Saturday, November 22, 2008

In a year's time

Oughta update this. Let’s see, in the past year, published some stuff here and there. Started a new zine, called Lit Up Magazine. Links to other great zines here. What else, oh yeah, wrote some books. Made a lot of new friends, some are on myspace, some on facebook. If you’d like to add a comment, tell me what you been up to. Thanks.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Golden Age of Literature

We are living in the golden age of literature. Never before in the history of man has writing played such an essential role in all facets of our lives. Included in this, is a revival of poetry as has never seen before. Led by guru Rob Plath, and including Tony O’Neill, Justin Hyde, and so many many more great great poets all over the net and right at your fingertips. Here’s one of the best.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

What's New

Added a list of great blogs in the links section; check ‘em out. Also added links to some of my stories/poems at my name. Started a new blog at Kos - for lit news, events, websites, info, whatever. Anyone can add to it, so please do. Found another great story to recommend - Fernando's Hideaway by Joseph Ridgwell. This is straight-forward hilarious, lemme know what you think.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Great Story

Rusty Barnes has written a great story. Read it at Small Spiral Notebook. Why is it great? Well, not only does it move, it moves the reader. You have to take a stand on the issues he raises, and be able to support your position. You have to learn from this story. Like Freddy Mercury, it’ll rock you. On a personal note - been there, done that, and its tough.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007


What’s missing is reality; or the ability to explain it. Consider, at all times - who you are and what you’re doing - the reasons for being and doing. There has to be a purpose, a ‘ground’ as Heidegger would say. And it has to be defined by each of us, according to Sartre. Thus reality would be the continuous explication of your own purpose. Note: Heidegger, Sartre are referenced only as craftsmen of reasonable process. 2nd note: please advise if I’ve left something out.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Some Favorites

A masterpiece is a benchmark, the best of. They say this is purely subjective, a matter of preference, of taste. They’re wrong. It’s clearly objective, constant, and universal. Like the sun, it shines. Favorite short story - THE LITTLE ROBOT by Bill Ectric. Can’t show and tell ‘cause it’s not available on-line. But it’s a great story. Some great writing that is on-line - excerpt from Brett Savory’s The Distance Travelled. While we’re at it, how ‘bout a great song - TV Child by 99 Burning. Words, music, clear vocals, so deep bass and thumping drum beats, lilting guitar. Yes John, it’s a pretty song; a great song.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Short Reviews

There’s some great fiction, great short stories on the internet. Many you can access fer free. To help find them, I’ll be reviewing some of the best. Will also take the opportunity to discuss what makes a great story.

FLUFF AND BUTTONS by Matt Smith is currently at ChiZine. Editor Brett Savory calls it “one of my favorites in a while.” That’s saying something. To me, it’s well worth reading but for different reasons.

The most intriguing, unique aspect of the story is the circular nature of the struggle. One species preys on another; kills them for nesting material. It’s a natural function, apparently done without animosity. Simply part of reproducing, maintaining the flock. But of course the others try to survive by killing the offspring of the first. An interesting dilemma.

Another marvelous twist is the circular way in which Smith treats the genre. In a speculative fiction setting, his characters could be anyone, anything. Androids, ancient middle-earth elves, Saturn moon dwellers; but they’re not. They’re teddy bears. Rather like care-bears gone bad. I wonder if the author isn’t taking a jab at the very genre he’s writing in.

But I don’t know or understand genre. Don’t know why the concept exists, what purpose it serves. The only genre’s that interest me are good writing and bad writing. Fluff and Buttons fits into the first category. Smith has done an excellent job of creatively re-inventing an important theme. Perhaps that’s the function of speculative fiction.

THE TEACHER by Paul Tremblay, is a paradigm. This is what a short story should be. This is what the ‘now style’ of writing is. Writing of course, is the key ingredient to writing. I want, need a story to tell me something, move me, make me feel something. But none of that’s gonna happen if I can’t read it. And...y’know, I quit reading a lot of stories...because of the writing.

Tremblay’s story actually hurt my feelings - didn’t know if I could write that well. But it also taught me a lot. If you wanna be a writer, try to live up to a certain standard. Make what you write...a polished, finished work of art.

More to it than that though, more than just fine writing. Matthew Tait of HorrorScope says “I’d be lying if I said I completely understood it...” But to me, the story is one of those societal cogs we need to get to know. Perchance we Westerners have no reference point for marking childhood’s end. Maybe we’re a society of overindulged perpetual adolescents.

Tremblay makes a definitive statement. Comes a time when school’s out, and... teachers, adults, longer have the answers. THE TEACHER is also at Chizine (archived). Is this a pattern? Well, good fiction is where you find it. There’s an interview with the author here.

A FACE TO AVENGE by George Karimalil is powerful stuff. Punches you in the stomach, knocks the breath out of you. Obviously every story can’t do that; and obviously you wouldn’t want them too. But when one does, you have to take note.

Set in the tumultuous years (aren’t they all tumultuous years?) but this during Gandhi’s march to free India from British colonialism. As if you were there - beaten, kicked, bloodied by the troops. As if you were - slave, bonded servant, suddenly seeing a light of freedom; after all those years, generations, centuries.

Dr. Karimalil doesn’t write much adult fiction. I think he’s published a number of children’s books which are widely read in India. But this one story is well worth the read, worth taking note of. Not just the writing, the excellent story, but that it’s important. Important to read, to know; it makes a difference.

It’s available at's archives (where you can also find a lot of stuff by the shamelessly self-promoting me). Writing is measurable, and so is our valuable time. Stories like this one, and those mentioned above, set a standard for creativity, style, message, and impact. There’s a lot of good writing on the web, but these I think, are some of the best.