:: Fiction archive ( 2000-2005, click for articles pre-2006)

GIRL 3 published 09/12/2013

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She is here and here and here, in the regions of my body and the invisible spaces. She is in the incomplete memories. They will come in the night. Something terrible will happen that night because of its fearful truth. Night is a quick-silvered box, night is another country. I am not seeking definition but complete explanations and only she can talk to me without even mentioning its name. She knows everything and I have no reason to lose her again.

By James Miller.

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A visitor in the night published 14/10/2013

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I can’t sleep anymore. I’ve called off the search. All evening, buried in my armchair I’ve sat and waited for the waves to take me. But as they started to reach the walls, as the eddies took up the things in my room, a frogman slowly opened the door. Green water rushed in and over his heavy form, ran over the carpet, raced up towards the ceiling. He walked towards me clumsily as if at the bottom of the ocean. Then, taking off his glove, he placed on my table a pebble. A phosphorescent pebble glinting in the shadow growing thicker. I could no longer see the diver after that. Just in the middle of the night this white pebble.

Excerpts from Journal of a dead man by Marcel Béalu, translated by Andrew Robert Hodgson.

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The 1983 Advisor published 03/10/2013

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The President was in the middle of a speech when someone with a deep but feminine voice cut in, jamming the broadcast. Naturally I couldn’t hear him, but he gesticulated wildly, so I suppose he must have been told what was happening. The woman’s voice, pitted against his theatrical seizures, revealed that insurgents had taken over a northern province.

By Susan Daitch.

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from Madeleine E. published 26/08/2013

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It is Scottie’s idea to go to San Juan Bautista. It is prompted (as was certainly planned) by Judy/Madeleine’s dream, but the timing is left up to Scottie. And if he had not thought of San Juan Bautista? Gavin Elster, in the tower, waiting with a dead woman, his wife, Madeleine, for hours, perhaps days. How, for that matter, did Elster get Madeleine’s body into the tower? Does Judy scream because this has not, after all, been the plan? Are we so sure that she knows that she is impersonating a dead woman so that that woman’s murder can be covered up?

By Gabriel Blackwell.

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Spray Can Romance published 10/08/2013

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It was to be a final, fervent declaration of love, sprayed scattershot throughout the city. He hoped, through such dutiful replication, to command her attention, provoke her into getting in touch. With a rattle he would summon her face from the ether; black toxic clouds, filtered, would see her smiling face emerge. A love declared through repetition. If the night went well then by sunrise her face would be resplendent across the city, her stencilled ubiquity hard to ignore. She would wake oblivious to her domination of the city’s walls. He would cease spraying only once she had broken her silence.

By Stuart Snelson.

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Head to toe portrait of Suzanne published 23/07/2013

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My God, I’m too fat. No one loves me. I’m still young, kind of. But it has always been like that. At school they called me Oinker, and later Big Belly or Lard Ass, or Big Lard Ass Fatso. God, how I suffered. I alone knew the wealth of purity that was hidden beneath my barrels of fat. The others considered with disgust this body which they believed to be the physical representation of my moral state. It’s like how visitors at the zoo recognise guilty elements of humanity in the animals, condemned to expose their degradation for all to see. The monkey is an obscene man and the tiger a deceitful man, the serpent is a vile man and the lion a proud man. Me, I’m a pig. A dirty gluttonous pig. My spirit is incapable of raising itself up from the floor. Divine gravity dictates to me this law: my body resides at ground level, there must rot my soul.

An excerpt from Roland Topor‘s Portrait en pied de Suzanne, translated by Andrew Hodgson.

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Meridian published 19/07/2013

Their talk continued in reminiscence of the deceased. But it struck me that the exchange was so stagy it could have been rehearsed. I had become, perhaps unconsciously on their part, an audience, a chance to shine. Is there a sociological counterpart to quantum mechanics? Even by eavesdropping, however discreetly, do we alter others’ behaviour, even their memories? I was struck again by how essentially unknowable, unreachable, we are to each other.

An extract from David Rose‘s Meridian.

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Ghost Town published 16/07/2013

Never answer the door at 5:45 AM on a Sunday morning. Either somebody’s too high, somebody has just died, or somebody has just arrived who wants to kill you.

By Lydia Lunch.

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Loo published 26/06/2013

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She audited an Oral Communications class at the township college. But despite all that dreamy speech-course certitude about “messages” and their “senders” and awaiting “receivers” (those textbook diagrams with the perkily curving arrows always made her sad), wasn’t most communication of any sort a one-way street anyway? Shouldn’t she have been content with the inner sentences of hers going on for miles and miles—an entire continent’s worth, for that matter—without anyone in any oncoming traffic taking any notice whatsoever?

3:AM proudly presents new fiction from Gary Lutz.

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It came from out of my head published 13/06/2013

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Dear God, wrote the boy, if you listen hard enough, you might be able to hear what I am trying not to say to you.

By Ken Sparling.

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