Posts Tagged ‘Werewolves’

And so the second report came in this morning from Pole to Pole Publishing (see just below):  Thank you for sending “The Game” for Pole to Pole Publishing’s “Re-Launch,” anthology.  We appreciate the chance to read it, and have decided to accept “The Game” for inclusion in the anthology.  Your contract and additional information will be sent to you in a few weeks.  RE-LAUNCH, we’ll recall, is to be the science fiction half of Pole to Pole’s reprint dyad, with my story “The Game,” about an “on the beach” spaceman earning redemption, originally published in Britain’s HUB magazine on November 7 2007.  More will appear on both publications as it becomes known.

Then Sunday afternoon brought the Bloomington Writers Guild’s “First Sunday Prose Reading & Open Mic” (cf. January 7, et al.), this time in a County Library conference room as it continues to seek a new home, with featured readers Molly Gleeson, a one-time teacher of English in China, Saudi Arabia, and Japan now working as a writing tutor at a Bloomington community college reading her short story “House of Atreus”; international doctoral student Maureen Chinwe Onyeziri with a story about a young girl identified as a malevolent spirit, “Taming the Spirit,” followed by a brief memoir of a recent visit to her home in Nigeria; and local poet and fiction writer Cara Hohit with three short stories linked by a theme of intimacy, both old and new and both wanted and shunned.  My own contribution, third of six when it was time for the open mike segment, was a recent tale especially chosen for Valentine’s Day, “Home Is Where the Heart Is,” about a first meeting between a vampiress and a just-in-the-process-of-changing werewolf.


If you have a chance to see a movie called AS BOAS MANEIRAS, or in English GOOD MANNERS, do so. It’s a long film at about two hours and fifteen minutes and, as confessed by the docent introducing it at the Indiana University Cinema Thursday night, almost anything you can say about it would be a spoiler.  So, at the risk of spoilers, here’s what the IU Cinema catalogue says:  Mysterious and wealthy Ana hires Clara — a lonely nurse from the outskirts of São Paulo — as housekeeper and nanny to Ana’s soon-to-be born child.  Against all odds, the two women develop a strong bond, but a fateful night changes their plans.  Oliver Lyttelton from THE PLAYLIST perhaps best articulates the you-have-to-see-it-to-believe-it AS BOAS MANEIRAS as “the year’s best Brazilian lesbian werewolf musical melodrama.”

Lesbian werewolves, what more could one ask for?  Except that’s not really what the film is about.  Also, toward the end, there’s what one recognizes as the classic torch-bearing peasants storming the castle – in this case a São Paulo slum apartment – scene, except that’s not really what it’s about either.  In a way, in fact, it’s really two films and, yes, what girl-on-girl action there is falls in the first part. Except maybe one of them’s really sleep-loving.  But then the second part is very different.  And if there’s a theme it may be about innocence — that of children and mother’s love — and trying to do the next right thing when dealt a weirdly bad hand by life.

Except that there is a werewolf too, and maybe someone should have known better.  But what’s one to do, especially if one’s from the lower classes and almost anything one might try isn’t likely to end well?  And how much truth should one tell a child?  And, even with werewolves, could something like all this really happen — I mean, there are secrets, but maybe some have just too many loose ends?   So, probably not, but the final scene is both sad and heroic — and brought applause when the audience realized the film had ended.

To my best knowledge, the film’s not available on DVD, at least not yet, but if you should have a chance to see AS BOAS MANEIRAS, I think there’s a good chance you’ll enjoy it.

Another one published, this one LUPINE LUNES:  HORROR POEMS & SHORT STORIES from Popcorn Press, as announced by Editor Lester Smith.  To give Amazon’s take on it, Welcome to Popcorn Press’s eighth annual celebration of horror writing, this year featuring the werewolf in a collection of stories and indexpoems, particularly that crescent-shaped smaller sibling of the haiku — the lune.  Each year, on October 1, we host an open call for horror-themed poems and stories.  By October 31, we have a finished document published in ebook form, with a print version close on its heels.  What you hold in your hands is the result of that creative marathon.  Inside you will find werewolves galore, along with a handful of other shapechangers and harbingers of transformation.  Read it by the light of a full moon, if you dare, or perhaps by candlelight.  Read it aloud to family and friends — there is safety in numbers when the werewolf prowls!

My own pup in this pack is a single poem, albeit longer than lune or haiku, “Beware of the Dog” (see November 21, October 29), a working-class take on exactly how disruptive a werewolf might be on a Saturday night in a factory town.  Delve within at your own risk!  “Beware of the Dog” was originally published in GRIEVOUS ANGEL for September 11 2014.

To check LUPINE LUNES out for yourself on Amazon press here, or for Popcorn Press’s direct order page here.

Sunday, the second day of a cold snap that’s finally brought November temperatures to November, also brought the Bloomington Writers Guild’s Third Sunday “prompt” session (cf. September 19).  This is kind of fun mostly, a group of us around a table writing like mad to prompts the facilitator(s) offer, completing an essay or story or poem within a fixed time.  There are usually three of these, the first yesterday involving description/analysis of a recurring dream, the second a poetry prompt from an outside source, and the third. . . .

Well, a moment on that.  The third, for which we had only five minutes (the first two were fifteen minutes each), was to write a “thank you” letter.  But my mind wasn’t entirely on this.  It seems the cave cat Wednesday (more on whom, here depicted in kittenhood some twelve and a half years back, can be wendy31found under her name on “PAGES” at the far right) had her annual visit to the vet last week and the news wasn’t all good.  She had been losing weight and, tests coming back, the reason appears to be hyperthyroidism.  The good news is she can have the condition treated by eating a special *expensive* cat food, a bag of which is now on order in hopes she will like it.  The bad for her is that she must eat it exclusively, which means no more cat treats (her favorite:  Friskies’ “Beachside Crunch”).  So anyway what came up was a cat-related “thank you” to a hypothetical sister, for the gift of a hypothetical book, with the hypothetical cat “Fluffy” standing in for Wednesday — and which, as a tip of the hat for her, I offer as a lagniappe:

Dear Sister.  Thank you very much for the book you sent, 101 THINGS TO DO WITH YOUR CAT.  Fluffy thanks you too, though she thought numbers 18 and 36 were a little rough.  Her favorite, though, seems to be number 52, the one that involves catnip.  I would have one complaint, however — or perhaps a warning you might include if you give copies to people in the future — for numbers 48, 77, and 82, I woindexuld strongly recommend wearing thick gloves.  (Your Loving Brother)

Then back to business for Monday, today’s email included a proof copy of Popcorn Press’s LUPINE LUNES, including my Rhysling-nominated poem “Beware of the Dog” (see October 29, et al.), returned with no problems found this afternoon.  “Beware of the Dog” was originally published in GRIEVOUS ANGEL, September 11 2014.

Well, speaking of devils, or werewolves if one prefers, word has just come from Editor Les Smith that one of the three (not two, oops) poems has been accepted.  The poem is “Beware of the Dog” and offers a working-class view of lycanthropy, originally published in GRIEVOUS ANGEL, September 11 2014, and also appeared in the 2015 RHYSLING ANTHOLOGY in May last year.

Untreed Reads has e-reminded us that they’re running a 30-percent off sale on all mysteries and horror, ending Monday October 31 at 11:59 p.m. PST (see also October 2).  One minute before the Witching Hour, for you west coasters!  Two of my stories are included in th2940013874367_p0_v1_s118x184is, the Christmas chapbook I’M DREAMING OF A. . . ., and the New Year’s Eve anthology YEARS END:  14 TALES OF HOLIDAY HORROR with my lead offering “Appointment in Time.”  For more, press I’M DREAMING’s picture in the center column, from which, if desired, you can also go to other titles in Untreed Reads’s store.

Meanwhile Popcorn Press has announced a kickstarter for their latest Halloween anthology, LUPINE LUNES, with an emphasis on werewolves and very short poems, but you have to hurry — it ends Sunday, tomorrow, October 30 at 12:59 p.m., this time EST.  I may or may not have a dog(s) in this fight — I sent two poems, but haven’t heard back yet — but Editor Lester Smith has published me in the past (see November 17 2015, et al.)  Maybe more on this score as it becomes known.  But in the meantime, for more information, donations, press here.

Another month, another last Sunday, which brought today the Bloomington Writers Guild’s “Last Sunday Poetry Reading and Open Mic,” presented in conjunction with the Bloomington and Monroe County Convention Center (cf. August 28, et al.).  The opening reading this time was by Jordan Zandi, a Boston University MFA, who read from his recent Kathryn A. Morton Prize winning collection, SOLARIUM, then ended with one or two new poems slated for his next publishing project.  He was followed by Indianapolis born and bred, and lately Bloomington resident Jason Ammerman, a lively and experienced reader and also co-founder of the Indiana poetry troupe The Reservoir Dogwoods, with his most recent collection, BATTLE SCARRED, published by Chatter House Press in 2012.  He also has a forthcoming collection, WAYLON JENNINGS NEVER SLEPT HERE.

When “Open Mic” time came there were nine readers signed up, a larger than normal group, of which I came last with three recent and as yet unpublished poems.  The first of these, “Some Assembly Required,” was a three-line not-really-haiku about the travails of an undertaker, following the night of the full moon, collecting body parts left by the local werewolves for proper burial.  This was followed by bambitwo longer poems, the first of which, “Escalations,” references a very short movie I saw years ago, BAMBI MEETS GODZILLA, describing how after the movie the Japanese monster, washing festering deer body parts off his foot in Tokyo Bay, inadvertently starts a worldwide athletes foot epidemic; the second, involving a prompt to write an uplifting poem (I explained to the audience I generally don’t do uplifting) is called simply “Uplifting,” and describes a woman wearing a wide-brimmed, but overly tight-fitting hat who is caught in a wind storm and blown to the moon.  (This last one also included vampires.)

A lovely mid-April day today, the sun bright and warm after an at-best mixed spring.  And the Weather Channel says more is to come through most of next week!  But what of the vampires?  Will they be doomed to ever-shortening nights, fearful to go out in the sun by day?  Or is there a way to bring the sun’s power inside, even into one’s coffin, for power not only by day but night as well?

Enter Jarad Jones on UPWORTHY.COM with the latest in scientific prowess in “How Do You Power a Solar Panel Without Sunlight?  These Scientists Have an Awesome Answer.”  But let’s hear a bit from the horse’s own mouth:

Yes, the cumulonimbus cloud is truly the kryptonite to the solar panel’s Superman. . . . 

For some areas of the world, the push toward clean, renewable solar energy has faced an uphill battle due largely to climate constraints and regional weather patterns.  With environmental experts predicting that solar energy could account for two-thirds of all new energy generated in the next 25 years, these areas are increasingly at risk for missing out on this largely untapped goldmine.


Scientists from China just unveiled an “all weather solar cell” that could turn even gloomy weather into glorious electricity by generating energy from raindrops. . . .

And that isn’t all!  Scientists at Binghampton University’s Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science in New York have suggested a second method of harnessing the sun, even at night, by using bacteria.  But for the rest, it’s time to read the whole article for oneself by pressing here.

Now, what will science offer to do with the moon for year-round werewolfing?

It also brought some serious poetry too, but, yes, it was that time again for the Bloomington Writers Guild’s “Last Sunday Poetry Reading & Open Mic,” presented in conjunction with the Bloomington and Monroe County Convention Center.  The featured poets were Hilda Davis, a graduate student in Indiana University’s Department of African American and African Diaspora Studies — and also a seasoned poetry slammer — and Jonathan Holland, a graduate of Ivy Tech as well as a student at Indiana University.  Both presented rhythmic, sonorous works, both personal to them as well as connected to the world about them, ending up almost surprisingly complimenting each other.  This was followed by the open mike session where I had the number four spot in a field of ten, about as many as I’ve seen read from the audience at these events.  I read two poems, one about werewolves and loss of habitat originally published in STAR*LINE, “No One Wants to Run Through the Woods Naked Under a Full Moon Anymore” (see January 27 2012, July 11 2011), and the other as yet unpublished, “Don’t Always Believe Everything You Read,” in which a zombie explains why the New Hampshire motto Live Free or Die fails to reflect reality (“. . . being dead’s cheap enough — / but living free, sorry, / that’s bucks on the barrelhead . . . ”).

Two quick items for today, the first being that THE 2015 RHYSLING ANTHOLOGY has arrived.  This is the book of nominees for the Science Fiction Poetry Association’s annual Rhysling Aw2015Rhyslingard for short (50 lines or less) and long poetry, in which I have one entry in the short category, “Beware of the Dog” (see March 16, et al.), a tale of werewolves and working-class values originally published in GRIEVOUS ANGEL in September 2014.

Then, in the electronic mailbox, the contract came for “Bubba Claus Conquers the Martians,” a jolly Christmas tale (with zombies) to be published in Upper Rubber Boot Books’s upcoming “anthology of fiction and poetry,” THE MUSEUM OF ALL THINGS AWESOME AND THAT GO BOOM (see February 16).  “Bubba Claus Conquers the Martians” originally appeared in Yard Dog Press’s HOUSTON, WE’VE GOT BUBBAS in 2007.

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