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Your Own Back Yard – Michael Gillan Maxwell

Visual Art – Creative Writing – Social Commentary

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Short Fiction

“Short Fuse” Published in The Bitchin’ Kitsch

“Short Fuse,” my twisted flash fiction piece about  going off the deep end is published

in the December 2013 issue of The Bitchin’ Kitsch. 

Humble and heartfelt thanks to

Chris Talbot-Heindl ~ Co-creator and Editor of

“The Bitchin’ Kitsch  ~ A zine for open creativity”

Follow the link below and go to Page 29

http://www.talbot-heindl.com/dec2013

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Nomination for 2013 Pushcart Prize

author pic

I am humbled, honored, nearly speechless and totally thrilled to be amongst the six writers whose work has been nominated by Metazen for the 2013 Pushcart Prize. http://www.metazen.ca/?p=14739
My heartfelt thanks and appreciation to Metazen editors ~Frank HintonChristopher AllenLen KuntzCaitlin Laura Galway, Diana Cole, Jamie Smith and Belinda Bilonda Kalala for this huge honor! Congratulations to the other Metazen Pushcart nominees Charlotte Seley, Karen Stefano, L.S. Johnson, Oliver Daltrey and Daniel Shurley.

Follow this link for more information on The Pushcart Prize. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pushcart_Prize

An Embarrassment of Riches

Books

An Embarrassment of Riches

 Back in June I experienced the surprise of my life when my piece “Funky Little Blaze Orange Pork Pie Hats” was selected as the first place winner in the FLASH MOB 2013 Flash Fiction Day Competition.

LIke I said then, I’ve won stuff. Lottsa stuff. A bike at a school blacktop carnival. A pie at St. Anthony’s parish festival. A bag of groceries. A two dollar lottery ticket. A karaoke contest in Tokyo. A bonus round on the slots at a casino in Cleveland. An arm wrestling contest.  Yeah, I’ve won stuff. Lottsa stuff.

But I never expected to win that kind of honor in FLASH MOB 2013. That was overwhelming enough. Then, unexpectedly, surprises began to arrive in the mail. The surprises were the 1st place prize in the form of the latest books authored by so many of the writers whose work I admire. It is an honor of the highest sort.

Included in this unexpected bounty is a copy of Gears ~ A Collection by Alex Pruteanu, Thank You For Your Sperm by Marcus Speh, Three Squares a Day With Occasional Torture by Julie Innis, The Merrill Diaries by Susan Tepper, and The Cheese and Onion Sandwich and other New Zealand Icons by Vivienne Plumb.

It is with a sense of deep gratitude and appreciation that I welcome these works to my library and accept the responsibility for their care and feeding, but most importantly, for their reading and appreciation! I only hope that some of the genius of these authors might rub off on my work!

Once again, my gratitude and appreciation goes out to the participants, organizers and judges of FLASH MOB 2013, including Christopher Allen, Michelle Elvy, Marcus Speh, Robert Vaughan, Leah McMenamin and Nuala Ní Chonchúir and Linda Simoni-Wastila, and to the aforementioned authors for their work ~ Alex Pruteanu, Marcus Speh, Julie Innis, Susan Tepper and Vivienne Plumb. Thank you one and all. I look forward to paying it forward if I am ever presented with the opportunity to do so!

“Good Help Is Hard To Find” in The 2013 issue of the Santa Fe Literary Review

I am thrilled and honored to have my 100 word shorty short “Good Help Is Hard To Find”  in The 2013 issue of the Santa Fe Literary Review alongside so many writers whose work I admire. Thank you Meg Tuite for your time and positive energy in this and congratulations to all on your great work! :-)Includes work from Sheila O’ Connor, Mary Stone Dockery, James Joseph Brown, Mathieu Cailler, Robert Vaughan, Alex Pruteanu, Timothy Gager, Teisha Dawn Twomey, Libby Hall, James Claffey, Mia Avramut and others.

Meg Tuite’s interview with Sheila O’Connor is a fascinating glimpse at the creative process.

Follow the link below for online access to the entire journal. My story is on Page 53.

Santa Fe Literary ReviewPoems, stories and essays from Santa Fe’s up and coming writers.

Santa Fe Literary Review

“Funky Little Blaze Orange Pork Pie Hats” published on Metazen REPOSTED WITH LINK

This is a repost because I inadvertently posted a link that didn’t work. I apologize for any inconvenience or aggravation!

My piece “Funky Little Blaze Orange Pork Pie Hats” is up on the Metazen site. Thank you Christopher Allen and the rest of the editorial staff for publishing my work!   http://www.metazen.ca/?p=13207

Glad To Be A Mobster!

Rock 'n RollBot
Rock ‘n RollBot

When Flash Mob 2013 called for entries, I jumped in there just to be part of a mob. Not the kind of mob that involves irate villagers with flaming torches, but the other kind of mob, the good kind of mob. It’s something I’ve not had the opportunity to do since the heady student protest days in the 60’s.

Frankenstein

I hoped by rubbing elbows in close quarters with so many fantastic writers their mojo might rub off on me. I thought what the Hell and sent in my quirkiest piece. One of my favorite pieces, freshly rewritten, but had never seen the light of day. I made believe I was a pitcher throwing a screwball, then a football QB heaving a Hail Mary pass. Or not.

Anyway, I was just happy to be in a mob and livin’ it up with all my fellow mobsters! Lightin’ cigars with hundred dollar bills. Struttin’ our stuff & shuckin’ and jivin’ in our zoot suits. You get the picture. Because I was preoccupied with intense summer solstice rituals (it’s Saturday bitches and it’s summer!) and because of the super moon, hugest.full moon.ever. I forgot to even check to see what was going on, and it was not until a friend called to congratulate me that I found out I’d won.

Thrift Shop Fedora
Thrift Shop Fedora

“You won!”

“Huh? What now? Who’s on first?”

“I called to congratulate you.”

Long pause.

“Um….congratulate me …. for ……. not getting arrested …what…what?”

“You won!”

Long period of speechlessness followed by ranting and raving.

It’s not like I’ve never won anything. I’ve won stuff. Lottsa stuff. A bike at a school blacktop carnival. A pie at St. Anthony’s parish festival. A bag of groceries. A two dollar lottery ticket. A karaoke contest in Tokyo. A bonus round on the slots at a casino in Cleveland. An arm wrestling contest.  Yeah, I’ve won stuff. Lottsa stuff.

But to be honored in this event …. well, all I can say is

I am humbled, honored and giddy as all git out!

In the Cool of the Evening
In the Cool of the Evening

Thank you Flashmob people and all my fellow mobsters!

FLASH MOB 2013 showcases more than 100 stories from more than 100 participating writers from all over the globe.

Click the link below to jump in with the Flash Mob

http://flashmob2013.wordpress.com/winners

Funky Little Blaze Orange Pork Pie Hats

Driving into town daydreaming about the dream I had last night. Not the one about my father, but the one about designing a line of men’s wear made exclusively from potato skins with snappy names like Dudz from Spudz, Potato Pants and Tater Tees. I pass fluttery paper cornstalks, vineyards rusting under sullen skies, pickup trucks clustered at trail heads and men with shotguns creeping toward corn fields.

Walt Whitman’s redneck body double is in the diner, writing on a napkin at the counter. Could be a shopping list, directions to his hunting camp, or a new collection of radiant poems. Seems like I’m the only one in the place not wearing green and beige camo and a funky, little blaze orange pork pie hat. Where are the Fashion Police when you need them?

A man and a teenage girl stand at the counter, their hands are covered with blood.
The girl shows off a photo she just shot with her phone of the buck she just shot with her gun.

Walt Whitman says: “That’s a big deer sweetheart! How old are you anyway?”

“Fifteen, but my dad let’s me drive his pickup.” She leaves to wash her hands.

In the grocery store I spot a man in the produce department squeezing bananas. With his meticulously groomed white goatee and wire rimmed glasses, he’s a dead ringer for Sigmund Freud. I want to tell him about the dream I had last night. Not the one about my father, but the one about Henrietta swimming through a sea of roses.

I want to say: “Doctor, would you mind if I lie down on your couch over here by the tomatoes for just a few minutes? I need to tell you about my mother.”

Flash Mob 2013 The International Flash Fiction Day Competition

Hello all,

This is the story I posted June 9th as my entry in Flash Mob 2013 The International Flash Fiction Day Competition.

FLASH MOB 2013 showcases more than 100 stories from more than 100 participating writers from all over the globe.

Click the link below to jump in with the Flash Mob

http://flashmob2013.wordpress.com/

Funky Little Blaze Orange Pork Pie Hats

Driving into town daydreaming about the dream I had last night. Not the one about my father, but the one about designing a line of men’s wear made exclusively from potato skins with snappy names like Dudz from Spudz, Potato Pants and Tater Tees. I pass fluttery paper cornstalks, vineyards rusting under sullen skies, pickup trucks clustered at trail heads and men with shotguns creeping toward corn fields.

Walt Whitman’s redneck body double is in the diner, writing on a napkin at the counter. Could be a shopping list, directions to his hunting camp, or a new collection of radiant poems. Seems like I’m the only one in the place not wearing green and beige camo and a funky, little blaze orange pork pie hat. Where are the Fashion Police when you need them?

A man and a teenage girl stand at the counter, their hands are covered with blood.
The girl shows off a photo she just shot with her phone of the buck she just shot with her gun.

Walt Whitman says: “That’s a big deer sweetheart! How old are you anyway?”

“Fifteen, but my dad let’s me drive his pickup.” She leaves to wash her hands.

In the grocery store I spot a man in the produce department squeezing bananas. With his meticulously groomed white goatee and wire rimmed glasses, he’s a dead ringer for Sigmund Freud. I want to tell him about the dream I had last night. Not the one about my father, but the one about Henrietta swimming through a sea of roses.

I want to say: “Doctor, would you mind if I lie down on your couch over here by the tomatoes for just a few minutes? I need to tell you about my mother.”

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When Nature Calls

Thank you Editor and Publisher Matt Potter for including my piece with so many wonderful writers in this rambunctious exploration of “Personal Space” on Pure Slush!

Michael Gillan Maxwell discovers what it’s like ‘When Nature Calls’, part of ‘personal space’ at Pure Slush, and now online:
http://pureslush.webs.com/authorslm.htm#914784738

Click on the link for “When Nature Calls”

Lunch Laddy at the Dirt Track Races
Lunch Laddy at the Dirt Track Races

Funky Little Blaze Orange Pork Pie Hats

Driving into town daydreaming about the dream I had last night. Not the one about my father, but the one about designing a line of men’s wear made exclusively from potato skins with snappy names like Dudz from Spudz, Potato Pants and Tater Tees. I pass fluttery paper cornstalks, vineyards rusting under sullen skies, pickup trucks clustered at trail heads and men with shotguns creeping toward corn fields.

Walt Whitman’s redneck body double is in the diner, writing on a napkin at the counter. Could be a shopping list, directions to his hunting camp, or a new collection of radiant poems. Seems like I’m the only one in the place not wearing green and beige camo and a funky, little blaze orange pork pie hat. Where are the Fashion Police when you need them?

A man and a teenage girl stand at the counter, their hands are covered with blood.
The girl shows off a photo she just shot with her phone of the buck she just shot with her gun.

Walt Whitman says: “That’s a big deer sweetheart! How old are you anyway?”

“Fifteen, but my dad let’s me drive his pickup.” She leaves to wash her hands.

In the grocery store I spot a man in the produce department squeezing bananas. With his meticulously groomed white goatee and wire rimmed glasses, he’s a dead ringer for Sigmund Freud. I want to tell him about the dream I had last night. Not the one about my father, but the one about Henrietta swimming through a sea of roses.

I want to say: “Doctor, would you mind if I lie down on your couch over here by the tomatoes for just a few minutes? I need to tell you about my mother.”

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