Saturday, November 14, 2009


Lovesick by Howie Good
The Poetry Press
ISBN 978-0978904166

Reviewed by Nathan Tyree

Howie Good turns words into a reciprocating saw that can be worked through your gut. He has internalized the existential horror of existence and turned it outward. In the pages of Lovesick, Good alternates between the scalpel and the three pound hammer. He slices and smashes. These poems deal with terror, love, pain, loss, regret, politics; in short, all of the terrible things that life has to offer.

Good is, I believe, a journalist. This may account for part of his style. While his work is lyrical and lovely, it also has a cold mater of fact tendency. He writes about life in a way that takes for granted that this is all terrible. As he puts it in one poem "life is a rifle butt to the face". Nothing could be more descriptive of existence, and yet noting could be more simple. It is precisely this easy turn of phrase that marks these poems.

These poems also have a knack for interesting constructions. In one instance he refers to the "extruded plastic moon". This is a blue collar phraseology that should appeal to a rather masculine audience. Such references are antithetical to the common feminine tendency of most modern poets. These are manly poems, and yet they are soft; filled with longing and regret and loss. That dichotomy is much of the power of Good's writing. He strikes a difficult balance between traditional tropes and modes and something wholly modern. I may be straying from the point, though.

Another important aspect of these poems is the often oblique allusion. Good never specifically mentions the holocaust, or South American death squads, or the mother's of the disappeared; yet they are there for full view. In these pages are all of the horrors of the twentieth century, discarded and used up.

Anyone who has followed Good's career will recognize some of these poems from varies online venues and from his chapbook Tomorrowland. This full length collection, however, offers so much more. This is an essential book. One that should be read and studied and internalized.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Stories for Abortions

Magazine of the Dead: Stories for Abortions is the third anthology (read "print issue") from Magazine of the Dead. It features a lot of great writing from the last year of MotD, plus a ton of bonuses that have not been seen on the site. In these pages are fiction and poetry by Sam Pink, xTx, Nathan Tyree, Joshua Weston, James (JMES) Horn, Jon Catron, Bradley Sands, Kenji Subaki, Z. Lustig and many others. Order it here. It should also be coming to Amazon soon.


Thursday, October 15, 2009

A Deadly Thirst

Thirst for Fire has a new issue, the first since 2006. It features an angry anus, some ground, nocturnal vehicular deer hunting, graves, burning, sex, death, and other fictions designed to fuck your face with a chainsaw and melt your brain. The thing is edited by Taylor Durden with help from Nathan Tyree and the direction of P.H. Madore.

Suck it, bitch.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Riley Michael Parker

Recently Nathan Tyree interviewed Riley Michael Parker, the author of the amazing chapbook Our Beloved 26th. What follows is the first half of that interview:

Nathan Tyree: After reading Our Beloved 26th, the first question that comes to mind is: how long did you work in the corporate world and how badly did it scar you?

Riley Michael Parker: To tell the truth, I have never worked in an office, corporate or otherwise. OB26th has no grounding in reality - corporate men just seemed like something worth talking about. I wish I could give you something a bit more concrete about how it all came about, but it's hard to explain the genesis of my own work. I don't want to say that anything just came to me, because I was constantly making decisions, throwing away ideas and restructuring stories, but I can't exactly rationalize any of it. I just write what I feel like writing.

NT: Do you think that modern corporate culture bears a strong resemblance to the "wild west"?

RMP: I really don't know much of anything about modern corporate culture. Most of my writing is fairly minimalistic, which lends itself very well to writing about things you know nothing about. With OB26th I just wanted to write about fragile men, all of them having been pushed by society, or perhaps their fathers, into an over-romanticized male world – a place filled with hatred, and backstabbing, and oneupmanship – and then loving every minute of it. I wanted to write about men trying to live up to impossible standards – the ideals created by Hollywood and these last few generations of men – attempting to embody the modern mythology of what a man really is. Nothing is like the “wild west”. Not even the wild west. My assumption is that the corporate world is full of lonely, scared little boys who want to impress their fathers, men who long to be understood and accepted by their peers, just like the men you find in the rest of the world. A lot of these men probably don't like women, because as it seems, so few do. I think it is entirely possible that most men turn out to be assholes because they feel like that's what is expected from them. But all of that aside, I love westerns, and I love the stereotypes that they promote, never mind how fantastical all of it is. I wish that modern corporate culture closely resembled the wild west. Wouldn't that be delightful? Wouldn't you just love to see men in shirts and ties carrying revolvers, with flasks of whiskey attached to their belts, with spurs on their boots and chew in their bottom lips, the color of their ties a bold declaration of which gang they were affiliated? Yeah, well, me too.

NT: Some of the stories in your book have a strong sense of surrealism and absurdism. Do you feel that you have been influenced by those schools (on a sub note, are you at all a fan of Luis Bunel, David Lynch, Takashi Miike, David Cronenberg or others of their ilk (assuming that they can be lumped into a single group, which on second thought is a pretty shallow assumption on my part))?

RMP: I never attended college past the one lone term, nor did I partake in any kind of formal literature studies, so I can't say that I was really influenced by the schools of absurdism or surrealism, because as schools of literature, I honestly know next to nothing about them. I am simply not aware, in the academic world, which authors are categorized into those two factions. There are writers I like with a knack for surrealism, and I am influenced by them, but I am neither out to join nor start a movement of writers, but rather just to tell little stories. I think my taste for the absurd and surreal stretches back to my early childhood. I was really into horror films as a kid, and though I had a fairly clear-cut idea of what parts of them were based in reality and what parts could never really happen, in the dark of night, lying in bed, there was always a part of me that was expecting these creatures to crawl out from the VCR and into my living room, and then to either kill me or befriend me, and in a way, I was hoping for either. I didn't have a lot of friends as a kid, and a lot of things weren't exactly what you would call ideal, and so I spent a lot of time wishing that I could create my own reality from the ground up; that I could live in a place with both people and monsters, with living furniture and talking animals; a place where I could go and do and be anything I wanted. And yet despite spending so much of my energy focussing on these bizarre little worlds, I didn't want to give up on reality completely. I was very fond of adults as a child, and I envied the complexity of their lives. I longed to join them, to engage with other people on a deeper level, and to establish complicated relationships like the ones I was always seeing in movies. I knew that once I got the whole pesky childhood thing out of the way that things would become a lot more interesting, and lucky for me, they have. I think that in a lot of my writing I try to find a balance between these two things, a sort of amalgamation of the complex relationships that form between individuals and these absurd little situations that lie just beyond the boundaries of reality, these abstract ideas that I am currently, and have been since childhood, so enthralled by.

As far as the second part of your question goes, I don't really like the filmmakers you have mentioned, and have not seen a great deal of their work because of it. I think that you could make a convincing argument towards lumping those directors together, but I have a limited knowledge of them. I am more into the films of Woody Allen, Jean-Luc Godard, Michael Haneke, Wes Anderson, et cetera, but my favorite film is Buffalo '66 by Vincent Gallo.

NT: Which writers have had the greatest influence on you?

RMP: I would have to say Vonnegut and Brautigan, because of the way that they present their stories. I love the way that everything is so fast, so short, and so to the point. All of the chapters in their novels could stand on their own as short stories, which is something that I greatly admire. Have you read Bluebeard by Kurt Vonnegut? On one level it is a very simple story about a man's life, but there is so much going on in that book, so many little stories pieced together to make something so sweeping and grand. Everyone knows about Breakfast of Champions, but that novel was the first book I read that really made me feel that there were authors that wrote with me in mind. I read a lot of Stephen King as a kid, and I still like some his work, but the characters far more than the plots. He really is such a bad writer sometimes. Have you ever read Carrie? I haven't. I put it down after six pages. But if you get a chance, read Rage, the Bachman book about the school shooting, because it is nothing but character development, and it is wonderful. It was also pulled off the shelves over a decade ago, upon King's request, because of violence that keeps happening in schools. But you should try and find a used copy, because it is worth reading. My other main influence, Richard Brautigan, is someone I only discovered a few years ago, but he has had an enormous impact on me. You can tell from his novels that he had a history in poetry, because he always ignored so much of the traditional literature structure and took his stories to really interesting, and often bizarre places. Brautigan really opened my eyes to what fiction can be if you are willing to take it far enough, but more importantly, his books showed me how much can be taken away from a story and still have it work.

NT: You are currently working (we hear) on a series of stories that could be deemed horror. Is genre a concern of yours? That is, do feel constrained to remain within a single genre, or do you just write whatever you feel the need to write and say fuck what people think? Do you ever fear being pigeon-holed by what you have written in the past?

RMP: The stories I've been writing have horror themes, but they are not necessarily of the horror genre, as there is little to no suspense or tension. It's all flash fiction, so there isn't really any time to build anything up, but rather just to give the reader a glimpse into someone's life, and then to leave again. Blink in, then blink out. But the stories are all about murder and witchcraft, haunted houses and demon possession, so I tend to describe them as horror, because I don't know what else to say. You could also describe these stories as jokes that aren't jokes, because that's a lot of what I've been writing this last year and a half; little set-ups with just a sliver of a punchline that most people don't think is funny. And genre is not a concern of mine. I am interested in characters first and foremost, but also in the structure of sentences, in themes, and in ideology, and when I'm writing that's all I think about. It isn't until I am about to put something out, the few times a year that I write something that I think is worth showing people, that I consider how it might be marketed. It was in the works to have the release for the horror book (tentatively titled Witches) in a random basement, with a lot of occult paraphernalia around, and candles mounted to mason jars positioned carefully throughout the room, the jars themselves full of maggots and rotten meat, but my friends talked me out of it. Nobody but me thought the idea was all that funny. I work in film and visual art in addition to writing, and so I have this desire to give everything a very elaborate presentation, but with certain ideas it is hard to find support. Go figure.

NT: Ballard, Beckett or Burroughs? Why? Are the boys kept on a leash an explicit allusion to Waiting for Godot, or am I reading too much into that?

RMP: I haven't read a single book by any of those authors, save fifteen pages or so of Ballard's Crash, but it wasn't for me, so I put it down.

NT: How do you like your steak?

RMP: Cut thick. Pink in the middle. Served with asparagus.

NT: Do you feel the need to flee? Does it feel like life has you caged in? Why are you staying in one place so long?

RMP: I like the option to flee more than the actual fleeing. It is nice to be able to drop everything and have a two month adventure, but it isn't really a possibility for me anymore. I pay rent now, and I have a job, and I have people who rely on me to make movies, so I am more or less stuck. I was homeless for a little over a year, and so I floated around a lot, meeting people and doing a lot of writing. It was a lot of fun. My only addictions at the time were reading and coffee, both of which are socially acceptable and neither are all-consuming, so my time on the street was actually fairly pleasant, especially since I spent so few nights on the actual street. If you're going to be homeless, be charming! Make friends! Tell jokes! These days I am fairly unlikable, so I don't think I could ever travel that way again. Who would take me in, even for a night? Also, living that way is exhausting. You are the perpetual guest, and so you must always be so polite – washing dishes, keeping quiet, watching whatever your host wants to watch without complaint... It's dreadful at times. But I was able to see some wonderful cities, and meet some fascinating people, and as comfortable as I am here in Portland, there is a part of me that misses that feeling of not knowing what tomorrow brings; a part of me that wants to disappear.

NT: Do you consider yourself a satirist?

RMP: No, not really. There are satirical elements to a lot of the things I write, but I don't want to get too specific when labeling myself. I am a writer, and a filmmaker, and a visual artist, and that's about as much as I can commit to. I try not to analyze my own work, or to say it is certain things and not other things. Anyone can take from it what they will. I will admit, however, that I think everything is funny. There is nothing I can think of that I am unwilling to make fun of. In that sense, I suppose I am a satirist, if not always in my writing, then always as a person.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Thirsting for Fire

After a long, sad hiatus Thirst for Fire is back and wants submissions. Check out Thirst for Fire. Read the old issues, look at the guidelines, consider sending something offensive.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Twitter 666

Have you ever wondered what it was like to be an aborted fetus; a big sandwich; a Lionel Ritchie CD; a polite rapist; an ATM; a lawn gnome? Well, now you can learn. Sam Pink and Martin Wall have conceived a brilliant new journal called Twitter666. It uses Twitter feeds to explore the existence of things and people that are seen, but rarely heard.

Contributors include Bradley Sands, xTx, Chris East, Nathan Tyree, Ani Smith, D.J. Berndt, Vaughan Simons and Danny Collier.

Share in the madness of Twitter 666

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Need to contact Nathan Tyree?

Nathan's email account is broken. Please contact him at as that account seems to still work.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Are you a fan of Zombies? Horror? Dark comedy? Why are we asking? There is no way you could end up here if you weren't. You know Magazine of the Dead. We're the nasty madmen of the internet. Today we want to tell you about something extraordinary. Indywood Films is producing a fascinating movie called Invasion of the Not Quite Dead. A lot of talented people are involved and you can join their ranks.

For just a few bucks you can be a producer on the film (and get a lot of cool goodies too). Don't pass up this chance at filmic immortality. MotD's own Nathan Tyree has already jumped aboard.

You should drop some coin and get involved

Friday, June 12, 2009

Straight Up Pimpin'

I’m starting to get to the point where it seems to be prudent to contact publishers about Tom Waits and Charles Bukowski Fistfight in Hell. I’m not very good at that, though. What I want is for some crazy ass publisher to find me. It will not happen. But… fuck, who knows.

Are you a publisher? Do you want to start a publishing house? Would you like to get going with a book that has a tiny amount of internet buzz and is written (being written) by the biggest pimpin’ self promoting S.O.B. ever? Email me at Things can be arranged.

I don’t want to kill anyone, I just want to make them hurt real bad.

That’s it. My load is blown for the day. Now I need to do some real writing and then get drunk.

Love me, hate me, fight me, fuck me. Please.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Zombie Research

Magazine of the Dead is highly motivated by the Zombie Research Center.

This is highly suggested material.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Come Play a Game

Amazon lists a book that does not exist. It is titled None and is by an author named None. It has no description. It needs reviews. Some of us have written ours. have fun. Go write yours

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Brandon Book Crises

The Brandon Book Crises
MuuMuu House
Brandon Scott Gorrell and Tao Lin

The Brandon Book Crises is an un-edited collection of gmail chat sessions, text messages and emails centering around the problems that Tao Lin and Brandon Gorrell had in dealing with the layout and design of Gorrell's upcoming poetry collection, During My Nervous Breakdown I Want to Have a Biographer Present. It's just the raw data, with no tweaking (in fact they have left in tact their personal phone numbers and even log in information to their printers FTP server).

Going into this book I thought that I could view in like the running commentary on a movie. It turns out to be nothing like that. In fact, it has nothing at all to do with the poetry collection itself. The conversations are all about layout, color schemes, file types and the minutia of formatting. This should be random and unreadable. The things is, an actual narrative emerges. There is genuine tension about whether they will be able to get the book completed in a form that they can live with.

Characters emerge. Oblique references to girlfriends (and the troubles that relationships entail), unemployment, on-line feuds, and meals begin to inform the reader. Through it all Tao and Brandon seem a bit out of their depth. These are writers (very young writers at that) and not experts at graphic design or layout. Their dealings with the tech people at the printer are almost funny. You get a real sense for how young these men are (they say 'bro' a lot and worry if Blake Butler is 'on their side' and such).

The book is very post-post modern, and strange. It may help the reader to think of it as a sort of dumbed down My Dinner with Andre for twenty-somethings.

The Brandon Book Crises is not a book for a mass audience (the creators know this, they are only printing 150 copies) but it is an oddly compelling read.

Nathan Tyree

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Break This Shit

An interesting idea. Jon Catron wants you to break his shit. Bust it up. Smash the mirror and put your freakshow face up. Post the bloody results in the comments so we can all see how pretty your ugly gets.

13 Perspective Breaks

Blurred eyes slide pieces of a jigsaw face into finely minced detail.
Knuckles bleed silently, white and sparkling.
The mirror screams angry words that I cannot say.
It breaks for me.
It bleeds for me.
God does not heed either of us.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Interview with Greg Santos by Nathan Tyree

MotD's Nathan Tyree interviewed Greg Santos. Greg is an editor at Pax Americana, as well as being a great poet. He is Canadian, which is interesting. The following are the results of that interview.

NT: Do you feel that a poet should attempt to focus on a single theme (or set of themes) that run through their body of work and create something unified?

GS:I don’t think a poet should have to do anything. It’s up to an individual to decide whether or not they want to keep writing about a single theme or a set of themes. That being said, I get bored when I see the same thing over and over. I mean, how many times can Billy Collins keep writing the same poem about staring out a window? I love Billy Collins but the same persona can get tiring after a while. In my opinion, a great poet, or any artist, for that matter is someone who is able to adapt and change over time and build on their corpus.

NT: What sort of poetry (or which poets) have effected you the most? Would you say that your work is directly effected by a specific school (or poet) and if so, which?

GS: I’m always adding to the list. When I first moved to the US and starred studying in New York I devoured poetry by the first generation of The New York School poets. Particularly Kenneth Koch and John Ashbery. Koch’s poetry is absolutely hilarious but extremely rich. I mean, I could only read “Some General Instructions” and “The Art of Poetry” for the rest of my life and never get tired of them. I also think Koch’s book Making Your Own Days on the pleasures of reading and writing poetry is brilliant. I teach a weekly poetry workshop to 8-year old kids and his book Wishes, Lies, and Dreams on teaching children how to write poetry is my bible. As for Ashbery, I don’t always understand Ashbery’s poems but I get him, you know? I find myself thinking about his poems a lot after I read them because they make my brain feel like a Rubik’s cube. I guess some other names I’ll throw out there are James Tate, Russel Edson, Dean Young, and Mary Ruefle. Whenever I’m stuck and I’m not able to write anything, I turn to Dean Young and Mary Ruefle to get unstuck. Read Ruefle’s Indeed I Was Pleased With The World. It’ll change your life. I also really love Elizabeth Bishop’s poetry. She had a small body of work but man was it good.

NT: Has the internet (and the rise of internet publishing ) changed poetry? If so, are these changes good or bad?

GS: Absolutely. I don’t think it’s only changed poetry but the entire publishing industry in general. I like how the internet has allowed publishing to become much more democratic. Everyone, in theory, can be a published writer or editor. The internet is good for building links and it allows for poets to expose their work to a large audience at the click of a mouse. That being said, that also means there’s a lot more writing to sift through. The fun part, though, is discovering sites and online journals that have work you enjoy reading on a regular basis.

NT: Do you like editing? What is the best thing about editing a magazine? What is the worst thing?

GS: The best thing about editing a magazine? The power to rule with an iron fist, of course. Being an editor often helps me approach poets whose work I enjoy reading and admire without seeming like a weirdo. But the best feeling is receiving a submission Ben, Carter, and I end up falling in love with from someone we’ve never even heard of and sharing it with our readers. That feels pretty rad. The worst part is turning down someone’s work. It’s someone’s baby. No one wants to have their child rejected. Sometimes I really like a poem but it just doesn’t fit with the theme of an issue or there’s some other variable at play. That’s the way it goes. Though, it doesn’t make rejecting someone’s work any easier.

NT: Do you feel that your duties as an editor detract from your ability to spend the necessary time writing and submitting your own work?

GS: No way. If anything, I think editing helps me read and write better. There’s a lot of navel-gazing that goes on when you’re constantly thinking about and working on your own stuff. Editing others’ work, like teaching, gives me the opportunity to stop thinking about myself and forces me to focus on someone else for a change. And with all the crazy stuff that goes on in that noggin of mine, it’s often a very welcome change.

NT: My favorite poets are Baudelaire and Bukowski. Which do you prefer? Who is your favorite poet?

GS: I like Bukowski but in small doses. I really liked Bukowski when I was younger. It was around the same time that I was really into the Beat writers. I think I was first introduced to his writing from an anthology I seriously dog-eared when I was in my late-teens called Drinking, Smoking, and Screwing. It was hedonistic writing at its best with stories, essays, and poetry, by people like Bukowski, Spalding Gray, and Nabokov. I find a lot of Bukowski’s poetry sounds the same but maybe I’m just too old of a fart now to appreciate his writing. I don’t know. As for Baudelaire, I don’t really read a lot of him now but when I first started writing poetry seriously, I was given a copy of Baudelaire’s Les Fleurs du Mal when I graduated from college by my then-girlfriend and current fiancée. Baudelaire really influenced a lot of my early writing. I remember writing a poem about a pigeon after his famous albatross one. I’ve been writing a lot of prose poems lately and I haven’t been conscious about the way Baudelaire wrote prose poems but now that I think about it, his prose poems were the first prose poems I was introduced to. That must account for something. I don’t have a favorite poet. I have favorite poets. But there isn’t any one poet that I consider to be better than anyone else.

NT: Have you ever eaten raw meat?

No. But it’s on my to-do list. The last time I was in Montreal I ate pig’s feet. That was awesome. I watch Andrew Zimmern’s Bizarre Foods on the Travel Channel all the time and lots of the stuff he eats looks absolutely nasty but now and then I’ll see something interesting and think I want to try that. For instance, in one episode he goes to Ethiopia, I think, and eats raw meat dipped in lemon juice and spices. It looked like sushi! Only bloodier.

NT: T.S. Elliot and Ezra Pound were geniuses; great poets, but on a personal level they were shits. These men allied themselves with the Fascists. Does that change the way you read their work? Should it? That is, can you disconnect the art from the artist, and should we even try?

GS: You can’t take away their contributions to English literature. When I first read Eliot’s The Wasteland it was a revelation. His use of polyphony in that poem opened up what I thought poetry could do with multiple voices. A lot of Pound’s Imagist stuff was also great. But then again they were douches. Eliot was a raging anti-semite and Pound was a fascist. I appreciate what they did for literature but it doesn’t mean I have to like them.

NT: If a stranger punched you, would you hug him?

GS: I would start with a friendly hug and then sneakily turn it into a wrestling bear hug. That’s how I roll.

NT: What is your favorite color?

Supernova. Is supernova a color?

NT: Is there anything that you would like to mention? This is your chance to pimp upcoming work, your magazine, anything. Go:

GS: Well, I just finished writing a poetry manuscript for my MFA thesis. Any takers? People can order a copy of my chapbook Oblivion Avenue from Trainwreck Press. Check out pax americana online and also order copies of our print issues. You’ll be the most popular kid in town. That or you’ll be chased by an unruly mob brandishing pitchforks but at least people will be taking an interest in you. Our next web issue is going to be guest-edited by the beautiful people who bring you New York’s Poetry Brothel. pax americana also has a short story contest in the works with a cash money prize, so keep your eyes open for that.

NT: Do you feel that poetry is more pure than prose?

GS: No, I don’t think it’s more pure or has any more truth in it that prose or any other art form. Though, I personally prefer writing poetry. I used to be all over the place. I did theater before I really got into poetry, I also wanted to be a cartoonist when I was younger, and I did publish some short stories. At one point I realized I needed to focus on one thing and poetry ended up being the art form I was most passionate about. For me it isn’t just a career. It’s a vocation.

NT: What are your thoughts on "prose poetry"?

GS: I’m a big fan. Like I mentioned earlier, I was turned onto the whole prose poem genre by Charles Baudelaire. I then discovered work by poets like James Tate, Russel Edson, Charles Simic, and so on. There’s an irreverence to the genre that I can’t get enough of. One of my favorite poetry anthologies actually is Great American Prose Poems edited by David Lehman. When I write poems, I don’t necessarily have a switch in my brain that helps me differentiate whether it’s going to be a prose poem or not. It just sort of happens. The poem decided how long its lines are going to be and if they’re going to have line breaks or not. Sometimes I write my prose poems in blocks, other times I break them up into a series of sentences because that’s how they want to be. I think it’s possible that when people encounter my prose poems, my work could be considered flash fiction or something like that but in my mind they’re always poems.

NT: Name a website that all poets should read on a regular basis?

GS: Moondoggy’s Pad and pax americana, of course. Also, Ben Mirov’s blog. Ok, that’s several. I’ll keep going. I always go on The Poetry Foundation’s website for poetry news. Some other poetry or poetry related sites I frequent are Eyewear written by Canadian expat Todd Swift, Bookninja, and HTMLGIANT. I love what Brandi Wells is doing on The Brandi Wells Review. She posts 100% of the submissions she receives. You’d think that would water down the quality of the writing but she publishes some pretty kick-ass stuff there. Paul A. Toth runs some pretty cool sites, too. He’s the editor of Hit and Run Magazine which publishes writers’ raw notes and materials as well as Sitting Pretty Magazine which displays writers’ desks and workplaces. They’ve very addictive.

NT: You're from Canada, but live in the U.S. What is the biggest difference you noticed between this country and yours?

GS: The US has less polar bears running around mauling people. I miss that about home.

NT: Are all Canadians as affable as they seem on TV?

GS: Remember Terrance and Phillip from South Park? They’re Canadian. You know how they have flapping mouths and beady little eyes? We Canadians are exactly like that. It’s almost scary how accurate the portrayal is.

NT: What are your thoughts on MFA programs? Are they really useful or just a waste of time and money?

GS: MFA programs can be expensive so it’s not for everyone but it also depends on how much you want to learn from the workshops and classes you end up taking. I went in there eager to learn from everyone around me and I think that’s a great way to approach it. I personally had an awesome time in my MFA program. I can’t believe it’s almost over. The supportive community of students and professors really made my experience something I’ll cherish for the rest of my life. I would give my life for them. You’ve heard of those crazy exploding poison-tipped bullets? I would so take one of those for them.

NT: Is there anything else (anything at all) that you would like to share with the 76 people that read this site?

GS: Stay in school. Don’t do drugs. Floss every day. That’s about it. Thanks.


Short Story Competition: The Twilight Zone by Jonny Kelly

Hello readers of MotD,due to the new life in literary competitions on
the internet, I've decided to start my own.
Guideline & Rules: Every short story has to be ORIGINAL, but written
like an episode of The Twilight Zone (Horror, sci-fi, twists).
Basically a weird, Serling-like, beginning, middle and end. There is
no word limit at all. You must send the story in the body of the
e-mail. You can send me as many stories as you like, as long as they
are in different e-mails.
Closing date: all entries are to be sent by the June 1st 2009.
Prize: £30 ($45) winner, you'll get it published somewhere and I'll
get it published in my e-book and you'll make a percentage of any
Submit stories to: jonathankellyoim@google

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Ebay crazy sex toy cuddly stuff

MotD favorite Nathan Tyree is running an ebay auction. The winner gets to be a character in his next novel. Check out the auction here

The winner gets to be a major character in a novel I will write. The winner will have to provide me with their name, a photo of themselves, a description of their personality and mannerisms, a bio (background info and such). I will write the novel and guarantee publication within one year of the end of the auction. Then they will also receive a free copy of the book.

Praise for Nathan Tyree’s Work

“[Mr. Overby is Falling] Crams more malevolent nastiness and thought-provoking misanthropy into its every word and deed that your average Bret Easton Ellis.”

-Peter Wild, Editor of Noise and The Flash

“Nathan Tyree’s “Morning in Alphabet City” takes the idea of showcasing a large collection of unrelated characters as they go about their day and presents it with as much horror and brutality as it does compassion and tenderness.”

-Joe Roche, Dogmatika

“Tyree goes right for the jugular.”

-Susie Morris, Epinions

“(At times) violent and (always) compelling, Mr. Overby is Falling is a smart, well-written book.”

-Kevin Donihe, Author of Shall We Gather at the Garden and Ocean of lard

“[Mr. Overby is Falling] will have you biting your nails.”

-Brent Powers, author of The Dog’s Tooth

“[Mr. Overby is Falling] takes a wild dark ultra-violent turn around page forty that will interest and sicken almost any reader.”

-Miele Bang

This is a once in a lifetime chance. Grab it now!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Fiction Anonymous

Fiction Anonymous

by Jonny Kelley

The man who looks like Patrick Stewart is asking me personal questions.
He is tapping his knee several times.

“Repeat what I'm doing John,” he says, sounding very commanding.
“What is in your head now?”

I'm thinking of the time I was sick after sucking all the artificial
ink off a chocolate bar wrapper. But I would be foolish to say that to
Patrick Stewart.

“I'm thinking of the time the bone was sticking out my leg, they put
an orange pillow over it - the leg that is.”

He tells me to banish the thought, rip it apart in my mind. I do this
so well I fool the psychologist - what a stupid man he clearly is.
Still I hope for there to be no life on the billions of stacked universes.
There was a stupid woman who put belief in God - I killed her, I bet
she is rotting in the ground.

“Do you feel better?” asks Patrick.

“Yes,” I answer.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Interview w/ Nathan Tyree by James Horn

Regular Magazine of the Dead contributor James Horn sat down with MotD Contributor and sometimes editor Nathan Tyree to discuss fiction, writing, death and other important topics. The following is a transcript of that conversation.

James Horn: So, how have you been?

Nathan Tyree: Roughly close to death, I guess. It's all up and downs but no arc. You know? How about you?

JH: Okay.

NT: You working on anything good?

JH: Right now I'm writing a story about people having sex with dead amputees. I'm reading a draft of a new book by Z. Lustig, and it's very good. Very strange. Tell me about your new book. What's it called again?

NT: Stygiophilia.

JH: What's it about?

NT: Self destruction. Sex. Self loathing. Existential dread. Underage girls. Cigarettes. Alcoholism. Everything that I have a problem with I guess. It's about enjoying a hellish existence. Maybe enjoying it too much. The main character mutilates himself and gets a sexual thrill from it. He can't maintain a relationship in a healthy way and he has terrible secrets in his past. That's all on the surface though. The subtext is the interesting part.

JH: What's the subtext?

NT: None of your fucking business.

JH: Fair enough. Let's talk about the old book, Mr. Overby is Falling.

NT: Let's talk about fetuses.

JH: Really. That book has a bit of a cult following. I know it effected me a bit. When you wrote it did you think that it would catch on the way that it has?

NT: I don't know that it has caught on. A few thousand people have bought it. Some of them liked it and mentioned it various places. I'm not Chuck Palahniuk or anything.

JH: Didn't I hear that it inspired some artist?

NT: Yeah. Teo Treloar cited it as an inspiration for his NO EXIT exhibition.

JH: How'd that make you feel?

NT: Good. The dude's work is the balls, and that he chose to claim I helped inspire it shocked me.

JH: What's this I hear about Palahniuk saying something about your work?

NT: I don't know about that.

JH: Okay. Do you consider yourself an internet writer>

NT: I don't know what that means. Do you consider yourself an internet writer?

JH: Yes.

NT: Have you ever killed anyone?

JH: I'm not answering that. What are you working on now?

NT: Mostly poetry and flash fiction. I hate that term, by the way. It sounds like something dirty. But I love writing short, forcing myself to create a full story in a short space.

JH: What are your plans for the future?

NT: I want to be a mercenary. That or a male stripper. I'm sexy, you know.

JH: This has been fun. I hope we can do it again.

NT: Me too.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Dreaming of Perfection : a novel excerpt

Chapter 2

by Jonny kelly

The rain is pissing down in the wonderful Glasgow. I'm on a bus going
into town. I'm particularly annoyed as I can hear two fucking junkies
snorting cocaine on the back of the bus. I don't know if I want to
join them or kick them off the bus - I probably want to do both at the
moment. The driver is a tall, husky black fella, who seems oblivious
to Sid and Nancy snorting in the back seats. My mind seems to rest
slightly as I see my stop coming up. I stand up early, so I don't have
to hear the snorting pigs anymore. “Cheers driver,” I say extremely
politely, the driver looks at me with an awkward glare, as if I've
just raped his baby daughter with a chainsaw strapped to my dick. I
put a Metro newspaper over my head, because the rain seems to be
thumbing down nonstop. I'm not infuriating with annoyance though; I
know I've only got a two minute walk - the editor, my boss, is waiting
in a nice little café just around the corner from the bus stop.

I enter the café with a big smile on my face; there is a lovely smell
of fresh coffee, which makes me fell quite happy. I sit down on an
expensive looking black leather chair, at the table where my editor
(John) is sitting. “Have you read the Mirror today David?” John asks

“No I've just read the Metro on the bus, why?”

"Well, David, there is an exclusive story in the Mirror about mass
deaths in the Orkneys."

“Mass deaths in the bloody Orkney Islands, are you having a fuckin'
laugh? Is there something in your coffee John?"

"There isn't much information in the paper, at the moment, all we
really know is that over 20 people in the Orkney islands have commited
suicide by forcing a 10 inch blade through their skull.”

"So I guess I have to go to the bloody Orkney Isles for this story
then. Scotland's answer to the fucking Wacko Disaster.”

"It might very well get bigger than that mate, who knows?"

"Fine I'll go as long as I don't end up in the Wicker man at the end.”
An oriental looking Asian girl walks over to me with a black coffee.
She has a cute little grin on her face, so I decide to grin back at
her, this makes her giggle.

I put the soaking Metro in to a bin which is at arms length from our table.
“So when will I start this investigation?”

John takes a sip of his coffee and then rests the cup on a napkin,
“hopefully you'll be able to start this weekend, we'll see what we can
do for your transportation."

I am now quite annoyed, I look at the ceiling of the café and notice
some chewing gum, this makes me even more annoyed, because it looks
like a nice little clean café.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

A Headless Man Falls in Love with a Bowl of Rice

A Headless Man Falls in Love with a Bowl of Rice

by Bradley Sands

The headless man is eating dinner. He feels his life is incomplete. His tears dribble out of his neck wound and his major organs rain down on a bowl of rice. If any more organs rain down on the bowl of rice, the headless man will stop feeling that his life is incomplete. He does not want this. The only way to save himself is to make his life complete in a different way. He must use a method of hunting and trapping the missing piece rather than not feeling anything at all. The headless man has determined the missing piece is an emotion. An emotion that has been reserved for a person who is not the headless man. An emotion that will fit into his soft tissue. But where will he hunt and trap this emotion? Women are repulsed by his incompleteness, men are likely to react to it with violence. He contemplates this conundrum. He stops contemplating. He looks down at the bowl of rice with longing. He looks down at the bowl of rice, regretting all the pieces he has left behind.

Bio: Bradley Sands is the author of the novel, It Came from Below the Belt, and the editor of Bust Down the Door and Eat All the Chickens. His work has appeared in The Bizarro Starter Kit (Blue), Lamination Colony, No Colony, Opium Magazine, Robot Melon, decomP, susurrus, Thieves Jargon, and elsewhere. Visit him at

Monday, April 6, 2009

Underneath, A Group of Catfish Discover Existentialism

Underneath, A Group of Catfish Discover Existentialism

by XtX

Paw Paw wakes up.

Paw Paw decides, ‘this is the day’.

Paw Paw still makes his breakfast, still turns the pictures facing the walls.

Paw Paw calls no one; he feels secure in this.

Paw Paw finishes his quilt made of horseshoes, hemming the sleeves with the remaining darkness from his past.

Paw Paw takes the rest of his arthritis medicine and a six pack of Coors.

Paw Paw saws off a shotgun, writes “FRIEND” in black Sharpie on the side.

Paw Paw heads out to the bridge at the mill pond.

Paw Paw thinks, this path is overgrown now.

Paw Paw remembers catching blue gill with his grandson which is a lie he tells himself

Paw Paw is terrified for a second, but the second passes and he cannot feel his hands

Paw Paw sits on the low wood railing of the bridge; he hears the rustling of birds in the brush.

Paw Paw thinks about it being his last day, for certain.

Paw Paw wraps himself in the horseshoe quilt, grabs his friend.

Paw Paw whispers please.

Paw Paw pulls the trigger.

Paw Paw falls and sinks and sinks.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Breakfast at Sedlac

Breakfast at Sedlac.
By Jon Catron

Let me genuflect at your pelvis, kneeling on your spine. Venerated, your skull hangs high above, its stern, loving gaze crucifying me. Your rib cage closes about me, an iron maiden of calcium, phosphorus, sulfur, and heavy metals. I share the fate of your heart, bled out, desiccated, desecrated, consecrated in this pain. Our anatomies mingle; fluids everywhere. I drift asleep awaiting the salvation that never comes.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Fucker Inside

The Fucker Inside by S.A. Griffin
Tainted Coffee Press
ISBN 978-0-9814685-1-8

S.A. Griffin claims to not be an erotic poet. He even goes so far as to include a poem in this slim collection explaining just that point. Despite that, most of the poems in the book deal, in some way, with sex.

The opening poem "I Ate Fig Newtons Until I Puked" uses the act of gorging on a food until you can no longer stand it as metaphor for obsessive relationships and the intense sexual passion that normally occurs at the beginning of an affair. He does this with language that is often rough, and line breaks that seem almost jarring. This is strangely effective. He evokes the disjointed quality of love and sex wonderfully.

All of the poems in this slender volume are well realized, and complete. Standing above the rest though, is a piece that seems to be the center of the work, the core: "How Many Times". This poem, though short, carries real weight. I'm not one to reproduce a poem in its entirety in the context of a review, and this poem is too short to excerpt easily. It is about (on the surface) watching a woman undress, and then seeing her as the empty clothes.

Much of Griffin's work is reminiscent of Bukowski at his best. This is powerful stuff. Griffin manages well formed, insightful, intelligent poetry dealing with sexual themes, which may be the most difficult subject for the poet to face.

The Fucker Inside is a fine book.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009



by Sam Pink

Time is recurring terror.

There is no night and day there are only small naps.

There is no way to understand anything there are only nods.

There is no holding hands there is only making sure the other one doesn’t run.

There is no idea there is only saying something one of us already said but forgot about.

There are no naps there are only blinks.

There are no blinks there are only small rips in sight.

There is no fun there is only me not saying anything.

There is no floor there is only feeling like you can’t go below where you’re at.

There is no washer and dryer in my apartment building and that sucks fucking balls.

There are no fingers there are only smaller pieces of your arm.

There are no arms there is only your body trying to expand without your permission.

Being dead will be the easiest thing I do. I am not accomplishing anything; my feet are shovels.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Review: Tomorrowland

Tomorrowland by Howie Good
Achilles Chapbook Series

I received Howie Good's chapbook Tomorrowland in the mail just a few days after my mother died in a car crash. Initially I ignored it because it did not contain any alcohol and I had no time for any object that lacked the ability to numb or kill. Eventually I picked it up thinking that it would distract me from my melancholy for a bit. After reading the first poem, "Love, Death, Etc." I flung the wee book across the room and curled myself into a ball on my couch. I was angry at Mr. Good. Solipsistically, I wanted to be the only person capable of understanding my level of pain and he had cleanly disproved that theory in a single page. Some time later I returned to the slim volume and finished it. I am glad that I did.

Good weaves poems into prose (or perhaps it is the other way around) and bends beauty until it breaks. His words describe and elicit agony and love and death (and etc.). He has captured the burning heart of god on the page.

He illuminates the human condition with simple lines like:

“Where we sleep, you know, it isn’t necessarily where we wake up, it all depends on what we dream, my dead mother for example, crisscrossed by the fence, fingers hooked through the diamond shaped links.”


“Quick, send the extruded plastic moon to this address and because the ambulance driver will get lost in the maze of small, unlighted streets, send the moon out for an encore.”


“not knowing what I’ll remember one day or that no one escapes the fire.”

Good plays with words the way a virtuoso plays the strings of some obscure, forgotten instrument. He understands grief and pain and how to express them fully in ways that most poets could only dream.

This is a wonderful and marvelous and painful book.

-Nathan Tyree

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Sam Pink

Nathan Tyree has interviewed Sam Pink for Bookmunch. Pink is the author of I'm Going to Clone Myself then Kill the Clone and Eat it.

Over and Out

Thursday, March 5, 2009

4 Poems by Z. Lustig

Four Poems by:

Z. Lustig

Dog Fathers

I ate her face
it tasted like
frozen peas
but I seemed
to enjoy it

Love Story

If I chew enough gum
then the bitch wont be\
able to catch me when
I run out back of the
and fuck her sister
before she starts
to rot.

The Fight

She's dead now

The headhunter's hair

My last breath is taken by
a headhunter with the dread
gum disease known as
gingivitis. He has
golden feathers in
his redolent hair

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Femme Fatale

Femme Fatale


Herman Bloom

She turns in time to see him looking at the woman sitting sideways at the end of the bar. The woman is long, too thin, too tanned and clouded by a haze of cigarette smoke that suggests a scene from some late nineteen-forties movie where a femme fatale coaxes some slow witted man in a fedora into murdering her husband, and then leaves him to rot in prison. For his part, he is busy trying to appear as though the only interesting thing in the entire room is floating just below the surface of the scotch in his glass. He badly wants to hide the fact that he was looking at the woman perched at the end of the bar. In the last few months he has found himself looking at other women more and more; wanting them more and more; needing her less and less.

Monday, February 23, 2009

This is Not a lie

This is Not a Lie
by James (JMES) Horn

I ate her face
then I took a bath in
her feet