Books

You Suck: A Love Story

In a past life as a bookstore ninja, I was told time and again to read Christopher Moore’s books. I liked the covers, they were brightly lit and amusing. I put him aside because I had a million other things to read. But he stayed in the back of my mind. Then I briefly stopped reading because literature in general made me angry. When I picked up on reading recreationally again, I came across this novel during my travels as a used bookstore fiend. A Dirty Job was my first novel of his, because I bought the ebook on sale. That novel actually ended up inspiring me one of the short stories in my thesis, Electric Angels. It taught me that even if there are rules, and your characters are the only ones who know how it works, make it all work together. I love the irreverent tone in this…

Zen in the Art of Writing

I have decided to elevate Ray Bradbury to be the grandfather of my literary aesthetic, which is cinematic absurdist. I found an essay (an interview, really) in this book where he states “all my stories are cinematic. … I may be the most cinematic novelist in the country today. All of my short stories can be shot right off the page. Each paragraph is a shot.” I KNEW there was a reason why I enjoyed his work so much! That is how I approach my writing: every dialogue break, every inch of white space, is simply a subtle stage direction to the reader to move the camera that is in their mind’s eye. It sent shivers down my spine when it all came together in my head. Like me, he never rejected film and movies as a source of inspiration. To me, film is cyclical. You can’t watch a great…

Remember Me

This is the long-form review that I wrote for Remember Me by Mary Higgins Clark that originally appeared on Litsy. Add me there; I am hellogilly. Back when I was a wee little Gilly, my Ma got roped into a subscription for Reader’s Digest Condensed Books. This novel appeared in vol. 217 in 1995, when I was 12. I didn’t have the luxury of going to the library often as a child. It truly was a treat, because it wasn’t a thing that I was allowed to do. My Ma never had time to take me to the library because she had other things to do, and keeping my rambunctious kid brother in line at the library was damn near impossible. Our activities had to be a joint event. If it only served one of us, we didn’t do it at all. She was also financially averse to library fees…

Read More in 2017

With the installation of a president I do not support and women on seven continents protesting said installation who I stand with, I turned inward to my own journey and what it took to get me here. Sometimes we forget to take care of ourselves. We’re so concerned about what is going on outside, in the news, and in our neighbor’s yard that we often never stop to say, “what about ME? What are they doing that affects ME?” Today I am here to tell you that it is okay to be SELFISH. Take care of you first. Something doesn’t feel right, you just can’t shake that cough you’ve had for weeks now? Go to the doctor. Have some spare time, even just ten minutes? Go outside, enjoy the sunshine, take your dog for a walk. I bet you’re like the many people I know and love, and you’ll logically…

Chapter 13: The Future’s So Bright

Dear Adrian W. Griffith, I’m sorry to bother you like this, but my name is Marlene Griffith. I am your daughter. You died when I was a baby. I don’t blame you for leaving me, my mom, and my sister alone for the rest of our lives. God called, and it was your time to go. I work for Section Seven now. I was recruited over a year ago. I was drafted as an agent under the Understudy program. I’m not cleared to know the details of your final mission. Maybe someday I will, but not now. I don’t know whether to thank you or hate you for my new life. Should we hate the dead for their effects they would have on future generations? I want to, but I can’t. You gave me half my DNA. At any rate, it’s something to think about. I wonder why you never…

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