Friday, February 25, 2011

"Stickers" is my autobiography

The last story in Curio. It's my favorite.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


Story 20 is a wee thing that reflects my fear of turnpike rest stops. It's also a vague tribute to the spirit of Shane Jones' Light Boxes. "Crimson" almost didn't make the collection, but now I'm glad it did, because 1) on its own it would have perished, and 2) the folks who have indicated they like it are an odd, unexpected bunch.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Last Week of Curio: "I Want to Kiss!"

Story 19 was originally published Corium Magazine's debut issue, but in context of the collection, you finally get to see why Bun likes to carry a dead chicken around with him.

In other news, I've gotten a glimpse at the possible cover art for my novel, Death Wishing, due our in October from Ig Publishing. It's completely crazy and I LOVE it. My main worry about the new title was that it seemed too grim, but the art takes care of that problem. I think I have finished the requested edits, but I'm going to sit on it for the week in case I think of anything else.

In other, other news, Tim Jones-Yelvington picks up on a suggestion I made on Facebook in his Big Other post, "What's Your Stuff"

Friday, February 18, 2011

"First Anniversary," Story 18

"First Anniversary" went live today. It's based on our real life adventure of having found a guy out in the snow with a broken leg. I'd say almost all of it is true except the end, the car models, and the fact that Dean and I are not quite as old as Linda and Red.

Only one more week of these to go. Also, I think I figured out/fixed most of the large edits for the novel--there were about 25 pages of scenes that needed pov shifts and re-ordering, plus a sex scene that needed better integration. I feel good about how I've solved these problems, but I know I need to do the finesse work now and that means I have to be damned good to myself to reclaim my frame of mind.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Brining The Chronicler and The Courier together in this one. The final story in Curio, "Stickers," depends somewhat heavily on this one.

I like reading "Inking" out loud so I can shout the final 5 lines.

Monday, February 14, 2011

"Seckle"--Sweet Sixteen

"Seckle" appeared in Double Shiny, but then vaporized. Guess they don't archive, which is a drag.The story is an extract from a humongous story I've been writing all my life called "The Temple of Love and Hate." It's about being a kid, then being a grown-up. It sucks, but the title is good and there are five little possum skulls in it. Apparently you can purchase a possum skull for $69 from a vendor called Skulls Unlimited.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

aspiration, ohio

Remember Simon & Garfunkel's "My Little Town"? Story 15 from Curio is my version of that song. "A Closed Throat"

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Two Thirds

"Last Seen Leaving" is the 14th story from Curio. It was originally published in last Summer's Smokelong Quarterly, something I never thought would happen. I have a virtual pile of SLQ rejections, so many that for a long time I refused to "like" SLQ on facebook because it seemed S&M to do so. In fact, I had given up on SLQ, but last February I did a reading at The Big Bear Cafe as part of the Cheryl's Gone series, and when I saw that Art Taylor and Tara Laskowski had braved the icy mounded remnants of snowpocalypse to attend, I did a quick change up, setting the artsy fartsy stuff aside for something more fun and creepy--LSL. At that point Tara was a helper-reader for SLQ, having completed the Fish Fellowship. I don't think she was even on the masthead, but she encouraged me to submit the story. I was shocked when it was accepted, even more shocked to hear that it was a unanimous yes.

I guess that's a boring story.

Dean's working on the ebook version of Curio, btw.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

You Told Me So

I went to AWP and loved it. I was very nervous about meeting Elizabeth and Robert from Ig--they're the ones who are going to put out the novel, now titled Death Wishing, in October. But christ they are great people and christ they love the book. Plus, they seem to know more about it than I do, like what the ending means. We're going to be genuine partners on this trip. We had two great conversations about the book, and one great conversation about hotel detectives, awp murder mysteries, and carl bernstein. Erin Fitzgerald was privy to that one because all parties were in transit, and it was a clog-the-aisle encounter. Afterward Erin said, "what a perfect fit." She's a genius.

I was not nervous about meeting Mike Meginnis, 1/2 of the Uncanny Valley editorial team, mainly because Curio is out the door, yeah. He's a great guy, very cool. Send them your stuff!

Everyone is exactly like they are online except Roxane Gay, Ben Loory, xTx . . . they're just a little different. (Ben said, "I almost knocked over Joyce Carol Oates. Luckily I had the presence of mind to say, 'AAAaaagh!'") Lauren Becker is more like herself than I could have imagined. Mel Bosworth smiles like he knows a secret all the time. Steve Himmer and John Minichillo smile like there are no secrets any more. I feel like I've met Donna D. V and Robert Swartwood before. I have met David Erlewine, but he has new eyeballs. I'm curious to know what everyone expected of Scott Garson. He came home with us Saturday night because he wanted to make an early night of it, but we stayed up late bullshitting. An unexpected delight--meeting award winning poet Marilyn Kallet at dinner with D & L. She gets it, she gets all of it, even though she doesn't have to.

Thanks again to Erin and Ryan Bradley, without whom I would still be hopelessly lost. Ryan stood in one spot for 72 hours, and Erin never lost patience: She sent one particularly helpful text, In goatee alley. Thanks to Art & Tara for carting my ass around. Thanks Beth for being so painfully funny. So far no signs of Brandon's cold. Thanks to Dean for missing me. We don't do stuff apart.
This is my fave AWP photo--it's from the wonderland reading, thurs night: dogzplot/sententia/jmww/wigleaf. That's Danny Collier, Scott Garson, and Beth Cox-Thomas. They are all demonstrating hip hop & urban looks.

Monday, February 7, 2011


This was fun to write.

AWP de-brief coming soon.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

"37 lbs" & AWP madness

Story 12 from Curio went up yesterday and I missed it, mainly because I've been caught up in AWP action. Debriefing yet to come, but last night's Atticus Books Happy Hour at Bourbon was followed by the Smokelong/Corium/Prick of the Spindle reading at The Black Squirrel, and both events were terrific.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

. . . and the hump story is "Moon walk"

The 11th story in the 21 story collection is a streamlined version of "Moon Walk," which originally appeared in the Paycock Press anthology Gravity Dancers: Even more Fiction by Washington Area Women. "Moon Walk" is a straight up ghost story, the longest in Curio. Tomorrow I hit AWP hard, and I'll be armed with postcards to pimp the collection.

Tomorrow night, I'm part of the dogzplot/wigleaf/jmww/sententia offsite reading at the Wonderland Ballroom. Uh huh.