Passive and Active engagement with your passions…

Now, this might be a massive generalization, or it might be accurate, I don’t really know, but talking to people, reading about people, I get the feeling that at some point in all of our lives, we feel stuck, or sense that we have a lack of purpose.

The common scenario I’ve noticed is we do what we see, what we were programmed to do. Grow-up, find a partner, get a job, have kids or don’t, and just settle in until you retire and then die. And at the beginning, all of this can be exciting. You’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing, what your friends are doing and you get to talk to them about it, comparing lives and congratulating each other on your successes and supporting each other through failures. And this is fine… at the beginning.

Then the job you were so jazzed to get starts losing its shine. Maybe getting out of bed to go to work becomes a battle everyday. Maybe you look in the mirror and think, how the hell did I get here? But what can you do? You have people depending on you, depending on your income and you love them, and your problem shouldn’t be their problem so you get up, and you go to work and the next day, you do it again ad infinitum. But that’s not it. Well, it doesn’t have to be.

For me, I didn’t start writing until well into my late thirties. Before that, in order to quit smoking, I started racing in 5K runs, then a half-marathon, then triathlons, and when the quitting smoking finally took, I was like, now what? (Over the past two summers I finished a marathon and an ultra-marathon- I will not be doing either again). It is obvious now I was looking for something extra. Something to occupy my brain and body. I needed stimulation outside of my work. And you know what? This is a great time to live in. If I had been born just a decade earlier, some of the options available now would have passed me by.

I started writing and submitting stories online to magazines and book compilations and bam! Published (after many rejections, of course).

Years ago, you’d have to type out a manuscript, mail it off, and wait for weeks on end for the acceptance or rejection letter to arrive in the mail. It’s called snail mail for a reason. And it was considered bad etiquette to send out your story to multiple places. You had to send to one, wait, and then if rejected, send to another and wait. Ugh. How disheartening!

But for me, at the time I tried to give writing a go, all I had to do was write it, attach it to an email and click send. And the answers came within days, weeks, but not months. Perfect.

And this is not just applicable to writing. There are so many people out there who are returning to what they are passionate about and trying to turn that passion into a reality. You can create your own online store, design T-shirts, 3D print products to sell, create a YouTube channel where people watch YOU play a video game or critique a movie, a book, or you could start a micro-brewery, I mean, the options are limitless! For the first time, in a long time, the options truly are what you can imagine.

And it’s the trying that’s important isn’t it? Even if I had never been published, I know I’d be writing, and like now, trying to get better everyday. I went from passively wishing to actively pursuing my passion for horror and it’s paying off.

What obstacles are in your way? I know it’s cheesy, but I found the only real obstacle to any of my goals had been me. Just me. And I’m still learning to get out of my own way.

I don’t know a lot, but I do know that you shouldn’t hold back. You get one shot at this incredible thing called life. I’m sometimes blown away at the idea of it. I mean billions of years, billions of obstacles, billions of evolutionary changes that created you, in this moment, in this time. Enjoy it as best as you are able. Chase your passion (cheese, I know, but no less true).

John Hunt is the best-selling author of Doll House, The Tracker, and Off The Grid. His newest book, Murder Run, is also available on Amazon.

Horror Stories and Fun. All right here.

Don’t you love it when you find a new author to read?

I was looking for contemporary horror to read, so I used the Googles to help with the search and I stumbled upon a blog listing 10 scary books in which not one of them had been written by Stephen King. I know, I know, I was surprised to find such a list as well.

And on this list (sorry, I forget the blog name and didn’t bookmark it, and I really would have liked to give them credit) was BROTHER by Ania Ahlborn.

I read quite a lot of books from multiple genres, and after a time, you can sense the trends, the story and what direction it is going in, and sometimes, the conclusion without having to finish the book. This happens to me a lot, actually, to the annoyance of my family and friends (they don’t like to watch movies with me because I can predict the ending quickly). And I can do this because I practice it a lot. I read all the time. I watch movies all the time, so, after a while, nothing truly surprises me.

I like being surprised. I try to surprise my readers with my books, and so far, luckily, I’ve been successful. And when an author surprises me, I am over-the-moon happy about it.

That’s what happened when I read BROTHER.

I won’t spoil it, but I will say that you usually know what type of book you’re getting into when it involves a family of backwoods cannibals. So I wasn’t expecting much in the way of a new storyline. I was absolutely wrong. And I am so happy that I was.

If you love horror with new, clever, and surprising storylines, you’ll love this book.

I mean, go get it now, off of Amazon, or wherever you can get it. Me? I’ll be buying the rest of Ania’s books.

John Hunt is the bestselling author of Doll House, The Tracker, Off The Grid, and his newest novel, now available on Amazon, Murder Run.

Horror Stories and fun. All in one place.

Best Horror Video Game of all time… IMHO.

How do you rate the best of a subjective genre? By personal opinion, of course, and for me, I’m rating my best on gameplay, and most of all, the story. I am a writer after all, well, doing my best at practicing it anyway.

For the scariest, like, wanna throw the controller away type of fear, you can’t beat OUTLAST. It’s a first person game, using darkness, flashlights with low batteries, and an eerie atmosphere to freak you the ‘f’ out. And it does it well. But is the story awesome? It’s ok.

You also may have heard of the Friday the 13th game as well. It is a multiplayer game, where you spawn as either Jason (predator) or a camp counsellor (prey). Jason tries to kill all the counsellors as they try to activate, and or build their means of escaping the map. Hella fun, and as an avid F13 fan, I absolutely love this game, but once again, the story? It’s ok.

The preceding games are just an example of some of these types of games. They are survival horror. Resident Evil has been doing these games for years and they are not new.

In 2013, yeah, seven years ago, a Playstation exclusive game was released. The Last of Us. Man. This is a game. It is third person game, but still manages to immerse you deep into the story. And the opening? Your teenage daughter dying in your arms at the beginning of a world-ending pandemic? Need I say more? Ok. I will then.

Of course, the father, Joel, becomes hardened, angry, and afraid to care for anyone. He makes his living smuggling items, and working on the dangerous outskirts of the small, stand-alone communities. And then along comes Ellie. A teenage girl who needs to be escorted far away. Joel doesn’t know why, only that the job pays very well.

They begin their long journey together, and of course he doesn’t want to like her, but he ends up dong just that. Now, none of this is really storytelling originality for sure, and I won’t say that it is. but the ending, man, I still think about it.

SPOILERS: Turns out Ellie is immune to this plague. She carries antibodies that could be used to develop a vaccine. She knows the process of removing these antibodies will kill her because it has to be harvested from her brain. Joel doesn’t know this until the very end when she is about to be operated on. And although Ellie is willing to sacrifice herself, Joel is not willing to sacrifice her. While she is out, getting ready to be operated on, Joel kills everyone, the surgeons, the staff, and takes her away.

The game ends with her asking him what happened. He tells her before they got in too deep, they realized they wouldn’t be able to create a vaccine, that it had all failed. Suspicious, she asks him if he is telling her the truth. He tells her yes, of course he is. He swears on it.

That is one hell of an ending. Joel couldn’t care less about the rest of the world. He only cared about Ellie, and what losing her would mean to him. Love it. If you like survival horror and an excellent story, get this game. It was a Playstation exclusive and it sold 17 million copies. It’s not on Xbox, not on PC, only on Sony and it sold that many… yeah. So good.

John Hunt is the best selling author of Doll House, The Tracker, and Off the Grid. His newest book, Murder Run, is available now on Amazon. Click the link below to get your copy today.

Horror Stories and fun. All right here.