Is murder legal in Utah? Because I KILLED with my talk at the SLC Comic Con

I was invited as a special guest to the Salt Lake City Comic Con last weekend, and I sat on one panel — a George Romero retrospective, very fun — and gave a one-hour talk on “Creating the Perfect Scene,” using the ideas of several well-known writing gurus and presenting them with my own twist and style.

It was a hit. Huge. Like cheering at the end. It was, to say the least, a heady moment in my life. But even more than that, I talked to some attendees afterwards and they told me that this was just what they needed to get themselves actually writing that book they had always dreamed about. I was very proud to have helped them, and very flattered that Dan Farr (the founder of SLCCC) gave me such an outlet to help fledgling writers.

The video is on YouTube, and right here as well:

I loved this Con, and I hope to be able to enjoy the magic, sell my books, and spread the gospel of creative writing to more audiences. What a rush.


What I told the Salt Lake Comic Con when they asked for my deets

Do you remember that I was all set to go to the Salt Lake Comic Con’s “Fan Xperience” back in April? Well, my crashing pad fell through and the local hostel was, well, hostile, so I done told ’em that I couldn’t make it to the FanX but I was definitely coming to the even bigger Comic Con being held at the beginning of September in that Mormon enclave of supergeekdom, Salt Lake City. Seriously, Utah was named the nerdiest state in the Union.

Comic Con

You of course recall the prophecies that Joseph Smith received from the golden Mjölnir.

Anyway, one of the things that is arguably the least fun about being invited to speak and sell books and meet amazing people at a Convention is filling out the bio and supplying relevant pictures and such. But for some reason, the exuberance of the SLCCC organizers was infectious, and I had fun with mine. So, since maybe someone out there might like to read it, I include below my 500-word biography for the Con’s website.


Some might find this more interesting than others.

Sean Hoade is an author of thrillers, literary novels, and more. His work has appeared in several anthologies and literary magazines, and his novels Ain’t That America: A Thriller for the Cynical, the Bitter, and the Doomed and Darwin’s Dreams, a novel about the great naturalist and his lifelong rivalry with the captain of the Beagle, have been met with great acclaim. [See below.]

His heart is in genre fiction, however, specifically apocalypse horror. Existential terror, Lovecraftian creatures that have no regard whatsoever for humans, and zombies are his bailiwick and where he really feels at home. His literary heroes include Stephen King (natch); H.P. Lovecraft along with his circle of fellow writers of dread and loathing; “new Lovecraftians” like Joe Pulver, S.T. Joshi, Ross Lockhart, Robert M. Price, Wilum H. Pugmire, Jason & Sunni Brock, and Silvia Moreno-Garcia; and other writers of a dark and menacing ilk such as Thomas Ligotti and Laird Barron. He also was a fan of The King in Yellow before it was cool.

He has a 10-book contract with apocalypse publisher Permuted Press, the first two of which are Deadtown Abbey (the upper-crust English must fend off zombies, vampires, werewolves, and Lovecraftian entities) and Reviva Las Vegas! Book 1: Dead Man’s Hand, which follows the adventures of a vagabonding poker player in post-zombocalypse Las Vegas.

Deadtown Abbey and RLV:DMH will be available as advance copies exclusively from the author at this Convention and will not be available online or in stores before their official releases in 2015.

Upcoming books in Sean’s Permuted Press line will be:

    • two more books in the Reviva Las Vegas! trilogy, one continuing our trusty cardsharp’s tale and the other showing how Sin City survived the zombie apocalypse;
    • a trilogy about the war between mankind vs. Cthulhu (more Jonathan Lethem than Guillermo del Toro, although del Toro is THE MAN). Big Green is not a kaiju and you can’t blow him up … if you could, the human race might stand a chance. But you can’t;
    • a novel about a boy whose fishing village is terrorized by Lovecraftian sea creatures, How to Train Your Dagon;
    • Dark Acres, a novel reimagining TV’s Green Acres set in Innsmouth;
    • and Exactly What Happened, a zombie apocalypse novel told in reverse.

Sean created and taught one of the first university-level classes on zombies in literature, film, and culture, and his iTune U series of lectures garners over 100,000 downloads each year. He has taught creative writing at several universities, but has set that aside for now to write full-time.

The author is obsessed with all things zombie and Lovecraftian. He attended the H.P. Lovecraft Festival and CthulhuCon in Portland, OR, met many of his heroes, and wore a ballin’ fez.

He is also working on several projects for a “bizarro fiction” publisher, trying to push the envelope on unsettling novels and scenarios. These books are shorter (about 30,000 words), which allows for really weird ideas to be explored. He considers himself an acolyte of Carlton Mellick III, Cameron Pierce, and Jeff Burk in this subgenre.

Sean lives and writes in Las Vegas, NV, a city he describes as feeling more apocalyptic than any city outside of Chernobyl. Writer Tom Bissell said that “Las Vegas itself is as ultimately doomed as a colony of sea monkeys,” and Sean could not agree more, feeling that this makes it the ideal place to explore the dread of existence and of non-existence beating in every human heart.

A great place to have fun and breathe deeply of Sean Hoade’s oddness is his website at He also entertains himself and sometimes others with tales of the writing life at his blog, Also, feel free to drop him a line at


That’s right: I said GREAT ACCLAIM, bitches.

Anyway, I thought y’all might find interesting the different ways a writer needs to brand him- or herself these days in order to take maximum advantage of these kinds of PRportunities. If you’re a writer, how do YOU answer this kind of request? How do you do “branding,” if at all?