Though she wasn’t born in the South, her stories evoke for me the same drawling sense of pocket-universe skewedness as Howard Waldrop’s best, perhaps filtered through a more contemporary sensibility; a time-lapsed version of Stephen Graham Jones’s back-country, tooth-bearing fictions, with disquieting details lovingly blown up and lingered on; and all of this enlivened by injections of surrealism a la Leonora Carrington, with touches of William Gibson-esque techno-estrangement. It’s a mind-expanding brew.
I have a story in this called “His Name is Love,” based on the Stephen King story, “The Man Who Loved Flowers.”
Here is an excerpt.
I’ve been asked to dinner a lot. I reek of dead flowers. I like men, even after everything that’s happened. I mean I like women more, but I don’t see myself in that way. I want to take off my face, have a nap. I always want to nap. Sometimes I want to nap forever, lie curled up on a bed of petals and just go to sleep, dream that I’ve remembered my name. But that’s just guilt talking. Dusk isn’t a good time for any of us.
Now go and subscribe to Unnnerving. It’s killer.
Without writing a separate review of each of these tales it’s difficult to do full justice to the quality of this author’s writing, but what it is very easy to do is to urge you to read these haunting, disturbing and thought-provoking stories for yourself. If you enjoy the weird, the quirky and the unexpected, I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.
While I’m catching up on news, here is Breach magazine’s review of my upcoming collection, Collision.
Stories are ruthless, nothing is safe—even the child who offers a lollipop and loses a wrist to the Clint Eastwood dog. Breukelaar experiments with the Gothic and queries the queer. Bedded within the tales is a voluptuous energy that turns pages. Tables pirouette in a blink and, before you know it, the story is eleven shades grimmer.
Thanks to Eugen Bacon and Breech Mag for the words.
You can pre-order Collision here and everywhere.
Best books of 2018? I read very few books last year. I don’t know why I read so little. The ones I did were mainly for work. I read a lot of student work, edited manuscripts for clients and my own. Getting Collision edited and ready for printing took a lot of my time, partly because the folks from Meerkat are almost as anal as I am. Or at least pretend to be when I know they are just being patient. Anyway here are my pics for 2018 over at LitReactor. And while you’re there, check out Parts 1 and 2, pencil at the ready to jot down the list for your local bookstore.
Where do I start? Probably with a huge huge shout-out to CreateNSW who made travel to WFC Baltimore possible by awarding me the Artist Quick Response Travel Grant.
This is the first time I’ve gone to World Fantasy with any assistance, and it lifted a whole lot of stress and allowed me to concentrate on networking, learning, making new friends and connecting with old ones. Another first for me this time was having my publisher front and centre. I owe a huge debt of gratitude and respect to Tricia Reeks, CEO of Meerkat Press for everything she did, and is. Finally, it was such a joy to reunite with my agent Matt Bialer and my brother-from-another planet Seb Doubinsky who is also part of the Meerkat family. I don’t want to write too many spoilers here because of a forthcoming article at LitReactor.com, but yeah, hi-jinks did ensue.
Here are some of the pictures, but they don’t tell the whole story. This is the convention that keeps giving for sure, in terms of friends, colleagues, and inspiration. I sold books. I connected with new readers. I read new work by some talented people. I panelated with, um, Alliete de Bodard. I drank a teensy bit too much with Ms Warren and Mr Jeffrey Ford. I slept way too little. Can’t wait to go back.
So this is happening—thanks to the good people at Meerkat Press.
My first grant, so. When the guy from CreateNSW called me and told me, I literally cried and he was embarrassed. It was a moment. Anyway, thank you CreateNSW. I’m goin’ to Baltimore, my third World Fantasy, and the first one not on my own dime, entirely. Can’t wait to meet my new publisher, Tricia Reeks of Meerkat and to reunite with my amigo Seb Doubinsky, and hang out with my people. I always get so much out of these cons—meeting new readers, bonding with new viewers, scoring invitations to contribute to anthologies. But the best thing about this World Fantasy is getting to support some fellow Australian authors, especially the amazing Kaaron Warren, who is Guest of Honor. I plan to hang out in NYC for three short days afterward, where I’ll be reading at Gotham writers Workshop and elsewhere.
I’ll be tweeting about my road to WFC Baltimore so watch that space.