Saturday, December 31, 2011

12/31/11: Kaleidotrope

Find my bizarro novella, "The End of Owln's Malt", in the winter issue of Kaleidotrope, free.

Kaleidotrope link

Sunday, December 25, 2011

12/25/11: Enter At Your Own Risk

Find my Gothic short story, "Riottaba", in Enter At Your Own Risk, an anthology of such stories. (It came out a couple months ago and I was, somehow, uninformed.)

Amazon link

And here is a sci-fi story that was, also without my being informed, published on the Aphelion webzine, nearly a year ago.

The Sad

Saturday, December 24, 2011

12/24/11: Mandorla

Yesterday, I read an unfamiliar word in a book I won't name: "mandorla". It stuck with me all day and then into the night, on my mind even as I went to bed. Mandorla, mandorla, my last thought before sleep.

This morning, I awoke and sat down to breakfast, one of my words-to-learn ledgers at wing. I opened to the page I had stopped at yesterday (which I had flipped to and bookmarked without reading), and one of the first words on it was "mandorla" -- undefined, as it were, it not being in the dictionary I had referenced after writing the word down (years ago, when I'd first started this particular ledger of new words).

I have not, to my recollection, heard this word except for when I first noted it and then yesterday, in the book I'm reading, approximately twelve hours before I would encounter it in my ledger.

And the clincher: I looked it up tonight, and was unsurprised to learn of it signifying the coincidence and interaction of opposing realities, of which I have recently been experiencing extensively.

Friday, December 23, 2011

12/23/11: Arcane

Find my bizarro short, "The Delivery", in Arcane, a new weird/macabre anthology.

Amazon link

Friday, December 16, 2011

12/16/11: WTF?

Find my bizarro short, "The Matador", in WTF?, a new anthology from Pink Narcissus.

Amazon link

Monday, December 5, 2011

12/5/11: Schlock Magazine

Find my short-short, "On Killing Yourself", and many others in the new, apocalyptic issue of Schlock Magazine, for free.


Also, find another post-apocalyptic short-short of mine, "Body Builders Here To Stay", in this month's issue of Jake's Monthly anthologies, for only $0.99.


Sunday, December 4, 2011

12/4/11: Nonlogic

Exhibit A:

Yesterday, I was stopped in traffic behind a '90s green Chevy truck with a matching camper top, and a distinctively rusted bumper. I noticed this truck -- Noticed it, For Some Reason (enough to cement it in my memory, in any case). The truck was nowhere near my house.

Exhibit B:

This afternoon, my father happened to give me a newspaper clipping from The Charlotte Observer, detailing how a man accidentally threw away a prized ring and then, miraculously, located it in the dump, and after 30 minutes, no less, when the dump workers had, understandably, given him "zero chance of finding it."

Exhibit C:

While eating lunch, I read the newspaper clipping, which got me thinking about such incredibly unlikely happenings, which got me thinking about my own incredibly unlikely happenings, which got me thinking about how chance, it seems, is an illusion, since reality seems to operate on some nonlogical structure that we have yet to decipher -- a structure that seems to be intelligent, and will make itself known to those open to its possibility.

Just as I thought this, I noticed movement out of the corner of my eye: a truck, passing by my house, outside my dining-room window. I only caught a fleeting glimpse of it, but it was enough to make out a chartreuse green, and a matching camper top, and a bumper with an infection of rust. My house is very secluded, by the way.

It brought a sense of, "Did I hear my name?"

Saturday, December 3, 2011

12/3/11: Daily Flash 2012

Daily Flash 2012: 366 Days of Flash Fiction is a new anthology from Pill Hill Press, which includes my flash piece, "The Noise".


Friday, December 2, 2011

12/1/11: Pants

Yesterday morning, before leaving home, I was struck with the distinct urge to change my pants. It was not a passing thought, but very pronounced, pressing, a do-or-die sensation. I would go so far as to call it a voice in my head, gentle and calm, but insistent. Yet, I had just changed my pants the day before.

So I didn't change my pants.

That afternoon, however, my attention was, by chance, drawn to the crotch of my blue jeans, which had, at some point between breakfast and lunch, become split up the crotch, awarding me a vagina of sorts. They were old pants, so their splitting didn't surprise me until later, when I remembered what had happened that morning.

Good thing I wasn't out of state, on business, alone, in my truck, and due to an appointment. (Notice my sarcasm.)

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

11/30/11: Local Heroes

Find my short story, "Lucky", in Local Heroes, a new anthology from Static Movement.


Friday, November 11, 2011

11/11/11: Pseudopod

Read/hear my psychological-horror story, "War", at Pseudopod.


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

11/8/11: Zero

Find my story, "William", and a great bunch of others, in Zero from May December Publications, an anthology of zero-patient zombie stories.

Amazon link

11/7/11: Bad Memory

I went on vacation last week, and when I got home, I had two pieces of mail: a check for some work I'd done, and a piece of junk mail from Allstate Insurance.

I opened the junk mail first, though I was thinking of the check, what (I thought) would be for $336.

Thus came synchronicity #1: The letter from Allstate informed me, in a shouting headline, that I could save up to $336 on my car insurance.

Synchronicity #2 came almost simultaneously: My mother, who thought I was opening my check, asked me how much I got -- funny, because, look here, the insurance letter I just opened says $336, the amount of the check you were asking about.

When I finally opened the check, however, was the funniest part: it wasn't for $336, but $366, thirty dollars more. And I knew this, actually, it's just, in the seconds before I opened the insurance letter, I misremembered it as $336, the exact amount announced inside.

It evoked Johnny Carson in a big feathery hat.

Monday, October 17, 2011

10/17/11: Title Goes Here

Find my post-apocalyptic short story, "The Last Christmas", in issue #9 of Title Goes Here.


10/14/11: Deja Vu

My mother volunteered me to help one of her friends move. Okay. So I go and pick this guy up, along with a truckload of stuff, and then he directs me to his new place. As we turn from the highway, I comment on how the only time I've ever been down this road was, coincidentally, another time I was helping someone move, years previous.

As we creep down the road, I begin remembering more and more about the other time I'd been there, helping with a move-out rather than an -in, also for a parental acquaintance, also during the first spurt of fall.

We creep down the road, no, not this one, keep going.

When he at last said turn, and pointed me up a sloping drive way that I found familiar, I saw what was coming, and couldn't help but laugh, to the man's nonplus.

Sure enough, he stopped me at the very house I had years ago helped someone move from -- the very unit, in fact.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

10/13/11: Lenticular Redounds

I keep a ledger of interesting words to add to my vocabulary, which I read while eating, to maximize time. Today at lunch, I came across "redound" and "lenticular," and thought of how they were, by nature, two horrible words, and also how I had only seen them used once, in the novel I gleaned them from.

This afternoon, while reading, I came across both words, within an hour of lunch.

Thanks to just seeing them and reading the definitions, I understood their meaning.

10/9/11: Puppet Master

In an email from a friend of mine, she mentioned, in passing, the movie The Puppet Master. I had never seen this movie, and had heard of it maybe once, twenty-odd years ago, when I was a small child.

The next morning, while I read a book -- which I never, ever do (reading by morning, since I typically have other things to do then) -- I came across a passage which referenced the movie The Puppet Master.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

10/6/11: Publications

My short story, "The Treasons", was featured in this month's issue of Something Wicked.

Read it for free

Also, find another of my stories, "The Dep Tank", in Look What I Found, from Norgus Press, an anthology of stories involving found objects.

Amazon link

Friday, September 23, 2011

9/23/11: Synovial

You ever heard the word "synovial"? I hadn't, until yesterday, in an email from a friend of mine.

Within hours, I'd heard it again, from a phone conversation overheard at random.

It's a lubricating fluid resembling an egg. What this means, I don't know.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

9/14/11: Say Goodnight to the Bad Guy

Find my short story, "Chinked", in Say Goodnight to the Bad Guy, the latest anthology from May December -- and, also, "Candy Apple Red" by Rebecca Snow, my internet quasi-wife.

Amazon link

Saturday, August 27, 2011

8/27/11: The Shadow of the Unknown

Find my short story, "Quietus", in The Shadow of the Unknown, a Lovecraftian/new weird anthology from Static Movement.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

8/16/11: Chivalry Is Dead

Pick up this brand-spanking-new Zombie anthology, Chivalry Is Dead, from May December, some good, tasteful folks. It includes my short story, "The Gift", amongst many others.

Amazon Link

Sunday, July 31, 2011

7/31/11: Ask, and ye shall receive

Was in town, driving, and thinking of how I could best transport a motorcycle using a pickup truck.

Seconds later, while I was stopped at a light, a pickup truck pulled next to me, two bikes upright in the back, strapped just so.

I studied them long enough to see how they were secured, then laughed loudly.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

7/23/11: Publications

Find my short story, "Roommates", in #222 of Children, Churches, and Daddies. It's also in a just-released anthology.

Children, Churches, and Daddies

Also, find a bizarro short of mine, "Three Prophets", in Like Frozen Statues of Flesh, a bizarro anthology from Static Movement.

Monday, July 11, 2011

7/11/11: Metametrix, quality stool analysis

Internet searches are always interesting, the proverbial box of chocolates. You go searching for information about one thing, and it ends up leading to another, and that leads to another, etc, etc, until you have a thousand tangential Firefox windows open, miles from your original query. At least, that's how it always goes with me.

Today was no different.

This morning, I researched a popular supplement, alpha lipoic acid. Don't ask me how, but an hour after my original search, I was looking up a possible laboratory test for mercury poisoning ("alpha lipoic acid" -> "chelation" -> "mercury poisoning" -> "mercury poisoning symptoms" -> "mercury poisoning testing" -> "mercury poisoning hair test" -- a kind of math).

And that's how I came across a forum post advocating Metametrix laboratory testing.

Buried deep within Google's guts, the original forum post was asking a question in regard to a test for mercury poisoning, per my original search, but when I went to it, I came across a reply saying that Metametrix was a good, reliable source of hair- and stool tests for toxicity, viruses, parasites, etc. I took notice of this because my chiropractor had called about an hour before and told me to come pick up the stool test she'd ordered for me (I won't go into why I need such a thing, if you don't ask).

It crossed my mind that maybe I should reject my chiropractor's test and get one of the Metametrix jobs, since these tests are worthless coming from a subpar lab. But, alas, the test was already in.

My worry was in vain, however: when I went and picked up the test from my chiropractor, this afternoon, it was from Metametrix. Do a Google of your own and see how many testing services are out there.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

7/4/11: Synchroshocked

First, read my unlikely enlightenment on the smell of patchouli oil, namely how I was compelled, for no obvious reason, to visit my parents' vacation property in Myrtle Beach, SC, and was synchroshocked as a result.

That was nothing compared to my last trip there.

It started ten days ago, when it came up, arbitrarily, that the two parties that had both wanted to use the vacation property for the Fourth had, for separate reasons, opted out. As I heard that, The Voice spoke up: Why don't you go down there? it said from just left and center in my head, and I answered with the obvious: Because I have no reason, Voice, and it will cost money and take time and I will lose work and more money. But The Voice was incorrigible, and as I was still duking it out, trying to reason my way into staying home, my father said, "Hey, Aaron, why don't you go down to the beach this weekend?"

I knew then I was going to Myrtle Beach for the Fourth of July, for reasons unknown. I buckled my mental safety-belt.

Now, my first three days there, I had neither fun nor the synchronicities I was privately hoping for. Since I, as mentioned, had nothing to do and no one to go with, I literally sat around doing nothing with no one, except for three things, all of which I felt utterly compelled to do, against my better sense:

1) My first day there, I went to a flea market filled with things I didn't want to buy, where I happened across a Stephen King novel I hadn't read, Thinner. The novel takes place in a Connecticut town named Fairview.

2) Also, that same day, I went out to a pawnshop I didn't want to go to and bought several CD's on the cheap.

3) I was, on my third day there, compelled to go visit another store I didn't want to go to, which ended with me coming back to the vacation property and hearing "Times Like These" by the Foo Fighters on the radio (and taking note of it for no particular reason).

Keep these three factoids in mind -- Exhibits A - C, if you will -- as they turned out to be the components of a bomb.

As I mentioned, my first three days in Myrtle Beach were very unthrilling, and in fact very unpleasant, because my thyroid acted up while I was there and I ended up not only having nothing to do, but feeling miserable while I didn't do them. So after three days there, of the planned five, I decided to return home, where I could at least be miserable while working and staying reasonably productive. On top of that, I was feeling stupid for having gone down at all, my inner skeptic getting a toehold and scolding me for following such a stupid whim. I accepted the scolding and then some, so much that I began questioning the trip.

My last thought before leaving the house was, I wish a synchronicity would happen to justify my coming down here. Within five minutes, my wish was fulfilled. By the end of the day, it was fulfilled three-fold.

Synchronicity #1:

It happened just after leaving the house, only minutes after I had yearned for the synchronicity that would justify my visit. I got in my truck and keyed the ignition, and just what happened to be on the radio but "Times Like These" by the Foo Fighters. This would've been insignificant had it not been playing when I turned the truck off, the night before. As I mentioned in Exhibit C up above, I had taken particular note of this song before I killed my truck and got out, it for some reason getting my attention in that specific way these things do. What are the chances I would have gotten home with the song playing, and happened to leave just when the same radio station was playing it again? (It bears mentioning that I had planned on leaving that morning, of Monday the Fourth, but a long series of events saw me leaving that afternoon, instead, just in time to hear the song ...)

Synchronicity #2:

This one came about five minutes after the first. As I left the little neighborhood the vacation property sits in, contemplating the long drive to North Carolina ahead of me, I went to put on my headphones and listen to my MP3 player (on the radio, Foo Fighters had given way to music I didn't care for). The day prior, I had preloaded the MP3 player with the CD's I'd bought at the pawnshop, and was interested in hearing them on the drive home. Unfortunately, I never got to listen to them.

But let me back up.

On the way down to Myrtle Beach, while listening to the same MP3 player, I had come across the album American Standard by Seven Mary Three, which I had been listening to in the days preceding the trip. Upon seeing it on the playlist on the trip down, I'd thought absently, I won't be listening to that album while at the beach; but then, immediately, The Voice had answered: Oh yes you will. I remember pausing upon thinking that and hearing The Voice's answer, thinking in return, Oh no I won't, there's no way I'll end up listening to that played-out album yet again. But the voice had repeated: Oh yes you will. It was enough to give me pause and cement the occurrence in my mind.

Well, as I was sitting along the road on the afternoon of the Fourth, I remembered that little feud with my Voice as I turned on my MP3 player and scrolled through the playlist, to the first of the new CD's I'd loaded onto it the night before. I had time to think, Oh no I won't be listening to American Standard again, and then selected the first of the new CD's and pressed play. Afterward, however, there was no music, and I watched the MP3 player cycle through each of the new songs and albums, working through the playlist until it found ... (drum roll) ... Seven Mary Three, after which it played.

I knew at once what had happened, yet it dulled the Shock none: the new songs' format was incompatible with the MP3 player. Being forced to use my laptop instead of my desktop to copy and encode the audio files, I'd been forced to use lossless WMA format instead of FLAC, which I use for all my other audio (the Seven Mary Three album, for instance). As I know now (but didn't know when encoding the files ...), the Sansa Clip MP3 player does not play lossless WMA files, hence it skipped through them all instead of playing them -- right down to the album that The Voice had prophesied I would listen to while at the beach.

Surprisingly, I found myself in the mood to hear it again, and let it play.

But that's not all, folks! [Billy Mays smile]

Synchronicity #3:

There are several ways to get from Myrtle Beach, SC, to western North Carolina, the fastest of which involving Highway 9 and 601, as I've learned from experience. There is another, roundabout way I've gone -- read: took a wrong turn and been forced to follow -- and while coming home on the Fourth, I made sure to avoid the wrong turn, and therefore go the fast way. Despite my best efforts, however, I indeed took that wrong turn -- again.

I could've swore it was the right way, really, gun-to-the-head, stack-of-Bibles swear, but I was wrong, because the next thing I knew, I was going the wrong way, and had been doing so for so long it was actually faster to just go that other, roundabout way rather than double back and get back on track.

So I stayed on, and by consequence happened across the small town of Fairview, SC.

The same as in the Stephen King novel that I'd bought from the flea market I was compelled to go to for no good reason, and ended up reading half of while at the beach.

If I'd gone the right way, which I really, really, really tried to do (really), I would've missed it.

It was a one-two-three punch. My inner skeptic won't be walking right for a week.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

6/22/11: This One Goes Out To Vincent Young

Dear Mr. Young, I have no intention of invading your home and mutilating your wife with a beer bottle.

But let me back up.

I was yesterday compelled to visit Goodwill (which seems to feature in my synchronicities as of late), and after fighting it tooth and nail like a child does medicine, I complied, and bought The Great Gatsby for 75 cents, a book I had read in high school and retained not a word of. Coincidentally, I finished my current read on the same day. I vowed to start Gatsby the next day.

When today rolled around, as it has a habit of, I did my thing, and this morning had an odd surge of thoughts regarding a short story of mine, "Variations of Soullessness". This is where you come in, Mr. Young, as the protagonist's name mirrors your own, Vincent Young, chosen arbitrarily (my Vincent Young's wife is the one mutilated with the beer bottle, by the story's antagonist, but as I said, this in no way includes you, okay? Cool). From nowhere, the story popped into my head, for the first time since I'd last submitted it, a month prior. I felt around this some, found no reason why I should be thinking of this particular story of the dozens I've written, had time to wonder what the folks at Chizine thought of it, and let it go -- but not before it made a solid impression on me.

I at last got around to starting Gatsby this afternoon, approximately an hour or two since being harassed by thoughts of the Vincent Young-starring "Variations". As I sat down and opened the book, however, I didn't get past the first page, because behind the cover was a library stamp, a single borrower written within: Vincent Young.

Friday, June 10, 2011

6/10/11: And God said, Listen to Linda Perry

Last night I happened to listen to 4 Non Blondes' one and only album, Bigger, Faster, Better, More, a classic, in my opinion. As I did so, I absently visited the 4 Non Blondes Wikipedia page, wondering what ever happened to the band. I noticed that Linda Perry, the lead singer, had moved on to a solo career.

I wouldn't mind a Linda Perry album, I thought then, as absently as I had researched the band. I went to bed. The sun arose. I awoke.

Fast forward to this afternoon. If asked, I would've said there's no way I would visit my local Goodwill today, but after a domino-line of different occurrences, I somehow ended up there.

There was a Linda Perry CD on the rack.

I bought it.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

5/26/11: "Caffei-nation"

Read my short story, "Caffei-nation", an offbeat commentary piece, at Ensorcelled.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

4/12/11: "Pour L'Art"

Read my bizarro short-short, "Pour L'Art", in Quite Curious Literature, for free (or buy the damn thing, why don't you).

Saturday, April 9, 2011

4/9/11: Storm Warning

This morning, I wrote about a woman in a gym hearing one of those eeek-y storm warnings on the radio. This afternoon, approximately two hours later, I was in the gym, and in between songs on my MP3 player, I heard an eeek-y storm warning on the radio.

I'm still quite male, last I checked, but it was close enough.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

3/19/11: "Supine"

Read my horror short-short, "Supine", at The Fringe, for free.


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

That's Good Jesus

Goes good with a side of Buddha, I hear.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

2/22/11: "To Manufacture Self-Destruction"

Read my bizarro short, "To Manufacture Self-Destruction", at, as part of their Weird Words contest.


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

2/9/11: No Time

When I am editing a piece and stop, I write "Stopping place", so that I can search for "Stopping place" when I resume.

Tonight, as I opened a novel to edit, I for some reason thought of the Lou Reed song "There Is No Time", namely its chorus, which goes, "There is no time."

Several nanoseconds later, before the very slight reverb of Lou Reed's smoke-strangled post-Transformer voice had yet to leave the confines of my brain, I CTRL+F'ed and typed Stopping place and searched. Immediately beside this particular Stopping place were the words: "No time."

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

2/2/11: Macabre Cadaver

Read my short story, "Thingmaker", for free at

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

2/1/11: "The Psyche Corrupted"

Read my short story, "One of Them", along with many other fine pieces in the psychological horror anthology The Psyche Corrupted.


Saturday, January 15, 2011

1/15/11: Sein and Werden

Read my short story, "Song of the Impure: A Love Story", in the latest issue of Sein and Werden.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

1/13/11: Indigo Rising

Read my short story, "Borrowed Time", at Indigo Rising.