Who is this guy?
After working in the film/video industry for well over a decade, Matt Kurtz wrote, directed, and edited the 16mm feature film Falling Hard, a drama about a twenty-something guy in a loving relationship who suddenly questions his life after unexpectedly falling for his best friend’s new girlfriend. The film, praised by The Fort Worth Film Festival as “...an engaging romantic drama…” and “…an impressive first feature…”, received both DVD and VOD distribution through Vanguard Cinema in 2005. In addition to Falling Hard, he’s written numerous (unproduced) feature-length screenplays in the comedy, drama, and horror genres.
Years later, after being fed up with all the bullshit that came with filmmaking, he said, “The hell with movies! I wanna write a book!”
“Start small, hone your craft, and then jump into something larger” was a philosophy he’s always followed since his filmmaking days and later applied it to prose. He wrote nearly one hundred short stories, all in the horror genre (something he’s loved since childhood). Over half of those tales found a home in various anthologies from publishers such as Blood Bound Books, Comet Press, Apokrupha, Necrotic Tissue Magazine, and Strangehouse Books… as well as a bunch of publishers that probably shouldn’t have been publishing in the first place.
When it came time to write a novel, he sat his ass in a chair and put fingers to keyboard, then took a deep breath and… got intimidated and returned to writing even more short stories.
When he was ready to take the plunge a second time, he cranked out two novels. The first, A Warm Place to Hide, sits on a shelf (to be edited soon) but the second, Kinfolk, was published by Grindhouse Press in 2018. The novel, about two criminal brothers locked in a high-octane battle with a clan of bloodthirsty cannibals, was praised by numerous book bloggers, reviewers, and websites including GingerNuts Of Horror which said, "From the very first moment until the last blood-soaked scene you will be left breathless."
Matt also has the short story collections Monkey’s Box of Horrors - Tales of Terror: Vol. 1 and Monkey’s Bucket of Horrors - Tales of Terror: Vol. 2. A third volume (with the even ridiculously longer title of Monkey’s Butcher Block of Horrors - Tales of Terror: Volume 3) was published early 2020.
His forthcoming novel, The Rotting Within, an occult/creature-feature, will be published by Grindhouse Press in December 2020.
Most recently, his work was translated into Russian for Darker Magazine, Russia's Biggest Horror Webzine since 2011.
Feel free to reach out to him on Twitter at @MattKurtzWrites or visit MattKurtzWrites.com
THE ROTTING WITHIN
"Let me be crystal clear, I do not scare easily. It's one of those stories where you forget to breathe. The Rotting Within is perfectly paced and packed with unease, dread, raw tension, and a shock-tastic ending!" — Janelle Janson
* * *
"This is a perfect novel for all horror fans. Please do not make the mistake thinking that this will be a light read. It is heartbreaking, disturbing, and scary as hell."
— TheWeevilDead, ScareTissue.com
"...TENSE from the first page until the very last. This book had everything I could've asked for. Pulse pounding, nail biting, and SCARY."
— Ashley, @spookishmommy
"The creepiness factor is off the charts... Definitely one of the top novels of 2021."
—Mike Rankin, Horror Bookworm Reviews
"With a masterful use of tension building... and a startling ending that will leave your jaw on the floor, THE ROTTING WITHIN did not disappoint."
— Nina, The Wandering Reader
“...a fast-paced, cinematic novella full of terrifying creatures and wicked witches!"
— Sam & Waylon, The Horror Stacks Podcast
“Tense, scary and unpredictable, with a killer ending... Highly recommended."
— Richard Martin, IndieMuse
"...a fantastic book filled with action, suspense, terror and everything a horror book should entail. ...I found myself holding my breath for the last few pages. This book truly went out with a bang!"
"...an eerily entertaining read that oozes dread until the climax - then the vein opens!"
— Justin Lewis, Journey Into Horror
“If I were to distill down Matt Kurtz’s Kinfolk into a single word, something to give you an idea of how you will feel as you blast through this story, it’d have to be tension. From the very first moment until the last blood-soaked scene you will be left breathless.”
“...an entertaining and fast-moving white-knuckle ride…”
“...not for the faint of heart... From the jump, it’s nonstop mayhem and savagery.” - Cedar Hollow Horror Reviews
" A fast-moving tale of survival...exciting and addictive" - Red Lace Reviews
"Imagine if you took Wrong Turn, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and parts of From Dusk Till Dawn, threw them into a bloody blender and mixed the bones of each story. That is what Kinfolk is to me. And it was one hell of a ride." - Dead Head Reviews
"Intense, brutal, and bloody, Kinfolk delivers everything a reader might expect from a south Texas, backwoods cannibal tale…and then some." - Sci-Fi & Scary
"...high octane horror... ...one killer story you won't want to put down..." - Biblioculus
“...definitely on my list of favorite reads this year... If you're looking for a page-turner, this is the book for you." - Becca Leighanne, writer/blogger
"...if you’re after a gruesome blast of backwoods bedlam, you’ll probably have a fun time with these here Kinfolk…” - Kendall Reviews
"There are some occasional flashes of extreme horror brilliance here..." - Horror Drive-In
"... an all-out gory smackdown fight to the finish... If you’re looking for quiet, elevated, or literary horror, this is not the book for you." - The Horror Fiction Review
"...a high-octane thrill ride that is violent, shocking, and grim without losing its playful nature…" - Cameron Chaney, creator of Library Macabre
MONKEY'S... TALES OF TERROR
“A gut twisting collection of horrors guaranteed to rattle your cage. Matt Kurtz’s Monkey’s Box of Horrors is an amazing debut by a writer with a keen eye for carnage. Take my advice. Devour the stories in this book...
– Joe McKinney, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of The Dead Won’t Die and Dead City
“Monkey’s Bucket of Horrors is every bit as gloriously bonkers as its title. Every story in this collection is insane, and I think Matt Kurtz may be, too. But that’s cool, because it’s GOOD insanity.”
– Jeff Strand, author of Pressure and Wolf Hunt
"...an engaging, thrilling, imaginative collection. A must-read for that special reader that needs to be terrified."
"There's revenge, amputation, sacrifice, and a very unusual/uncomfortable breeding process... The stories in this box of horrors played out in my head in similar cinematic fashion as Trilogy of Terror or Creepshow, with short but sweet tales of horror that take up residence in your psyche."
"(Matt Kurtz has) got a talent for keeping you reading and his stories are anything but subtle. Monkey's Box of Horrors is chock-full of graphic frights... there's something in it for any horror aficionado."
"In the vast bloody ocean of horror writers, few voices emerge with such a big, noticeable, in-your-face splash as Matt Kurtz. In a genre laden with clichés, Kurtz somehow pulls forth innovative ideas from the most demented regions of his disturbed brain that will keep you turning the pages."
- Anthony Masi, Producer of Halloween: 25 Years of Terror and Still Screaming:The Ultimate Scary Movie Retrospective
“…a great throwback to the heyday of horror short stories, conjuring up fond memories of curling up with Stephen King's Night Shift and Clive Barker's Books of Blood.”
– Kristopher Triana, author of Gone to See the River Man
Video Blogs and Podcasts discussing my stuff.
THE HORROR STACKS
A Horror Book Podcast
Hosted by Samantha Kolesnik & Waylon Jordan.
Join us in the stacks as Sam and Waylon dig into The Rotting Within by Matt Kurtz. We also talk more about the relationship between writers and directors in indie filmmaking, content warnings, and more of the books we're excited about in the new year! (40 min.)
Vital Social Issues 'N Stuff with Kris and John Wayne
Episode 20 - We Take a Bite Out of Crime
KINFOLK was chosen "Book of the Week" by Kristopher Triana. Kris begins discussing it at 27:45, but check out the entire episode because these guys are freakin' hilarious!
(check out all their episodes at KrisAndJohnWayne.com)
IN THE WORKS:
A WARM PLACE TO HIDE - a horror novel currently being edited.
SHOCK WAVES (working title) - completed novella currently being edited. If I had to pitch this sucker: "The Mist at an amusement park". It's big, dumb, monster fun.
INVASION (working title) - novella-length, work-in-progress. Sci-Fi Horror in a small town.