For Fever Dream is truly less a dream and more a nightmare, although the kind that—like the best of horror—you cannot help but wanting to see through.
And then Gaddafi came in, totally in drag. Not just eye shadow, which he was famous for, but a full evening dress, pearl necklace, and hose. Rouge on his cheeks. Four burly female bodyguards tailed him, holstering guns. Besides the slight dip in volume of conversation, no one at the party acted like anything was askance. Gaddafi’s lips were the red, it occurred to me, of that “Say goodbye a little longer” chewing gum, and it was that commercial jingle that played in my head as I watched him walking in heels like he practiced it. It wasn’t like he didn’t have the facial features to cross dress: thin cheeks and high cheekbones like a model’s. (This was before age sunk his face into a permanent scowl, before he insisted on that comb mustache and that sweep of a rug under his chin.) Perhaps this was because I was trained to spot such disguises, but it was obvious to me from the moment he walked in.
Funny enough, this is (oh very very loosely) based on a real story, albeit one that was hearsay on top of hearsay. Of course, for fiction, that’s all part of the fun.
Very happy to announce that my story, “Space Tears Can Hurt,” a little venture—a bit different for me—into sci-fi, has been accepted for publication in Pulp Literature, a really great journal (“Good books for the price of a beer”) that came to my attention late last year and has published some sci-fi greats. It will appear in the Winter 2016 issue. Big thanks to the editors who have been working with me on some edits.
I’ve read basically two classic fantasy or sci-fi novels ever: The Lord of the Rings and Dhalgren. I’d like to think my approach lies somewhere between the two. I’ll be sure to post again when you can read the story.
Very excited to share that Issue # 17 of the great lit mag Midwestern Gothic is now out, and it includes a short story of mine, “Stare Decisis.” Here’s a somewhat representative excerpt:
Nobody told Walters, upon putting on the judicial robes, how all of his friends would change their conversations around him, how they would treat him differently. Even the longtime confidants—the ones he’d had since college, who remembered him passing out at a party, or caught him falling flat on his face going after a girl, or gave him advice when he was dissolutely smoking cigarettes all day and planning his motorcycle trip across the Badlands—all distanced themselves once they knew he had sentenced someone to death. The couples that he and his wife had socialized with would not get drunk around him. The secret meaning to “sober as a judge” was that you were a buzzkill at all parties. Not that he cared about being drunk—the post-trial hangovers where he’d felt his head unravel in the night which was never quite put back together the next morning, were awful—but it was comforting to see his friends slur their words.