Recommended Read/Listen: “20 Simple Steps to Ventriloquism” by Jon Padgett

PseudoPod 433: “20 Simple Steps to Ventriloquism”

I absolutely guarantee the last couple twists are ones you ain’t gonna see coming, dummy. 

[photo credit: “Photo booth portrait of two clowns and a ventriloquist dummy” by oakenroad is licensed under CC BY 2.0. ]

RECOMMENDED READING/LISTENING: “Balloon Season” by Thomas Ha @PseudoPod_org

This is a “frog boil” story, and may in fact be the perfect frog boil story.  If you’re woke-ish, then it is pretty clearly a climate change story. But if you’re on the political right, it may actually seem to much more obviously be an immigration story. It could be a cautionary tale about the dangers of group think (although its up to the reader to determine of its more about anti-mask group think, QAnon group think, CRT group think) or privilege or income disparity. 

However you read it, the message is the same: It’s a warning against repeating the same old prayer that humans have repeated prior to disaster for Millenia:

I guess it’s happening, but let it happen in some other neighborhood in some other town far away, above someone else’s roof and out of my sight.

Anywhere but here. 

Anywhere else.

Also, absolutely terrific monster-of-the-week. So worth your ears and eyes: PseudoPod 819: “Balloon Season” by by Thomas Ha

RECOMMENDED VIEWING: Spiral 🌀

Holy moly is this good. I generally like horror because it deals honestly with trauma and how we cope (or fail to cope) with it. This is a occult/folk horror film that really grabs ahold of not just trauma, but intergenerational trauma—and also intergenerational mutual aid and support. 

Spiral is available on Shudder, the only streaming service worth every penny (at under $6/month).

HALLOWEEN TREAT 🎃👻🦑💀: “Mitochondrial Assimilation” by Khalifaziz @NightlightPod

This story resonates with me tremendously as a Jew. It captures the ambivalent, ecstatic trauma of becoming part of the thing that is America in a way that perfectly matches my lived experience.

NIGHTLIGHT (A Black Horror Fiction Podcast) # 422: “Mitochondrial Assimilation” by Khalifaziz

They also have an interview with the author, Khalifaziz, that’s well worth your time.

I’m a lifelong Michigander, I’ve been to Isle Royale, and I can confirm that this is a true and accurate assessment of that stony archipelago…

…and, in fact, one of its most charming aspects:

This artist is living her best life, in my humble.

source: I Illustrated National Parks In America Based On Their Worst Review And I Hope They Will Make You Laugh (16 Pics)

I’ve got a story in NEW VOICES OF SCIENCE FICTION—and it’s available now! (UPDATED)

[UPDATE 2019-11-25: I just saw Paul Di Filippo’s review of this antho for Locus, and so added a snippet of that below, because it’s insanely kind and flattering and I wanna crow about it.]

It feels a little odd to be a “new voice” in anything with so little hair atop my head and so much grey in my beard—but I’ll take it!  The publisher has been kind enough to include a section of my story “In the Sharing Place” to whet your appetite (here’s a link to all five previews stories).  Enjoy!

The New Voices of Science Fiction (from Tachyon Press)

Reviews

“Reminiscent of the weirdness of Ben Marcus’s The Flame Alphabet, “In the Sharing Place” by David Erik Nelson chronicles in vivid surreal fashion a post-invasion, post-collapse world where psychological counseling takes on dire new facets.…this is a killer collection, full of top-notch stories beautifully written and invested with much care, compassion and thought …Deploying the toolkit and concerns bequeathed by their literary ancestors, they are extending the reach of the genre not by plowing under everything that was built before and salting the earth, but by erecting new superstructures on old foundations—or perhaps new eco-communes in the shadow of dinosaur cities. It’s the way the field has always moved forward, and this volume gives plenty of hope that the future of future fiction is in good hands.”—Paul Di Filippo, Locus Magazine

“While readers may be familiar with many of the names and individual works here, having them together in one volume creates a stunning set of sf shorts. Highly recommended for all collections.“—Library Journal

“There are also stories that present unique dystopias such as the mist-haunted New York in Jason Sanford’s ‘Toppers’ or the mysterious outside world in David Erik Nelson’s ‘In the Sharing Place.’”—Booklist

“After some kind of alien invasion/apocalypse, children try to come to terms with the loss of their families ‘In The Sharing Place’, a thoughtful and ultimately a chilling story by David Erik Nelson. Much of the narrative takes place in the therapy sessions that happen in the Sharing Place and only slowly are details of the apocalypse revealed. It’s a very effective tale.” SF Crowsnest