September was one of those months where I ended up strangely incapacitated. I read a lot, but it was mostly a book of Henry James novellas and polishing off some art history essays. I didn’t read as much online stuff as I wanted to– though I got some good recommendations from last month’s appeal, and have no really good excuse.
But there were a few things that stuck out. Half of this post comes from people I actually know, in the internet sense, which isn’t my usual. But I’m cool with that. It’s been over a year, so it’s time for some repeat offenders (and I generally meet people on the net because I tend to email them/find their blog and tell them they are awesome because of X Story)– and with offenders like these, there are no complaints.
First up, surely we all know that the newest issue of The New Bedlam Project cropped up recently. I talked about the first one, but just in a general “oh, this is rad!” way. Anyhow, this new one lives up to the promise of the first two, full of dark fantasy and horror awesomeness. From BT’s lead in, The Grass is Always Greener, it was full on. I was pretty impressed with the storybook feel to two of my favorites: Saranna DeWylde‘s Bluebeard’s Daughter and Louise Bohmer‘s Lair of Bedlam’s Witch. The former is a lovely and disturbing extension of one of my all time favorite fairy tales– very well composed, very prettily presented. She finds just the words to make it hurt. The latter is also a fairy-tale takeoff, a flash piece, but applies itself to your imagination in a particular way. Don’t want to say much about either, because they’re short and sweet and speak for themselves most articulately. But the whole issue is a must read.
I mentioned The World in Rubber, Soft and Malleable by Aaron Polson already, but I really can’t discuss my online reading for September and leave it out. The author here shows his usual ability to cut to the quick. (That, if you don’t know, is one of the highest compliments I can offer.) And while I’m talking of repeat offenders, I wanted to give a mention to The Boy Band by Natalie L. Sin. I’ve rarely read something so awfully fun. If you want a story without a dead spot (not undead, of course, just dead), she’s the one to look to anyhow. But truly, this story is at once adorable, hilarious, and plain scary. I don’t know how she does it, but it’s more than worth the read.
And in closing, something that’s more from October (okay, I know the issue of TNBP came out in October– shhh!), I just discovered Chris Douglas‘s new and fabulous fantasy webcomic, Antallan Tales, which is being serialized at Fantasy Magazine. I’m downright dickish about my webcomics, honestly, but a character is already fascinating from the first page in this one. I’m sold. There are a few more pages on his site, so have a look and see, but — yeah. Epic fantasy urges are going to be satisfied. Yay!
Well I had some nonsense to talk about short fiction in general, but I can see that this has gone on long enough, it’s getting too late here, and my Jack and Coke has gotten far too low. So sweet dreams, y’all.