Thursday, September 17, 2009

New Story in Pulp Pusher

I continue not to publish much fiction, but earlier today my Midwestern noir story "Killing the Singer" was posted on Pulp Pusher, the awesome site of Scottish crime writer Tony Black.

Come for my story, and stay for work by and/or about noir folk (Tartan Noir and other) including Chad Eagleton, Christa Faust, Victor Gischler, Allan Guthrie, Sophie Littlefield, Anthony Neil Smith (no relation) and Andrew Vachss.

What--or who--would you sacrifice for Art?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

New Story on Flash Fiction Offensive

I still don't publish much fiction, but my neo-noir story "Neighborhood Watch" appears on the Flash Fiction Offensive site and is eligible for subsequent inclusion in not-for-the-faint-of-heart print publication Out of the Gutter Magazine.

I don't want to ruin the story by saying too much about it, but I follow distantly in the footsteps of one of the most famous works of Jonathan Swift.

If you are wondering what neo-noir is, I would describe it as a descendant of hard-boiled noir and pulp fiction of the twentieth century, but with generally more (okay, much more) profanity and less racism and sexism, and sometimes social commentary. Leading purveyors include Todd Robinson's Thuglit and Tony Black's Pulp Pusher. (Disclosure: My stories have appeared in both.)

Reading my story doesn't take much longer than getting a fist to the face, and it hurts a lot less. What's not to like?

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Story in Bull: Fiction for Thinking Men

I don't publish a lot of fiction, at least not yet, but sometimes it happens.

The most recent example is my story "Foolish Time" in the online journal Bull: Fiction for Thinking Men.

Editor Jarrett Haley does not offer a one-size-fits-all approach to who thinking men are, or to what men's fiction should be. He is nonetheless speaking to a clear divide between mainstream publishing, particularly in literary fiction, and much of the male population.

The conventional wisdom in publishing can be summarized as "men don't read" or "men don't buy books." In response to proposal that two friends and I once made for a book targeting men, a literary agency assistant's rejection including the observation that men instead spend their money on "beer, lottery tickets and sex." This comes as news to me and to most of the men I know.

A second problem with those statements is that mainstream publishing, in spite of its dire financial situation, offers relatively little for men to read. Most of us can't relate to the upper bourgeois dilemmas of men usually portrayed in a New Yorker story. We additionally go a long time between the appearances of writers such as Thom Jones or Marc Nesbitt with something to say about the experience of men who feel burdened, cornered or simply "had" by the difference between what they were told to expect and where they find themselves.

Publications like Bull and various independent publishers are trying to meet needs that the mainstream largely ignores.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Second Poem in The Wanderlust Review

As noted in the previous post, my second poem has been published in The Wanderlust Review.

That poem, "Andante," a Valentine to travel in general, can be found here.

You will notice that the poem is an abecedary, where each line begans with and features a letter of the alphabet. In addition to playing with sounds, the abecedary is a way of taking inventory of what's going on inside one's head. I heard Denise Duhamel read an extended abecedary at the 2004 Conference of the Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) in Chicago and was eventually enticed to try one myself.

But I will let the poem speak for itself.

Yellowknife beckons.