Most of you are probably wondering why I’ve chosen to launch a literary magazine. The short answer is that I love books and I have experience in publishing and promoting them. The long answer: a few months ago, I received an opportunity I couldn’t turn down.
When I first started writing and publishing back in 2009, my ultimate ambition was to be a novelist or memoirist. I grew up reading books by Hunter S. Thompson, Charles Bukowski, Philip K. Dick and other writers, and I viewed blogging as a stepping stone to a more “formal” literary career. Part of the reason I used to write so many book reviews on my blog was because of my intense interest in literature and the sheer number of books I read.
Aaron Clarey once wisely said that no one should write fiction before the age of 30 due to the fact that they lack the life experience to create interesting stories. While not a hard and fast rule, it’s one that seemingly applied to me, because I haven’t attempted to publish fiction yet. Even writing literary nonfiction is a tall order for me. I’ve been working on a memoir of my hitchhiking adventures for several years now, and I’ve had to continuously put it to the side in order to either rewrite it to be better or work on more pressing projects.
I’m now a month away from my 30th birthday and at a crossroads in my career. Fortunately, back around Christmas, I got an email that gave me a map for the future.
The email was from Nameless Writer, who wrote two posts for my blog back in 2015. The first, “While You Were Speaking,” was a confessional erotic story, while the second, “Why I Lie,” was an interesting look back at the kinds of women he sleeps with. Both stories were popular, particularly “Why I Lie,” which actually went viral among feminists, who accused me of writing it under a pseudonym. One girl even sent me nudes of herself over email because she was turned on by reading it.
In his email, Nameless Writer told me he had written a memoir called Letters from a Heartbroken Pervert, expanding on the themes in those two articles. He wanted me to serialize the work on my blog and publish it as a book, because he wants to stay anonymous and he trusted my ability to edit the work and publicize it. The work was fascinating, to say the least: a deeply confessional, funny, uncomfortable, and endearing look at modern love. “Bukowski for the Internet generation,” I later put it.
After reading his email, it suddenly clicked: I should start a book publisher.
It’s the logical extension of what I’ve been doing the past ten years. I’ve built a sizable audience through my blog and other platforms, I’ve written and published eight books, and I’ve worked as an editor on several other books and websites. I’m also friends with Arktos CEO Daniel Friberg and other Arktos employees and learned a lot about publishing from them.
Not only that, there’s an absolute dearth of counter-cultural media right now, which has led to massive success for the people who are brave enough to provide it. In particular, the literary magazine Fluland, which I was a big fan of (and for whom Terror House editors Glahn and Calvin Westra have written), won a huge audience when it launched last year by catering to outsider writers. Independent book publishers such as Arktos and Nine-Banded Books have become popular for the same reason.
Fluland’s runaway success—in barely six months, it became more popular than lit mags that have been around for decades—showed that the public is starving for quality literature. We all know that mainstream New York publishers have killed writing, but the “alt-lit” community that sprung up in response is just as bad. Case in point: they hounded Fluland off the Internet late last year, falsely accusing the admin of being “alt-right” and attempting to dox him and other major site contributors. Soft Cartel, which was intended to be an unofficial successor to Fluland, was converged by the “alt-lit” community two months ago and is now run by an SJW who is obsessed with trannies.
It’s in part because of all this that I’ve decided to pick up the torch of outsider literature. I told Nameless Writer that I would love to publish Letters from a Heartbroken Pervert. I initially began serializing it on my own site, where it quickly won a dedicated following. For example, here’s Davis Aurini discussing it on one of his latest livestreams:
(All currently published installments from Letters from a Heartbroken Pervert are now on Terror House Magazine: click here to read them.)
But I realized early on that a book publisher wouldn’t be enough: I’d need a magazine of my own to cultivate an audience, find up-and-coming writers, and publish their work. I’d also need experienced, well-connected editors who could help publicize the site, curate submissions, and recruit contributors.
Enter Terror House Magazine.
Terror House is a writer-focused, ideology-free platform for outsider literature. We’re not interested in cliques or censorship: we’re here to publish good fiction, literary nonfiction, poems, the works. Unlike most lit mags, we won’t take our writers for granted either, which is why we offer a $10 cash prize for the best submission each month. (Click here to learn more.)
My goal is to build Terror House Magazine—and later, Terror House Press—into the premier platforms for outsider literature. There are too many critics in this corner of the Internet and not enough creators. Terror House Magazine is just the beginning: I plan on making this site into the hub for great fiction and literary nonfiction. (To find out more about my plans to expand the site, click here.)
For more info about Terror House Magazine, click here.
If you’ve got work you want us to publish, click here to read our submission guidelines. Our first submission will be published on Wednesday.
Follow us on Twitter here.
Subscribe to our YouTube channel here.
A special thanks to fellow Terror House editors Glahn and Calvin Westra and social media manager Bryan Wilke for their invaluable help in bringing the site together.
Let’s tell some great stories.
Matt Forney is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Terror House Magazine. He is an American author, journalist, and radio host based in Europe. Matt blogs at MattForney.com and is also on Anchor, BitChute, Stream.me, Twitch, and YouTube. He is the author of eight books, available from Matt Forney Books, Amazon, and other retailers. Matt’s work has been featured at Return of Kings, Reaxxion, Taki’s Magazine, Right On, Red Ice, Affirmative Right, and other sites. He has also served as an editor at Return of Kings and Reaxxion.