2017 Press and Radio


At Green Apple on the Park

My chief lesson in 2017, when it came to work, was what exactly a big publishing house could do for me.  199 Cemeteries is my 11th book. I’ve worked with independent presses big and small, as well as running my own publishing house.  I’d even published with Scribner, so I thought I’d worked with a big professional house, but I think the size of the advance in that case worked against me.  In the months before Morbid Curiosity Cures the Blues was published, I worked with four different publicists at Scribner — and they didn’t get me any press at all.

This time around, Black Dog let me work closely with the Head of Marketing as well as with an A-#1 in-house publicist, Marisol Salaman.   I was amazed and deeply honored by all the media attention she was able to draw to my book.

Radio Interviews:


Waiting to begin taping Under the Radar

Cemetery Travel: World’s Best Destinations (background for Blueprints for Living interview on ABC radio in Australia)

Tombstone Tourism on Blueprints for Living on ABC radio in Australia – includes link to listen to the podcast.

Gary Shapiro’s From the Bookshelf aired on KSCO in Santa Cruz, California on September 25. My bit starts 23 minutes in. https://player.fm/series/gary-shapiros-from-the-bookshelf/guests-james-gleick-and-loren-rhodes

Agony Column (long version of Rick Kleffel’s show), broadcast on October 6 on KBCZ 90.1 FM, Santa Cruz Community Radio: http://www.bookotron.com/agony/audio/2017/2017-interviews/loren_rhoads-2017.mp3

Screen Shot 2017-12-21 at 12.35.09 PMThe Agony Column (short version): http://www.bookotron.com/agony/audio/2017/2017-time_to_read/time_to_read_ep274_loren_rhoads.mp3

Finch Files Halloween episode, with Bay Area legend Peter Finch:

The Jim Bohannon Show aired several times on and around October 26 on more than 500 radio stations around the US. Here’s my bit as an audio file.

Callie Crosby interviewed me for WGBH’s program, Under the Radar: https://news.wgbh.org/2017/11/10/author-graveyard-aficionado-asks-whats-your-favorite-cemetery

My favorite interview ever might be Horror Addicts #150: Cure for the Holidaze. Emerian asked what I did to chill out and survive the holidays. One guess what my answer was. https://horroraddicts.wordpress.com/2017/11/18/horroraddicts-net-150-cure-for-the-holidaze-special/

At some point during October, I was on the Entertainment Weekly Radio show on Sirius XM. I missed hearing it, so I don’t have the airdate.

I appeared (briefly!) on the Sean Moncrief Show on Newstalk.com, a national radio broadcast in Ireland on November 6, 2017.

My last radio interview for the year was live on the Michael J. Thorp Show on December 20th. It is part of the SuperTalk 1570 Cumulus channel and broadcast in Flint, Michigan on WWCK AM.

Print/Online Interviews:

The only interview I did about my Alondra stories appeared as a Four Questions interview on the Merry Ghost Hunter blog: https://merryghosthunter.wordpress.com/2017/09/17/4-question-interview-loren-rhoads/

A Narrative Species article by Rich Kleffel accompanied his Agony Column shows:
“Loren Rhoads suggests 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die: Life, Death, and Everything in Between.”

Time magazine interviewed me for their 10/3/17 issue:
“What Gets Remembered: How Visiting a Cemetery Can Teach you About History”

San Francisco magazine interviewed me about Bay Area cemeteries that everyone should visit:
“Just in Time for Halloween, Bay Area Cemeteries to See Before You Die”

I’ve been a subscriber to Real Simple for more than a decade, so it was a thrill to be interviewed for “10 Hauntingly Beautiful Cemeteries to Visit Before Halloween”

The San Diego Union Tribune interviewed me in advance of my reading at Mysterious Galaxy and drew in a big crowd: “Cemetery-book author takes readers to 199 of her favorites”

The book writer for the LA Times came to my reading at Stories, then interviewed me and some of the audience members.  Her story appeared as “Hurry to see a cemetery while you can still appreciate it, says author Loren Rhoads”

“A Guide to the World’s Most Intriguing Cemeteries” was Allison C. Meier’s summary of the interview I did for Hyperallergic.

USA Today columnist Larry Bleiberg asked me for “10 Great Cemeteries to Visit Before You Die”

The National Trust for Historic Preservation asked me for “The Best Historic Cemeteries to Visit Around the World”

“Two of the 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die are in Utah appeared in the Salt Lake Tribune

“A Kind of Serendipity: 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die” is a more traditional interview, published by the Funeral Zone blog in the UK and Australia.

Death & the Maiden also interview me about 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die:


IMG_8774“Dark Tourism: Why Would You Want to Spend Your Holiday Visiting a Cemetery?” This news story was based on the interview for the Blueprints for Living show on ABC radio in Australia.

“In Search of Cemeteries Alive with Beauty, Art, and History” on the Atlas Obscura site.

The New York Times featured the book in their Open Book column in the Books section:
“A Guide to Graveside Tourism”

Did You Know focused on “7 Amazing Cemeteries to Visit Before You Inhabit One (if You’re into That Sort of Thing)”

Mind-Blowing Facts echoed that with “10 Unique Cemeteries to Visit Before You Inhabit One”

The San Francisco Chronicle also featured the book in their Sunday Lit section:
Travel Books: “199 Cemeteries” A Lively Chronicle of Culture

Mental Floss highlighted “12 of the Most Beautiful Cemeteries Around the World”

Lenore Gwynn was my editor at Gothic Beauty and provided a lovely blurb for the book. She wrote about it for her blog: http://lenore.online/199-cemeteries-see-die

Mental Floss was inspired to write “These Connected Graves in the Netherlands Prove Love Conquers All” after reading my book.

The London Dead review:

Vice had a different angle in “Being Dead Sucks Even More than You Thought.”

Popsugar focused on “11 Cemeteries That Are Hauntingly Beautiful”

Travel Gumbo announced my book and linked to my blog: http://www.travelgumbo.com/topic/199-cemeteries-to-see-before-you-die-by-loren-rhoads

The Wall Street Journal wrote a lovely piece about my book in “Books for Impassioned Travelers.”

The perfect review of Wish You Were Here and 199 Cemeteries appeared on Luna Luna as “Two Books to Delight the Tombstone Tourist in You.”

Funeral Zone featured “10 Cemeteries to See Before you Die.”

“Cemeteries You Must See Before You Die: Scotland to Japan, the world’s most haunted and beautiful burial sites revealed” appeared in The Daily Mail about the UK edition of the book.

J’aime Rubio was kind enough to add my name to the page called “My Favorite Authors!” on her website: https://www.jaimerubiowriter.com/my-favorite-authors/

Miscellaneous Good Things:

EW Screenshot 199199 Cemeteries hit #1 in Amazon’s Literary and Religious Travel Guides on September 22, 2017.

It made the Order of the Good Death Booklist:  http://www.orderofthegooddeath.com/resources/books#5

And Cult of Weird’s Morbid Must-Reads for Fall:

I was a guest on the Writers Chatroom:

It made the list of Best New Books list in Entertainment Weekly.

It reached #5 on the Borderlands Books Best Sellers in Hardcover in October.

Cult of Weird featured 199 Cemeteries on their Weird Book Wednesday on Tumblr and got a huge response.

And I got invited to join the TBD Writers Group, with Angel McCoy, Lisa Morton, Jennifer Brozek, and Allison McKenzie. They are inspiring me to write some new stories!

Books Lists & Gift Guides:

199 Cemeteries made Borderlands Books’ Opinionated Holiday Gift Guide.

The Cult of Weird Holiday Gift Guide:

The Macabre Holiday Gift Guide 2017:

The list of Macabre Non-Fiction Books for Darklings:

The Weekly Gift Ideas from the Staff of Atlas Obscura:

And “14 Holiday Gift Book Ideas to Help You Finish off Your Christmas Shopping” at the Deseret News in Utah:

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Live in 2017


Reading ghost stories at the Literary Speakeasy.

Never Enough doesn’t really describe this year’s live events, because I’m pleased with how many times I got to speak or read in public. I’m not sure I could have managed anything more.


Broad Universe Rapid Fire Reading
Friday, March 10, 2017 at 4:30 pm
Members of Broad Universe — Rebecca Gomez Farrell, Valerie Estelle Frankel, Sarah Grey, LS Johnson, and I — read a spectrum of work.  I read the prison attack from No More Heroes.

Rebound Bookstore
Something Weird Just Landed!
Wednesday, March 29, 2017 at 7:00 pm
S. G. Browne and I led off an Open Mic at San Rafael’s Rebound Bookstore. I read from No More Heroes, the third of the Templars novels.

Friday, April 28 at 1 pm
I read with Sumiko Saulson on the fabled Queen Mary. I read a bloody bit from Kill By Numbers, the second Templar novels.

Friday, May 26 at 2:30 pm
I was in the mood to read something more from No More Heroes.


Octopus Literary Salon
Wings Unbound release party
Saturday, August 26, 2017 at 4 pm
Rebecca Gomez Farrell invited me and Daniel Potter to help celebrate the release of her novel Wings Unbound. I read from No More Heroes again.

Green Apple on the Park
Tuesday, October 3 at 7:30 pm
This was the debut of 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die. It was also my first opportunity to read at the lovely Green Apple sister store.

Borderlands Cafe
Saturday, October 7 at 3 pm
My homecoming at Borderlands was amazing. My friends turned out in force to help me celebrate 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die.

Lit Crawl
Hippos, Heroines, and Spaceships
Borderlands Bookstore
Saturday, October 14 at 6:30
I read as part of Phase 2 of the Lit Crawl with Sarah Gailey (River of Teeth), Sarah Kuhn (Heroine Complex), and Carter Scholz (a huge number of short stories). I read a not-yet- published story called “The Assassin’s Mirror,” which combines space opera and cemeteries.

Stories Bookstore and Cafe
October 17 at 8 pm
I returned to Stories in LA’s Echo Park for the first time since the release of Morbid Curiosity Cures the Blues. I read a little of 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die and talked about the cemeteries I’ve visited.  It was great to see Megan Rosenbloom, director of the Death Salon, and meet Karie Bible, a tour guide at Hollywood Forever. Also in the audience was Agatha French, who interviewed us for the LA Times.

22555451_10155130195017874_1602668833465728067_oMysterious Galaxy
October 20 at 7:30 pm
This was my first visit to the legendary Mysterious Galaxy bookstore in San Diego. Thanks to a feature in the San Diego Union Tribune, I had a great crowd as I raved about 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die.

Screen Shot 2017-12-18 at 2.22.13 PMSFinSF
Women in Horror
Sunday, October 29th at 6:30 pm
I joined Erika Mailman (Murderer’s Maid, a novel about Lizzie Borden) and Dana Fredsti (Spawn of Lilith and the Plague World trilogy) in a reading and interview moderated by Bay Area author, editor, and raconteur Terry Bisson at the American Bookbinders Museum.

Literary Speakeasy – the Martini Bar of Horrors 
Monday, October 30, 2017 at 7 pm
Martuni’s, San Francisco, California
Emceed by James Siegel, with Carson Beker, Meg Elison, Richard Kadrey, and Sumiko Saulson, I read some ghost stories from 199 Cemeteries To See Before You Die.

2017 Miscellaneous Live Events:

16473469_10154452223462874_8460477696744072594_nBorderlands Cafe
Sunday, February 5 at 3 pm
Borderlands celebrated Women in Horror Month by hosting a panel discussion between me, Horror Writers Association president Lisa Morton, and Bram Stoker Award-winner Rena Mason.

Saturday, April 29 at 11 am
I debuted a brand-new lecture called “Whistling Past the Graveyard” on the Queen Mary. I talked about ghosts, graveyards, and things that go bump in the night. The room was packed and people asked great questions.

Bay Area Book Festival
Saturday, June 3, from 10 – 6
It’s become an annual tradition for me to spend a day hanging out with the San Francisco Bay Area chapter of the Horror Writers Association at the Book Festival in Berkeley. I sold a ton of books this year.


At Barnes & Noble in Flint, Michigan

Barnes & Noble
Saturday, July 29 from 1 pm to 4
The Barnes & Noble at Genessee Valley Mall in Flint, Michigan let me sign the updated edition of Wish You Were Here.

Death Salon
Saturday, September 9, 2017
I was honored to facilitate a lunchtime discussion at the Seattle Death Salon. We talked about cemeteries, of course.

Ipso Facto
October 18 at 5:30 pm
It was great to sign 199 Cemeteries at the legendary Goth shop Ipso Facto. I’ve known Terri, the owner, since way back in the Morbid Curiosity magazine days, when she was a frequent advertiser, but I’d never gotten the chance to visit her before.

Dark Delicacies
October 21 at 4 pm
The first professional book signing I ever did — for the Sins of the Sirens anthology — was at Dark Delicacies in Burbank, California. It was wonderful to be invited back to sign 199 Cemeteries.

Screen Shot 2017-12-20 at 8.03.06 PM

At the SF Elks Lodge, talking about cemeteries to a Taco. Photo by Jill Tracy.

San Francisco Elks Lodge #3
Sunday, October 29th, 12:30 pm
Now I am a party clown. I was invited to the Elks Halloween party to show some slides and get kids interested in cemeteries.

Borderlands Cafe
In November, I once again hosted Nanowrimo Write-ins at the Borderlands Cafe.  It’s inspirational to join so many writers banging out their books.  Although the first night was packed, I was all alone the night before Thanksgiving. Still, I look forward to doing it again next year.

Convention Panels:

I was on two panels at this year’s FogCon:

Social Media for Writers and Authors
Friday, March 10 at 3 pm
I moderated a well-attended panel about the variety of social media available to help writers connect with readers.  Joining me were Rebecca Gomez Farrell, Valerie Frankel, Phyllis Holliday, and Heather Rose Jones.

Pitches, Presentations and Proposals: making your point without resorting to kidnapping your boss
Saturday, March 11 at 4:30 pm
I participated in a panel moderated by Karen Brenchley, with Marie Metivier-DeMasters and Alfred Nash. We each brought different skills to the topic, from pitching panel topics to selling books, articles, and columns. The highlight was when we threw open the second half of the panel and let the audience pitch their books to us. Not only was it fascinating, it felt like we were being extremely useful.

At BayCon I pitched three panels and ended up moderating them all. I even got to participate in other people’s writing-oriented panels.

Girls Will Be Girls
Saturday, May 27 at 4 pm
Why are so many YA dystopias centered on young women? What about this particular genre is so appealing to (or inclusive of) young women and what does it say about our society? I moderated, with Teresea Edgerton, Margaret McGaffey Fisk, Linden Tarr, and Carrie Sessarego participating as panelists.

Women Of Horror
Sunday, May 28 at 11:30 am
Emerian Rich of HorrorAddicts.net led a discussion between me and Pat MacEwen about the stereotypes, expectations, and discrimination involved with writing in this mostly man-dominated genre.

Dystopian Space Opera from Ancillary Justice to Rogue One
Sunday, May 28 at 1 pm
I moderated again, with Juliette Wade, Douglas Berry, Andrew Clark, and Chuck Serface as panelists. What is it about galactic empires that turns the future into a dystopia? We’ll discussed fiction, television, and film and tried to figure out what form of galactic government would make everyone happy.

Harry Potter and Dystopian Fantasy
Sunday, May 28 at 4 pm
The final panel I moderated, with Jean Batt, Colin Fisk, and Linden Tarr participating, looked at dystopia in fantasy. What’s a main character to do when the government (whether the Ministry of Magic or the Empire of Melnibone, the Head of the White Council or rightful King of Westeros) will use magic and lies to keep the populace in line?

The Dreaded Outline
Monday, May 29 at 10 am
Technique discussion about outlining and other pre-work that helps keep writers motivated to the finish line. Tip-focused rather than memoir, it really highlighted all the different ways writers do the advance work (or in my case, outline once I get stuck in the middle). Moderated by Margaret McGaffey Fisk, with me, Jay Hartlove, Maya Kathryn Bohnhoff, and J. L. Doty.

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Never Enough, 2017 edition

Every year I recap the writing triumphs and disappointments of the previous twelve months. Every year I feel like I’ve never done enough. This year, even with all that’s happened, I still feel like I wasted too much time. If only I’d hustled a little more…

Book publications:

199Cemeteries_1AMy major accomplishment of the year was the publication of 199 Cemeteries to See Before You Die. I signed the contract last December and turned in the first draft in March. It came out on October 3 and is already going back for a second printing. It’s the first book I’ve written to gain the notice of Time, the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal. I’m looking forward to doing more speaking engagements about it next year, including lecturing at Cypress Lawn in September.

WYWHere - Cover

Wish You Were Here: Adventures in Cemetery Travel, the second edition of my collection of cemetery travel essays, came out in paperback in August. I was able to update the essays and add an index. My book designer did a great job with the new cover, using one of my favorite photos from my first trip to Highgate Cemetery.  Doing the work to update it made me start to think about assembling a second book of essays.

Short fiction publications:

unnamedAn Alondra story called “The Drowning City,” which appeared in Nevermore! Tales of Murder, Mystery, and the Macabre, appeared in Best New Horror #27, edited by Stephen Jones. It was my first time sharing a table of contents with Neil Gaiman and Gemma Files. It was also the first time I had a story in a Best Of collection, the first time I got to autograph a signature sheet, and the first time a story of mine appeared in hardcover.

Strange California cover“Guardian of the Golden Gate,” an Alondra story about magic in San Francisco and the hunger that lives beneath the Golden Gate Bridge, appeared in the Strange California anthology. The book includes stories by Seanan McGuire, Tim Pratt, Laura Anne Gilman, and so many more.


Short fiction sales:

“Something in the Water,” an Alondra story about San Francisco’s Academy of Sciences, sold to Occult Detective Quarterly for an upcoming issue. I don’t have the details yet.

I’ve also placed “Elle a Vu un Loup,” an Alondra story set in Michigan, but the contract isn’t signed yet. I’m really excited about the venue, though.

Nonfiction publications:

I published two more cemetery essays on Gothic Beauty: about Two Rock Valley Cemetery in Northern California and Barcelona’s Poblenou Cemetery.

Cemetery Sights: Norton, Emperor of the United States, my first essay about cemetery treasures, went up on Legacy.com.

My second piece on Mental Floss, published in October, proposed 5 Cemetery Road Trips for the Ultimate Taphophile.

In September, I started a column called Grave Fascinations for the Horror Writers Association’s monthly newsletter.

Guest Post publications:

What a Piece of Work is Man, about visiting the Capuchin catacombs of Rome, was published on HorrorAddicts.net in January.

Reading Your Own Work was published on No Wasted Ink in May.

Did You Know There Are Travel Sites Dedicated to Visiting Cemeteries? appeared on The Author Spot (Stacey Turner’s blog) in October.

The Most Haunted Cemetery in the World, about Greyfriars Kirkyard, appeared on Horror Addicts in October.

Cemeteries and the Ghost of Marie Laveau appeared as part of the October Frights feature on A. F. Stewart’s blog.

The Ultimate Romantic Cemetery, about the cemetery at Stoke Poges, was published on Emmy Z. Madrial’s blog.

An outtake from 199 Cemeteries appeared as American Vampires on the Emz Box blog.


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Write with me tonight?

Nanowrimo2017How’s your Nanowrimo going? If you need to pound out some words — and you’re in San Francisco — come join me tonight at the Borderlands Cafe for a couple of hours of writing.

If you can’t be come to the Borderlands Cafe in person, please join us virtually.  Comment below or ping me on Facebook or Twitter and let me know you are writing.  I’ll be with you in spirit.

The Borderlands Cafe is at 870 Valencia Street in San Francisco’s Mission District.  It’s between 19th and 20th Street. I’ll be at the tables in the back from 6 to 8 pm.

And my Nanowrimo?  Well, I’ve gotten 23,000 words that I didn’t have before.  I don’t think there’s any way that I can “win” this year, considering I’d have to write more in the next week than I’ve managed in the last three, but it doesn’t matter.  I’m that much closer to the end of this book, which keeps growing as I get deeper into it.

I’ve been working on the Pioneer Cemeteries of the San Francisco Bay Area book again.  It’s a nonfiction guide to graveyards from Cloverdale in Sonoma County to Gilroy in Santa Clara. It visits the graves of Donner Party survivors, the first transman to vote in a presidential election (for Lincoln, of course), a mountain man who survived a grizzly bear gnawing on his skull, the only Emperor of the United States, and winemakers, highwaymen, suffragettes, murder victims, ranchers, priests, paupers, and more. It spans in history from the Ohlone, Miwok, Wappo, and Kashaya villages through the Spanish missions, the Mexican land grants, the Bear Flag Revolt, the Gold Rush, and on up to the dawn of the 20th century.

The book is 71,000 words so far (which includes this year’s Nanowrimo addition). I expect it will be closer to 90,000 by the time I’m done.

Come tell me about your book tonight — and let’s get some work done!

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Nanowrimo Write-in Tonight

NaNoWriMo_2016_WebBadge_cropFor the third year in a row, I’m hosting a series of National Novel Writing Month write-ins at Borderlands Cafe in San Francisco’s Mission District. This year they’ll take place on Wednesday nights from 6-8 pm (except for 11/15, when the cafe has something else going on).  It’s free to come and write, but the cafe would appreciate it if you’d buy a cup of coffee or something to help keep the lights on.

If you can’t be come to the Borderlands Cafe in person, please join us virtually.  Comment below or ping me on Facebook or Twitter and let me know you are writing.  I’ll be with you in spirit.

You do not have to be signed up for Nanowrimo to join the write-in, although I encourage you to do it if you’re up for a challenge.  It’s amazing to feel part of a community of people pounding out the words and shaping reality.

At times like these, when the surface of reality is shifting beneath our feet, it is more important than ever to write.  Tell YOUR story. Spill out your fear and frustration.  Or  make something up and create a place to escape. It doesn’t matter what you write, only that you do.

Every word that you write will heal you a little more.  If you’re lucky, you may also heal someone else.

The Borderlands Cafe is at 870 Valencia Street in San Francisco’s Mission District.  It’s between 19th and 20th Street. I’ll be at the tables in the back.

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