[re-posted every year around this time] 1– I can’t remember if it was Kurt’s idea. Maybe it was mine. Ideas come out of the air at that age. As you grow older they have to be created. Also the idea of driving to New York before Christmas was more of an impulse than an idea. Though, again, at that age, ideas are impulses. They are hormones. Wait… that’s right… …It was Kurt’s idea. He didn’t want to spend Xmas with his mother. He thought that by driving out there a couple of weeks before Xmas day he could avoid the highest … Continue reading EXCERPTS FROM “THE VELVETEEN GULAG” [a memoir]: CHAPTER 2: IMAGINED

SALTER’S LUCK (a short story)

In every way my second (and last) marriage is wonderful, my first marriage was a nightmare. A fruitful situation rich in fiction-producing toxins. This story and another  (and this chapter in my memoir) are the stories I got out of that dark, dark period. . . Salter woke up to Lola shouting there was oil fucking paint on her Jil fucking Sander. He couldn’t at first tell if he was having a heart attack or caught in an earthquake or both but Lola was so up in his face she appeared to have one long ice-blue eye in the middle … Continue reading SALTER’S LUCK (a short story)


  from the completed novel THIS INCREDIBLE SEX   COMEDY or  the little almanac  of Famous Black Philosophers & Great German Comedians  a novel as poem or symphony or joke —-(download the 231-pg pdf HERE     ”The best reader,” he says, ”is one who is most open to human possibility, to understanding the great range of plausibility in human actions. It’s not true that modern life is too fantastic to be written about successfully. It’s that the most successful work is so demanding.” It is, he adds, as though our better writers ”feel that the novel’s vitality requires risks not … Continue reading CHAPTER 20 from THIS INCREDIBLE SEX COMEDY: A NOVEL


Six Quickies and Two Shorts from my Collection WE DO NOT DIE   ********   10             FLARCH   She always swore she’d never FLARCH. “You’ll never catch me FLARCHING,” she always said. She pitied people who had no minds of their own and she often said so. More and more of her friends were doing it, though. They were FLARCHING, which made her even more stubborn, more resistant, more categorically averse to the idea. She simply wasn’t a herd animal. She needed to make that perfectly clear. A sheep she was not. A lemming she was not at all. Show … Continue reading SCI FI FOR MODERNS


The Convoluted Real Life Romantic Adventures of a Bohemian Serf Abroad and at “Home” During Fewer Than Two Months of the Clinton Administration. This is not a quick read… Let the Sex pull you through it. — preface I used to call myself Crank.  I don’t know why. July 1995-A There was a very confusing war in the Balkans and it had something to do with the break-up of Yugoslavia or the calculating evil of the Clintons or something. M nodded. I read M’s mind.  She was eighteen. Nodding yes yes yes. To be eighteen and know you’re eighteen is … Continue reading EXCERPTS FROM “THE VELVETEEN GULAG” [a memoir]: CHAPTER 27: GIANTS


  Sometime around the year 2002 or 2003 I wrote a novella called THE BAD CZECH. The narrative of that novella is a proper Möbius strip. Then I wrote two more novellas, THE BOMB COLLECTOR and JESUS IN VEGAS. They form a postmodern (I’m not ashamed of the word)  trilogy that I’ve collected in one book called 3PSTMDRN MURDER MYSTERY NOVELLAS (CLICK HERE) ….Ricky Lang can remember quite clearly the moment he became a god, if not God (it would be arrogant, and embarrassingly human, to ignore the categorical distinction between the two on the off chance he was the former). That was the moment he turned Benny … Continue reading 3 POSTMODERN MURDER MYSTERY NOVELLAS

Excerpt from THE BOMB COLLECTOR (a novel)

In early 2008 I finished a 41,000-word novel called The Bomb Collector. I wrote it with the goal in mind of writing a book with a secret layer, a secret layer that would remain absolutely detachable from a “normal” reading of the book. That is, one could get quite a lot (I hope) out of the book without needing to uncover its secret. Which is like Life itself, no? You can eat your favorite meals, argue facetiously with your colleagues, go swimming on Sundays and collect door knobs or key-chains quite happily without guessing at any of the twinkling layers … Continue reading Excerpt from THE BOMB COLLECTOR (a novel)

THE INHERITANCE (a short story from the novel GERMANTOWN)

A cloud of noise from the far corner of Golders Park, a jangle of plaint and controversy. The vivid disturbance swelled as it swept the grass on abundant legs broadcasting the many-headed din of a thing so dirty-furred and spittle-spraying. It approached with all chains ringing and swooped its thirty four tails with snaggle-toothed grins proclaiming the man and his muttpack after all this time returned. The loudest runty ones fanned ahead like scouts yapping cocky and proud and the big ones and the old ones loped and trotted and limped behind with the prophet himself striding the rearmost calling … Continue reading THE INHERITANCE (a short story from the novel GERMANTOWN)


  [The Bomb Collector is a Novella featured in THREE POSTMODERN MURDER MYSTERY NOVELLAS] The only thing I like more than packing a suitcase is unpacking a suitcase; the former indicates an adventure to come and the latter an ordeal survived. My pleasure would be magnified in this case by unpacking my suitcases in an absolutely empty flat. Just walls, floor, windows, doors and ceiling. A ritual I was, however, too exhausted to enjoy before getting a little sleep. In the top layer of suitcase number one was a cloth-covered air mattress I’d purchased from a bankrupt Army Surplus store as … Continue reading THE NOVEL EXCERPT: from THE BOMB COLLECTOR


[a gender-mending, Sye-Fye epic set 15 minutes into the  peril-rich Future] . “Father was busy reading and did not notice that the house was being filled with strange Indians until Mother spoke about it.” -Narcissa Cornwall, 1846 1. Ideological branding aside, most Lesbians she knew and admired had less problem with the penis as a fact than with the word Lesbian, that cardboard word, so dry, so nothing brown, redolent of the 1950s and the suppressed longings of whiskered librarians with scalp-torturingly tight buns streaked with grey. O’Sirus can even smell the book rot. The brambled grey heart of the … Continue reading THE BROTHERLAND MIRACLES: a Novel Excerpt

THE BAND (a short story from GERMANTOWN)

  [a short story from GERMANTOWN, a novel made of linked short stories following the intertwined histories of two families, from the early 1900s until the early 2000s]   **** A human being (who also happened to be property), born more than two hundred years before Benny Murcheson walked this earth, wrote: One morning, when I got upon deck, I saw it covered all over with the snow that fell over-night: as I had never seen any thing of the kind before, I thought it was salt; so I immediately ran down to the mate, and desired him, as well … Continue reading THE BAND (a short story from GERMANTOWN)

jizos av masi: a short story from GERMANTOWN

Every working day at 5:40 a.m., like a ninety six pound prize fighter in training, Bernadette Murcheson wakes up to the tinny bell of the wind-up alarm clock she got from her mother as a graduation gift at the end of high school. The little clock, after all these twenty four years, is the only thing left from that original windfall of dime store treasures she got to commemorate her big move into the world beyond Golders Park. The utilitarian nature of every one of those family-given gifts (alarm clock, stapler, can opener, sewing kit, compass, miniature crescent wrench set) … Continue reading jizos av masi: a short story from GERMANTOWN


  The previous text I posted, a day or two back, came with a warning about its difficulty. This one… FIRE PAPER GUNS THE INTERNET and ALL WHO FOLLOWED AFTER (an excerpt)… makes that look like a book by John Irving or Erica Jong in comparison. It’s Sumo Class stuff in the hierarchy of obscure narratives. Chapter One: SUMMER OF NONE The splendors of existence are so near. Smell them, taste them, they are yours, right there, in thick liquids or crunchy solids or blown twinkling on your face in a highway mist through the passenger-side window of a secondhand … Continue reading FIRE PAPER GUNS THE INTERNET and ALL WHO FOLLOWED AFTER: an excerpt