I am honored to be among six San Diego writers asked to read a “coming out” story as part of the events of the  2017 San Diego Pride parade and festival. The other selected authors are Mary Sue Doyle, Katie Krantz, Patrick McMahon, Jeffery Pinkston, and Dylan Yates. The reading, organized by Judy Reeves and Steve Montgomery, took place on 7/16 at The Ink Spot, San Diego Writers Ink’s studio in Liberty Station.

IMG_2032What a fun and thought-provoking evening it was! Thanks to all of you who came to listen, and again to Judy, Steve, and my fellow writers.

 

 

 

 

Just in time to get ready for Halloween, Sez publishing has released graveyard-front-coverthe anthology Graveyard,  containing my short story, “A Letter to Anna Bell,”

It’s available in print or Kindle edition from Amazon. For those of you who may be squeamish, let me emphasize that this is “horror lite”–lots of ghosts, grave digging, and psychological drama (the last describes my story, which starts on page 29) but few graphic scenes. There are nine other stories in the book that I found particularly entertaining:

“The Big 4-0” by William Davis (page 48), “Fryton” by J.C. Michael (page 164), “His Place of Rest” by Bekki Pate (page 194), “Morrigan” by Suanne Schafer (page 226), “Phone Call from the Mausoleum” by Jiil Hand (page 236), “Pine Grove Cemetery” by Skye Winters (page 256), “Stuff” by Larry Crist (page 289), “Thou Shalt Not” by Ann Martin (page 292), “The Van Arsdale Secret” by Mary Ann Ronconi (page 296), and “Witch” by Kate Wiant (page 310).

I hope you’ll check these out–and the other stories as well!

Follow this link to buy Graveyard at Amazon. (paperback $13.00, Kindle edition $7.00)

 

 

Originally published in Haunted Magazine, my Poe-ish mystery story “A Letter to Anna Bell,” has been accepted for the Graveyard Anthology to be published later tGraveyard 3his year. Haunted ceased publication shortly after my story ran (no, I don’t think there was a connection) and their archives are no longer available, so the anthology will be a re-birth of sorts for “Anna Bell.” Looking forward to seeing it in print again! I’ll post another notice when the anthology is available.

“SanShadowgraph logodman” grew out of a challenge my writing partner and I took up: to write a complete story consisting of one sentence. In the beginning it was just an exercise, a prompt; but I found that the piece that emerged was seductive in its relative simplicity and brevity. The format seemed perfect for a dream-like meditation that, to some, may seem more poetry than prose.Wings-chart

The story touches on mystery, mortality,  belief, and sexual desire; it was inspired by a week spent on Cape Cod in October, 2015 and is published this month in Shadowgraff Quarterly. Click to read “Sandman.”

(By the way, Alice and I both cheated a bit on the one-sentence rule: my story is in three sentences, hers is in two. Read Alice’s piece, “Quickly”  in the May 2015 issue of Labletter.)

 

 

I saw an announcement this week inviting submissions to a new journal focusing on scent-triggered memories. The journal, Olfactory Memoirs, is a project of the Sfrying bacon_Page_01an Diego Foundation Creative Catalyst Fellowship Program and will culminate in a series of spoken word performances orchestrated to coincide with scent compositions made by artist Brian Goeltzenleuchter. I posted my short piece, “Scents Memory,” which talks about losing the ability to taste and smell as a result of progressive Parkinson’s Disease. (I mention, among others, the scent of lavender, the stink of gasoline, and the smell of bacon frying, which explains the photo above.)

Although my situation is, obviously, not funny, I tried to strike a wistful and somewhat ironic tone. Let me know whether or not I was successful after reading the piece here. And, while you’re at it, consider posting something about your own olfactory memories on the Write — Participate page.

 

 

I am privileged to have been selected for inclusion in a new anthology from Blue Heron Press, Songs of Ourselves: America’s Interior Landscape, which was officially published on December 1.

When John and I were moving from New Jersey to Scover imagean Diego, California in 2008, we gave ourselves a month to accomplish the trip by car, stopping anyplace that looked interesting. I kept a travel diary describing what we saw; my chapter in Songs of Ourselves is made up of excerpts from that diary. Because we are both interested in Frank Lloyd Wright, we ended up visiting a number of his projects, from private residences in Oak Park outside Chicago to the Johnson Wax headquarters building in Racine, Wisconsin and his beloved Taliesin West near Scottsdale, Arizona. The preponderance of Wright’s work in our itinerary suggested the title for my contribution: “The Wright Stuff: Encounters with Frank Lloyd Wright and others on a trip across America.” Other sites we visited along the way include the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio; Mount Rushmore in South Dakota; Devil’s tower in Wyoming; and Chaco Canyon near Farmington, New Mexico.

The book is available through Amazon in soft cover or you can read my chapter here. I received my copy yesterday, and am looking forward to reading my fellow contributors’ stories.

From “About us” at the Hamilton Stone Review:

“The Hamilton Stone Review is part of a movement of small, independent publishers and publications dedicated to distributing high quality fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction. We intend to encourage writers, whether unpublished or established, by bringing their work to readers by way of this online literary magazine.”

Rebas Wedding- Family

The author at about age 21.

There are certain milestones in most lives that are culturally important, whether because of privileges earned, deeds accomplished, or lessons learned. For me, my twenty-first birthday was one of these milestones. This story describes a birthday for the narrator that went disappointingly (and somewhat humorously) awry. I’m not saying it was mine, but…

Read “Twenty-one” here.

 

Review Review logo2The Review Review has again published a review of a journal that recently published one of my stories. “Panic at Twenty-four Frames Per Second” was selected as the featured creative nonfiction piece for Lunch Ticket’s summer/fall issue.

The reviewer chose to emphasize the “social justice” theme of many of the pieces in the issue: “Serious, though not heavy-handed, in tone, the journal explores matters of social justice and what it means to be human in an ever-changing world. Within, many different themes surrounding the human condition such as love, teenage angst, and self-discovery are examined in these pieces, but they all circle back in some way to matters of equality. Among peers, among the community. Finding out where in the world you belong.”

Ironically, my essay is the most frivolous and light-hearted piece I’ve produced in quite a while and, not being consistent with the reviewer’s characterization of the journal, was not mentioned in the review. I guess one can’t be in the spotlight all the time. Read Lunch Ticket anyway.

Read the review of Lunch Ticket in The Review Review here.

For the earlier review of Red Savina Review, which published my essay,”There Are Still Empty Places in California,” see my 12/3/2013 blog entry.

logo1It’s been a long wait, but I’m pleased to be able to say that this one is a little lighter in subject matter compared to what you may have come to expect from me. Although it contains a dire warning, I wrote it with tongue firmly planted in cheek, and I hope you’ll read it that way. The story recalls my days working as a film projectionist while attending San Diego State University. I’m happy it found a home in the journal Lunch Ticket, a well-respected online literary magazine produced by students in the MFA program at Antioch University in Los Angeles.

I hope you enjoy it!

Click here to read the story on the Lunch Ticket website.

Coming out…

January 20, 2015

Journal Cover Lime Hawk…again? The online journal Lime Hawk has just published my experiential essay, “Parking Signs/Outside the Pleasure Dome,” which focuses on my 2013 diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease and the period immediately following it. I had a hard time writing this one, not least because I have quite a few friends whom I’ve not told about it before, and I expect they’ll be pissed that they’ve been kept in the dark. Sorry, folks. I hope this essay will illuminate some of the reasons why I’ve been silent.

And, speaking of illumination, please read the other pieces in this fine journal. I promise you’ll enjoy them.

You can go directly to my essay by clicking here.