Posted: March 15, 2013 in Book Reviews, Writing
Only a certain kind of writer can imagine genetically modified pandas munching on lawn furniture. But shooting the poor cuddly things in the face requires a whole other level of brilliance. Paul Meloy’s stunning collection of short stories, Islington Crocodiles, originally by TTA Press, now reprinted by Bad Moon Books, collects several short stories that have appeared over the years in British mags like The Third Alternative and Interzone, plus a few that are new to this collection.
Meloy’s stories are often set in dreamscapes–not pleasant, idyllic fields of dream, but bomb-blasted wastelands and rundown seaside towns filled with menacing childhood toys, dreams of broken bones and rusting innards. This decaying dream-reality often bursts into our world, in flickers caught out of the corner of the eye or glimpsed beneath a carnival tent, but unlike many stories the intrusions here are never vanquished at the end. For Meloy, the monsters under the bed are the status quo. The reality of these dreamscapes is made manifest by the many inhabitants that can exist in both worlds: the Firmament Surgeons, Paladins, Autoscopes, a Jungian constabulary doling out the barest bits of solace in the world, allowing quick flashes of sunlight in the darkness.
Meloy tempers the bleak pessimism of his stories with a black, sick humor. The kind of jokes that you know you shouldn’t laugh at, but can’t help yourself.
Posted: February 25, 2013 in Writing
It’s been a while since I have posted here. Sara and I have been posting a bit at our new food and travel blog, eatdrinkculture. I will still be posting about travel here, but mostly in relation to my writing.
I have a 10,000-word story out a market now. Expecting to hear about in around May. It is the best thing I have ever written (except for all the stuff I would tweak; those annoying bits you only see once you click “send” on a submission.)
I have several longer-scale writing projects in various stages of completion. Mostly surreal/magic realism, but one is space opera. I expect to finish three novella-length stories in the next three months, and then I have a couple of horror stories to finish to submit to some upcoming anthologies.
On the travel front, we went to New Orleans in January. We are going back in May for Jazz Fest 2nd Weekend. Later in the year we are taking a longer trip (it will be our 15th anniversary, so we want to do something, but not quite sure where yet. It will depend on what time of the year we can get off time from work. Right now we are leaning toward Istanbul for a few weeks. If the timing for that doesn’t work out, we are also considered reprising the Marrakech/Madrid trip, with an excursion to desert, or a trip to India. We should have a better idea in a few months time.
Posted: November 9, 2012 in Writing
Sara and I are going to Portsmouth, NH, this weekend for the 2nd annual Anthocon.
I will be on a Hiram Grange panel Saturday with all the writers and artists involved in the project to date (the first time we have all been in the same room together since we started the endeavor several years ago. Really looking forward to meeting Malcolm McClinton, the phenomenal artist who did the cover and interior paintings for Hiram Grange and the Digital Eucharist.)
I will have Chimp Head swag! Buy a book, buy a beer, or plead in a winsome fashion and you may be able to add to your sartorial splendor with a Chimp Head pin.
A visit to the Portsmouth Brewery is de rigueur, as I have not had their IPA and volcano-style chicken tenders in a while. I’ll let people know when we are heading down as there will be space in the Zipcar (you must eat a modicum of volcano tenders or you are walking back ).
Looking forward to catching up with old friends and meeting new ones. Looking forward to meeting Gary Braunbeck (His book In Silent Graves is awesome) and Rick Hautala.
Had a great time in Nicaragua. Here are some pics.
Posted: October 14, 2012 in Writing
Posted: July 27, 2012 in Writing
Sara and I just booked a fall trip to Nicaragua. We are staying at Hacienda Puerta del Cielo (Heaven’s Gate), an eco-lodge that has great views of the Masaya Volcano (La Boca del Infierno) and the rainforest.
Yes, there will be monkeys.
Posted: July 1, 2012 in Writing
Just got back from New Orleans. We went down for Jazzfest and had a great time. Here is a link for more pics.
Posted: May 13, 2012 in Writing