Ugly Little Things, a collection of dark ficiton

Hey guys, fellow writer Todd Keisling has just launched his limited collection of short stories titled Ugly Little Things just a few minutes ago. He will only take orders until August the 16th, so please, if you like dark fiction, go support a really good author. Just click the link on the title, and it’ll take you there!
 
Take care peeps.

Winter is not coming

I’ve realized something after awhile. I’m a man of the cold.

Of course for those who know me, they’ll probably roll their eyes when they read that sentence, as I am Canadian and when it does get cold up here, it can be pretty damn cold. But no, I’m not talking about where I’m living, I’m just talking about myself.

What I mean when I say that I’m a man of the cold, it’s simply means that I just prefer the cold. When this past winter came, and stayed, and everyone across everywhere was complaining about it, I felt fine until right near the end where even I was getting sick of it. Still, at this moment I cannot help but feel such pleasure when as I drive I roll down the windows and the cool breeze just envelopes me. Usually now when it is cold outside, I walk out without a coat on. I like feeling the cold on my skin, until it gets too cold to the point I need to bundle up. I really cannot stand the heat or humidity for long periods of time, but where I live (Southern Ontario) we get spouts of humidity which is really annoying.

Okay, to put it in better perspective, I’m going to talk about Game of Thrones for a moment. No need to worry about spoilers, as there won’t be any. Anyway, I love the Stark’s, they’re my favourite out of every other person on the show. But I also love Winterfell, the rolling hills, the grey skies, the fields of hard earth that reward when toiled on properly, it just makes me happy. Of course despite that Westeros is in a decade long summer, the North still has its bouts of snow, it’s just not classified as winter like we would think it would be.

So yeah, my body prefers the cold over anything else. I need to have my bones chilled, my hands numb, and maybe just be a bit frostbitten. Hell, I don’t even need winter, give me a sea side town and let the ocean winds fill my room through an open window, that would satisfy me in plenty of ways; or a place near a mountain side near a large stream where you can chill a six-pack in it instead of using a fridge. There are plenty of places I would love to visit at the right time to achieve this. Ireland sea side, the prairies in Canada or Montana, or the east coast of the States.

I know this seems a bit silly, but that’s just the way I feel. I still like summer, just not as much. And I want to visit places with warm climates, but my body yearns for cooler temperatures. Anyway that’s all, a simple rambling from me today.

Take care peeps.

On the State of Publishing

You know, the more I think about it, the more I would love to open a publishing house if I ever get the money. I’ve been seeing so many articles about women, POC or the LGBTQA writing community (and all the other communities I cannot list) who are of course, not recognized and the field is dominated by just white guys. Not that there is anything wrong with white men writing, as we all know there are brilliant pieces of fiction that have been written by these men; but when you think about it, just how many voices have gone unheard? How many brilliant stories have been chucked aside because, well, the person who the story was submitted to passed on it because “they couldn’t connect to the character”? (wherein fact the person submitting is, lets say, a POC, and the publisher is Caucasian) I’m serious on that statement. While it may be true that all the stories have been written, not all the point of view’s have been given a chance.

I know, me being a Caucasian male may seem like it would be hard to try and get with any story that comes my way, but I’m a lover of really, really good fiction no matter who it is written by and who the main character may be. Though at this point this is where I would ask other people to join in and read the stories, and of course we can discuss the stories, just in case I may not get something or we can have a debate over why the story should be published or not.

I will point out again that a lot of really good pieces of fiction, whether it be lit, sci-fi, fantasy, horror, humor, etc, have been passed over ever since fiction has really been recognized as a serious art form. So we have probably missed out on so many brilliant tales spanning over the past 150 years, at least. To me, this is a crying shame. For example, I have been missing out on writers of the classic sci-fi era because I never heard of them before, or they passed away before I found them, or their work went out of print despite that they’ve won awards. That’s why I want to open my store and try to bring back some of these stories, because there is still brilliant fiction that has been made, but no one knows of it. So think about a writer who is a POC who was turned away by a publisher, or convinced to do something else with their life because they are told no one would care about their work, and multiply that by an unknown number then span it across many different groups. It’s insane.

Of course not all fiction is good fiction, we all know this; but we also know that it takes time to cultivate and create good work, no matter what art field one resides in. There needs to be places, and publishers, who are accepting and willing to give anyone a chance. I say this because we also know for a fact that a good piece of fiction is entertaining, but an amazing piece of fiction, no matter who it is from, no matter who is the main character, can inspire, can change lives, and it has happened before and it will continue to do so well into the future.

I’m starting to wish that I realized that wanted to do this ages ago, maybe then I would have pushed myself toward this idea. I’m still trying to write as well, and life is, life, and it likes to remind me that I have things I need to deal with. But if I could do this, and I want to do this, I know it could happen given time. I’m just a sucker for a really good story, but man, I want those writers out there get their due.

“Sneakers” and The Naked and Famous

I love making playlists when it comes to my writing, as the music just happens to fit the story and it does actually help with the process. But there are times where there is only one song that encompasses the entire story, and this song by The Naked and Famous is one of them.

The story is called “Sneakers”, and it’s just a regular piece of fiction, no supernatural elements, no far away worlds composed with magic or technology. It’s just about friendship, experience, and memories. I easily know how it’s gonna start and where it’s gonna end and I’m grateful for that at least. So with this tune pulsing in my ears, I think that I’m ready to see where it leads me.