Today you can find my short story, Debris, in the pages of Shenandoah: The Washington and Lee University Review. This is my third publication in the US, and by far the most significant of them. It is also the title story for my forthcoming short fiction collection (from Biblioasis, in 2015). I think it’s one of the strongest stories in the book, and will likely stay that way unless I go on a tear and write some baffling new stuff before we go to press.
Massive thanks to Rodney Smith, the editor of this venerable American journal, as well as any and all staff and interns that had a hand in getting this story out there. I have been pretty actively submitting to US journals for a long time now, along with some of the best journals north of the 49th parallel, and this was a big one for me. Shenandoah is widely regarded as one of the best in the land. They’ve published the likes of Dylan Thomas, W. H. Auden, James Merrill, Ezra Pound, William Faulkner and Flannery O’Connor. Not at all intimidating or humbling.
Debris follows an elderly couple in the middle of some rural everywhere as they figure out that the county they live in, and the backwoods near their property, might be home to a particularly heinous and dangerous human being. This after a storm stomps their farmstead one night. They deal with it all accordingly.
One useful piece of news is that Shenandoah now gets published online and can luckily be got by all of you (Yankees or Canucks) without having to snag it from some speciality store or further sullying your credit cards. It can all be had right here, so get into it and maybe read the work of the other fine authors in this issue as well.
This story is particularly family friendly and entirely free of blood and f-bombs, so feel free to let your children and grandparents read it before you vet it at all first. Absolutely take my word for it. Hell, you can even print this story off and hand it out on Halloween. That probably should actually be some kind of marketing plan that I suggest to the good people at Shenandoah…
Otherwise, an interesting thing to note is that this story was shown interest by Joyland: A Hub For Short Fiction just a hair before Shenandoah asked about it, and Joyland subsequently went on to publish the next story that I sent their way. That story, Shape of a sitting man, is up on Joyland right now and you can give that a read as well if you’re inclined. Thanks very much to all the people who facebooked and twittered it this past week. Keep it up if you can, and we can continue to show the folks in the states that we can fucking crack up here against the best of them.
After this I’ll be fairly tapped out for story news for the time being. I have a number of new stories out for submission in the US, and, after revising the newest I wrote, I’ll start bombarding Canadian journals again as well. If anything good shakes out as a result of that I’ll tell you about it. I’ll also post more info when I know more about my story Old Man Marchuk and its release as part of Best Canadian Stories 14, edited by John Metcalf for Oberon Press. That should be out within the next little while based on what the internet says to me. Finally, my unicorn-level magic secret news that I’ve alluded to in earlier posts is still locked up, but it shouldn’t be for long…
Until then, thanks for reading all this shit and keep believing in your dreams and so forth.