Fiction Circular 1/31/19

“All words are pegs to hang ideas on.” – Henry Ward Beecher

INDEPENDENT AUTHORS

The Dark Netizen published a installment in his on-going flash fiction horror series.

Part 1- Twittering Tale: Campfire

Part 2- Flash Fiction: Boots

Part 3- Flash Fiction: Stay Out

Part 4- Flash Fiction: Into The Woods

Part 5- Flash Fiction: Into The Woods 2

Part 6- Flash Fiction: The Woods

Roger and Gary heard their friend’s cries for help coming from the woods.

— The Woods

Next, Ventures Heart by Westley Nash, from his personal website, Thoughts of Steel. The form of the short story is unusual in that it is written more akin to a play than a typical prose work, however there is a reason for this, as the entire story is relayed via the transmission logs of a one Captain Taylor of the colonial ship, Venture’s Heart.

This is Captain Taylor of the colonial ship “Venture’s Heart” recording my final log prior to our departure towards the Perseus system. I am pleased to say that we have a clean sheet! Not that I want to tempt fate of course, but all in all the first stage of this mission has been a resounding triumph. — Ventures Heart

Stacey Chesters published her debut novel, To Play With Sadness, on Amazon in both Kindle and paperback editions.

Synopsis:

A story of music and memory… 
a forgotten daughter wants to help her father to remember who she is after over 20 years of silence.

The fear of not being recognized.

INDEPENDENT PUBLISHERS

From Jokes Review, The Racoonist by Lee Blevins, wherein Mr. Blevins proves himself quite an agile, energetic and off-kilter humorist.

Rex considered himself quite animal-friendly but his instincts and training were violence personified and PETA wouldn’t like it if I told you what he did to that critter after it bit him. — The Racoonist

From 101 Words, Emma’s Ghost, a ghastly piece of flash fiction from Gudrun Roy.

“What is it, Emma?” I asked, finding her at the front door. “Stop screaming; it’s okay.”

“Ghost!” Emma yelled, hysterical. She pointed to the warped panel of glass in the door-frame; a pale, hazy stranger hovered just behind it. — Emma’s Ghost

From The Stray Branch, Family Tree by Dan Klefstad, a grim and captivating tale of vampiric lust.

Childbirth hurts because a woman’s organs force a living thing from her body. It’s a pity mortals don’t feel this pain more often. — Family Tree

From X-R-A-YDomestic Terrorist by Meeah Williams. A distinctively styled short story, as humorous as it is fragmented and perplexing.

“Do you happen to know where this train is headed?” He said, “No. But wherever it’s going I hope they serve hamburgers there.” — Domestic Terrorist

From Terror House Magazine, MadDog78 by A. Elizabeth Herting, a sad and moving tale of troubled man in failing health. A peeling away of simulacrum.

One of the best short stories I’ve read in a very long time.

Whenever she asked him for a picture, he’d send one at least five years old or make excuses about why he couldn’t take a new one. He knew he was being dishonest, but he didn’t want to scare away the only woman he’d ever loved. MadDog78 was his link to a possible future—or any kind of happiness—and he wasn’t about to screw it up with reality. — MadDog78

LITERARY EPHERMA

Completed the illustrated novel Goblin Slayer (Vol. I) by Kumo Kagyu (which inspired the comic and animated series of the same name). The book recounts the tale of a man obsessed with exterminating goblins in a cliche-ridden tabletop-inspired fantasy world (the gods are capricious beings who control the characters in the story by rolling dice, not unlike players in a D&D campaign). Rather than the mythic heroes one typically expects to find in high fantasy works, the titular Goblin Slayer is more like a janitor, who does the dirty and seemingly trivial work which, out of pride and indolence, his compatriots refuse. Originality by way of cliche. Better than expected.

“Imagine that one day your home is suddenly attacked by monsters. They swagger into your village like it belongs to them. They kill your friends, they kill your family, they loot your home. Imagine that they assault your sister. They torture her, they rape her, they kill her. They desecrate the bodies of your family, do whatever they want, cackling all the while. And you see it all from where you’re hidden, trying not to breathe. How could you ever let that go? So you get a weapon, you train yourself, you learn, you grow. Everything you do is to help you take revenge. You search them out, hunt them down, you fight, you attack, and you kill them and kill them and kill them and kill them. Sometimes things go well, and sometimes they don’t. But each time you ask—how will I kill them next time? What’s the best way to kill them? Day after day, month after month, that is all you think about. When you get a chance, of course you test every idea you have. And when you’ve been doing all that long enough… You start to enjoy it.” — Goblin Slayer

The American Literary Blog published a wonderful piece on the love poems of American writer, Albert Pike.

I am the soul of the Universe,
In Nature’s pulse I beat;
To Doom and Death I am a curse,
I trample them under my feet.

Creation’s every voice is mine,
I breathe in its every tone;
I have in every heart a shrine,
A consecrated throne.

— Albert Pike

Lastly, from Rachelle Gardener, Tightening Your Writing, a brisk and insightful guide to shearing away superfluous words in a text. She follows a lot of time-tested advice such as omitting excessive use of passive voice (indicated by words such as “was,” “were,” and, “that”). Seasoned writers

Thanks for reading.

If you have any recommendations for writers or outlets you think should be included, feel free to let us know.

If you wish to support our work publishing and promoting independent fiction authors and publications, you can do so here.

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.


 

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.