The Deadline Story

A BRIEF, YET STILL BORING, DEADLINE PRESS HISTORY by Peter Enfantino

Deadline Press was the brain(?)child of Cliff Brooks, Peter Enfantino and Joe Lopez back in 1988. The Scream Factory grew out of a Bay Area horror club that the three belonged to called House Carfax. A group of a dozen people would meet every other Friday and discuss horror film and fiction. A digest-sized magazine called (appropriately enough) HOUSE CARFAX was published in early 1988. Equal parts fiction and non-fiction, the zine was limited to a print run of approx 200 and distributed mainly through Bob Weinberg. Two women in the group decided that they were not only the editors of HC, but also Jesus Christ and Stephen King combined. Their idea of the perfect HC was all fiction by (you guessed it) two women. [DarkEcho comments: I see nothing wrong with the idea.]

This didn't sit well with Peter, Joe and Cliff and they left the group to start their own magazine, THE SCREAM FACTORY. The first few issues were made up almost entirely of material by the three, but outside writers eventually drifted into the fold. Important things would happen that would jazz us: we were invited on to the set of HBO's upcoming TALES FROM THE CRYPT show; we got a rave fan letter from William Schoell telling us he'd like to be a part of TSF -- hey, this guy had a whole shitload of novels published and he wants to write for us??!! Two of the writing world's foremost gentlemen, Robert McCammon and Joe Lansdale, agreed to be interviewed and then treated us with respect. Things was happenin!

John joined the crew in 1989, with Bob Morrish following in 1990. For a short time, there were, god help us, FIVE editors of TSF. But Joe and Cliff decided to leave and that whittled it down to the present three. We've published 18 issues of TSF (and a NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD special), 4 hardcovers, and two chapbooks in the last 8 years. The 19th issue will be our last. It'll be a "Horror in the Comics" special and it's been in the works for over two years (just ask Lawrence Watt-Evans, a prime contributor).

We've published a lot of material over those 19 issues that we're very proud of (Ed Bryant of Locus commented in a review that our NOTLD special ought to be bound in hardcovers as it was THE definitive statement on the film), but we think that the best is ahead of us. In early 1997, John and Peter will release the first issue of BARE BONES, a slimmed down version of TSF.

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