Beans and Lies just went up at Daily Science Fiction. It’s quite short, I promise. And it’s almost a fairy tale. Almost.
My short story Death and Death Again just went live up at Nightmare Magazine.
Since I’ve been yelled about not warning people about this sort of thing before, warning: this story is pure, unadulterated horror. Like horror movie style horror. Not one of my usual indulgences, but sometimes fear and terror just has to crawl out.
There’s also an interview here where I chat a bit about my inability to come up with character names. This has actually reached the point of being a pretty bad joke, but in this case, it happened not because I couldn’t figure out the right names (the usual problem) but because I was writing in a fit of pure irritation, and quite honestly reached the end before realizing that I’d done it again. Ah well.
Available for purchase today, the July issue of Nightmare Magazine, which includes my story “Death and Death Again.” You can pick it up here. It’s a little foray into pure, unadulterated horror.
And available for preorder today, Upgraded, an anthology of cyborg stories edited by Neil Clarke, containing my story, “Memories and Wire.” You can preorder it here. The book should be available later this month; I’m really looking forward to seeing the other stories in it.
That both these pieces are appearing in the same month is a fun coincidence, given their somewhat similar themes – especially since although I don’t think I’d classify “Memories and Wire” as pure horror, it’s definitely edging in that direction.
(The other little story coming out this month from Daily Science Fiction is something else entirely, but more on that later.)
After a week where I was seriously considering checking out of the whole writing business, figuring that the entire effort was futile (this happens a lot to writers, and especially me) some good news this morning:
“Twittering the Stars,” my science fiction story told entirely in Twitter format, a story that can be read backwards and forwards, is now available from Upper Rubber Boot Books as an ebook from the following locations:
Amazon (Also other worldwide Amazon storefronts.)
Canadian readers can also purchase the book through Chapters Indigo.
I’m very pleased about this. “Twittering the Stars” was one of my hands down best received, best reviewed stories. However, it was only available in an anthology, which limited the number of people who picked it up. I’m delighted that it’s now available as a separate short.
I’m also delighted to be part of, in however small a way, Upper Rubber Boot Press, which apart from doing this series, also publishes speculative poetry collections, something I always want to see more of.
My email brought me one other snippet of good news, about which more later, making me feel like a touch more of a writer today. Maybe I will get this current story finished after all.
Sometimes, stories go more or less the way you think they will.
And sometimes, you start a story, thinking that you are about to write a funny caper story very loosely based on a fairy tale, and for various reasons, you get this instead. To say that “Coffin” did not go where I expected it to go is putting things mildly.
My grandmother was born in Brooklyn, but her mother was from Ireland, and so, my grandmother learned about certain things to watch for – including combs or bits of combs left in the road or on the sidewalk, even cheap blue plastic ones. Bad things happened to people who touched them, she told me, and I believed her.
I spent years assuming this was just a way to keep me from putting colorful things I found on sidewalks into my mouth – wise advice for any item found on the street – only to find, years later, that this, like my grandmother’s stories of the evil puka that made bad things happen in the kitchen, was a little bit of oral culture passed down through Brooklyn. I never heard the banshee part of the story until much later – I don’t know if my grandmother ever knew it – but the connection between things found in the road – including silver combs - and banshees and evil things of the night is strong indeed.
Which more or less led to this poem, The Silver Comb, which just appeared in Mythic Delirium this month. I don’t think my grandmother would have liked the ending, but perhaps you will.