A Few of My Favorite Things

“Scary Books, Cheap Whiskey, Smooth Yo-yos and all things horror”

More books & yo-yos, much less whiskey than I let on… (shush, don’t tel anyone). Here is a running list of Publishers, Writers, Artists, and Manufacturers/ Designers who are bringing the heat, challenging the status quo, and pushing boundaries. These are the people creating the things I love, the thing that make me tick, the things that make my free time pass enjoyably and all to quickly.  Consider everyone on this list respected, recommended, and supported. Wholeheartedly.

This will be a running list and as it grows it’ll more than likely get split by category.

Crystal Lake Publishing

“With unmatched success since 2012, Crystal Lake Publishing has quickly become one of the world’s leading indie publishers of Mystery, Thriller, and Suspense books with a Dark Fiction edge. Crystal Lake Publishing puts integrity, honor, and respect at the forefront of our operations. We strive for each book and outreach program that’s launched to not only entertain and touch or comment on issues that affect our readers, but also to strengthen and support the Dark Fiction field and its authors.

Not only do we publish authors who are destined to be legends in the field (and as hardworking as we are), but we also look for men and women who care about their readers and fellow human beings. We only publish the very best Dark Fiction and look forward to launching many new careers. We strive to know each and every one of our readers, while building personal relationships with our authors, reviewers, bloggers, pod-casters, bookstores and libraries.

Crystal Lake Publishing is and will always be a beacon of what passion and dedication, combined with overwhelming teamwork and respect, can accomplish: unique fiction you can’t find anywhere else. We do not just publish books, we present you worlds within your world, doors within your mind, from talented authors who sacrifice so much for a moment of your time.

This is what we believe in. What we stand for. This will be our legacy. Welcome to Crystal Lake Publishing.

Sinister Grin Press

“An idea formed in the dark recesses of the minds of Travis Tarpley and Shane McKenzie, in that place where only mushrooms grow. A publishing company that puts out books that freak, horrify, terrify, petrify, appall, shock , startle, stun, dismay and in general scare the pants off of people; mostly themselves. Then a strange thing happened, people bought the books. Then a stranger thing happened, Shane wrote books of his own and people bought them too. So Shane left on his own dark quest to pursue his own mushroom growing ideas. So now based somewhere near Austin, Texas; in a small room with a barking dog  and  run by Travis Tarpley, Tristan Thorne and Matt Worthington,comes the risen oddity that you now see. We want to give the horror fan something they will be proud to spend their hard-earned money on. And we still want our books to be the razor blades that bury into the flesh of your face and slice open a smile. We want to give the true horror fan exactly what they’ve been looking for. So look no further, you sick bastards. We’re here………or at least that’s how we remember it.”

Perpetual Motion Machine

“Perpetual Motion Machine is a small press based in San Antonio, TX. It was founded in 2012 by Max Booth III and Lori Michelle. PMMP publishes dark fiction that branches out into many genres, such as horror, science fiction, and crime.

But why such a long name? Why Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing?

Long answer: we love what we do and we never want to stop. We love underdogs, and what’s a bigger underdog than the perpetual motion machine? It is defined as “a machine that can continue to do work indefinitely without drawing energy from some external source; impossible under the law of conservation of energy”. Impossible, according to all the odds. But at the PMMP office, we like to say screw the odds. Our goal is to continue producing kickass fiction until the sun comes crashing down upon us all.”

YoYo WorkShop

“Yo-yo’s shouldn’t be boring or conventional – they should be unique and fun. A story is behind each product we make, and with each YoYo WorkShop product we produce….we ensure they are: ‘Engineered for FUN'”

One Drop Design

“We design and build the world’s finest yo-yos in our workshop in Eugene, Oregon, USA.

That’s right. In a world full of outsourcing, we are 100% committed our maker roots. It is no doubt the more challenging way to go and for sure a path less traveled. We have made nothing but yo-yos for the last 12 years and proudly released over 45 models. We are intimately connected with every step of building yo-yos and are ever refining our knowledge, skills and processes. Our workshop is specifically designed and tooled for the single purpose of making yo-yos. Every single yo-yo is hand assembled and hand tested. We combine a deep technical know-how with a Team of professional players who provide insight and guidance on the more subtle subjective side of how a yo-yo feels in play.

We are craftsmen and yo-yoers who put our heart and soul into what we do. We appreciate being part of this amazing community and are thankful every day for the support.”


“CLYW is a premium return top company based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Started by retired mechanical engineer Chris Mikulin in 2004, CLYW combines art, craft, and technology to create some of the best performing return tops in the world. Our award-winning team of return top players win contests from Canada to Japan, and are considered some of the best in the world.

CLYW is managed by owner Chris Mikulin and Marketing Manager Steve Brown. Together they work daily on creating playable art for discerning return top players, and contributing to the future of the return top industry worldwide.”