“What’s Inside” Goes Audio!

This is one of the most flattering things that has ever happened to me.

Last week I was approached by a voice actor interested in doing a reading of my short story, What’s Inside. I listened to one of his other recordings and signed on immediately.

It came out today and I am so excited to share it with you! Cody has his own voice, as does Mrs Chappel, and hearing the two of them together… I’m not gonna lie. I got goosebumps. (Or ‘goosey bumps’, as per one psychopathic little boy.)

So close your eyes. Settle in.

I think I hear someone screaming…

 

Check out Immunity Zero’s YouTube channel for this and other creepy stories, and watch for more collaborations between us in future!

Excerpt from “You Only Live Once”, a Horror Story

“What they don’t tell you is what it feels like not to die.

They don’t tell you that the casket isn’t actually padded; that there’s only a bit of cushion under your head and shoulders, and that’s for your family to feel better, not you. You’re supposed to be dead.

They don’t tell you that the backs of your clothes will be cut away, and that you’re not so much wearing them as being covered by them, like lying under a quilt whose pieces are unattached. No one worries about decency, or dignity for that matter, when it comes to dead guys.

There’s no such thing as comfort, when you’re supposed to be dead. Take me: my left leg is broken just under the knee, because by the time they found my body it had stiffened oddly to the side. It’s all in how you fall, see, and it’s hard to worry about the convenient alignment of your body when you’re trying not to die in the first place. They cracked the bone to make it lie neatly in the casket, in case an inquisitive relative (nosey, they said, because they didn’t know I was listening) should happen to peep under the closed end of the box. They want you to look like you’re just resting, like even if you were able to get out, you’d still be there because it’s just so damned comfy.

No one sleeps like this: body ramrod straight, arms on chest, hands twined together. When you go to bed tonight, try it, then tell me if it’s how you’d want to spend eternity.

God, I hope I wink out before eternity.

At least now they’ve stopped fussing at me. I wouldn’t have thought myself a prudish person in life, but somehow when you know that you’re being stripped out of your soiled clothes and laid out, naked, to be washed by strangers, you develop sudden surprising shynesses. You try to remember whether you showered the morning she killed you, and whether or not you wore clean socks. It becomes paramount that the rubber-gloved attendant now seeing to your final needs not be embarrassed or disgusted on your behalf.

That’s not how you’d be remembered, if you could have a say. If they could hear you.”

– from You Only Live Once, a short horror story by Stefanie N Snider.
Get your copy from Amazon or Smashwords now!

Excerpt: “Annabelle”, a Horror Story

I never really loved that child.

I mean, she was an easy birth. And when she got a little older, and I could start putting little bows and ribbons and things on her, she was cute enough.

But I knew right from the start she was evil.

It wasn’t one of those things you could see easily. Hell, I had a hard enough time seeing it myself.

When we’d go out to the market, she’d be sweet as pie. All the old women would come over and tug on those blonde ringlets. They’d caw like ravens and pinch at her cheeks. She’s got these dimples, see, that make the little grannies just about weep with adoration.

I used to tell those biddies they could take her home with them, if they loved her so much. They always giggled from behind their dentures and shook their smiling heads. I wish, just once, that one of them had realized I wasn’t kidding.

I caught the first hints of the demon in her when she’d cry out in the night. Most children, see, they wail. Their little chests suck in all the air they can hold and force it back out, loud as a foghorn through the darkness. Annabelle was different. She hissed. It sounded like a basketful of snakes let loose in her room.

I started turning down the baby monitor. Then I shut it off. Before long, I was closing her door and sleeping with a pillow over my head.

Of course I took her to the doctor; what kind of mother do you think I am? He checked her front and back and upside down and said there wasn’t a damned thing wrong with her. I wanted her to startle at his touch, to cry out so he could hear what I’d heard. She sat there instead, half a hand shoved in her mouth, and the doctor didn’t suspect a thing.

So I bundled her up against the Fall wind and wheeled her back home in her stroller. The strangers we passed all cooed at her. I think that was part of her witchcraft, being able to fool them all like that. They didn’t feel what I felt…

There’s something different about Annabelle. Something unsettling. Something…demonic.
Mommy’s little monster is here.

Annabelle, short horror from Stefanie N Snider

Available now at Amazon

Find Out “What’s Inside”: a Horror Preview

Just in time for Halloween, I thought I’d share an excerpt of my short horror story, “What’s Inside”. Graphic, disturbing, and unsettling, this one’s my favourite!

“She’s only a little dead. I can feel the warm. The bits inside, for sure, are hot.

There was a lot more blood than I expected; more than when I done either the mouse or the chipmunk.
Maybe it’s because of the babies. I learned in school that a lady has more blood when she’s pregnant. “It’s because the baby needs more food,” Mrs Chappel told us. I don’t know what that had to do with anything; I just wanted to hear about the blood. But when she talked she rubbed her hand around and around on her belly, and the sound drove me bananas until I couldn’t hear her words anymore. She was always touching her belly and smiling; I don’t understand why she was so happy to be getting fat.

I’ve got my favourite sharp stick here and I squidge it around inside. There’s some lumpy stuff, and a thing that looks like a kidney bean. I tried poking at it but it got stuck on my stick and I had to shake it off. It went splat when it hit the dirt and had little stringy bits like a spider’s web all over it.

I kicked some dust on it. It’s not what I want.

I get up close again, and don’t get any grass on my knees. My Mom just bought me these jeans and she’ll be mad at me if I wreck ’em.

The knife I took out of Daddy’s drawer is right here with me. It’s all rusty and I couldn’t get it open at first but I worked real hard and it opened right up. It just took some wiggling.
“My clever boy,” Mom says inside my head, and it makes me smile. I love my Mom.

It’s starting to get a little dark out. Goosey bumps are all over my arms, even though I have my coat all did up.

What happened was I stayed in the cloakroom after the last bell. I was trying to think. It was warm and dark in there, and even though it smelled like wet boots it made me feel safe.

Mrs Chappel came to the doorway of the cloakroom and pulled me out of the pile of other kids’ clothes. There’s babies inside her, two of them. I wanted to know if they could see me from in there.

“Do your babies have eyelids?”

“Well, that’s a good question. Yes, I think they do.” She was rubbing at her belly again and her hand went scratch scratch scratch against her shirt.

“It’s too loud! I don’t like when you do that.”

Her hand stopped. “Okay, Cody, time to get you home. Put on your coat.”

I let her help me, even though I’m big enough to do it myself. And then I had a lightbulb.

“Mrs Chappel, my mom can’t come get me today. Can you take me home?”

“Hmm. Why don’t we call her? We’ll go to the office and I’ll let you use the phone.”

“No! She can’t come. She had a appointment. And my dad can’t come either. He works.”

Mrs Chappel’s eyebrows went all up.

“It’s close to here.” It’s not, really, but I tell good lies.

She got down on her knees and zipped up my coat. Her eyes were big and brown, with little bits of green.

“I can’t take you home to an empty house, Cody.”

“I could…I could go to my neighbour’s. She’s old, so we can’t call her. She doesn’t hear. But she watches me, sometimes.”

Mrs Chappel tried to stand back up, but it wasn’t easy for her. I put my arm out and let her push on it, but I knew she wasn’t really putting weight on me. Grownups never think you can do stuff.

I do lots of things that grownups don’t know about.”

From What’s Inside, a horror short by Stefanie N Snider.
Throw a buck at Amazon or Smashwords and find out why some kids are better left alone.

Excerpt from “You Only Live Once”, a Horror Story by Stefanie N Snider

“What they don’t tell you is what it feels like not to die.

They don’t tell you that the casket isn’t actually padded; that there’s only a bit of cushion under your head and shoulders, and that’s for your family to feel better, not you. You’re supposed to be dead.

They don’t tell you that the backs of your clothes will be cut away, and that you’re not so much wearing them as being covered by them, like lying under a quilt whose pieces are unattached. No one worries about decency, or dignity for that matter, when it comes to dead guys.

There’s no such thing as comfort, when you’re supposed to be dead. Take me: my left leg is broken just under the knee, because by the time they found my body it had stiffened oddly to the side. It’s all in how you fall, see, and it’s hard to worry about the convenient alignment of your body when you’re trying not to die in the first place. They cracked the bone to make it lie neatly in the casket, in case an inquisitive relative (nosey, they said, because they didn’t know I was listening) should happen to peep under the closed end of the box. They want you to look like you’re just resting, like even if you were able to get out, you’d still be there because it’s just so damned comfy.

No one sleeps like this: body ramrod straight, arms on chest, hands twined together. When you go to bed tonight, try it, then tell me if it’s how you’d want to spend eternity.

God, I hope I wink out before eternity.

At least now they’ve stopped fussing at me. I wouldn’t have thought myself a prudish person in life, but somehow when you know that you’re being stripped out of your soiled clothes and laid out, naked, to be washed by strangers, you develop sudden surprising shynesses. You try to remember whether you showered the morning she killed you, and whether or not you wore clean socks. It becomes paramount that the rubber-gloved attendant now seeing to your final needs not be embarrassed or disgusted on your behalf.

That’s not how you’d be remembered, if you could have a say. If they could hear you.”

– from You Only Live Once, a short horror story by Stefanie N Snider.
Get your copy from Amazon or Smashwords now!

Excerpt: “Annabelle”, a Horror Story

I never really loved that child.

I mean, she was an easy birth. And when she got a little older, and I could start putting little bows and ribbons and things on her, she was cute enough.

But I knew right from the start she was evil.

It wasn’t one of those things you could see easily. Hell, I had a hard enough time seeing it myself.

When we’d go out to the market, she’d be sweet as pie. All the old women would come over and tug on those blonde ringlets. They’d caw like ravens and pinch at her cheeks. She’s got these dimples, see, that make the little grannies just about weep with adoration.

I used to tell those biddies they could take her home with them, if they loved her so much. They always giggled from behind their dentures and shook their smiling heads. I wish, just once, that one of them had realized I wasn’t kidding.

I caught the first hints of the demon in her when she’d cry out in the night. Most children, see, they wail. Their little chests suck in all the air they can hold and force it back out, loud as a foghorn through the darkness. Annabelle was different. She hissed. It sounded like a basketful of snakes let loose in her room.

I started turning down the baby monitor. Then I shut it off. Before long, I was closing her door and sleeping with a pillow over my head.

Of course I took her to the doctor; what kind of mother do you think I am? He checked her front and back and upside down and said there wasn’t a damned thing wrong with her. I wanted her to startle at his touch, to cry out so he could hear what I’d heard. She sat there instead, half a hand shoved in her mouth, and the doctor didn’t suspect a thing.

So I bundled her up against the Fall wind and wheeled her back home in her stroller. The strangers we passed all cooed at her. I think that was part of her witchcraft, being able to fool them all like that. They didn’t feel what I felt…

There’s something different about Annabelle. Something unsettling. Something…demonic.
Mommy’s little monster is here.

 

Annabelle, the newest short horror from Stefanie N Snider

Available now at Amazon

Find Out “What’s Inside”: a Horror Preview

“She’s only a little dead. I can feel the warm. The bits inside, for sure, are hot.

There was a lot more blood than I expected; more than when I done either the mouse or the chipmunk.
Maybe it’s because of the babies. I learned in school that a lady has more blood when she’s pregnant. “It’s because the baby needs more food,” Mrs Chappel told us. I don’t know what that had to do with anything; I just wanted to hear about the blood. But when she talked she rubbed her hand around and around on her belly, and the sound drove me bananas until I couldn’t hear her words anymore. She was always touching her belly and smiling; I don’t understand why she was so happy to be getting fat.

I’ve got my favourite sharp stick here and I squidge it around inside. There’s some lumpy stuff, and a thing that looks like a kidney bean. I tried poking at it but it got stuck on my stick and I had to shake it off. It went splat when it hit the dirt and had little stringy bits like a spider’s web all over it.

I kicked some dust on it. It’s not what I want.
I get up close again, and don’t get any grass on my knees. My Mom just bought me these jeans and she’ll be mad at me if I wreck ’em.

The knife I took out of Daddy’s drawer is right here with me. It’s all rusty and I couldn’t get it open at first but I worked real hard and it opened right up. It just took some wiggling.
“My clever boy,” Mom says inside my head, and it makes me smile. I love my Mom.

It’s starting to get a little dark out. Goosey bumps are all over my arms, even though I have my coat all did up.

What happened was I stayed in the cloakroom after the last bell. I was trying to think. It was warm and dark in there, and even though it smelled like wet boots it made me feel safe.

Mrs Chappel came to the doorway of the cloakroom and pulled me out of the pile of other kids’ clothes. There’s babies inside her, two of them. I wanted to know if they could see me from in there.

“Do your babies have eyelids?”

“Well, that’s a good question. Yes, I think they do.” She was rubbing at her belly again and her hand went scratch scratch scratch against her shirt.

“It’s too loud! I don’t like when you do that.”

Her hand stopped. “Okay, Cody, time to get you home. Put on your coat.”

I let her help me, even though I’m big enough to do it myself. And then I had a lightbulb.

“Mrs Chappel, my mom can’t come get me today. Can you take me home?”

“Hmm. Why don’t we call her? We’ll go to the office and I’ll let you use the phone.”

“No! She can’t come. She had a appointment. And my dad can’t come either. He works.”

Mrs Chappel’s eyebrows went all up.

“It’s close to here.” It’s not, really, but I tell good lies.

She got down on her knees and zipped up my coat. Her eyes were big and brown, with little bits of green.

“I can’t take you home to an empty house, Cody.”

“I could…I could go to my neighbour’s. She’s old, so we can’t call her. She doesn’t hear. But she watches me, sometimes.”

Mrs Chappel tried to stand back up, but it wasn’t easy for her. I put my arm out and let her push on it, but I knew she wasn’t really putting weight on me. Grownups never think you can do stuff.

I do lots of things that grownups don’t know about.”

From What’s Inside, a horror short by Stefanie N Snider.
Throw a buck at Amazon or Smashwords and find out why some kids are better left alone.