Thursday, January 28, 2010

In Memorium - J.D. Salinger

J.D. Salinger passed away today, at age 91.

Damn. The world of words just got a little less brilliant.

Catcher in the Rye was one of the first novels that I read that showed me the true power of storytelling.

It was also in studying the book (I too read this for high-school English) and having to write essays upon it that I came to consider writing for others in any serious way.

Holden's story stands up as one of my favorites, up there with A Clockwork Orange, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, and Catch 22, each of which have had a profound influence on me.

Here is a link to his obituary on

Rest in peace Mr. Salinger.


Monday, January 25, 2010

At the Normal Café - Part 3 - Abnormal Psychology

Quick post to say that part 3 of "At the Normal Café" is up at Thrillers, Killers & Chillers today. It's called Abnormal Psychology.

Thanks for reading.


Friday, January 22, 2010

The Choir of Pulcinello - Up on "The New Flesh" Today

Got a piece up on The New Flesh today, my first at that particular site. Some may have read it in the past at MicroHorror, but I thought it could do with another turn around the catwalk.

This piece started as a 12 page epic poem before being distilled down to the form it's in today. This came as a result of being told that, as an epic poet, I'm a hell of a flash fiction writer.

In other news, I think I'll have Part 3 of "At the Normal Café" ready for next week. Been fighting with this current segment, but it seems to have gotten over the hump.

Thanks for reading,


Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Clarity of Night Contest Winners Announced

For everyone that was following the Clarity of Night "Silhouette" contest, they've announced the winners.
Announcement is here.

Big congratulations to the winners:

1st Place--Payne, Michael H., A Better Day Tomorrow
2nd Place--Hendricks, Kurt, Get Ready For The Weirdness
3rd Place--Thakkar, Aniket, The Good-stuff
4th Place--Courtland, Linda, The Inevitable Loss of Burnt Sienna
5th Place--Haller, Alisa Rynay, The Choices We Make

They were all wonderful stories, and well worth a look if you haven't read them.

Congrats also go to Lee Hughes, for winning a Reader's Choice award (AND Honorable Mention to boot) with The Mending of the Broken; and also to a new Thrillers, Killers n' Chillers pal (as well as being an away-from-the-computer friend here in Toronto) Stephen Hill for Unspoken.

And to everyone else who entered and shared such amazing stories with over 18,000 unique readers. Well done!

My own entry, Not a Dove made "The Forties Club" (The contest entries were scored out of 45.) I'm content with that result, as I was quite happy with how the story came out.

Thanks again to Jason Evans for running a fantastic contest, that for two weeks this January, set the E-Writing community on fire!

Thanks for reading.


Thursday, January 14, 2010


Working on a bunch of things right now:

1) Hacking up the first draft of Troll (at least the first 30 pages I'm sending off for review)

2) Typing up a story from longhand that I've been putting together to sub for the "Baconology" Antho - details here . (That's going to require a sharp machete when I'm done .. it's heavy with the unnecessary.)

3) Working up Part 3 of "At the Normal Café". I have another chapter ready to go, but after reworking part 2, I've got to change up the order of the other parts now.

4) Reader's choice voting is ON at the "Clarity of Night" contest. I'm entry #12 ... BIG THANKS to everyone who checked out my entry and left such amazing commentary.

5) Thanks to Lee Hughes for passing on another new contest. Write a horror story. Use only 13 lines of dialogue. No narration (not even 'he said'). I threw one out there just for fun. Details here.
[Update - holy crap - if you make your villain a religious nutcase - be ready to defend it!]

6) Finally, I'm "smithing" a short that just came back marked "Rej." Decided to use the stuff I'm working on in the course to rework it. (Picture Silent Hill with robots.)

That's about it (which is more than enough!)

Thanks for reading,


Friday, January 8, 2010

At the Normal Café - Part 2 - Victims

Quick update - At the Normal Café - Part 2 is up at Thrillers, Killers & Chillers today. It's called "Victims." Check it out here.

Not much else going on. Re-subbed a bunch of shorties to some different sites, and I'm narrowing down my "big" project for the course; right now it's looking like "Troll" will be the winner.

** Update ** - a quick and nasty little piece of mine, "A Bad Dream", just popped up over at Micro Horror. ** (Note - this one's a little gristly, so don't click if you don't want gore.)

Thanks for reading!


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

New Short-Fiction Contest

Hey all.

Over at "The Clarity of Night", a blog by photographer/writer Jason Evans, they're running a flash-fiction contest. 250 words max (!!!), based on the photo shown. There are prizes! There is also a "reader's choice" award up for grabs, which is very cool.

My entry, "Not a Dove" is up now. Check it out. Enter! Spread the word!

Thanks for reading,


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Happy New Year!

Thanks to everyone who came to check out my little diatribes here in 2009. I'll be spewing more of the same as we come into 2010.

Some big thank-you's in order for 2009:

Nathan at MicroHorror, Lori and Bob at Flashes in the Dark, Matt and Col at Thrillers, Killers n' Chillers, and the fine folks at Six Sentences, Everyday Fiction, Static Movement, and the Oddville Press

Thank you all for taking a chance on my stories. It's been a great year, and a steep learning curve, but all these great sites and pubs have been fantastic.

2010 I hope will bring to fruition my first novel - either "the horror" (Big Top) or "the drama" (Troll). I'll also be seeing some of my work in print as Elements of Horror and The Moron's Guide to the Zombocalypse hit stores, so there's that to look forward to!

I'm encouraged by the early responses to "At the Normal Cafe" over at TKnC, so I'll have more installments on the way for that shortly.

Also, "back to school" has arrived. I'll be working within a college course for the next 6 months to hone one of the aforementioned "big" projects, so my "flashing " may actually take a bit of a hit, but I'm already seeing things in my work that can be improved so it's an exciting time.

Finally, and I hope it isn't lame, but there's a reason I finish all these posts the same way ...

Thanks for reading.