colorful, alarming and is guaranteed to leave you with scary thoughts that will come back and haunt you in your dreams.

If you are allowed to have a favorite story among so many I do, The Newspaper Rack. I don’t know where it comes from but out of no where Nick surprises you. Here is a story of a young hotel employee who works the night shift and out of boredom develops a personal challenge to help himself to whatever he finds, and can loot, but gets so much more. In the tradition of the Grabowsky horror, layers are added to this tale until we realize were in the middle of a chain reaction of events that end with a nightmarish finale.

With titles like The Wanting Seed, The Falling, and Mental this collection of macabre stories will remind you why Nicholas is a major voice in horror. 

Norman Applegate

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