“Higgins! The narwhal repellent, quickly!”

Well, that was close. I thought that giant squid had me for sure!

Oh, hi there. Just me, back from the wilderness to share tales of wildness and… wilding?

Not really. Writing-wise, I’ve not had any news on my current submissions – which now include a tale to an anthology of Lovecraft-themed stories. WAIT! Before you beat me over the head with my own cynicism, let me explain that my story includes no elements from the Cthulhu Mythos and is tangentially related at best. Really, it comes across more like a Neil Gaiman homage to HPL on an alternate timeline. Well, that makes it sound a little more lofty than it is… what I’m trying to say is, I didn’t appropriate HPL’s somewhat antiquarian, rococo prose stylings, or wedge in some pre-existing deity with a name that sounds like a tapir blowing its nose – my tale is its own modest take on a more cosmic type of story than I usually write, with a couple of subtle references for Mythos trainspotters. (“Ar, that be the local priest, Mr. Azathoth.” NO. That is a JOKE.) Now that I’ve blah-ed on about it, it’ll be rejected for not being Lovecrafty enough. Bah.

Other writey stuff: I’ve been beavering away at the latest drafts of my newest novel and novella. Hardly exciting stuff, but so important. Usually I’m just going through the text fixing tiny errors and purging all the excess semi-colons; but not this time, my friends. Isn’t it funny how you can miss major flaws in your own manuscript the first five times you read it back? Can’t see the forest for the trees, etc. Well, that’s fixed, but the nuts-and-bolts work continues. It always continues.

Extracurricular: I recently filled in as temporary bassist for Priority Orange, a band led by my ex-guitarist Larry Ash; I partook in Soundwave, the Fringe and the Adelaide Festival, meaning I caught performances by such brilliant bastards as Testament, GWAR, Filter, Clutch, Baroness, Alice In Chains, Down, Rob Zombie, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Mastodon, Stephen K. Amos, John Zorn, Mike Patton and Trevor Dunn; and I’ve agreed to score a new short film by my friend Jon X. Hoh.

And last of all, a random list. Some books I’ve read lately: Dark Harvest by Norman Partridge, The Last Girlfriend On Earth by Simon Rich, Ex-Sanguine (graphic novel) by Tim Seeley & Joshua Scott Emmons, The Last Safe Place by Ramsey Campbell, Embassytown by China Mieville, Of Grunge And Government by Krist Novoselic, The Monkey’s Mask by Dorothy Porter, and www. HR Giger.com by… I forget his name. Something Swiss. Meanwhile, my To Read pile grows higher and higher: Andrew Vachss, E.E. “Doc” Smith, Margaret Atwood, Poppy Z. Brite, Sarah Pinborough, Yvonne Navarro (I promise you I do actually read female authors!), Traci Lords (seriously, I do!), Christos Tsiolkas, Dorothy Parker (argh!), Ronald Malfi…

Maybe I’ll make a start now, and get back to you when something interesting happens.

Til then,
– MxRxD

PS. That has a nice ring to it: The Narwhal Repellent. Followed by The Narwhal Rampant and The Narwhal Resplendent. An new epic trilogy about love, disaster, and the stigma of being considered a dodgy marine rhino. Twist: turns out narwhals evolved from the two unicorns who were cruelly left behind by Noah’s Ark – which, in the most unbelievable twist in this whole work of ridiculous fiction, was actually a thing. Ha! I’ll shut up now, promise.

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