When I need hyper-emotional instrumental music in the fall, Explosions in the Sky is the go-to. I'll switch to Sigur Ros when the first snow comes down, back to Don Cab when it all melts.
I had a new publication go up at a new publication. Justin Lawrence Daugherty started up a lit journal that intends to scorch the earth. So far, I think he's done a bang-up job. My story is called "The Ultimate Warrior, Sitting In His Kitchen in the Middle of the Night, Practicing Applying His Face-Paint in Anticipation of a Return That Will Never Happen." It's one of those self-explanatory titles. Check it out, along with great work by Aaron Teel, Edward Hagelstein, Helen McClory and many more.
"The thing about being dead is that I have no idea what it’s like.
I got a haircut and took some time off and people started to talk because they either think that life is as fake as wrestling or vice versa.
But remember that guy in the promotion who was pretending to be me? Suicide. When they finally hired the real me, he had a pity spot on the roster as my stunt double and then he got fired and then he shot himself."
My column proposal, Love Dumb: A Song-By-Song Analysis of the Nonsensical, Incompetent, Sophomoric, Confusing, Beautiful KISS Discography, got accepted over at Used Furniture Review. This, too, is fairly self-explanatory. I'll be analyzing two KISS songs every week for the next two years, at which point I will have dissected all of their songs and decided that I actually fucking hate them. I'm three songs in so far and aside from reinforcing the basics--Peter's not very good at drums, Paul's the weirdest straight gay dude ever--I've learned that I only like KISS when I don't have to think about them. If I'm just feeling the music, they're the best. The second I turn my brain on, they just turn into some mediocre Jews singing about their dicks.
In trying to come up with a name for the column, I called on my friends to help. My buddy Bob suggested, "Get a girlfriend."
Going back to pro wrestling, I'm considering proposing a column to Fear of a Ghost Planet in which I take old wrestling PPVs and compare them based on the month and year in which they appeared. So, Hog Wild '96 (WCW) would go up against Summerslam '96 (WWF). Sure, it was the beginning of Hogan's first title run as a heel and it was the end of Vader's push in the WWF because Shawn Michaels was a real cunt back then, but what about he shows themselves? I'm curious as to which one is better to just put on and enjoy, free of nostalgia, (mostly) free of wrestling-nerd snobbery.
On the surface, these two columns appear to be way more niche than the stuff I normally write: short stories, book reviews, essays. Really, I think it's about the same. It's 2012 and I'm writing stuff that mostly appears on the internet, a place that already has millions of stuffs of all kinds and doesn't necessarily need any of mine.
In short, maybe I need a girlfriend.
I'm not sure why I've taken a sudden interest in writing a column, but I'm afraid it's because I'm running out of ideas. I'm not counting on my chapbook winning the Caketrain competition because they get a bunch of awesome submissions that are probably more geared toward their aesthetic, but they have to choose someone. (Every writer needs this attitude. No journal or zine or whatever exists without shit other people wrote. You could totally be other people. They have to choose someone.) So, on the extremely offhand chance that it wins the contest, I'm pretty much out of publishable material.
The more likely situation here is that it won't win, but I've already got some self-defeating bullshit for that, too. When it doesn't win, I'll shop the first half--the story cycle--around as a short, 20-page chapbook. That leaves the other three longform stories for another collection, which I would then set about finishing using a few older stories that need massive revision and a few newer ones that need to be written. Still, this is only maybe a year's worth of work. That's not a lot considering that I want to write for fucking ever.
So I'm a bit scared that I'm out of ideas. I haven't reached the point where I'm considering making some poor decisions just so I have some shit to write about, but I'm getting there. (A girlfriend? Come on. Desperate times . . .)
This is how I justified watching all of Party Down on YouTube last week. Just, you know, stirring creative juices or whatever.
Shake Away These Constant Days, my mostly-ignored debut short story collection, is now available for your e-reader. Get the Kindle version on Amazon or, if you think Amazon is the devil, Smashwords.
Also, in an attempt to maybe get some people to buy the book, I'm going completely backwards in terms of logic and giving away two copies. Head over to Goodreads and sign up for the Shake Away These Constant Days Giveaway.
I'm selling a surprising number of books at the bar I work at. Drunk people love feeling smart. I did, however, have a better reaction to the ice cream I brought in and scooped for everyone. I knew my book couldn't compete against mint chocolate chip. Regardless, a busty girl named Floro took a picture of me scooping her an ice cream cone and texted it to her mother as a means of informing her of our inevitable marriage. We then discussed the finer points of the Aggro Crag from the Nickelodeon show Guts.
Things are fine, everyone.