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Old 07-02-2014   #1
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William Scott Home

I found a tremendous article on William Scott Home. It also contains Ligotti’s remarks about that writer.

When Ligotti first read Home he thought the writer was possibly mentally ill or just “inexpert’. He compared Home’s stories to Aickman’s because very often they failed to make any kind of normal sense. The entire quote (from a Ligotti interview) is in the fantastic essay on Home that I just discovered.

After reading this piece, I know I’m not alone; another intelligent human being sees Home’s work as far from “unreadable”—it is extremely difficult, however, that has to be admitted—and heralds “A Cobweb of Pulsing Veins” as a truly “terrific” work. (In my view, it’s a work easily on par with Lovecraft’s classic Hound.)

When I first read Michael Shea’s “The Autopsy” I wondered if perhaps it wasn’t Home working under a pen name. (He had good reason to do so since readers found his stories intimidating). If he had pared down his baroque style in favor of narrative flow he might well have produced something as attractive to readers of weird fiction. Home’s fiction while rigorously intellectual is nonetheless every bit as visceral as early Shea; indeed, there are paragraphs that can produce a real physical revulsion in the reader.

But enough! Here then is the link for those interested in a genuinely unique writer:

http://wwwbillblog.blogspot.com/2012...day-21-is.html

"A Cobweb of Pulsing Veins" is pretty terrific, and the story continues into some still stranger areas once the inhabitant of the coffin is revealed. This story, too, becomes dependent on certain traditions, but Home never lets go of his special brand of madness. In fact, this story could almost be said to have a happy ending, even an inspiring one (for all its bleakness, "The Last Golem" is also not without a certain spirituality), if it wasn't for that last sentence. That last damn sentence, man, ends things on such a creepy, shocking, baffling note that I don't finally know what to think about the morality of it all, which is something I think is probably always to be considered in Home's work. But whatever the morality of "A Cobweb of Pulsing Veins" is, whatever the positive morality is, it's still fairly hideous. Maybe not specifically morally hideous -- though even then, I don't know -- but objectively hideous all the same."

Last edited by Druidic; 07-02-2014 at 10:20 PM..
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Old 07-03-2014   #2
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Re: William Scott Home

Home also had a fine piece in Arkham House’s The Dark Brotherhood : “The Lovecraft “Books”; Some Addenda and Corrigenda” is a valuable and scholarly treasure when it comes to factual accuracy regarding all the books, real or imaginary, that appear in Lovecraft’s stories.
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Old 04-29-2017   #3
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Re: William Scott Home

Necro post, apologies. I just waltzed across this thread and was taken back several decades.

I read - rather, tried to read - Home when he was still active.
Must confess, his style was taxing and he was not one I collected.
Part of the problem was undoubtedly the publisher, Paul Ganley.
Of the three big zines back then, Weirdbook was the least professional looking, and had spotty contributors.
In comparison, Whispers was slick, featured illustrations from forthcoming Donald M Grant releases, and had well known writers.
The third zine,, Nyctalops., boasted Ligotti, Potter, and Mr Morris himself.
In the early issues, an irresistible letters section.

Because of the poor layout of Weirdbook, reading was less enjoyable. If memory serves, columns were not typeset.
I suspect I transferred some of my displeasure onto the scribe Home himself, which was unfair.
Thanks for mentioning William Scott Home, Druidic.
I'll dig out my copy of Hollow Faces from the stacks and give it a reread.

Here's a more recent (2016) article about Home -

Tracking William Scott Home
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Old 04-29-2017   #4
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Re: William Scott Home

Zaharoff, I agree about Weirdbook completely.

Give "A Cobweb of Pulsing Veins" a shot.

Home was such a strange writer I wouldn't be surprised if a small cult develops around his work.
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Old 04-29-2017   #5
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Re: William Scott Home

Well worth $5, and Fabian's art is excellent.

W. S. Home (+ Stephen E. Fabian art) HOLLOW FACES, MERCILESS MOONS —horror tales 932445004 | eBay
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Old 04-29-2017   #6
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Re: William Scott Home

No need to apologize for Necro posting.

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Old 05-10-2017   #7
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Re: William Scott Home

He sounds interesting but...is this really a good representation of his prose?Quote by William Scott Home: “I put a sour cherry pastille on my tongue, but ...” it is, I can easily see why readers and editors weren't exactly enamored with him.
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Old 05-10-2017   #8
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Re: William Scott Home

Quote Originally Posted by durandal View Post
He sounds interesting but...is this really a good representation of his prose?Quote by William Scott Home: “I put a sour cherry pastille on my tongue, but ...” it is, I can easily see why readers and editors weren't exactly enamored with him.
This excerpt seems to have issued cacophonously from obscure marmoreal vaults of macaronic monstrosity, the product of a deliquescing cerebrum riddled with syphilitic spirochetes dancing a subcellular quadrille of hairy, drooling, turquoise madness to the accompaniment of a leper spasmodically pounding a flesh-bound drum with his own detached and riddled femur. Most prose excerpts are merely deposited like bland and mausoleously dry McNuggets into the small portable Styrofoam carton of Goodreads, but this excerpt is more like a raw flank torn from the black-feathered side of a Nyctalopic mountain chicken by the rabid jaws of writerly consciousness and seasoned with the venom of a stylistic asp incubated in the decaying skull of a lunatic. I CAN'T THINK WHY editors and readers wouldn't be enamored with it.
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Old 05-10-2017   #9
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Re: William Scott Home

Quote Originally Posted by durandal View Post
He sounds interesting but...is this really a good representation of his prose?Quote by William Scott Home: “I put a sour cherry pastille on my tongue, but ...” it is, I can easily see why readers and editors weren't exactly enamored with him.
What, you never felt like a taffeted plankter drinking substance from the spectrum of a fractured sun?
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Old 06-12-2017   #10
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Re: William Scott Home

I ought thank you for this, just as I ought thank you for Keller.Great stuff, with a surprising amount of occult erudition behind it. I'm surprised that "Silver judgment" and "The parasite" weren't reprinted, as they could have been appreciated by this wider range of readers. I do love how he gradually reveals what is going on in the former, so that everything that happened falls into place in the end, and latter is indeed very reminiscent of early Shea. Anyway, I would never say that there is no logic or purpose behind even the most esoteric and difficult stories in the collection, tho stuff like "...the House of Hides" or "What breeds around her heart" demand some foreknowledge in order to see that purpose. Same goes for the longest of the bunch. This guy isn't generous towards his readers, not by any stretch of imagination. And the prose can be difficult, feverish. He isn't wasting words tho, very specific images and concepts are conjured here. And anyhow, I cannot imagine, say, good chunk of "The Ship of Ghouls" not being written in mad, rambling prose given what is being narrated, who is doing that narration, what his state must be.(also, since you already mentioned the "The Cobweb" - "Hound" connection, I ought mention that "The House of Hides" is like a gnostic take on "Hypnos")
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