Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Things I'm Excited About

So I finally got around to downloading the Do Some Damage collection Terminal Damage. It's eight stories by eight top-notch authors set in an airport for a grand total of 99 cents. Great idea--I think these kinds of depressing, everyday settings are ideal for noir. And for some reason airports have always fascinated me--the people watching, how airports all the same yet different, how you can get trapped there for days.

While I was at it, I downloaded Chris F. Holm's Eight Pounds. I checked out The Hitter in Needle (excellent) and A Rip Through Time: The Dame, The Doctor, and The Device at Beat to a Pulp (most fun you can have at your computer with you clothes on... or you can read it naked) and I heard that this collection rocks. And it's only 99 cents. Instead of buying half a cup of coffee, I bought his book. So two downloads for a total of less than two bucks, which I look forward to reading.

In the stuff I've actually read portion of this post, Nigel Bird has a tragic and beautiful tale up at Beat to a Pulp, Taking a Line for a Walk. No fancy-schmancy plot trickery or witty banter here--just a cold, unforgiving snapshot of reality. As AJ Hayes said, bring the tissues!

And to end with a question: Which airport do you hate the most?

I'll go with Moline, Illinois, where I usually fly from. It's small, dingy, flights never leave on time due to snow, and the woman who works the only post-security eatery is the definition of surly. Though I guess I would be too if I worked at MLI...

Close second: LaGuardia. Trudging through those terminals, I can't help but think of cattle being led to slaughter.


  1. Those two e-collections are full of great writing.I think you'll enjoy them.

  2. LaGuardia-hands-down. Never get out of there without delays.

  3. there are some small British airports that are so bad i can't remember their names - they're blocked out.
    and thanks.

  4. Thanks for the download, Chris! Hope you enjoy it!

    And Newark. Sweet Christ, does Newark suck.

    (Dishonorable mention: Puerto Rico. I'm sure it's a nice enough airport, but I was once stuck there a full day. You get stuck at an airport in the tropics, you get no sympathy whatsoever for not showing up to work the next day -- plus you get the added bonus of being a stone's throw from a gorgeous beach while sitting on a sticky plastic seat across from an Au Bon Pain.)

  5. Newark does blow. Perhaps I'll take a tip from Nigel and mentally block it out.

    I like that description of the PR airport--it sounds sad.

  6. Thanks for the heads up on the reads. Going to check out Taking A Line For a Walk now. My airport is Logan, which sucks, but O'Hare in CHI sucks worse.

  7. Nigel's story is a trip into the very darkest end of sadness. Nigel sometimes your stuff makes a grown man (me) cry.
    I was privileged to win a copy of Eight Pounds in the six word story contest. I read it through in a sitting and reread it again. Terrific stories.Great collection.

  8. Don't fly so that solves that problem. lol

    And way, way behind in my reading. Thank you for mentioning these and others. Short stories get overlooked by many these days and what you do is a very valuable service.

  9. Thanks, Kevin.

    And Sean--I often connect in O'Hare and it is pretty rough. Always get delayed there.

  10. Joplin, MO has the best airport. And the snack machine always has Bugles.
    Worst? Atlanta's, if you have to get across it quickly.

    And thanks for the mentions, sir.

  11. Yap Island in Micronesia. Every landing dicey. It's an old Zero landing strip and a 737 can barely get stopped. It's full flaps and thrust reversers full tilt boogie at 50 feet, slam it down and stand on the brakes. Air Micronesia pilots call it their "weekly bounce on Yap."

  12. Wow, Micronesia. That's an interesting one.

    I'm actually a fan of Atlanta--but only if I have a long holdover.