:: Fiction

Palenque Hotel published 21/05/2019

“I must formulate completely the work I’m going to undertake. I must search for the law to which all things submit.” Beginning at the beginning. Ah! The first word.

An extract from Palenque Hotel, a new novel by Louis Armand.

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Red Sky at Night published 10/05/2019

Paul arrives in Patras and lights a cigarette. It is four pm and hot. Sweltering in fact. It has been all summer and even though it is now September the heat shows no sign of letting up. From the coach across southern Greece, Paul had seen trees blackened by forest fires and white walls stained with smoke. He crossed rivers that had become beige dried-up banks and he watched a dog limp across a road to beg an old man for water. Everywhere you look there are signs of the damage being done to the land by the heat, but here in Patras no-one seems to care.

An extract from Thomas Chadwick‘s Above the Fat — this month’s Republic of Consciousness Book of the Month.

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Detachment published 01/05/2019

Supposedly, to be a voyeur is to be a pervert, but he was not that: it was not genitals or infidelities that excited him—primarily, it should be said, because of course they did, too—it was the chance to see someone as they are, that was all.

An extract from Hugh Fulham-McQuillan‘s forthcoming story collection, Notes on Jackson and His Dead.

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The Logos: An Introduction, Part II published 16/04/2019

From where did this belief, this faith in me, stem? This is what I think secretly infuriated Claire, though she herself believed just the same as they did about me. Perhaps it came down to the sheer confidence of my line, which was irrefutable; or the speed with which I’d absorbed my lessons in methods and materials, in draftsmanship especially, and later in painting. Actually, these kinds of measures were useless in gauging an artist’s deeper gifts, but then, these were academic artists surrounding me. What could you expect of them?

The conclusion of chapter one from Mark de Silva‘s new novel, The Logos.

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The Logos: An Introduction in Two Parts published 02/04/2019

I have always thought of her face as a mistake. Always—even before I could see the world wouldn’t turn out as we’d hoped. Where was it, though? The flaw. I suppose you could just have well have asked, which of her faces did I mean?

The start of chapter one from Mark de Silva‘s new novel, The Logos.

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Proleterka (Extract) published 28/03/2019

Many years have gone by and this morning I have a sudden desire: I would like my father’s ashes. After the cremation, they sent me a small object that had resisted the fire. A nail. They returned it intact. I wondered then if they had really left it in his suit pocket. It must burn with Johannes, I had told the staff of the crematorium. They were not to take it out of his pocket. In his hands it would have been too visible. Today I would like his ashes. It will probably be an urn like any other. The name engraved on a plate. A bit like a soldier’s dog tags. Why was it then that it had not occurred to me to ask for the ashes?

An extract from Fleur Jaeggy‘s Proleterka, translated by Alastair McEwen.

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The Beauty of the Room published 01/03/2019

Here’s how come the title. O, it was so beautiful. The room was. I stood and swooned—and said what you just read. I swear it to you, that I stood in the doorway and said, “O, the beauty of the room.” Well, sure, I see it, don’t think I don’t see it—my saying I said O when, who knows, might it have been oh I said?

New fiction by Gordon Lish.

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Muscle (extract) published 08/02/2019

‘The beautiful thing about being paid by the word,’ said Holcomb, ‘is — well, let’s say all my money comes from my writing and all the writing I do is paid by the word. I write for the love pulps mainly. Terrible things, too coy even to have the dignity of the earnestly seedy. Some science fiction too. Now obviously you could go through my apartment, and for each of my belongings you could attach a label with the cash value of that item. I paid this much for the typewriter, this much for the desk, this much for the brandy. Each word I write I get paid a nickel. Sometimes it’s less than that, sometimes it’s even a bit more. But let’s say a nickel. If you know how many nickels I paid for something you could figure out a word that I’ve sold the necessary number of times to pay for that thing.

An extract from Alan Trotter‘s Muscle.

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Grey Tropic (excerpt) published 07/02/2019

“Who would I tell this to?”
“I don’t know…Your readers?”
“I’m not the writer of this story!” I say.
“I thought it was a first person narration! Look: it’s a first person narration. You’ve just said ‘I’m not the writer of this story,’ I say,” she says — she’s sharp.
“Yes, true. But it’s not autobiographical. I’m not the writer. Getting that wrong is a basic kind of mistake, Neva…”
“That’s what all writers say,” says Neva.“And—” a roar of laughter drowns the rest of her words. I take offence about this, because she’s absolutely right.

An extract from Fernando Sdrigotti and Martin Dean‘s Grey Tropic.

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Palomares Bomb Grrls published 16/11/2018

‘He was a thousand corroded wounds which had to be forced to live. He smelled of the smoldering bomb & compressed vertigo, a thousand wasted summers, under his skin an over-heated factory of insane traumas, strong convulsions, fever torments & no soul, no consciousness, no mind, no thought, only raw elements alternately chained & unchained – he was away from his body which he saw as a mere burst of flame, a chained monkey, something like a low cloud or smoke, some apocalyptic grin delivering him to inglorious disaster, departure & solitary death. His body was detached from his consciousness, a vampire folded in his nipples, a grey devil, a black crablice & choked & trussed lungs, & all he said was he didn’t die to come back & remake himself but only to give up life & whatever life one had &, well, because he wanted the coffin…’

An extract from Johnny Pulp‘s new novel Palomares Bomb Grrls.

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