Fiction Circular 12/19/20

A weekly dispatch of creative writing from around the web by Kaiter Enless.


From Ceres Eithne: Alongside Fear. A woman, failing to find comfort in therapy and medication, grapples with her increasingly disturbing psychological malaise.

“She had a nightmare last night: a horrifying one that carried small bits of the occurrences she had buried deep down in her heart…”


From Danika’s Memory Box: Dinner. A series of sentimental letters weave a patchwork tale of one man’s dark ruminations.

“I’ve heard rumors that she still loves me. Rumors, rumors, rumors… I don’t know what is true anymore. If she loved me, if she truly loved me then why would she do this? I shouldn’t be here. I shouldn’t…”


From Elizabeth Fiction Writing: The Man On The Train. A unlikely meeting on a train prompts a woman to recall her musical childhood.

 “The memory faded as soon as we were out of the tunnel and I could once again see everything around me. I shook my head as if it would help me clear my thoughts. Surely, the man on the train couldn’t be the same person?”


From Fiction Is Food: Elysium by Gary Jefferies. Two travelers brave a wild land in which a monstrous beast is said to lurk.

“I can see a sorcerers haze where the tracks end. I think it’s Elder Magic, maybe a portal.”


From Fictive Dream: A Meeting in Fitzrovia by Mike Fox. An aspiring writer seeks the advice of a talented poet in a crowded pub.

“The craftsmanship of his generation could speak of an artist’s sensibility, a fact recognised by a number of authors, who took the trouble to write and thank him when the first pristine copies of a book arrived to reward their long hours of effort.”


From Kyro Books: The Carnival by K. T. Rose. A homeless musician’s fortunes change when he encounters a mysterious masked man.

“But what is joy? So dead and coy Just ask this man Who’s still a boy”


From Richard R. Becker: Might As Well Jump. A taciturn boy’s bicycle ride takes a unexpected turn, presaging a series of dire events.

“‘Liam, come quick!’ she hollered. ‘The President’s been shot.'”


From The Inkwell: North Pole by Matthew Donnellon. A humorous Christmas fantasy, reminiscent of the 1964 claymation made-for-TV movie Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.

“The air in the makeshift snow cave was only slightly warmer than the air outside. Luckily, our Elvish DNA kept us from freezing but just barely.”

Advertisement

Fiction Circular 12/12/20

Previous circular


From Autumn Writing: A New Home by Autumn M. Birt. Two gods seek out a craftsman to make them a new world.

“Kummin nudged the hot core of the planet toward the surface of the north. Volcanoes erupted, and high mountains rose. But that only warmed the land a bit and not the air enough, not if he meant it to be breathable to something other than a god.”


From Bristol Noir: The Shooting House by C.W. Blackwell. An outlaw family stumbles upon a secret.

“I was eleven years old when Pops went away.”


From Kelsey Garber: The Living (part I), and, The Living (part II). A young woman and her brother attempt to escape from spirits after a mysterious cataclysm.

“The tiny fog of our making drifted from us and every instinct urged me to snatch the ice from the air before it gave us away.”


From Smorgasbord Blog Magazine: The Snow Globe by Diana Wallace Peach. An old woman’s snow globe provides a gateway to the past, both figuratively and literally.

“‘How long you been with the carnival?’

‘A hundred years,’ he replies softly…”


From Varied Fiction: Weasel of Ore by Conrad Cajgler. An outcast inventor contends with malevolent raiders in a mountainside mining town.

“His work could be started again, once he’d return to the ashes that remained of his home.”

Fiction Circular 12/5/20

A weekly dissemination of independent writing from around the web by Kaiter Enless.


From David T. Wilby: We Are Gargoyle. A tech-savvy vigilante pursues a corrupt politician caught in the machinations of a shadowy corporation.

“He’d tried to be a hero in his own right. First in the army, then the police. All he’d seen was darkness”


From Geoffrey David West: The Model. An aspiring painter struggles with his lack of talent after failing to capture the essence of a mysterious art model.

“Seems to me that for every creative endeavour, whether it’s writing songs, painting pictures, or penning novels, you can learn all the right techniques from the very best teachers, but without some kind of innate talent, you’ll always be useless.”


From Ry-Ter’s Block: Goddess of Spring by Ryan Ludington. A tragic fable.

“When the man was younger – more foolish and rebellious in his ways – he stole the
flower crown veil that belonged to the Goddess of Spring.”


From Tall and True: The Al-Rabie Hotel by Robert Fairhead. A husband on vacation gets more than be bargained for when he encounters a mysterious man with a peculiar proposition.

“He glances up, fixes me with his piercing eyes, smiles and winks. Suddenly I feel scared.”


From Tom Kane: Sentinels. A survivor of an alien invasion looks for other stragglers.

“Time, the scree and the coming night were his enemy, but his nemesis was the invader of his world…”


From TW Iain: If You Only Walk Long Enough. A man finds himself trapped in a strange series of passageways and desperately seeks an escape.

“But there must be a window somewhere. Or maybe a door, one that leads outside. I just haven’t…”


Fiction Circular 11/28/20

A weekly dissemination of independent writing from around the web by Kaiter Enless.


From Boondock Ramblings: The Farmer’s Daughter, Chapter 34 by Lisa R. Howler.

“Cecily looked Molly up and down again, slower this time, her cheeks sucked in slightly. ‘Oh. Well, okay. That’s different. You usually date tall, leggy blonds.'”


From Caliath: Muri Veteres by João-Maria.

“-icy this marriage, this enlightened fatherland of tombs-“


From Colin McQueen: Dramatis Personae by Colin McQueen.

“His face, which in his prime had looked lived-in, now looked as if someone had died there.”


From Friday Flash Fiction: Saturday Stories 11/28/20 (a collection of shorts) by F.F.F.

“Before going to bed each night, five-year-old Sarah Ball would listen to her father read the book she’d long ago memorized, hug him afterwards with all her might, and, as he kissed her forehead and left the room, crawl under her covers and wind back her magic clock twenty-four hours. Tomorrow would be the exact same thing, and she feared she would tire of the routine–but then she thought about what would happen the following day, how her father would be gunned down in the line of duty during a random traffic stop. No. She’d keep using the clock.”


From New Pop Lit: Just Another Silly Love Song by Nick Gallup (whose Mysterious Case of the Sticky Drawer was previously featured in our fiction round-up).

“The number of my single friends was dwindling. One by one, they were taking marriage vows. Once they were married, I became convinced they were plotting to persuade those of us who had not yet taken the leap to join them. I never knew if it was because they wanted us to share their joy or their misery.”


From Odd Fiction: Dragon Jail by Evan Witmer.

“The ceramics are flame retardant so none of the dragons can burn him by shooting their breath between the bars of their cell.”


From Snowy Fictions: Paused by Madeleine Rose Jones.

“Time is continuous, and a working clock never stops ticking. It never pauses, not for anyone. Except for me.”


From Terror House Magazine: As We Forgive Those Who Trespass Against Us by Dawn DeBraal.

“Her training did not prepare her for a faceless, broken woman lying in a ditch.”


From Times & Tides of a Beachwriter: Flat Earth Society by Tidalscribe.

“How could there be life on a ball of earth… people? They would surely fall off.”

Circular 3/27/20

From Caliath, (Droplet) Jupiter, The Loneliest Planet by Joao-Maria.

“I see now a Europe leeched dry of its fortitude.”


From Forward Base B, Trolly Problems on the Island of Sodor by Giovanni Dannato.

“Well, I tried to revive Percy and Henry and the rest, but no one in Sodor makes the parts for them anymore. I’m afraid we’ve lost them, Thomas.”


From Little Tales For Busy Folk, Chasing Memories by Vic Smith.

“When the last of these memories has slipped away from me, what is there left?”


From Meredith Schumann, 2050 by Meredith Schumann.

“She took a deep breath and delved into her pocket. How she longed to know what it had been like in her dad’s day, when every person, near enough, was connected with the world via a small rectangular device they’d keep in their pocket”


From New Pop Lit, Townies by Philip Charter.

“you probably think the Ministry of Sound is a governmental department”


From Shreya Vikram, There Is A Certain Distancing Necessary by Shreya Vikram.

“We know our catastrophe and sing.”


From Spelk, Junk Dumps by Phebe Jewell.

“Like all vigilantes, he has routines and rituals.”


From The Drabble, You Hear A Noise by John L. Malone.

“Those bloody mice, you say, though you’ve seen no evidence of any. It’s nothing, you decide, nothing. House noises. You head back to the bedroom, turn off the lights. Someone taps you on the shoulder.”


The Logos Fiction Circular features work by independent authors of prose fiction. If you have a recommendation of a particular author to cover, feel free to leave a comment and let us know.

Circular 12/25/19 (Yuletide Edition)

Regular readers of the site will be aware that circulars have been few and far between of late. That is not because I’ve discontinued the series, but simply because I’ve been focused on various other projects (namely music composition and writing). With that said—Merry Christmas! to all our readers and supporters.

— K. E., Logos Editor.


LOGOS RECAP

From Matt Wildermuth, four classically inspired poems (Hubris, Prospero, Leaving Ogygia, and Ysatters-Kasja).

From Dan Klefstad Elevens (2001) – an new excerpt from his forthcoming novel, Fiona’s Guardians.

From yours truly, chapters 1 through 15 of The Dauntless Rook (a novella), the remasters of the tracks Suzerainty (a march) and Blood For Butterflies (a organ-driven leitmotif), as well as a new arrangement of the track Legerdemain (a waltz) and a short essay on the etymology of culture.

Additionally, for those interested in downloading site-published tracks, the Logos patreon-exclusive music archive is now live (and will be updated daily).


LITERATURE (verse and prose)

From New Pop Lit, the Tale of the Christmas Bear.

From The American Literary Blog, a republication of a Christmas poem, written by the Virginian, W. G. McCabe during the Civil War.


VISUAL ART

From the always colorful Examining The Odd, a vibrant, eye-catching illustration.

From PMu at the Daily Doodle, a charming Christmas tree sketch.

And a statue of the Roman Sun-God Mithras (whose birthday is Dec. 25th).


MUSIC

For your listening pleasure, a wonderful performance of Rossini’s The Thieving Magpie Overture by Jonathan Scott on the great Willis Organ of Hereford Cathedral. If the title doesn’t sound familiar to you, give it a listen and you might be surprised that you’ve heard (a part of) it somewhere before.


HISTORY & CULTURE

One of the most enduring icons of yuletide in America (and various other places around the world) is Santa Claus. When one thinks of Jolly Ole St. Nick one is likely to conjure an image very similar to that created by the American artist Thomas Nast in 1881, an illustration which Smithsonian Magazine describes as “the face that launched a thousand Christmas letters.”

From SciHub, a fascinating article on the first radio broadcast in the U.S. conducted by Reginald Fessenden on Christmas Eve, 1906.

And lastly, I recently provided the sound-design for a Monologue On Roman Satire by the talented Miss White.


 

Fiction Circular 2/22/19

§00. Editor’s note: links affixed to author/publisher’s name will redirect to author/publisher social media, links affixed to story/article titles will redirect to the site whereupon the named piece is archived. ‘Independent individual authors’ section focuses on lone individuals who publish their own literary work, ‘independent publishing organizations’ section focuses upon independent presses, lit-mags, e-zines and other literary organizations who publish fictive work of multiple authors and ‘literary ephemera’ focuses on non-prose non-fiction literature, such as certain poems, news and art theory articles, reviews, interviews and critiques.


§01. Editor’s note on criteria for inclusion: a publication is considered ‘independent’ if it is self-contained and sustaining, that is to say, if it does not rely upon the staff, organizational prowess or financial backing of large corporations, academies, governments or other large entrenched organizations. For example, Sink Hollow Litmag will not be included on the list, not due to the quality or lack thereof of their work, but rather, because they are supported by Utah State University (and thus, are not independent).


INDEPENDENT INDIVIDUAL AUTHORS

From Byron F. McBride, A Long Night. Reminded me of the first episode of the tv series The Hunger.

The night was over, and I was heading home. Bennett Vandermeer had invited me for dinner, on account of his being featured at the art gallery Pluto-Neon, and his need to shove my face in it.

 

— A Long Night


From The Dark Netizen, a brisk but amusing fractal, Sinking.

The mermaids smile back at the sailors, unaware of the radioactive nature of the submarine’s doomed contents…

 

— Sinking


INDEPENDENT PUBLISHING ORGANIZATIONS

From Defiant Scribe, Grope, by Ian Simons, a surreal comedy concerning the monumental consequences of small happenings.

“The deer gave her a curious grunt as she flew by, and then she continued moving out into a fold in space, a maelstrom amongst the stars that was spinning, smearing old light in the darkness.”

 

— Grope


From Fictive Dream, Solitaire, by Travis Cravey. A flash fiction about mental illness.

“She didn’t say goodnight, or kiss my forehead, or tuck me in. She just kept playing solitaire. Sometimes I could hear her crying. But she never stopped playing.”

 

— Solitaire


From Flash Back Fiction, The Fur-puller, by Peter Burns, a dour, historical fiction concerning a poor, afflicted family struggling in England. Whilst it is somewhat maudlin in a begging-Mr. Bumble-for-gruel kind of way, its also deftly written. The tonally resonant audio-reading accompanying the story further adds to the Dickensian experience.

Mr. Matthews lays the sack on the scales. Rose doesn’t blink, for fear of missing the tilt of it, doesn’t breathe, for fear of losing more than she already has. Billy coughs like he always does, dry and brittle.

 

 

— The Fur-puller


From Reflex Fiction, White Line, by John Brantingham, a brisk flash fiction piece which follows a man’s reflection on violence, basketball, scars and stoicism.

From Storgy, The Perfect Family, by Susan Bloch, a sorrowful tale of a seemingly wonderful family that hides a dark secret. A study of inaction and its consequences.

That was the last time I saw Holly before sirens went off at midnight. Before medics carried out a black bag on a stretcher.

 

— The Perfect Family


From Surfaces, Not Me, by the inimitable Manuel Marrero. A impressive, soaring, dizzyingly baroque debut for the Paul Allen business card of literary websites. * best of the week

American life had subsided into an almost zen-like complacency, the Hegelian end, anathema for the Judeochristian disciples, ripe agency for the monolatrists. But vatic forces were gathering now to disrupt their binary equilibrium.

 

— Not Me


From The Rational Argumentator, The Wales Technique, by Gennady Stolyarov II. The story of a actuary who grapples with the problem of a blank spot in his predictive models. Mr. Stolyarov’s story is quite refreshing, as it is the only scifi story I can remember reading this year that isn’t a grim dystopia.

“The Black Hole… I can see it clearly in the region with fewer data points.”

— The Wales Technique


From X-R-A-Y, Spores, by Lukasz Drobnik. A surrealistic and metaphorical take on the superhero genre. Superb prose.

The monkeys can see her from afar with their laser eyes, their shark-like teeth glistening in the dark.

 

— Spores


LITERARY EPHEMERA

From Adam Lock, Is The Talented Writer A Myth? The short answer is “no,” it is a reduction. For those without preternatural receptivity to literary ends, practice avails. Mr. Lock writers: “Good writing is a talent. This idea has always frustrated me because it is indiscriminate and takes no heed of the hours of hard work a writer puts in to improve their craft.” I would contend that good writing IS a talent (the baseline for all human behavior is genotypic), but it is not only arrived at by way of individual genetic proclivity (ie. where sociality comes into play). Regardless of whether you agree or disagree with the premise which Mr. Lock attempts to untangle, his piece is well worth a read (especially if one happens to be a author or would-be author).

-is there is a distinction between mindless repetition and deliberate practice.

 

— Is The Talented Writer A Myth


From The Arcanist, It Cost Ray Bradbury $9.80 in Dime To Write ‘Fahrenheit 451,’ by Josh Hrala, a historical-philosophical piece concerning how it was that Ray Bradbury came to write his well-known science fiction novel, Fahrenheit 451 (originally titled, The Fireman) on a dime-rented typewriter. One of the reasons the piece stands out is its focus on work ethic (and the lack thereof amongst the writerly class); a topic which the author notes in the opening,

“There’s this false notion among non-writer folk that in order to sit down and write a novel, conditions must be perfect. As if writers have to perform a series of rituals designed for channeling an elusive, just-out-of-touch muse. Writing only by candlelight after sipping Colombian espresso on Thursday mornings while wearing a smoking jacket and facing true north, for example.”

A excellent piece. Highly recommended reading, especially for would-be authors.

I got a bag of dimes and settled into the room, and in nine days I spent $9.80 and wrote my story; in other words, it was a dime novel.”

— Ray Bradbury


Thanks for reading.

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

Fiction Circular 2/5/19

Editor’s note: Links affixed to author/publisher names will redirect to author/publisher social media; links affixed to story/article names will redirect to the named story/article.


INDEPENDENT AUTHORS

First up, Andrea Nicosia published a untitled short story concerning a dream.

A dire battle, and I was fighting. — A. Nicosia

Jason Simon published, On Returning, a fever dream rumination on social isolation and personal transformation.

-my heart no longer felt affection for these alien people and their barbaric rituals, their trivial matters of fleeting importance or their malevolent, false gods. — On Returning

Noah J. Wayne published the long-form short story, Convict. A story of one woman struggling within a partially automated prison. Highly recommended.

“Five minutes have been added to your sentence due to disobedience,” the guard said. — Convict

Sara Codair published Are We Like The Phoenix? A steampunk flash-fiction concerning volcanoes and time-travel. Whilst the plot and characters were interesting, it suffered from the perennial problem which afflicts nearly all flash fiction: being too short.

Even over the rhythmic growl of the ships engine, Lisbeth heard thousands of micro gears churning away. Of all the arcane devices she possessed, this one was the most powerful. — Are We Like The Phoenix

Stumbled across Vic Smith‘s 2018 short story, Caged, a gritty crime thriller.

He’d got Frank out of Dartmoor, and had to stand guard over him in this dingy flat and wait for orders.

They hadn’t come. Whatever the plan had been, it had failed. — Caged


INDEPENDENT PUBLISHERS

From Cheap Pop, Sanctus Spiritus, 1512 by Sarah Arantza Amador.

The camp cried and prayed, and she sat in her cage, focused on the smell of sea brine and the cook’s meaty neck. — Sanctus Spiritus, 1512

Also from Cheap Pop, Still Life With Prairie, 1860, by Natalie Teal McCallister.

Little girls be brave, brave as your mother. Little boys be meant for the earth, let your blood water the prairie and come alive again in the red of sunset. — Still Life With Prairie

From Coin Man Stories, Puzzles, Part 1, by José Alves de Castro.

– And now, for 200 points: Find the difference!

The audience stared excitedly as the contestants probed into the two universes looking for anything that might be different, each of the contenders searching differently for the tiniest changes. — Puzzles, Part 1

From Flash Fiction Magazine, Dead by Joe Cappello.

Martin Aurely was dead inside. It wasn’t physical, but a persistent feeling that there was no feeling. Where there is no feeling, there can be no life. — Dead

From Hagstone Publishing, Let Me In by Michelle Simpkins.

She can deal with the fingertips scuttling over the glass window of her front door. She can pretend they are tree branches scraping the house. She doesn’t mind the muddy footprints on the porch. If she doesn’t look too closely in the morning, she can tell herself an animal visited during the night.

It’s the voice that sends her diving under the blankets with crawling skin and clenched teeth. — Let Me In

From Jokes Review, Tropicana On Steroids by Sean Trolinder.

“You don’t drink juice from a needle.” — Tropicana On Steroids

From New York Tyrant Magazine, I Called Shotgun When You Died by Christopher Kennedy.

I come to understand eventually: There is no sun. There are no stars. The coast is never clear. — I Called…

From Reflex Press, Night Swimming by Susan Carol.

She could not swim but we still swim for her. Search the ocean for her and find her only at night. — Night Swimming

From Spelk Fiction, Roachburn, 1908 by Neil Campbell.

In the village of Roachburn, all blinds are drawn. The pregnant woman cries night and day. Another woman cries. A mother and an aunt cry too, behind walls buffeted by winds across the moorland. — Roachburn, 1908

From Terror House, Moments, Part 1 by Chika Echebiri.

I feel my shoulders slump as I begin to weep softly, thinking that Richard could be lying helplessly somewhere, seriously wounded or even dead. — Moments, Part 1

From X-R-A-Y, Blood! by Oliver Zarandi.

I remember, he says. Your life is one filled with tragedies. I may order another soup. — Blood!

LITERARY EPHEMERA

From Ghost City Press, Bird Bereavement by Alisa Velaj.

Morning was slow to come,
with a lonely canary in the other cage,
now facing the empty one in front.
Oh, how long we waited for our canary to sing!


Thanks for reading.

If you have recommendations for inclusions in the next LOGOS fiction circular, or wish to submit work to LOGOS, feel free to contact our administrator.

If you wish to support our work, you can do so here.

Fiction Circular 1/24/19

“Substitute ‘damn’ every time you’re inclined to write ‘very;’ your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.” — Mark Twain

INDEPENDENT AUTHORS

First up, Peter Midnight from The Storyhive.

The wings of the angel might belong to the angel of death… — The Storyhive, Peter Midnight

From the inimitable J. Brandon Lowry, the short story, The Dredger (2018), a peculiar tale of a reckless scientist tasked with investigating a dangerous bat cave. Its a fascinating tale (especially since I can’t ever recall reading a story that made guano scary) and exceptionally well written, as ominous as it is uplifting. Considering that it is an abridged version of the story it will be interesting to read the unabridged version whenever it comes out.

“-it is within such tales that we stare death in its cold, empty eyes and rejoice that we are indeed still alive.” — J. Brandon Lowry, The Dredger

Also well worth reading, Break Up, Break Down, & Break Face by , a moving story of betrayal, loss and the value and rarity of loyalty.

“No,” she said.

It took a moment for the words to sink in. This wasn’t right. That’s not how it goes. I opened my mouth to say something. Anything. Nothing came out. I closed my mouth. Opened it. Closed it. Like a fucking Hungry Hippo. Grasping for the right words. The plastic pill to change her answer.

“Get up. You’re making a scene. And put that thing away,” the disgust on her face was plain to see. — P. Blake, Break Up…

And lastly, Between The Stars by Sable Whisper, a gripping, slow-boiling space-thriller.

The twenty-four crewmembers of Icarus-3 were all dead.

Telemetry from their personal monitors no vital signs, but the ship’s own systems had been locked, so even Control could not gain access; no remote control or data capture would be possible. Only its location was available, one of the few things almost impossible to conceal from Command.

And so, the case had fallen to me. — S. Whisper, Between The Stars

INDEPENDENT PUBLISHERS

From 101 Words, The Tome by Justin Williams. Excellent flash fiction.

“I’m in this book…?”

“Everyone is.” — J. Williams, The Tome

From X-R-A-Y, Jon Berger debuts his heady short story, Plant Replant detailing the psychosis of drug culture.

“The next morning I’m driving back to my Grandmas still high and cozy, speeding down the bumpy road in my 98’ Bonneville with too many miles on it. Gridded up farm fields on all sides. These giant white windmills were being built in the middle of the fields to collect energy. Looking like Godzilla seagulls waving around lost with nothing to break.” — J. Berger, Plant Replant

From Terror House Magazine; Punchline by Michael Carter. A delirious and beautifully written piece of flash fiction.

Perhaps an office worker could awaken from uneasy dreams to find himself transformed into an insect; perhaps a jilted girl’s unhappiness could flood the world with tears. — M. Carter, Punchline

LITERARY EPHEMERA

Wrestling reviewer and short fiction author, Baron Zach M., announces that his novel is well-underway. We’re looking forward to reading it.

The true-crime film Gosnell, which follows the trial of serial killer abortionist, Kermit Gosnell, hit #1 in New Drama on Amazon; a book of the same name is available on Amazon. Gosnell crimes received very little coverage and even after he was put away, few enough know his name or deeds which was likely a consequence of the political atmosphere which looked upon any vocal opposition to abortion as being against women (and since most of Gosnell’s “patients” were black, one was likely to be called not just a woman-hater, but a “racist” as well). It is therefore fortunate that this sordid episode has received such a thorough treatment, that it may better elucidate many of the frequent (and frequently unremarked upon) horrors of the abortion industry and those who aid and abet it.

Lastly, Mick Ryan has a fascinating article up concerning the usefulness of sci-fi to real-world military thought and practice.

Reading science fiction reinforces the enduring nature of war.  Finally, science fiction permits us to test the principles of war in force design.  Based on two millennia (or more) of human conflict, science fiction can provide another framework to assess the continuing value of these principles, and the enduring nature of war as described by Clausewitz.  — M. Ryan, Science Fiction, JPME & The Australian Defense College

END NOTES

Thanks for reading. We’re always happy to take recommendations for authors and publishers to include in our weekly circular, if you know any, feel free to email us (logosliterature@yandex.com) or write to the site administrator directly.

If so inclined, you can support our work here.

Fiction Circular 1/21/19

Circular Notes: Fiction Circular is focused on unearthing, presenting, congratulating and critiquing the best in new, independent fiction. By independent, we mean small presses, litmags and e-zines (with a particular, though not exclusive, focus on American works). Work is separated into three categories: Independent Authors (which covers self-published prose-works), Independent Publishers (which covers work from self-sufficient sites that feature the work of independent authors) and Literary Ephemera (which covers everything that isn’t prose-fiction, ie. poetry, experimental works, literary reviews, news, etc). If you know a piece, author or site of literature that you think we should include in our circular, do let us know, either through our email (logosliterature@yandex.com) or via the social media account of our admin (Kaiter Enless).

INDEPENDENT AUTHORS

Nothing to report.

INDEPENDENT PUBLISHERS

X-R-A-Y published LAND SPEED by Alex Evans.

“On October 24th, 2011, Oscar Valentine broke the land speed record riding his Schwinn through a suburb outside of Madison, Wisconsin. People said that this was impossible, that Oscar Valentine, being neither a professional high-speed driver nor a legal adult at the time of the achievement, could not have exceeded 760 miles per hour.” — LAND SPEED, A. Evans.

From Terror House Magazine, Cannae (2019) by Proteus Juvenalis, a gripping and emotional tale of an unhappy and unfulfilled life and a fantastical flight from it. Mr. Juvenalis displays a unique prose style which mixes crisp minimalism with biting social commentary. He follows one of the best rules for short stories: omit needless words, as a consequence, we’d highly recommend his work.

“College-degreed, underemployed, on the wrong side of thirty. The scorn of my fellow American. Yeah, fuck you too.” — Cannae, P. Juvenalis.

North-Californian literary journal, Jokes Review has released Issue 5, featuring both prose-fiction and poetry.

“It’s my ritual,” he told Kurt the night he set fire to his first Applebee’s. “It helps me really hear the record.” — Thomas Burned Down The Applebees But The New Record Sounds Amazing, Kevin Sterne.

LITERARY EPHEMERA

Avani Singh of Blogggedit published a collection of her horror stories in the Kindle-available volume, Existence: They Do Exist (2019). I’m not really sure what to make of the name. Those who wish to support independent horror authors you can pick up a copy of her book through Amazon Kindle.

Alina Hansen announces work has begun on her first novel and promises future updates on the process.

Seasoned horror writer Laird Barron announces the definitive release date of book two of the Coleridge Series, Black Mountain.

Thanks for reading.

If you enjoy our work you can support us here.

If there are any authors or publications you think should be included in the next circular, feel free to let us know in the comments.

Fiction Circular 9/14/18

For writing circular recommendations, drop us a line at: logosliterature@yandex.com.

Editor’s note: Flash/microfiction length pieces which forms part of a continuous series that goes beyond the length of a flash fiction will be included either under the SHORT STORIES or NOVELLAS & NOVELS sections, depending on the length of the series in totality; they will not be included in the flash section from here on out given that they are only a portion of the whole story and not a true flash/microfiction unto themselves.


FLASH FICTION

Richa Sharma of iScriblr published the appropriately scribbly short fiction fragments, Fahrenheit 451 and Million Dollar Baby as part of a literary challenge to create a story in only three lines. In my opinion, she did a sterling job of it. If you’re a new fiction writer looking for practice, look up her form and try your hand.

“We’ve got 24 hours before they burn them all down! Hurry up!”

The literary journal, Gone Lawn published Empire of Light by the talented and charming Melissa Goode. The short piece is brisk and uplifting as her prose.

“We are a blip in time and space, nothing compared with matter and history, but that does not diminish a single thing about us.”

From Ellipsis ZineThe Axolotl by Rebecca Field. A sad but powerful shortform tale which encapsulates the maxim, “you never know what you have til its gone.” In this instance, life.

“I remembered the axolotl. Some creatures aren’t meant to grow up.”

 of Miles Before I Go To Sleep… recently published Finish The Story: The Art Student. As the name implies, Ms. Tantry’s story is as-yet incomplete; the point of the post is to see how other fiction writer’s build off of her existing microfiction. Its a pretty fascinating tale so far (and getting fairly lengthy so I suppose I could have also placed this in ‘short stories’) concerning art and magic, a burned man, Dante’s Inferno and a pact with a ‘crossroads demon.’ Some writers have already made flash contributions, including circular regular, The Dark Netizen. Go check it out and – if you’re a fiction author – consider trying your hand.

The man removed all his clothes. It was clear that the melted skin was pretty much all over and not a hair grew out of it. Standing on the platform his head brushed the ceiling tiles.

Amy couldn’t resist asking him “Your skin, were you born like that or….” She couldn’t finish the question, but he answered anyway, it’s what most people asked him.

“No, I was a firefighter, at 9/11. I was caught in a fireball.” He could say it now, seventeen years later, without breaking down.

Speaking of The Dark Netizen, he’s been busy with some poetry as well as the moody flash fiction tale, Another Dark Day.

“This fog can be wiped off with a quick sweep of my hand. I wish removing the clouds in my life was as easy.”


SHORT STORIES

Avani Singh of Blogggedit, who we covered in our last installment, made good on her promise to deliver consecutive slices of horror literature with the final installments of her memorably titled, ‘Weirdo Elevator’ series. Below we’ve provided the series in its entirety:

WEIRDO ELEVATORPart 1Part 2Part 3Part 4Part 5Part 6Part 7 [FIN]

“Only 24 hours of my life were left…”

From Burning House Press, Wisconsin by songstress, Sam Lou Talbot, whose fleeting, fragmented narrative is compelling but a little too scattered. Whilst beautifully written I wonder if it might have worked better as a song with the music filling in the narrative gaps in the story. Also from Burning House, Bomb Nostalgic by Mauricio Figueiras; a tale of Hollywood-backed filming of nuclear bomb tests in the wastelands of Nevada. Smacks of Don Delillo.

“His bronchial and alveolar tubes have been replaced with an expanding nuclear mushroom that eats up the entire thoracic cavity.”

From Terror House Magazine, The Manipulators by Jake Belck whose prose reminds me strongly of a less manic Bret Easton Ellis. A tale with many lessons for those with the eyes to see and the best of the week.

“See ya around,” were the last words to his wife of seven years before Leo cut the call.

From Idle Ink, Selling Caramel Turtles at the Concessions is Only Going to Confuse Visitors as to the Intended Use of the Reptile Ones in the Tanks by David S. Atkinson. Which is, as far as I can remember, the single longest title I have ever seen for a short story in my entire life (not that I’m complaining, mind you).

“This is the inner workings side of the zoo. We’re on our way to see the Elephant Lord.”


NOVELLAS & NOVELS

Seen a promo for a teen urban-fantasy romance novel titled, Imminence: Book 2, by Kat Stiles. Now, I’m not knocking the content of the book, I haven’t read it – seems to be quite good if the plethora of 5 star reviews are anything to go by – but the cover gave me a hearty laugh.

Dm_DQcmUcAAYfuU.jpg
Vampiric NSYNC member Sam Harris stalks pre-sellout Jennifer Lawrence in this riveting tale of romance and revenge.


LITERARY EPHEMERA

Neha Sharma of Literary Lemonades published, The Damsel In Distress, an apt criticism of the eponymous trope. It bares noting, however, that though her criticism is spot-on, the trend in fiction, literature, film and TV seems to be consistently away from the-damsel-in-distress and more towards The Mary Sue (any female lead who is good at everything to an absurdist degree and typically displays masculine traits). Ms. Sharma delineates the trope and breaks it down further into three sub-categories.

  • Bushy-haired, bespectacled (optional) shy girl who prefers books over male attention, only to transform later into a gorgeous diva for the hero, who understandably becomes the first ever man in her life.

  • A smokin’ hot girl from an academic background. She is unaware of her good looks and would finally make the hero fall in ‘true love’ for the first time.

  • An introvert girl who has clearly suffered some trauma in the past and she cannot trust anyone anymore. She finally meets our jolly-good hero who saves the day.

My summation is that both the mary-sue and damsel-in-distress tropes (when used a a focal point for a character) are around equally efficient at generating unbelievable and fairly boring fictional persons. Now, as ever, 3D characters are key.

STORGY landed an interview with James Frey (who wrote I Am Number Four with Jobie Hughes under the pseudonym Pittacus Lore) that delved into bibliophilia, literary criticism, bad press coverage and what is most important to a fiction author.

Q: “Do you think that honestly, that you sold out at some point?”

FREY: “I don’t know right? I actually had a tonne of fun doing Pittacus Lore and doing End Game. In some ways I don’t think it’s a sell out because it’s the least likely thing anyone ever expected me to do-“

Lastly, gnOme published the aesthetically engorged NEMO by X. Looks promising.


Thanks for reading. If you should wish to support our work publishing and promoting independent, controversial and unsigned fiction authors, you can do so here.

Fiction Circular 9/7/18

We’re always open to ideas on sites to cover for future installments, so if you know a good writer or collective, let us know via logosliterature@yandex.com


FLASH FICTION

Ramya Tantry of the whimsical writing site, And Miles Before I Go To Sleep… published The Mist, a surreal micro-fiction about (as you might have guessed) a peculiar mist and (as you probably didn’t guess) a lucky garden gnome.

Run, the mist is descending.. Run for your life“, cried Stu.

The poisonous mist was settling on his skin causing blisters. He was in tremendous pain and was in desperate need of water to wash the mist away. But he was unable to move. Poor visibility due to mist was creating hindrance in searching others.

He cried for help. He called for his friends. But no help arrived. As the mist started to clear he could see the bodies of his friends. He saw some of his friends on the other side of the fence crying their heart out.

I bring good luck. I am a good luck charm. I am the protector. Why I am being killed?“, Stu – the Garden Gnome wondered.

Certainly a evocative beginning to a tale, the only question: what happens next? Did Stu survive his ordeal? What is the mist and how did it become poisonous? Where did it come from? Perhaps we shall find out in another installment.

Curiously, The persistently consistent Dark Netizen also published a flash fiction entitled The Mist (presumably both he and Ms. Tantry were inspired by the same writing prompt). His story differs from Ms. Tantry’s in that there are no gnomes, but rather, considerably more giant spiders. Really not sure which situation is preferable…

Newcomer Avani Singh of the horror fiction site Blogggedit published a horror story memorably titled Weirdo Elevator. The story of the strange elevator and the terrifying smile continues in Why? Why Don’t You Leave Me? and is further elaborated upon in part 3, NOW YOU SEE ME! One thing I quite enjoyed about blogggedit’s posts is the usage of disquieting photography throughout, that both fit and intensified the narrative. We’ll be covering the rest of the series once we finish reading it and are definitely interested to see her work develop and progress.


SHORT STORIES

Worth reading from Jellyfish Review, When God Closes A Door by Kathryn Kulpa.

“I could picture the droop of his thinning hair, his hangdog eyes, as he realized the terrible sort of person I was. Like that song that says you always hurt the ones you love, but that wasn’t me. I hurt people I kind of liked-“

Nell begins the first chapter of a series titled The Angelic Conversation. A tale of convening with celestial beings.

angelic-alphabet1.jpg

“The social media app, which had in recent times, become her refuge. Another world she could escape to and be someone else – or perhaps just another version of herself, which was usually carefully concealed in her day job as an archivist.”

A tale of the freedom inherent to anonymity; no nagging questions from friends and co-workers; but are such relationships built as a stage or are they a potential alternative avenue of human connectivity, as real and genuine as talking to John upon the street? And who is this John anyway? I suppose we shall find out in her next installment.

We got around to reading more from OddMadLand’s back-catalog and delved into Ardency and Hysteria, the peculiar tale of a poet, Ren, who, believing himself a bird jumps to his “death” and, under perpetual transformation and internal turmoil, contemplates becoming his own planet and what life upon himself would entail.

“It was reported that the photographer and poet ended his life at the age of twenty-nine, but what they did not know is that he never hit the ground after jumping to his death. Instead the sky fell, and as it went down he went up.”

Like all of the stories at OddMadLand, Ardency and Hysteria is stylish, experimental and dense with symbolism. Highly recommended.

Terror House Mag’s Working The Night Shift by Daniel Bretton has a good premise – a depressed, wayward hall monitor seeing something or someone late at night, or at least he thinks did; this realization then causing total life-reassessment. Life, he realizes, is stranger than fiction, or something (it isn’t really laid out very well how this event changed his perspective, though the set up is well-done). However, this interesting premise is undercut by clunky prose which almost always tells rather than shows. Additionally, the story raises a few philosophical questions (the author snipes at dogmatic materialism (qua Dawkins et al.) and states – rightly – that what is true is not constrained by dogma, personal or collective; “if something is real it can take the pressure [of investigation]”) but doesn’t follow through with this idea, which makes the story feel, unfortunately, rather half-finished.

“In the modern day, the scientific and educational establishments have turned to a dogmatic materialism. No deviation from this premise is tolerated, with researchers and scientists putting their careers at risk by pursuing wider areas of research. Yet, to paraphrase a figure Burke otherwise has little use for; “if something is real it can take the pressure.” The strange, extraordinary, and yes, spiritual aspects of the universe do not simply cease to exist because post-enlightenment men choose to ignore them.”

Also from Terror House Mag, My Shinning Boy by Patty Fischer.

John Siney, whose work we’ve covered previously (The Ghost Of A Flea), has released an extract of his 2016 novel, A Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Woman. All I can say thus far is that it is splendidly written, amusing and hold’s too high an opinion of Pollock (who was dreadful).


NOVELLAS & NOVELS

Nothing to report; still working through The White Lioness (Kurt Wallander #3) by Henning Mankell.


NOTABLE NON-FICTION WORKS

Lastly, though not a prose fiction work, Disappearance and Assembly – Extract by David J. Roden is well worth a read.

“-only the speaker, the human, has any place on the stage-“


Thanks for reading!

If you wish to support our work and help promote independent fiction authors, you may do so here. If not, you’re welcome, its free.