The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play)


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6 thoughts on “Interzone #265”

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In which case that is my fault as its narrator. The only one with eyes. Or is it an article with a pseudonym that I as narrator have written in the form of a story about such a phenomenon for The New Anomalist? It shares pigeon elements etc. This entire city is just one big anomaly. Amputation parlors! Drinking urine on stage! People setting themselves on fire! A truly haunting and disturbing section about a boy called Raikka who writes articles for me — and his deadpan acceptance of recreational amputation — and where nothing is in interface with nothingness.

The nearest to a traditional novel. On the brink of both twilights with these creatures. Human prayers that are offered up at noon are often intercepted by the Sun — for all creative powers are jealous of one another — and those that are offered up at midnight are liable to be waylaid by the Moon in her seasons or by the spirit of some thwarting planet. It is a natural fact that those Two Twilights are propitious to psychic intercourse with the First Cause while other hours are malignant and baleful.

The description of the lady who tells me about this phenomenon after her entrance to my office makes the orchid tremble on the sill… She is her own veil? How do you know about that? In the text itself, I do not even consider that you night have read the same text as I have read or the same text that I am IN. I thought that I should actually learn to celebrate every sound, even cacophonies.

Who knows what it might encourage its readers to do to themselves and to what it might open them. And walking in the wrong one, without noticing. By the way, I did notice the Trepanist in one of the marches, but which one? The Otherkin, meanwhile, are beautifully described here. I am sure Sibelius must have been one of them. But I forgot to say that in this relatively short but important section of the book. Now it is crystallised in print, only possible to say it here instead. But why be friends with this character? Simply so that I can tell you, in the equally anomalous context of this novel, how she became a paranormal part of my life.

The portrait is very telling. And relevant to my addiction to datura seeds. These episodes gradually make the gestalt of this fiction as a would-be novel, another novel of sorts, each episode unfinished while I think the novel itself is a closed or holistic system but a system of such open-ended episodes. A bit of a loop though when you consider the explanation is put into the mouth of a character in this book about Datura and given to another character, i. Real dying becomes something other, slipping away leaving us alone. But the Otherkin of this work are something other, again.

And this teasing story of a woman with four identities is like different people using the same body, the same, if altered, face and bearing, with fleeting death between each visitation. This book, too. But as if in a fiction did I get this unlikely event right? Or was its unlikely aftermath right? Perhaps both were wrong, an anomaly upon another anomaly?

You perhaps need a real-time outside commentator like this to be able to nail the truth and transcend the anomalies within a book such as this novel. Reading rather than eating datura seeds? More about the nature of reality, too. I sense. The end. Is near. The New Anomalist, no longer a derogatory term, but someone like me, hopefully.

Or you? Incongruous and indeed incredible as it may seem to any one who knew him, his adventures as a detective were even made the subject of short stories appearing in magazines. The style in Chesterton is unique, textured, educational, but bizarre, surreal, emblematic, with a neutral hoaxing against as well as for old-fashioned standards of behaviour and set pecking orders.

FB here is even set to investigate not only a murder but also, for the first time, his own murder by culprits unknown! And the lunacies of advertisement. It seemed impossible that he should miss a man whom he never knew. He blinked at the glittering seascape and the pinnacles of the city, and then at the man in goggles. Something in his yellow face was almost Asiatic, even Chinese; and his conversation seemed to consist of stratified layers of irony. He was a type to be found here and there in that hearty and sociable population; he was the inscrutable American. Three millionaires. A skyful of aeroplanes or arrows?

Like many of the other stories, too. Politically incorrect then, is correct now? Murder as a game rather than a lethal crime. A bit like ISIS today. Or a murder dinner party. So, I give you below a few clues as to this mystery of a Will and its Witnesses, and of red herrings, motives, over-obvious impulses, truisms and a preternatural animal, clues by means of a few separate quotes below from the text. Sometimes you are too clever to understand men, especially when they act almost as simply as animals. Animals are very literal; they live in a world of truisms.

The more incongruous the coincidence, the more instantaneous the decision, the more likely he is to snatch the chance. People readily swallow the untested claims of this, that, or the other. The flickering of film where spaces exist between the frames? Or simply a brutal murder that can be explained with recourse to the preternatural? Something in the filtered light set his mind drifting on certain borderlands of thought, with the first white daybreak before the coming of colour, and all that mystery which is alternately veiled and revealed in the symbol of windows and of doors.

We all believe everything, even when we deny everything. The denyers believe. The unbelievers believe. The soul goes round upon a wheel of stars and all things return; perhaps Strake and I have striven in many shapes, beast against beast and bird against bird, and perhaps we shall strive for ever. But since we seek and need each other, even that eternal hatred is an eternal love. Good and evil go round in a wheel that is one thing and not many. Do you not realize in your heart, do you not believe behind all your beliefs, that there is but one reality and we are its shadows; and that all things are but aspects of one thing: a centre where men melt into Man and Man into God?

Holbein too, but I did not notice his elongated skull as if through a lens. Or did I? And books with false titles and tricksy stories like this bookful of them. And, oh yes, the brightness of murder if it can explain away a suicide. He wanted to bring the daylight of photography face to face with that dark masterpiece of painting; and to see whether the sunshine of the new art would not drive out the shadows of the old. Some say a career of crime had left him with too many scruples for a career of detection.

Occult or rational? Fiction and Truth. But we observe there is in many ways, a marked difference between your own method of approach and that of these other thinkers, whether fictitious or actual. The red flame seemed to hold his eyes and absorb his gaze that sank deeper and deeper into it, as if that single cup held a red sea of the blood of all men, and his soul were a diver, ever plunging in dark humility and inverted imagination, lower than its lowest monsters and its most ancient slime.

Yes, FB and lateral thinking, where everything comes in from unexpected angles of logic. The unexpected as the expected, and vice versa. The usual as just another form of unusual. Full of paradox, as ever, and lateral thinking. Peregrine Smart hovered like a fly round one possession and one joke. It is as if FB is the catalyst of the events rather than the responder to them. Readers of a book, too, as corporate alibi in a conspiracy of disbelief? We just need together to triangulate the coordinates of a book via all our personal real-time reviews, thus to nail the spoilers one by one, then flensing and flaying the text back like the flesh of a murder victim to reveal its murderer.

You turn it upside down and it looks like the face of a fiend. Possibly my favourite FB story so far, with some genuine chilling as well as mentally provocative moments, in this vanishing mystery in a tiny village. Best to take a few, enjoy them, and return for more at a later date — rather than scoff the lot at a sitting. And this current story begs the question: if your throat is cut when you are smiling, does that smile stay on your corpse? All with the seasoning of blackmail and Russsian intrigue. Read it and understand. Culture versus culture. Logic versus faith. Theft versus Replacing.

East versus West. God versus God. Hoax and truth. Read it an see but meanwhile here are choice bits from it… ——————— Marvellous things have been done by fakirs. Inside that, in the very centre, rose the basin of a dark-green fountain, or raised pond, in which water-lilies floated and goldfish flashed to and fro; and high above these, its outline dark against the dying light, was a great green image. Its back was turned to them and its face so completely invisible in the hunched posture that the statue might almost have been headless.

But in that mere dark outline, in the dim twilight, some of them could see instantly that it was the shape of no Christian thing. You do not even know what is really meant by hiding a thing. Nay, my poor little friends, you do not even know what is meant by seeing a thing; or perhaps you would see this as plainly as I do. No human being dares approach the accursed house except a silent procession of hatters, sent to provide an abnormal number of hats.

Father Brown filtering yarns about mysteries but also of Mystery itself. There was something uncanny about that very small figure, perched like a goblin beside the goblin stove; and the sense that its round head had held such a universe of wild unreason and imaginative injustice. It was as if the vast void of dark behind it were a throng of dark gigantic figures, the ghosts of great criminals held at bay by the magic circle of the red stove, but ready to tear their master in pieces.

This explains some earlier stories where both characters appeared. Having done something is half the battle towards solving the motives behind it. That is, she allowed what the papers called her Personality to go out from her in rays. She would have been equally beautiful, and to some tastes more attractive, if she had been self-contained; but she had always been taught to believe that self-containment was only selfishness. Why are you sitting up all night to see it through?

A whole cornucopia of mind tricks, even the envisaging of FB himself as real person or literary trick. This quick one does it with long drawn out machinations , and vice versa. You tell me which. It was the simple idea that, if Prohibition is right, some honour is due to the Prophet who was perhaps the first Prohibitionist. He had corresponded with the leaders of Mahommedan religious thought, and had finally induced a distinguished Moslem one of whose names was Akbar and the rest an untranslatable ululation of Allah with attributes to come and lecture in England on the ancient Moslem veto on wine.

John Raggley was generally regarded as a crank. He was the sort of man who writes letters to the newspaper, which generally do not appear in the newspaper; but which do appear afterwards as pamphlets, printed or misprinted at his own expense; and circulated to a hundred waste-paper baskets. Or perhaps hygienic reformers invented crime; they look like it, some of them. They are called foul, not because crimes are committed, but because crimes are discovered. This is about a book that if you merely look into it the Devil will get you, and time and time again this is proved by each one daring to look inside immediately vanishing… Also a very engaging tale of a Professor who prided himself on believing as well as disbelieving all spiritual or paranormal things, ever the empiricist.

A fine FaBle sussed by FB, one of apparitions not as appearances but as their opposite. The Green Man became a ghost trailing loathsome weeds and walking the countryside under the moon; the sign of the Green Man became a human figure hanging as from a gibbet; and the tarn itself became a tavern, a dark subaqueous tavern for the dead sailors.

Was the culprit the swarthy pirate-loving man as most suspected? Or someone less obvious? A lesson for a humanity that is often prejudiced. But not so our everpresent stoical clear-thinking Father Brown — who must equally take the catalytic blame for all these murders he was surely created to solve? There was a horseshoe of worry in his forehead, and the numerous groups and strings of entertainers stretched along the beach below looked up to him in vain for applause. Pierrots turned up their pale moon faces, like the white bellies of dead fish, without improving his spirits; niggers with faces entirely grey with a sort of grimy soot were equally unsuccessful in filling his fancy with brighter things.

I think the next time FB uncovers the culprit of a crime it will be me! Reply nullimmortalis July 18, at pm Edit The Crime of the Communist Three men came out from under the lowbrow Tudor arch in the mellow facade of Mandeville College, into the strong evening sunlight of a summer day which seemed as if it would never end; and in that sunlight they saw something that blasted like lightning; well-fitted to be the shock of their lives. Only, when we apply it, you call it red ruin and anarchy; and when you apply it, I take the liberty of calling it exploitation.

The above three quotes tell you much. But it is a more special experience to read the whole story, as quoting from it is a crime like petty thievery! He had a queer notion that the man who was speaking could not now be murdered, because he was already dead. It was, he cheerfully admitted, a perfectly senseless idea. But there was something that always gave him the creeps about the cold disenchanted detachment of the noble senior partner; about his cadaverous colour and inhospitable eyes.

And he was afterwards oddly convinced, with that mystic side of him which was normally turned away from the world, that in that detached dark islet of dreamland, between the two wakings, there lay like buried treasure the truth of this tale. Following the Communist in the previous story this one has Bolsheviks and a Lord and Trade Unions — and Workers working on a building near where FB sleeps.

Three more quotes above that I have stolen from the text, probably the most abstruse text you will ever read. You need to sleep and dream of if to solve its problem or problemise its solution. The pin without a point like a tell-tale heart under the floorboards. A suicide and murder in palimpsest. Reply nullimmortalis July 20, at am Edit The Insoluble Problem This queer incident, in some ways perhaps the queerest of the many that came his way, happened to Father Brown at the time when his French friend Flambeau had retired from the profession of crime and had entered with great energy and success on the profession of crime investigator.

Father Brown was not very fond of the telephone. Also it had red bedroom-slippers, one of which had fallen off and lay on the grass like a blot of blood. But neither Flambeau or Father Brown was looking at these things as yet. The paradoxes and loops of logic as well as the insoluble solution and problemless problem take a rich textured Catholic turn with this mix of characters and the mystery of the Reliquary at the centre of all machinations. This book nears its end. Maltravers, who may have poisoned her husband. The solution is, as usual, not what we have been led to expect, but the motive makes no sense, and neither do the dates.

Luxuriously upholstered book with quality materials, about 10 inches square, 54 pages, marker ribbon, all generously designed with much artwork etc, dust jacket, and embossed hardback cover. It really is. Which of us successful, I will leave to your imagination. If any. Increasingly intriguing and character-building. Even the prose style is syntactically syncretic, too. V is not a yellow wallpaper woman, but a woman far more destined to have thieved, with the arguably knowing nod of its owner, something I shall keep from you until you read THIS book that will entrammel something inside you, not your heart, soul or spirit, but something perhaps even more significant.

And the more they actually handle you. They swapped identities back and forth several times within the course of the dream, having grown so intimate as to comprise a single entity in two phases. Perhaps I should have suggested a magpie, too, In view of the invited thieving? Nor the arcane or pompish rituals. You may feel I have abandoned V, just to report so far these events real-time for you, so I intend now to hasten back there.

The gorgeousness of prose,too. Nearly, but never. Just received this purchased book…. Edited by Carl H. Reply I have just read the first six pages of the Introduction. Very satisfying fare. Highly textured with mind-awakening philosophy, even at this early stage of the book. Do they retain such power even if no-one reads them? Reply Dreamcatching? My review will continue in due course below…. And Graham Harman. Horror fiction, at its best, enters our individual territories and becomes part and parcel of a revolving realm with Death at its core: and, in this realm, all the flotsam and jetsam of life the richest life being generated by the imagination as well as by the day-to-day interaction of our minds and bodies spin round, some colliding only to ricochet off, others sticking together, some being swallowed whole or bit by bit.

Eventually, the various items are sucked into the core where they are minced up or refined into streams of sense or apparent sense or, even, nonsense which are then released from that realm into other revolving realms which create new collisions, fusions and spin-offs.

This is using Death as a positive tool, as it surely is.

45 thoughts on “DATURA, Or A Figment Seen By Everyone”

Mentions also Meillassoux. I can now no longer question my lifelong love of HPL fiction texts and of music like Stockhausen, Schoenberg, Xenakis etc as well as the slightly more mellifluous Debussy, Glass, Messiaen, Beethoven late string quartets etc etc. This essay has become a seminal slant on HPL, for me, and I shall revisit my real-time reviews where such references have permeated them since and my own reading since I first encountered HPL in On a personal note, when I first read HPL in the s, I knew nothing about the author, and I then felt not even a hint of this knotty issue.

However, forced as I was to learn more about HPL in ensuing years, especially through his letters to Kleiner, I, too, was altered in my mindset towards his works. Reply Later today. Yes, that is the word he actually used! Reply The sixth essay is H. Reply The seventh essay is H. More later… Reply This is a topic of which I have little knowledge. As well as this essay being another revelation regarding the phenomenon that is Lovecraft. A unique name that only he and his family bears — as the final irony? A watershed for me, too. Paranoia, conspiracy, incantatory recurrencies like lists of forbidden books, a minimalist music or a French anti-novel?

Another watershed for me. Thanks, Mr Punter. I, for one, have found it impressive and compelling. This article does not excuse but perhaps explains. What do you think? I find it less interesting from an Intentional Fallacy point of view, and prefer the hyper-cacophony, pareidolia and modernity side of the HPL texts, if not the personal side of HPL himself. I do not usually carry out real-time reviews on anything but fiction, and I have tried, in this review, to draw out a texture rather than an acrimony.

Meanwhile, I think anyone reading the main eleven essays as a gestalt will find a new gestalt of HPL as a multi-faceted phenomenon, a preternatural configuration beyond the tentacles, one that paradoxically attracts, repels and purges. Those who study, admire, hate or pastiche him are lucky to work in his shadow, a shadow more defined after this book but crazily even more ill-defined, too! Attracts, repels and purges, yes, and it is a book that I can now remove from the lid of the biggest purging device of our civilisation called the Lavatory.

I hope my fiction reviews utilise such methods, among many other methods new and old, to triangulate the books I buy to read. Clarke Grandpa - James H. Wallace Aye, and Gomorrah - Samuel R. Bayley Sandkings - George R. My previous review of a Jason A. Wyckoff book HERE. I intend to real-time review this collection in a week or so, and when I do, my comments will appear in the thought stream below.

Like this: Like Loading McIntosh" Rupetta - N. Sulway In "N. I will leave you discover those for yourself. The spiders, too. And more. The slow motion descent of the chandelier is in tune with the likely slow motion nature of this real-time review very slow-motion indeed although this first story has given me a positive spur towards a speedy engagement with the second story, but at the moment I am inundated with books all of which I anticipate relishing in real-time, each book slowing down the others.

Such is life. Somehow, for me, this compelling story is constructively reminiscent of John Langan-type bullicose fiction but has its own unique take upon the collusive nature of this Minotaur and its accoutrements that you may never forget. A terrifying vision of a close-encounters sort of indoor mountain built into or by his past and current hang-ups, a Lovecraftian monster as well as a mountain of madness. I judge this story is a metaphor for my own seeking of a gestalt, whether subtle, preternatural or obvious, whenever I conduct a real-time review of a fiction work or a series of fiction works in a single book, obsessed as I am, with the fruits of my own pareidolia and apophenia.

And if not found directly in this book, I will seek that closure elsewhere, I guess. Who the playthings, who the urchin kids you orphaned in this fog-locked town? Who the living, who the ghosts? Almost a sentimental slow-motion. A telling ending, too, for this remarkable work. A little touch of Harry in the night, to quote someone. They talk about eschatology, existentialism, Stockholm Syndrome. A decided poignancy, and a special theatrical quality, a dialogue similar, I guess, to Waiting for Godot, giving this work the potential for being classicised, if not classified.

Of course, it goes without saying that the meat of the story starts with a sputtering car… The collector-constructor is one who accretes found art, and I love found art, especially the stuff I find in the Tate Gallery or other museums of extreme modern art.

Which brings me back to the whole gamut of being a Dreamcatcher or Hawler amongst the mainframes, axles and bumpers of literature. Some alternate or fantasy Alaska? I was particularly taken with what I shall call the hawling of the tarp canopy, a prime example of my own hawling or dreamcatching, and you will need to go far to find such an off-the-wall obsession with keeping the canopy intact at night from those stray beams of light. The small upside-down trees. The dreadful or hopefully not dreadful but dreamful fate of his mother, amid those tangled trees.

And the lackadaisical fate for Hannah who continues her life with a husband and children, and with her only being able to see Hosea out of the corner of her eye. The beehives. The charms of finding gold in the river or the lucky charm of having a crystal around the neck. The seeking of an entrance into the head as dome or skull or canopy — via the nostrils? An engaging group of characters all on the edge of something they need to transcend. The reader, included. This is extrapolated beyond the preterite of his pre-internet student days into the Internet days proper — where substantiation is available on-line if that is not a contradiction in terms.

The narrator and myself both fulfilling the role of the classic jinx?


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As does Davis in this particular story. Another homunculus in the curio with whom to chew the fat, or dowse the water. Davis, on another level, is the stoical worker in the Ligottian Corporation, but Ligotti works in different, more diluted office politics. Nothing can touch the Wyckoff version in this story, I contend. It is sheer diffident bravado, as we follow the path of Davis trying to transcend the heating problems of the office building and the leg or is it log of the foot where the hot-blooded office workers work, and ends up burning the log — the one he once had aspirations to sculpt into a new shape — onto his own fireplace at home.

This story deserves a trophy, or at least a metal cup. The pessimum, too. Yes, I feel this story IS a classic, and does not need yet to become one. And then triangulating its frightening implications, its aftermath and its future beyond this book. On a personal note, I sensed this work as an extrapolation of the Nemonymous from the Weirdmonger side of me. As if my thousand plus published fictions before were the inferior insects that gave birth to the bigger and better ones in Wyckoff.

Even his name seems apposite! The essence of Nemonymity…. And later, when alone, her slipping on of a neat number of a dress leading her to transcend time but in which direction? And his log-lit smoke through the chimney is due to alert the the reader on the roof, a reader left with something at last to grasp — a life as a precious but expendable act of goodness that will outlast that reader who is anyone and everyone who triangulates, real-time reviews, hawls, dreamcatches such goodness from this fictively and luxuriantly stiff-paged and sturdy book I hold in my hand, a book, out of, not in, the library, one that will become dust, last of any of us, no doubt.

The ultimate method acting. Including me. When I review this book, my comments will appear in the thought stream below. Foresight, too, no doubt. I feel this story was uncannily written, in prophecy, for the time of Brexit…for my eyes and this opportune real-time review. Brexit as a word sounds like a blade snagging on a whisker…a faltering gash. A striking portrait of growing death-dementia. Just like a flash! A truly writerly, fascinatingly experimental, story, where Miss Willerton starts her story of the sharecropper with hookworm, and his wife, on her typewriter and it is as if the text enfolds her and she herself becomes the wife for real.

A remarkable story, well before its time. Words as phonemes as well as a crop of crumbs. When you are a God of a story you sometimes have to roll around in its mud yourself like a Dog. Told and very telling. Amazing mind-glitching stuff, nightmarish like the Horror genre but much more like. I know exactly what this story means, because it means so many different things from which you can choose in a bespoke fashion.

It is a very disturbing, amazingly evocative, idiosyncratically well-written, eventually Aickman-like story and people who know my taste in literature will surely follow me to this story if they know what is good for them. And the deadpan goal of sighting the shrunken man. Moats rather than Shrike. The other part was stocked up with all kinds of words and phrases. And, yes, maybe it is.

Breathless and seemingly fat? Makes it even more heart-rending. Shocking, too. And ironic. The power is conveyed by the mind-glitching style as well as by the obliquely outlying objective-correlatives that here are not objects but the other people that populate this climbing mole-coloured land of tenement stairs. Is it a coincidence that both umbrella and gorilla end with rella and rilla respectively? A sharply characterful journey through those States as long as you keep clear which state is which! Including that grandmother left like a lady who had once been courted by Mr.

Each review of mine a misfit for the foot it shods. A story that made me think. Entertaining, page-turning, too. The portrait of words, as portrayed by words, the words entering his head, is one of the great moments of literature, I would guess. As is that sudden brink between something and nothing, with only confusion between. A clogging cog of a story with sparks and speeds that it will be hard to forget! Connin said, taking off her coat. These boys are J. Take off that coat and hang it on the bed post, Bevel. And the healing of a hangover as well as of a purple lump on a left temple or of cancer itself, by gratuitously baptising oneself in that River of Life while chased by a salacious long-pig, I guess.

To bevel: to reduce a square edge on an object to a sloping edge. And her twelve year old daughter, Sally Virginia. And her friend, Mrs. Pritchard who relished talk of a woman who gave birth while in an iron lung, or even cuddling it in a coffin. Harper who come to her farm with one of them having lived there before while his father worked for Mrs. But CAN she cope, I ask?

Rude, too. And the fire they set in a circle — round them? The cherubim of war. This is a major work in the canon of all literature, I am sure. It is the tale of the balance of people — on a mid twentieth century farm in America — being broken by the arrival of one of those migrants that have hit the news in our present day as I write this. The pecking order balance at its tipping point, that foodline of farm owner, white trash, negroes and now displaced persons, here a Pole from the European war.

The priest and the peacock, being just one devastating part of this rejigged jigsaw. Absolutely staggering how a work like this subsisting all these years without my knowledge. So many quotable quotes. The honesty of labour, the dishonesty of motives, the economics of human vulnerability to scarcity. No review can do justice to it.

An apocalyptic apocrypha for our times. All very well characterised. This is the story of old Mr Head and his grandson Nelson, a young boy, a naive and forthright boy, who insists — when Mr Head takes him on a train trip to the city where Nelson was born — that he had visited there twice, even if it was once when a baby. One of the most horrific stories I have ever read. The ending is of hindsight horror and of what names and intentions truly hide.

An absolutely devastating scene. With a wooden leg, about thirty years old, with a degree. Meets the Bible Salesman, Manley Pointer. A story about names and aliases. And alliances of trust and incipient, almost child-like beginnings of sex between adults. And the ultimate chat-up line: where does the wooden leg join to you?

About innocence and knowingness. A bit of both in each of them. I expect this story will resonate with me for years to come, assuming I still have such years to come between the two nothingnesses that are not me. So simple, yet full of complex wisdom — or vice versa. Just finding himself at last, these few unburied years later. I never ast to come at all. Maggie May. She has dreams of being eaten from the farm outside, through the wall, towards her own heart, as a precursor of something else entering her heart at the end, when someone speaks into an ear that is not her ear, but which ear was which, I ask!

Anyway, a stray bull needs getting rid of, but this is something never got rid of till the end, a prevailing bullicose force that typifies the inchoate jigsaw of emotions of raw humanity that also prevails. The sun becomes a burning bullet… [I sense this whole book has that stray bull roaming throughout it, out to eat its way towards the author. It was apparent that this morning she preferred the sight of the woods. He witnesses her father, his son-in-law, a man who is the Pitts not the Fortune, beating her with a belt. But who truly betrays whom? No town planning those days allows the granddad to plan for a filling station on the front lawn where she and the other children usually play.

His motives are fine, he feels. A moral: that importance to a feisty girl is not necessarily important to her granndad, who has a belt round his waist, too. A digger in the clay pits. Some fine characterisations of relationship, and the sun as blood drenching the trees, inchoate and often gratuitous. Utterly, utterly devastating. Strangely uplifting, too? The old man had often sneaked up on her and found her alone in conversation with her feet and he thought she was speaking with them silently now. Utterly life-changing stuff for the reader.

The relentlessly grinding presence of the gobby slut, called Star Drake aka Sarah Ham, brought into the house by his do-gooding mother, pervades this story of Thomas as ill-spoken to his mother as Asbury was in the previous story,,,, The slut squats in the house as much as his own father squats inside Thomas himself.

LIfe is never fair, life has forces that grow twisted. I tell you, the bottom rail is on the top. Another son and mother relationship, so utterly flannery, here with mutual embarrassment and feisty conflict of outdoing each other, and he escorts her in her truly outlandish hat on the bus to her reducing class, with all her prejudices shown to the negroes on the way, including a black woman in not a similar hat but an identical one!

A switching of sons, seats and hats and a crosswire of eyes that goggle bigger than the text, bulging out, one of them lying on the page like a cancer, or is that my imagination over-compensating for the onset of social justice warriors that followed on in our own equally messy world? We ever should strive to strike exactly the right note. Gun crime prevailed then as now, a serial killing in one fell swoop by a man called Singleton, having been imprisoned for not buying a Festival badge, he shoots dead six of those who put him away, including someone unworthy of being buried with the other five.

Locked up with a goat. They want to write him up, actually see him…size him up for heroism. No, it is something far more oblique and ungraspable. The relationship, meanwhile, between Calhoun and Mary Elizabeth is memorably etched.

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No beauty contest. Feature by feature, a gestalt that is Trump? And it becomes even more devastating as a result. This book has a number of no-gooders that people care for, while hoping to make life better for these no-gooders, as well as a sense of self-satisfaction for the do-gooders themselves. The father, here, do-gooding to the detriment of his own son, brings in a difficult, garbage-eating youth, a youth who admits to being controlled by Satan in an attempt to prove his right to be what he is, a youth with a club foot.

Kindness is cruel, and events fall out of shape amid a complexity of motives, of guilt, shame, yearning, a perfect storm of emotions that you will find nowhere but in Flannery. A four page story, the shortest Flannery story by a long way. Yet, it has defeated me, with its complexity of resonances. I feel I am both the father who has suffered the stroke as well as his son Walter, as a palimpsest. It will only take you ten minutes to read, but last a lifetime in afterthought.

We are all waiting I guess. I then thought that, when sculpted in raw grey stone, white trash is the same colour as black goodness, ugly or pretty, mad or sane, or any permutations to that effect. You des as sweet and pretty as you can be. An obsession but only when he can see them without a mirror, until, to transcend a tractor accident and regain the love of Sarah, he obtains a meticulously detailed Byzantine Christ on his back… Idolatry or sheer bravado?

You will see. A vanity of vanities or an act of being marked to die? Another burning shoe. A burning ark that holds us all, of whatever breed? Reply The cleverest story of them all, I guess, the mid-twentieth century American complexity of pecking orders as black with black, white with black, white with white. Actor with preacher. Father with daughter. This father was not so much a Robinson Crusoe in his Southern shack with a Man Friday, but also with some version of not Friday but Flannery, a woman writer, of course. Her character is this father, a grizzled oldster taken to New York after whittling bark into glassless spectacles for his Man Friday, just for that honest connection between human and human, whatever the colour, whatever the pecking order.

And then the feisty father and daughter relationship, like those earlier ones between other pecking orders, like mother and son several times over. The daughter imports him to New York in some misplaced duty of care. He wants to be buried back where he came from, and now eventually stuck in the New York banisters, he dreams of Judgement day, upon the opening of his box forwarded by train to the station back south, except he sees, not Man Friday, but the black actor preaching nothing but nothing beyond death.

Utterly poignant, utterly telling, oblique as well as clear. Every move we make in life just a click away from the wrong one — or from the right one. A perfect book, one to resurrect from. I have always considered it to be the apotheosis of retrocausal Nemonymity as well as, now, the hawling or dreamcatching labyrinths of this Jungian or preternatural site where you read this review. For the rest, it is mere Pataphysics. Or Sir Thomas Browne coupled with Berkeley. Meanwhile, we already have had the cone zeroes and the over-heavy specific gravities in this book.

I never miss an issue! Kristi Demeester is a wonderful stylist of beautiful prose. She has a story here. Support great fiction. I sense that Priya Sharma is just a conduit for this story. Or, though I pray not, it is a conduit for someone else with her name?

There are moments here of goriness and cliffside sublimity all the more powerful because of such disingenuous artifice. Even to the extent of making us believe it is not artifice at all. Reply My links to authors show their previous reviews by myself. This beautifully written text is almost unbearable to read, unbearably right, too, and, like breathing, it is a toing and froing of ghostly truth and trust. But whose? Very cleverly done. It is its own wild, but believable Chien Andalou of the soul. On a more personal level, its black sewn thread connecting the posed portrait of the three girls summons for me the audit trail of interpretations derived from the Manet and Degas paintings in what is an entirely coincidental and still unfinished real-time review by myself of the Color Plates HERE.

Here, we have a married couple returning to the memory-haunted place where they both lived when teenagers. As if there are now nemonymous nightworlds beneath the thinnest veneer of sand and dust, teeming to test them from and through their own skin. As from the face on the front of this Black Static.

The Campaign

I felt the lightest DeMeester touch here, waiting for weights far too heavy for it. On a personal note regarding this necklace conceit, I cannot resist linking to a work of my own which was published in the early s reprinted on the DOWSE site in the early noughties HERE. And revelling is the right word. But perhaps it should now be a ravelling not a revelling, after this story, or an unravelling of the skeins?

As ever, this Hargadon is crammed with stunning turns of phrase, wise saws, suppurating homilies, witty, but down-to-earth, conceits… And here the central conceit of the variety act in question bringing to mind some acts I have seen recently on TV repeats of the Good Old Days shows of yore is too good to spoil or unspool in a review such as this. And the well-drawn characters amid the freaks and variety acts. And its staggeringly disturbing finale has to be encountered cold to be fully appreciated. No giveaway here, no unpicking of its casting-on. As an aside, I have assumed that this story must stand on its own, with no attempt by me to cohere a gestalt with the previous stories, as would be my normal wont.

And in many ways, it does. But in its unbundling of inner creatures, with needles et al, the penetration of the thin veneers of an otherwise civilised body, almost a self-harm, a paradoxically light touch within a mass of earthy humour, almost a self breathing within a self, in tempo with Tem, DeMeester, Neal, Sharma, Rhodes, all the previous acts of this show now able to stand even more revealed or unraveled by their subsumption somehow out-inside this Hargadon, I contend.

And now we have Wilkinson, another of my favourite literary writers. There are several other richly imaginative audit trails and leitmotifs in this relatively brief gestalt of a text.


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  4. Then within the gutter itself of the bowling alley… To reach beneath the skin. Skittled out. Needled out. One gutter of directive significance chosen, while many others then prick out the more one allows the text to haunt you. But each story is labelled with a single autonomous name. Absence then presence in each frame. A few wrong turns, but suddenly a wonderful serendipity. There is much else in Black Static to entertain the Horror Genre enthusiast in addition to its fiction.

    It taps into the Palmer team-building gestalt of this set of Interzone fictions so far, the Meteor God as impact SF, and the collective unconscious working both with and against such gargantuan archetypes to further them, a French minstrelsy with Hinckley also mentioning Charlie Hebdo. The Eyesis State. That Iceis State. When I real-time review this fiction, my comments will appear in the thought stream of this post below…. Interzone In "Gareth L. This is a well-characterised French minstrelsy, a pink oozing roundelay, a far future campaign against meteor gods who seem to have replaced the meteors themselves in impact SF.

    There is even a romance between a man in permanent armour and a woman whose finger flirts upon and between his plate and joins. I could go on and on. But this seems like a quite original dose of joyful Lovecraftianism in gargantuan proportions. Men become the new gods to defeat the old ones. It is that good. It is also sort of its own drone upon things. The vision of the Eye, a slow-motion vista, aspiring to culminate as Impact SF, where a Meteor God from the previous story seems to have become a stasis of watching, watching our narrator watching it. It has old-fashioned SF awe as well as new-fashioned psycho-selfies.

    This story is one such house, without a car parked outside. And that worries me, too. Reply belong by Suzanne Palmer Team-building is central to gestalt real-time reviewing. And the confidence boosting of the previous stories allowed me to defeat my fears that I might not know how my slavish understanding of the text would fit in with its own expression of it.

    In itself, an incisive, unquestioning portrait of corporate team-building exercises, this one accreting towards a confident culmination of becoming completely accepted as part of the team. But what went wrong when it went from sim to live? To answer that question would be a spoiler. To ask it at all, an even worse one. A provocative panoply that is mind-bogglingly imaginative.

    The human characters and their names are engaging, as is the companion alien, a sort of metal spider. I suppose I would have no choice but to abolish reality. Two alternating narrative viewpoints of a man and woman in sexual interface. But is one an alien, the other not? Or one who is nobody, the other not? One of the foreplaying couple is due to utilise the other in creating a new history using those memories.

    The creation of that history from what humanity thinks it is, a race without qualities. And was impact from without or within? Spectacles or a piece of black bark?

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    Thus, turned in on itself, the angst wells up as much as the absences between us — from the tenor of the previous story also accreting, limping foot or not. Or simply something in the boot? Sporadic realities as reconstructed each time by the abruptly collapsible words used to describe them. With a pervading sense of guilt or shame regarding your care for your family, taken to the extent of a paradoxically healing of a self-dare to destroy them by fire. Role-playing to differentiate between the lurching realities, and thus hopefully insulate them from more dangerous ones.

    OR SHE with you? But who is gaslighting whom? The question arises — at what point does surgical removal of various parts of your body reach the level where the body is no longer you? Relates no doubt to the piecemeal collapse of words that eventually change meaning as well as of your inner self — so graphically shown in the previous story and now, here, by a coda as a metaphor-of-physical-substance.

    Here, the man is still obsessed with the woman who stabbed him, she who ran away to a cult and collapsed her name Tammy so as to erect it again as Star, and, against his own best intentions, he is called to rescue her, having himself already been rescued, by his friends, from her. But who the cult, whom the culted? Who the gaslighter, whom the gaslit? Each a shallow grave with nothing buried there to dig up. Star, rats. Actually, I empathised with the male stick-in-the-mud protagonist, with a flighty female partner, each of whom called the other by surname.

    It is an absorbing planetary drill-mining scenario with various possible male suspects as an ostensible team of workers, an environment full of tunnels, dust, ductwork, filters, baffles, ventilation shafts, obsessions, paranoia, suspicions and more. It is a tontine prize. We see most events through the eyes of the man responsible for security matters as well as his cleaning of baffles, as he liaises with the overall manager, including a panicky weighing of equations regarding depleting oxygen, men available to breathe such oxygen, and the dust as the particles of a gestalt.

    An insidious dust that may have its own mind, like the various named men, each a suspect, each a beneficial sacrifice for the others, all of them overtly trying to work as a team, but, equally, so do the millions of dust particles try to work as a unit of synergy, too. A suspenseful waiting for the relief team to arrive, just days away. I know what I know. This is sheer momentous literary stuff. Believe me. And, as I have said before — during a number of my earlier dreamcatching gestalt real-time reviews — filters invariably work in both directions of flow.

    As does collapsing. This, meanwhile, is an almost unbearable story pun half-intended to read — at one moment absurdist, the next tragic. That one really needs to be gone by about the eighth grade, I think. Plus, I still smoke cigarettes—yes, in this day and age!!!

    My personal battle with alcohol may or may not be interesting, but it will be truthful. A social thing, primarily. Go out after work and have a few beers, go party from time to time, whatever. Things look up and it begins to taper off. Generally I could take it or leave it unless it was one of those shitty times , until I got into my late twenties. I took up lock-picking as a hobby, began taking boxing lessons, etc. I lived alone in a very small studio apartment downtown. Some days I would wake up and all the bourbon and beer would be gone.

    Alcoholism is progressive. Especially when, at least for a few hours, all that pain usually went away? I could smile. I could jam out to music, have a good check-out time. I could still focus and function until I passed out. Most of my friends drank, so what was the big deal? I was out cold and clutching a steak knife. So, basically what I had done, was drunken myself into temporary insanity. The knife? No idea, but it was from my kitchenette. So what did I do after this incident?

    It tempered for a while, though I still drank. And then I met a girl. At this point in my life I felt hopeless and awkward and desperate for love, as Chandler Bing once said. Apparently she was too, and so we moved really fast. While a drinker, I was still very driven to write and pursue other interests. So after the hospital, what did I do about it? I wrote Destination Unknown , the first of my novels to actually sell.

    Then, for a time, we did break up. It should have stayed that way, it would have been better for both of us. But I was in New Mexico and she was in Florida, so, really, how could we make that work? But overall, even though by no means were things perfect, it almost seemed as though I was getting myself at least a little bit back on track. That was stupid. That was when everything truly went to hell. We rented a house that was beyond awesome, but a cool house does not make a good relationship.

    Things were worse than ever before. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me. I was definitely the fool.


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    6. Our energy was even worse, plus I was actually now in love with someone else who lived far away but who dominated both my mind and heart. Could I have handled all of this differently? I was a stupid asshole. Did alcohol play a role in the making of some of these, if not most of these , poor decisions here? Without question. We broke up again, this time quite bitterly. The very morning she moved out was the day I began drinking in the mornings, and within less than a week I was typically drinking all day long.

      I lost my job, and in addition to losing my job, a couple of coworkers oh-so-kindly decided to tell my employer that I had been stealing—. Yes, it would make good sense that the alcoholic would be the one stealing money, right? Happens more than we think about. Pretty reasonable assumption. But I will say this: I was a lot of things, but I was never a thief.

      But I had primed myself to be the perfect scapegoat, and the rumors lingered for years, still might in some circles. Anyway, okay, back to our show. After another six months or so, I finally managed to move to Florida. We both drank a lot me more than her , she was bipolar and refused to take any sort of medication, and I also had my own depression and severe anxiety. One night, driving on I from Land-O-Lakes, where some of my closest friends lived, to Tallahassee, where she was, drinking rum and wine and beer all the while, I blacked out at the wheel, waking up to the impact of my Volvo Turbo slamming into the back of a Ford F at around seventy miles an hour.

      Thank God no one was hurt. My car was totaled. The Ford was pretty much fine, though of course I got thrown in jail for this, and rightly so. My friends in Land-O-Lakes gave up on me. Few friends from New Mexico talked to me. Then my friends Gerry and Lori Hausman, on PineIsland, took me in and did all they could to try and help me. Gerry, Lori, if you are reading this, I am eternally grateful, will never be able to repay you, and love you both so much, words cannot express.

      I started to slowly get it together, but very slowly, and not really. Finally, one night, I was living in a house that had no furniture and no heat. I only had a few items and was drinking as much and as often as I could. It was October. To that friend, I am very sorry. One morning, not too long after that, I finally woke up on the floor, stared up at the ceiling, and, suddenly, it just clicked.

      I left rehab a month later, on my birthday. I guess one could consider it a rebirth, if one so chooses. I think when I finally decided I was done, I was really done. Could I have a drink now and have it not be a big deal? Was it all possibly circumstances as opposed to genuine addiction? Not likely, but maybe, though I have absolutely no interest whatsoever in putting my life on the line to find out.

      A lot of people buy into the glamor of it all, courtesy of the media, or art and artists. I bought into it myself at one point. But, well, there is nothing at all romantic about alcoholism. Some of my very favorite writers were alcoholics, but there is nothing romantic about the reality. It is a nightmare from start to finish, even most of what we think are the good times.

      If I could ask anything of regular drinkers—not that I can—I would simply ask that you do your best to be careful and aware. I wound up being stronger than I thought I was, but I was also, all things considered, incredibly lucky. I really am much stronger than I had always been led to believe.

      RD: People struggle with depression every day. So often, they fight to hide the pain just so they can function in a normal nine to five existence. Trent , you attempted suicide. What advice would you give to someone who might be considering suicide?

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      I can remember thinking about it a lot back in grammar school. I know I am not especially old, but when I was a kid, people parents, teachers, etc. In all of my youth I had one teacher, my history teacher in the ninth grade, who knew something was wrong, and suggested counseling, which was something I did in fact want. Problem was, nobody was really willing to talk to my parents.

      I brought it up once to my family and was merely mocked. And so this teacher who did his best with what he had set me up with the school counselor. That went nowhere fast. Teachers, anyway, based on what I read, and on what my friends and their kids show and tell me, often at least try to make an effort to help, rather than simply turning a blind eye.

      Okay, here is where you will get some of the stuff that you can insert into my long bit on my alcohol addiction. I opened this answer the way I did so you can merely factor that in, whatever good that might do. Things had not been going well for a while, and then Florida. For some, paradise; for me, hell. I was on PineIsland. I was alone. Gerry and Lori lived on the island, too, but on average I saw them about once a week. I was trying really hard to pull my life together, occasionally making it for a few days but inevitably failing, trying to comprehend the fact that there are more problems than solutions at the bottom of a bottle.

      We still loved each other. Never any question about that. We were still engaged. But we were both so mentally and emotionally screwed up that we had to take breaks.

      One-Act Play: "The Dictionary Salesman"

      So, after jail and being a drunken drifter, I had been brought into relative safety by Gerry and Lori Hausman. I stayed with them for a bit and then managed to get this really cute little place of my own. An adorable trailer… But I was alone. There was a Circle K right around the corner and a strip mall with a liquor store about a fifteen minute walk away. In Florida you can buy beer and wine at gas stations but hard liquor has to come from an actual liquor store.

      The Circle K was literally one minute away, so it usually won. Five minutes from my place was the Public Library, so that helped in my sober moments. I was failing, but at least I was trying. It had been about ten at night, and she did not text back, not that night or the next day. I went for ten years without having actual TV and loved it. But, again, I was alone. I was so alone, and so often drunk. But then the evening would inevitably end and they would drive me home, and I was alone again, so the television became my companion.

      The day following my text, Gerry drove me to the post office to mail a couple things. I was depressed as hell, missing the woman I loved. It was two or three in the morning when my cell phone rang. I was asleep on the couch, which I had converted into my bed, because it was in front of the TV. She was an only child, close to her folks, and spent a lot of time there. But I was too tired to call her back at that hour, and decided I would call her the next day.

      I guess it was sometime around ten-or-so the next morning. I checked the Caller I. This time I immediately knew something was wrong. I answered and said hello. It was her mother, a sweet, sweet woman. I always loved both of her parents. She had swiped a pistol from her father, gone up to a camping area, then put the gun to her head and pulled the trigger. Alone in this cute little trailer on this lovely little island, I completely lost my shit.

      Understandably, I think. I was already an utter wreck, and this was the capper. It was late April, the 23 rd to be exact. I spent days drunk, crying, screaming. I had been battling with suicidal ideation my whole life, and now, while our relationship was tricky and at times quite tenuous, the woman I loved and planned, or certainly hoped, to marry, had just gone and taken her own life.

      Gone up to Georgia and blown her fucking brains out. And here I was in this trailer, trapped on this island, alone. Gerry and Lori did what they could—they were always there for me, no matter what. But I was so depressed, too depressed, and so alone. More and more I just wanted to end it all myself and join her, and so I began tuning lots of things out. More alcohol was needed, though, more alcohol was always needed. Without it the unbearable pain was beyond unbearable, beyond the worst pain I ever could have imagined. I was being interviewed online for Realms of Fantasy Magazine only a few days after it happened.

      All I could do, all I wanted to do, was drink, chain smoke, watch TV, and figure out the quickest way to make the pain—all of the pain, not of just the last few days, or months or years, but all of the pain since way back when I was an abused little kid—go away. It was time for me to have my true escape. Two things happened which prolonged it all, though. First, with the television being my only constant companion, one night I caught a basketball game. I got pulled into it.

      I became mesmerized, awe-struck. It was the Playoffs and for a while they were showing two games a night. Somehow, of all things, this sport pulled me out of that deep dark hole for a couple hours each night, and I became a little obsessed with it. This was my rediscovery of basketball, and my discovery of Steve Nash, who fascinated me and, as much as one can for someone in my situation, inspired me. The Science Fiction Hall of Fame is in Seattle, Washington, and they wanted to fly me out to accept the honor, along with my mother and brother and son.

      They offered to fly my sister out, too, but she just happened to already be living in Seattle at that time. So I had to stick around for that. That was even more important than basketball. Possibly the greatest honor my father could receive, and I was asked to accept it. Well, the Playoffs ended.

      The Lakers were the champions. The trip to Seattle was awkward at best, given that no one in my family knew what to say to me and all I could think about was killing myself. Riding along on a freeway in Seattle, I could just unbuckle my seatbelt, open the door and drop out. That occurred to me several times, even as my son sat right beside me. But it was good to see my sister and good to see my son, even if it was to be for the last time.

      Came the Fourth of July. I called a few people, I think trying to find some reason or other for maybe sticking around. But it was a holiday and no one could really talk. And so—forgive me but some of this is a blur and I cannot fully attest to the accuracy, given the circumstances—I went into the kitchen, found a sharp serrated steak knife, took it into the living room, sat down on the floor near where I had my laptop, checked with myself to make sure this was really what I wanted, then slashed my left wrist down to the bone.

      A few starter scratches and then a hard, solid, slasher-film-style whack. That scar will never go away. My arm spouted a geyser of blood. There was only a second of pain and then, almost instantly, I began to feel calm. Here is where things really get a bit murky. This is my recollection. I was on the living room floor, gushing blood. My cell phone was no more than maybe two feet away. It rang.

      The Caller I. But the phone rang and I saw, as heavy blackness pushed in on me from all sides, that it was Krysty, who for several years had been like another sister to me. In that moment I snapped. It was in that moment that I realized some people did still love me, and I could not allow myself to inflict pain such as I had experienced on those who cared. Krysty, a wonderful singer-songwriter, was fortunately able to keep her cool, and knew enough to explain to me how to get the bleeding to stop, while on a separate line she called I was taken to the hospital and stitched up, then put into a crisis center that made me wanna kill myself more than ever.

      A friend of mine, a psychologist, looked the place up, and it was, I believe, one of the top five worst crisis centers in the entire country. I mean, seriously, what the fuck is wrong with you, crisis center in Cape Coral, Florida? Are they all that way, or was it just the one I was put in? One of the five worst in the country? I truly would have rather been back in jail.

      Krysty may very well have a different take on how that last part went down before the crisis center , but that is how I remember it. She is also someone who I will never be able to thank enough. Without her, without the Hausmans, I would not have eventually pulled through. I would not have gotten to see my son graduate from high school, or my sister graduate from medical school.

      I never would have written the stories I have since, be they good or bad. Anyone who has ever tried it will have a different experience with different feelings. They may relate to this or may not. The one thing all of us who have tried have in common, though, is everything became too much, and there was just too much pain, and in that moment, or over that span of time, there were no other options, not that we could see. None whatsoever. I know it, understand it, and can place it into a little box and put it up on a shelf in the back of a closet in my mind and not worry.

      I hope this can be at least a decent example, as far as there can be good examples in situations like this, because I did manage to pull out of it, even if it was at the very last second, and required lots of help. I understand what happiness is now, and it is worth more than anything else in the entire world.

      It was when I finally, completely gave up being self-conscious with my writing. My love of writing initially comes from popular fiction, but I became much more introspective, had a whole slew of prominent demons staring me right in the face, and my writing took a completely different direction. Is it better than before all this shit happened? I think so. Will it be considered great fiction for generations to come?

      I seriously doubt it, but my work has spoken to people. RD: What is your relationship like working with George R. How did you become affiliated with GRRM? And what was it like to sit in the Iron Throne from Game of Thrones? Hell, just look at it chronologically. The first book was published in It is now and there are currently five books out in the series.

      That is roughly one book every four years, give or take, and A Dance with Dragons came out in If they were all there with him back in when the series started, that might be one thing, but were they? Were these legions of fans all over the world there on August 6, , when the first book came out? Or did they get hooked when HBO eventually turned it into a series? I was at a signing he did for it here at Hastings, which, other than myself and a few other friends of his, caught the interest of maybe three people, one of them drunk.

      So leave the poor guy alone. He busts his ass. As for the Jean Cocteau Cinema, it was a wonderful independent theater here in town that had closed down about seven or eight years ago. I needed some extra work, so I said yes, thank you, and am currently a projectionist there two-and-a-half days a week. I love the place and everybody I work with. And it is also how I met Laurel. Martin is responsible for me meeting the woman I love. The Iron Throne was fun.

      RD: Halloween — what immediately comes to mind? Do you look forward to this time of year? Does the commercial celebration of Halloween offend you? Do you think this an evil time of year? Does anything change inside of you with your approach to writing during this time? TZ: I love Halloween. I have always loved it. Christmas, on the other hand, frightens and, at this point, offends me.

      Nothing spiritual about any of our holidays exists anymore. Only money, and people literally gun down others or trample them to death at Walmart or Best Buy in order to make sure that they damn well spread their fucking holiday cheer. So, yeah, fuck Christmas, but I still love Halloween. The only time with writing was when Cemetery Dance Publications, a place I had wanted to publish with since I first started out, actually contacted me and asked if I might write a Halloween short story for them.

      Hello, dream come true. RD: What advice would you give to writers and to those who would love to become writers today? Be honest with yourself and explore yourself. Read a lot. Write a lot. And we all have our favorite topics or genres or whatever, but try to read at least some in every area. Write the books that you want to read.

      I think that is key. It may seem obvious to some, but a surprising number of people including myself need to be outright told that. So, quick summation: read a lot, write a lot, write the stories and books you personally wanna read, and do it with passion, not with thoughts of dollar signs.

      Thank you so much once again for taking the time to share such meaningful aspects of your life with us, for being so open and for not holding back. Thank you for your fine example, tenacity, and for being living proof that there is always a reason for hope. Thank you so much, Duane! I just asked the questions. Trent Zelazny decided it was time to be open about his life. I hope everyone else is listening, too.

      Thanks again, Duane! Brave man. Thank you, Lori.

      The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play) The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play)
      The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play) The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play)
      The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play) The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play)
      The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play) The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play)
      The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play) The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play)
      The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play) The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play)
      The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play) The Digital Eidolon That Fits in Your Pocket (A Very Short One-Act Play)

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