Monthly Archives: June 2014

Pick a book. . .

Sometimes you pick up a book for no good reason. Maybe the front cover draws you. You flip it over and peruse the dust jacket. You to take it home and, damn, you’ve uncovered a new author for yourself.

That was me and “Joe” by Larry Brown.  Joe Ransom’s a whiskey swilling, rough-cut, ex-con lumber company foreman that poisons trees for a living. He lives along the underbelly in a sweaty Mississippi county drinking, gambling, and womanizing. Gary Jones, 15, underfed, no schooling, and short on hope, forms a thin, unlikely bond with Joe. They careen toward redemption with Joe’s devils and Gary’s itinerant farm worker family headed by his murderous, unwashed father. Some dreams seem small. Then again, dreams are life-sized.

Larry Brown (1951-2004) is not a new author. A book of essays, one memoir, six novels, and two collections of short stories make up his published writing chops. Often compared to Cormac McCarthy, Harry Crews, and William Faulkner, he cites Flannery O’Connor, Raymond Carver, and Charles Bukowski as writing- life influences.  Factor in song lyrics by Leonard Cohen, film industry friends like Billy Bob Thornton, and Texas rock band leader Alejandro Escovedo and you come up with a shape called Brown.

Advice to new writers, don’t get discouraged.

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June 20, 2014 · 9:47 PM

Eerie Root Canal

There’s truth in that statement.

What's So Funny?

Sunday is Father’s Day and I sure miss mine. My favorite quote about Fathers is from Mark Twain. “When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years.”

Both my children are now in their early thirties and still waiting for their old man to gain some wisdom. Hopefully, I’ll get a little smarter before it’s time for them to make that coin-toss decision on whether to send me to a nursing home or insane asylum.

If you’re new to Friday Flash Fiction, the person who inspires us with her wit and wisdom every week is The Kansas City Sage, Margaret Twain Wisoff-Fields. If you’d like to participate in this exercise in madness, head over to…

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