Austin, TX | I write GrimDark, Fantasy, Horror, Western, and nonfiction | Tips and hearts appreciated! Team Seb Vettel!
On The Loss Of Jason David Frank
(Trigger warning: discussing trauma, depression, "unaliving") You might ask yourself why it's taken me almost three weeks to write this. Just about all of the content I've seen about the untimely loss of the dear soul depicted above has already almost dried up. Thanks to the power of the media--and the fact that aside from his own personal friends and family, none of us fans really knew the man--the news of his death and the circumstances is already cooling off.
Twitter Probably Isn't Going Anywhere
(I do not work for Twitter and I have no experience or visibility into the internals of their tech stack. This is an opinion based on my recent experience supporting and maintaining complex softwares. The opinions expressed here are my own and it's important that everyone do their own research and base their decisions on their own due diligence)
That Week We Slept In A Bathtub
It's hard to come up with a single poignant memory of your pets when you have five rescue cats. I have some of the fondest memories of my life with each one of them. I'm one of those cat moms that could never foster. I'd have nine of them if we had the space.
Accessibility Means Access To Food
I was originally writing this as a Facebook rant. Unfortunately for the world at large, I'm off this week and have way too much time on my hands. I spent the morning in conversation with a visually-impaired book editor. We were discussing what conlangs (constructed languages, i.e. fantasy or made up languages like Klingon and Sindarin) mean for accessibility when a person needs a screen reader. Turns out, it generally isn't an issue if the screen reader can read it and the website or story is formatted correctly (lots of food for thought there, no pun intended). That got me thinking about how the world views people with invisible disabilities, like severe food allergies or autoimmune disorders that are triggered by food.
All That Remains Of The Distant Pious
"Nobody can hear a scream in the vacuum of space, or so they say. In the halls of the Prime Intersector, drifter in the unliving dark, blessed are the ears of the Malleus Deciditus, the keepers of the blood and bile. Rejoice and pay homage to the Vaserai Indomitus, who, in the spaces between the stars, are the recipients of those soundless prayers. " --Sacra Ruinae of the Pale Priests, canto 12, stanza 4.
The inn of Gadgetzan was dim and smoky, reminding the blood elf seated at one of the long tables of an ogre den somewhere in the ruins of Alterac, where once--when he was a much younger man--he had excavated for iron. He sipped absently at a cup of something fermented. He couldn't put a finger the name of it at the moment, and what it was slowly doing to his lower intestine was just as unknowable. He watched the door though, blowing an ungentlemanly burp out of the side of his mouth, waiting for his contact.
Anarchy In Slow Motion
During some of the most turbulent years of his life, Bart Lynn Howell and his friend, Shane, were siphoning gas out of the tanks of cars on their block with a rubber hose and a gas can. Was this altogether intelligent? Probably not considering these two were not unknown in their tiny hometown of Fort Dodge, Iowa, and they were both high on some substance, and more than a little giddy from swallowing some of the fuel they were trying to steal.
So You Didn't Make The Cut. Now What?
A Community on the Edge Starting about about 7:00am Tuesday morning, and possibly hours before that, the collective platform waited, refreshing the Top Stories so we didn't miss the penultimate moment. It was make-or break. For some, it seems the anticipated post would define our success or failure on the platform. Self-esteem would be boosted or tanked. Hopes would be lifted or dashed. It came a day late, but and it came in like the wrecking ball we all thought it would be: the 1,025 finalists for the Vocal+ Fiction Awards, which accepted over 13,000 submissions between October 12 and December 29, 2021.
The Christmas lights had flicked on in the front yard. Luther glanced up, out through the door, unaware that the sun had gone down so fast. They had been in the old barn since noon, trenching and re-trenching the churned-up hard pan around their armies. There hadn't been any animals in that barn since the forties. The previous owners had sold it off, and throughout the early sixties, it had been the favored play place of the Richards family. Kids and cousins had jumped from the rafters into piles of forgotten hay, rotten and stinking, and as likely to burst into flames as not. Since time immemorial they had chased coach-whips through the sagging stalls before turning with mixed squeals of delight and terror as the snakes reared up on their bellies and chased their aggressors back to the barn doors. The game had tapered off when most recent of the Miz Richards brought home the barn cats. They hunted everything. No rodents, no snakes, just like Miz Richards liked it. It was perhaps the only point upon which Luther had agreed with the woman at any time in their very short acquaintance.
I Wish I Was A Twin
You may not believe it, but I remember sitting on those steps next to those rocks. I remember plunking those rocks into a puddle of water and my mother having to fish them out because that puddle of water was in the middle of the road in a little residential neighborhood in Poteet, Texas, about 45 minutes southwest of San Antonio.