Two new stories in the last two days from me, and they’re both free reading! (Though you should also buy the issues they are in – there is so much awesome there, and you can read it all right now if you buy it, rather than waiting til end of month/December in the case of Uncanny for the full issue.) I’ve been writing a lot of shorts over the past couple of years, and they’ve been kind of killing me with joy. They’re an opportunity to be no-holds-barred peculiar and poetic, in the same way I used to write tiny plays full of screaming choruses and long strange monologues, and talking animals. I still do all that, just in short story form these days. Both of these have elements that came from fact and fiction, and both also have lines in them I dreamed and then woke needing to write. I hope you dig them!
IF YOU WERE A TIGER, I’D HAVE TO WEAR WHITE
The first story is a fantastical Weird item, in the inaugural issue of Uncanny Magazine, edited by Michael Damian Thomas & Lynne Marie Thomas . It’s what happens when I’m thinking about Gay Talese’s Frank Sinatra Has A Cold, while also considering writing an Angela Carter-type riff on a fairy tale, while also thinking about The Jungle Book…and then I get a present of a little extraordinary fact that leads to a million other little facts, about Mabel Stark the tiger trainer, Jungleland, the Thousand Oaks animal-actor theme park where the MGM lions lived (and so did Mabel and so did Mr. Ed!!!). Anyway, the story, IF YOU WERE A TIGER, I’D HAVE TO WEAR WHITE found a home at Uncanny, and I’m so delighted it’s there! Here’s the story, and here too is a podcast with the audio version fabulously read by Amal El-Mohtar, along with an interview by Deborah Stanish, as well as a written interview which has some crazy amazing photos. But you have to read the story first, or none of the rest will make sense.
And after you read it, go watch this video of Stark herself.
OMG, is all I can say about that.
Here, too is a gorgeous review at Tor.com by Amal El-Mohtar. I could not ask for better. Damn. Life is sweet.
WHO IS YOUR EXECUTIONER?
The second story is WHO IS YOUR EXECUTIONER? and it’s horror. It’s up at Nightmare Magazine today, also for free! Three friends, thirty years, and 5 moments over those years. Not a ghost story. More of a tangled time, children’s games, inadvertent conjuring story. I wanted to see if I could write a really scary horror item, so I tried it! It has a lot of different childrens games from all over the world, and it also has a lot of bugs. Eugene Myers did a terrific interview with me over there about the story, and again, if you read it, read it after. It has spoilers.
I’d love it if you read these, and if you’d share them. I write them to be read! It’s a massive pleasure to get these two babies out into the world.