Fiction Circular 7/4/20

A weekly dissemination of fiction writing from around the web.


From Candy’s Monsters: What’s Inside by Candy Korman.

Men always lied about their height the way women always lied about their weight.

~C. Korman, What’s Inside

From Delicious Tacos: The Rage.

Knees go bad and you turn into keyboard Paul Kersey…

~D.T., The Rage

From Flora Fiction: Death Witch by Leon Clifford.

The captured fool looked down and had two realizations almost immediately. One, the bone he could see jutting out of his leg should, in fact, be on the inside of his ankle, and two, it was probably the source of excruciating pain emanating from the lower half of his person.

~L. Clifford, Death Witch

From Literally Stories: Tylen Brackus by Tom Sheehan.

October clouds were raggy and less than unique, filled with promise of the ominous sort, darker than usual, inertia buried in them, as if they were hanging there for a definite purpose.

~T. Sheehan, Tylen Brackus

From Richard Becker: The Sweeper.

“Looks nice,” June hesitated. “Quiet, maybe.”

“Let’s hope not too quiet,” Medford said, thinking of his film again.

~R. Becker, The Sweeper

From Terror House Magazine: The Silent Man by Alfred Kinning.

He didn’t use an alarm clock; he’d woken up at this time every day of his life.

~A. Kinning, The Silent Man

From The Inkwell: Paint Me by Matthew Donnellon.

He would draw out different pictures for her to find when she got home that when put together would reveal the location of her date.

~M. Donnellon, Paint Me

From The Literary Yard: The Empty Azurite by B.A. Varghese.

His thoughts were on more pressing matters. For one, his glass was empty.

~B.A. Varghese

Compiled by Kaiter Enless

Circular 2/1/20

PROSE

From Cajun Mutt Press: Little Hymn In One Part by Mike James.

“Once, he found a perfectly good leather dog leash re-used to wrangle passing clouds.” (James, Little Hymn In One Part)

From Every Day Fiction: Marathon Girl by Tim Boiteau.

“Water station nine. Hydration, raisins, and knives, knives, knives. Knives for slashing, slicing and cutting, for gutting and jabbing, sticking and skewering — for stabbing in the back. The attendant eyes my blood-spattered arm approvingly.

I snatch up another blade. And another.” (Boiteau, Marathon Girl)

From New Pop Lit: Hamburger Hill by John Higgins.

“He took the proffered hand like a hiker’s foot and gently shook it.” (Higgins, Hamburger Hill)

From The Story Hive: Fox, Wolf & Dragon (part one) by R.C.D.

“… she was a giant magical spider, and possibly the creator of the whole world-” (R.C.D., Fox, Wolf & Dragon)


VERSE

From Jane Dougherty Writes: Groundwater by Jane Dougherty.

“… ash falls with small explosions, red / flowers before the grey and dusty end.” (Dougherty, Groundwater)

From The Drabble: Gains by The Cheesesellers Wife.

“What do we gain and gather in all those places we go?” (TCW, Gains)


ESSAYS

From Clint Smith Fiction: Intoning Malone by Clint Smith.


 

A Consideration of Wenclas’ Vodka Friday Night (2019)

Kirk Fannin was the dangerous one– yet for a moment Stacey Shemke was the aggressor. (Wenclas, Vodka Friday Night)

§.00 Karl Wenclas’ short fiction Vodka Friday Night was the first incarnation of what the author has described as the ‘3D Story,’ a self-conscious attempt to generate a new, vitalistic literary model.

§.01 The plot—sharp as a razor—revolves around a rogues gallery operating in the seedy underworld of Detroit after the murder of ruthless gang leader named Lenny Z.

§.02 At the first, the style is breathless, almost entirely (and presumably intentionally) devoid of punctuation save the period mark and the occassional comma and features a interesting utilization of bullet points (1. 2. 3.) to delineate character perspective (which I induce to be the genesis of the 3D label). The brisk yet vivid characterization and punchy, clipped descriptions like “He looked mean, and was.” or “Kirk drove hard. Night fast.” harken back to the pulp neo-noir of the 60s and 70s from magazines like ADAM. However, certain lines stick out like weeds on a manicured lawn, such as, “Kirk knew Lenny Z’s reputation and knew the man was serious. He looked serious. Deadly and serious.” If a man looks serious the reader will internalize it the first time. Other lines appear to have been missed in the editing process, such as, “The opera had been a modern updating-.”

The gunman in the car behind Boyd’s took more deliberate aim, his gloved hand– an expensive yellow soft leather glove– squeezing the trigger red jets of flame glimpsed within the barrel gun kicking a row of shots sent off like hopeful children toward their destination. (Wenclas)

§.03 Despite these minor problems, the overall effect is one of tension, speed and intensity. Its a thoroughly rousing tale of egoism, crime, passion, loyalty and betrayal with a colorful cast of characters, told in sparse, machine-gun’d prose and one which I would highly recommend.

Fiction Circular 10/5/18

With October underway, Halloween swift encroaches — which means a bevvy of horror fiction will be cropping up as a prelude to Samhain festival and fantasy.


INDEPENDENT AUTHORS — SELF PUBLISHED WORK

First up from circular regular, The Dark Netizen, a serialization of microfictions culminating in the unnerving and surreal short, Uninvited Guest 2. Here are all the parts in the series in chronological order:

Cave TripCave Trip 2Uninvited GuestUninvited Guest 2

“Dear uninvited guest, you don’t have the right to refuse my offer…” —Uninvited Guest, 2.


From the excellent Iain Kelly, the humorous microfiction, View Askew.

“Archie heard the ominous creak.

After the dust settled, Agnes poured Winnie a top up. They watched Archie pick himself up and dust himself off, before charging after the small squirrel, profanity turning the air blue.” — View Askew.


From Jhedron, The Dark (excerpt from Revenge Of The Hyrm). A intense, visceral slice of scifi fury.

“Schripp was focused on the eyes of the girl. His sword, razor sharp, a fractions gap from her throat, and then the world exploded. His face was an agony of pierced flesh and his vision was gone.” — The Dark.


From Blogggedit, a new horror story, IT’S OVER. Its little jumbled (we’d recommend a editor) but her concepts are always gripping.

“So how can I stop all this?” Alice pointed towards the broken mirror on the wall of the dance room and said “that’s the exit. Go. Go fast-” — Its Over.


BaronZM Magazine published the amusing fantasy micro, Goblins Nest.

As I picked up the helmet, I started to hear them move in. “No take” said one of the goblins while shaking his club. “I can punt you into sky, Goblin.” — Goblins Nest.


INDEPENDENT LITERARY MAGAZINES

From Terror House, The Bunnies Are Killing Themselves by Adam Matson.

“We hit a squirrel, honey,” said her father.

“Cool!” said 8 year-old Logan. “Do it again!” — The Bunnies Are Killing Themselves.

You ask me they had it coming, given their crass lack of rapprochement, especially the beavers…

From X-R-A-Y, Noose Tattoo by Nick Farriella.

“”He said something about casting his own judgment, that the rope was a reminder.” — Noose Tattoo.


LITERARY EPHEMERA

Dead End Follies (very aesthetically crisp website) has a Book Review of Laird Barron’s mystery novel, Blood Standard (2018). The site’s overall impression is positive, with particular applause for Barron’s complicated characters.

Blood Standard’s best asset is Isaiah Coleridge himself. Career criminals are dime a dozen in literature and they’re too often derivative of the same kind-hearted outlaw archetype. There is some of that in Coleridge, but he’s much more complicated and, let’s say it better crafted character than most. He has personal stakes outside of the job, feuding with his father, who’s also a dangerous and shadowy type, over the death of his mother. He has a personality, you know? Fears and desires that make us bond with him and give a shit when his life is endangered. Coleridge might’ve not chosen this life if he hadn’t been ushered into it by an abusive father a shady uncle. — Dead End Follies.

However, the reviewer also notes that sometimes the old-school pulp vibes Barron goes for don’t always translate well when…

Full disclosure: I had a love/hate relationship with the aura of romanticism around Isaiah Coleridge. Sometimes it made him really cool and larger than life and others where his misplaced tough guy banter made him sound like a 12 year old who’s never got a whooping in his life. It’s an unfortunate side effect of Laird Barron alternating between old school pulp and more of a high brow literary approach throughout Blood Standard, but it didn’t detract from my overall enjoyment of the novel. Truth is, I just love the man’s writing. It speaks to me in a powerful, visceral way. He understands how to write inner darkness better than most and while Blood Standard doesn’t nail that concept constantly, it gets transcendent when it does. — Dead End Follies.

Dead End Follies gives Blood Standard a 9/10.

We have not yet read Blood Standard, but it was a text we were certainly looking forward to and we’ll be publishing a thorough review once we acquire a copy.


Fantasy author, Baron Z. M. announces the launch of his official Patreon account — so if you enjoy his work consider skipping on the expensive lattes and giving him some support.


Library of Nell, published the seasonal poem, After Michaelmas by Nell.

“After Michaelmas, when the bramble turns sour; is when our love is put to bed, smothered by gold. Its last breath is warmth – to guard against the Winter, and the cruelest scratch of cold.” — After Michaelmas.


From the surprisingly good Patreon Blog, How To Make Money As A Writer With 43-Time Published Author Seanan McGuire by Olivia Seitz.

Recently, we stumbled across a excellent book promotion, Indie Books Promo, which is geared to raising the visibility of independent authors (much the same as us). Check them out.


And lastly, to celebrate the advance of October, Alina Hansen offers up A Brief History of Halloween (Samhain).


Thanks for reading. If you wish to support our work publishing and promoting independent works of fiction, you can do so here.


End note: Simply using “professional” in PROFESSIONALLY PUBLISHED as short hand to mean that one’s work was vetted by a individual or individuals (typically an editor) other than themselves.


 

Fiction Circular 9/28/18

INDEPENDENT AUTHORS – SELF PUBLISHED WORK

First up, from Miles To Go Before I Sleep… is the micro, Venom!? by Ramya Tantry.

If a person can be Flash if struck by a lightning or a Spiderman if bitten by a radioactive spider. Then looking at snakes on display, she wondered.

What will a person become if bitten by a snake? Venom!?

— Venom, R. Tantry

From Blogggedit, S For Stairs by Avani Singh.

“I just wanted to get away from that endless darkness…” — S For Stairs.

From ABK Stories, Twenty Eighty-Eight by Alexander Bjørn Kodama.

“By 94 she had thought moving was going to be horrible, but medicine was better now, broke the bank, but it was better. 94 is the new 54; so they say.”

— Twenty Eighty-Eight

From Medium, It Didn’t Have To Be This Way, Ted by J. Brandon Lowry.

“Bring forth the murderer.” — It Didn’t Have To Be This Way, Ted.

INDEPENDENT LITMAGS AND EZINES

From Terror House Magazine, #LoveIsHate by T.J. Martinell. A interesting commentary on the culture of grievance and some of unintended consequences thereof.

“How is it any of your business what I do in my personal life?”

“Like I said, we have a situation here.” — #LoveIsHate

From New Flash Fiction Review (issue 14), Millhouse Again by Paul Beckman.

“Millhouse awoke when the page dropped on him. It was the third time and he got up and dove escaping the next crushing page.” — Millhouse Again.

LITERARY EPHEMERA

Art of Blogging offers up some helpful advice for aspiring professional writers with How To Be A Boss At BLogging When You Have 0 Followers by Cristian Mihai. Not all of Mr. Mihai’s recommendations are one’s with which we agree, but there is much to be gleaned from this rousing post.

“It is your attitude, more than your aptitude, that will determine your altitude.” —Zig Ziglar.


Thanks for reading. If you wish to support our work, you may do so here.

Writing Prompts 9/13/18 – Resolve

#1

He knew the killer was coming for him. Was only a matter of time. Yet, nothing would shake his desire to see the maniac brought to justice.


#2

The men, bestially masked and robed, gathered round and took their prisoners fingers, one by one; wearing him down with every sicking snip. “Where is she?” No answer. Another snip, another question, another pained silence, but for how long?


#3

“Without willful commitment, codes are but empty slogans.”


Thanks for reading.

If you use any of our prompts for a story, tag our admin online on Twitter at @KaiterEnless so we can read and promote them.

Logos Circular 5/19/2017

The Logos Club here presents a brief list of links to some of this weeks most enlightening, amusing and incisive pieces of writing from all across the web.

First up is

How To Make It As A Left-Wing Polemicist

which comes to us from the talented Hubert Collins of Social Matter. The piece is a ironic, caustic how-to list of dos and don’ts for how to become successful as a communist in contemporary Wiemerica. Mr. Collins amusingly notes,

E. Don’t stake out a firm position on immigration policy. While conservatives who oppose immigration are racists, identitarians who favor open borders don’t understand how that depresses wages. Never note both of these things at once–do so separately to hide your uncertainty about what to do about it.

Though one criticism we had of the piece was that he also writes,

F. Do be opaque. Use lots of jargon and obscure references to ensure newcomers won’t be able to just dive in. Throw around lots of words and phrases from grad school like: hegemony, false consciousness, late capitalism, conjuncture, etc.

NRx does precisely this (with good reason) and I’ve not heard much of an outcry about it. Though we here at the Logos are not mind-readers one might perhaps venture to guess that his point of contention was due to the fact that the socialist/post-modernist critic of the left has no precise demographic in mind whilst building his eldritch lexicon and merely does so for affectation and spectacle rather than effective communication.

At any rate it is a highly recommended piece and one that incisively dismantles much of the anti-dem Leftist project.

Next up is

A Quick History of the Russia Conspiracy Hysteria

from the insightful individuals over at EvolutionistX which chronologically details some of the origins of the resurgence of McCarthyite, Russian paranoia within the United States. Brief, but insightful, especially to those who may not follow politics with any regularity. Anon notes,

Russia is bad because they oppose US efforts to install Islamic fundamentalist governments in the Middle East, because they oppose gay marriage, and because taking Crimea is basically the same as Hitler’s invasion of Poland.

Russia is full of hackers. Assange is a Russian agent since he publishes information leaked from the US. Trump is a Russian agent since he opposes war with Russia.

Well… that’s neocon reasoning for you.

STEEL-cameralism v Steel anarchism.

Last up is easily the strangest but most unique entry in the list, Steel-Carmelism vs. Steel-anachism from Imperial Energy, a very interesting site dedicated to historically rigorous political theory (namely, Steel-carmelism). As one might assume from the title, the monograph deals primarily with the similarities and differences between Steel-carmelism and Steel-anarchism to determine which holds more future promise. Sites such as IE are exceptionally valuable as they offer a positive vision rather than merely negative critique (invaluable though it is) like the vast bulk of dissident/reactionary political/philosophical websites one is likely to encounter. Here IE critiques neoreactionary statecraft whilst simultaneously remarking upon the division of powers.

Divided power results in a weak, insecure, central power. This power will, nevertheless, immediately begin to centralise and consolidate its power by subverting, destroying and or absorbing all the other centres of power which prevent it from carrying out its four “feeding” functions. The paradoxical conclusion that neoreactionaries posit, however, is to remove as many barriers as possible for the state to achieve its functions – to have its “feed.”

For its sprawling incisiveness, Logos acknowledges Steel-carmelism vs. Steel-anarchism as its most highly recommended of the week.