Archive for May, 2012

Pseudopod 283: Dust Bunny

by Matthew C. Dampier

Dust Bunny makes its first appearance on Pseudopod. This story is based on Matthew’s greatest fear.

Matthew Dampier lives in Kansas City, Missouri where both he and his wife teach English. They are parents to a small and mischievous child who they often find in places she’s not allowed.

Your reader this week is Big Anklevich whose blog, “Big Anklevich Explains Everything” can be found by clicking the link under his name. And, of course, make some time for The Dunesteef Audio Fiction Magazine as well.

“”So you have a handle on it?’

‘She won’t be dropped. You have my word.’

‘I’ll be here until tomorrow morning. You remember how to make a bottle, right?’

When she hung up, I took a bag of breast milk from the fridge and ran it under hot water. I filled a bottle and put it outside the hole in the hope that she would come to her senses for a nice hot meal. I laid the bait and prepared for a stakeout, dimming the lights and moving my chair back to where she wouldn’t be able to see it. I drank quietly and cracked each new can under a towel to muffle any noise that might startle her back into the walls.”

Pseudopod 282: Flash On The Borderlands XI – Fearful Fashions

Three flash fictions about the sharpest cut on the newest thread, the latest craze that’s all the rage …

A MOTHER OF MONSTERS by Guy De Maupassant.

Henri René Albert Guy de Maupassant (1850 – 1893) was a popular 19th-century French writer, considered one of the fathers of the modern short story and one of the form’s finest exponents. He delighted in clever plotting, and taking his cue from Balzac, he wrote comfortably in both the high-Realist and fantastic modes; many of his short stories (notably “Le Horla”) describe apparently supernatural phenomena. However, the supernatural in Maupassant is often implicitly a symptom of the protagonists’ troubled minds, as Maupassant was fascinated by the burgeoning discipline of psychiatry. In his later years he developed a constant desire for solitude, an obsession for self-preservation, and a fear of death and crazed paranoia of persecution, that came from the syphilis he had contracted in his early days. On January 2, in 1892, Maupassant tried to commit suicide by cutting his throat and was committed to a celebrated private asylum at Passy, in Paris, where he died on July 6, 1893.

This story was originally published in 1885 and can be read here.

Read by B.J. Harrison, of The Classic Tales fame – who’s new audiobook version of “The Phantom of the Opera” by Gaston Leroux should be available, at the link, as we speak.

“”The child was born in an open field, and when the weeders saw it, they fled away, screaming, and the report spread that she had given birth to a demon. From that time on, she was called ‘the Devil.'”


Ms. Glaze’s work has appeared in numerous online and print venues in the US (including Bizarro, Baltimore Magazine, City Paper, and Urbanite) and the UK (THE LITTLE BLACK BOOK: MOVIES). Violet is also the author of paranormal erotic novel HOTEL BUTTERFLY (2009) and and the short story collection I AM GENGHIS CUM (2010) (where this story first appeared), and her short fiction appears in the anthology WEREWOLVES AND SHAPESHIFTERS: ENCOUNTERS WITH THE BEATS WITHIN (2010).

Read by Marguerite Kenner. Check out previous Escape Artists stories she’s read:
“Machine Washable” and “Movement”.

“He clucked his tongue. “Maternal love will swamp the earth. Everyone wants to keep their baby healthy. Think about what that means for someone else.””


John is a recent graduate of the Clarion West workshop, and “Forbidden Feast” is his first publication.
It appeared earlier this year in the anthology, RIGOR AMORTIS.

Read by Kane Lynch, a cartoonist based in Oakland who recently completed the graphic novel THE RELICS. Click the link to read it online.

“Takeshi certainly knew how to treat a boy. The restaurant captured the apocalypse nouveau aesthetic perfectly. Adam admired the axe and shotgun damage and savored the taste of damp smoke. His hips moved to the elongated screams and machine gun beat of judgment punk.”

Pseudopod 281: The Women Who Watch

by Thomas Owen

Translated by Edward Gauvin

This story first appeared in the 1972 collection LA TRUIE (THE SOW). This translation appeared in late February in the first issue of The Dr. T.J. Eckleburg Review (formerly The Moon Milk Review). It can be read here

Thomas Owen (real name Gérald Bertot) (1910-2002) worked all his life in the management of the same flour-milling factory. He held a doctorate in criminology, and a side career in art criticism under the pseudonym Stéphane Rey. Spared service in World War II, he turned to writing mysteries for money, with the encouragement of Stanislas-André Steeman, a celebrated craftsman of Belgian noir. In TONIGHT AT EIGHT (from 1941), he introduced the police commissioner Thomas Owen—a character whose name he liked so much he later took it as his own when he embarked on what he has called his true calling, his career as a fantasist. An existential dread, one that Thomas Ligotti correctly identified (in a blurb where he name-checked Owen) as “the nightmare of being alive”, emanates from Owen’s oeuvre of several hundred stories – the best word for Owen’s fiction is unsettling. The 1984 volume THE DESOLATE PRESENCE draws from six of Owen’s seven major collections for its 22 tales, and was the only current English translation of Owen’s work available, and is currently out of print. Both of those details may soon change.

Edward Gauvin is the winner of the John Dryden Translation prize, a Clarion graduate, he has received fellowships from the NEA, the Fulbright Program, and the American Literary Translators’ Association. His volume of Georges-Olivier Châteaureynaud’s selected stories, A Life on Paper (Small Beer, 2010) won the Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation Award. Other publications have appeared in F&SF, Podcastle, Postscripts, Conjunctions, Subtropics, and Tin House. He translates comics for Top Shelf, Self-Made Hero, Archaia, and Lerner. He also writes a monthly column on “the Weird in translation” for the VanderMeers’ Weird Fiction Review. He would also like to mention this graphic novel, Billy Fog and the Gift of Trouble Sight for lovers of the macabre “I think of it as Edward Gorey meets Calvin and Hobbes. If you like it, sequels are forthcoming!”.

Your reader this week is Pete Milan who does a lot of voice work with Pendant Audio, on their fan shows (we do a series of DC Comics-based audio dramas) and originals (I’m a writer and performer on their sci-fi serial, The Kingery, among others)…

“‘Do you know that woman?’ he asked the waiter.

‘What woman?’

‘The one in the corner just now.’

The waiter gave the man a look as if he were joking, and assured him no one had been sitting there. He seemed sincere, and gave no reason to believe he’d been in cahoots with the woman.

Of course something had to burst his bubble. At the foot of the abandoned chair, he spotted the forgotten shopping bag. Out peered the green of leeks, wrapped in newspaper.

The man didn’t insist. He was too happy to have escaped the evil spell.”

Pseudopod 280: The Meat Forest

by John Haggerty

This story first appeared in Shock Totem #3, published a year ago.

John Haggerty is a writer living in Northern California. His stories have appeared in Confrontation, The Los Angeles Review and The Santa Monica Review, among others. He is currently at work on a novel about greed, gambling, religion, sex and death set in the deserts of Nevada. It’s a comedy!

Your reader this week is Corson Bremer. Corson has been in the business of communication for almost thirty years, spanning two continents, and as a stage actor, writer, director and voice talent, he has participated in more than 100 stage plays, readings and radio drama productions. These skills also fueled a 9-year career in radio as a presenter and as a writer, producer and voice talent for commercials, branding, audio books and video games (including RED STEEL 2).

He would like interested parties to check out the Voice Artists United Network (VAU) website (click name for link – also on Facebook, LinkedIn, and MySpace), where he’s an admin. It’s dedicated to very serious VO professionals. That doesn’t mean just “stars” or the very experienced VO’s, it’s for people who have already made and/or are making a real effort to break into the industry. We welcome people as members if they have a “web presence” showing that they work in or are MAKING A BIG EFFORT to work in VO (like their own voice acting website or profile on the web… even if it’s just a free one on or or Check it out and tell your friends!

“Dmitri laughed in my face. ‘Who is going to stop me? I do what I want.’ He looked out into the drizzly evening. ‘I can get you out of here. Do you want to go?’

‘What? Out of the camp? How?’

‘How do you think?’ He nodded toward the gray forest that crowded the perimeter, where the electrodes got too weak to keep it out. ‘Through that.’

‘Through the forest? I thought it was impossible.’

Dmitri tilted his head up. Beneath his jaw were tattoos of two men’s heads, done with red and black ink. Their faces were contorted in an expression of horror; their eyes closed. He pointed to them. ‘Do you know what they mean?’ he asked. I shook my head. ‘I’ve gotten through it twice. The only man in New Russia. I’ll take you.’ He paused, looking me up and down. ‘It’s probably a lost cause. I don’t think you’ll make it. But if you’re interested, come to my hut tonight.’

I looked back out at the forest. It wavered in and out of focus in the rain, gray and silent. When I turned back around, Dmitri was already gone.”