Mr. Eaton has asked me to inform you that this is (probably) the last of his semi-badgering promotional activities based around the publication of his story collection Intimate Dialogues.
Four stories from this collection had been published previously online by different magazines. At least three of these, I’ve been informed, have been shouted at you (in a very online sort of way) during these last summer months.
This forth and final shout concerns his published story SHOULDER – and if you click anywhere around here you can go read it – for free at The Cordland Review.
And, I’m requested to urge, if ya like that one, there’s more where it came from. Print and ebooks availability right here.
After I have passed on those essential points, I have been asked to end this and give thanks for reading this and get out.
Consider this done.
Posts Tagged ‘short story by Vincent Eaton’
Well, news has it my next book is out. And there’s a video attached.
The collection of stories, Intimate Dialogues, was written over the last decade or so. I did not bother to keep score of what was written when, and how, or why. It began, as these things do, with writing one, then another, and so on, until something Chekhov once said about his stories entered my mind, and this is not an accurate quote, but a muddy recollection:
“I write briefly about large subjects.”
I embraced this idea, it brought coherency to these stories that were suddenly appearing, and so wrote, when the appropriate story idea appeared before me, with this in mind: writing briefly about some subjects, characters and situations that could have been, perhaps, rather longer.
Additionally, it was pointed out to me early in my writing life by an editor, that I possessed a talent few writer’s had, and that was the ability to develop characters and situations using only dialogue. The stories were all (for the most part) created with dialogue being the main narrative style.
Needing to get the stories going quickly, unexpected intimacy between disparate characters experiencing critical moments in their lives became a theme.
Lastly, I chose to employ the word dialogue rather than the shorter American usage dialog. I fancied the look of the word dialogue. There were more letters. Maybe because the stories are so compressed, I wanted a slightly uncompressed title.
Here’s a video that’s supposed to seduce you into buying the book.
Click on this sentence to see the video.
Also, additionally, in a hyper-marketing sort of way, click on this sentence to read some story excerpts or find where to buy the book.
That’s my story on these stories. Some stories have been published elsewhere, and I’ll post those now and then so you can have an opportunity to read, to taste, see if you might want to buy all their brothers and sisters contained in this collection.
So long for now, Vincent
My latest book, a collection of stories entitled INTIMATE DIALOGUES, is being released very shortly.
Several of the stories appearing in this collection have been previously published by online magazines. I’ll be posting some of them, so if you enjoy what you read, you might be tempted to order the whole collection (whether as printed book or ebook).
This one is the story that kickstarted the idea for the collection, which goes some years back (I’ll speak of this in the next blog posting).
Click here to read the story: Interruptions.
More news on this book very soon. Thanks for dropping by, Vincent
An original story of mine was recently published by the well-known and reputable online publication The Cortland Review.
It is called “Shoulder” and is part of my story collection Intimate Dialogues.
It’s available for reading, and just just click anywhere here if you want to read it.
Hope you like, and thanks for dropping by. - Vincent
He said to her, “I can name fifteen reasons why we should stay together.”
She waited over on the other side of the room, her arms crossed, waiting to hear his reasons.
He said, “One, I love you.”
She waited some more. She got tired of waiting, so said, “And?”
“The other fourteen don’t matter, just the first one.”
She continued waiting over there on her side of the room, arms still crossed, wondering how to tell him that that just wasn’t enough reason any more.
An autobiographical piece of mine was recently published online by a non-fiction story site called “Airplane Reading”. Called “Barely Airborne” (and will be part of non-fiction collection called “Intimate Details & Bodily Functions”), you can read the piece by CLICKING HERE TO READ BARELY AIRBORNE.
But here is how it begins:
“Over there is your airplane, sir.”
The Munich airport employee had checked my one-way ticket to Rome, then gestured to the bright tarmac of that reflected a bright winter day. There, over a ways all alone and looking suspect, squatted a small airplane with twirly propeller things on its wings. It seemed more suitable for a low-grade millionaire on a budget; I expected a jet.
“Yes. As there are only two passengers scheduled for this flight, it has been shifted to this plane.”
“But I have paid business class.” My company had paid business class. This was the week where I was following a very portable electronics conference around Europe and “managing” it; we had visited Paris, London, Stockholm, Munich, and now finally Rome. My job was to arrive in a hotel with a very large room, ask technicians and other sub-manager types if everything was okay as they set things up, and then hang around watching everything go well.
My ticket-taker walked away, leaving me to venture unaided across the tarmac and board. Carrying my bag, I stepped outside, and instinctively glanced left and right in case I had to dodge any zooming incoming or outgoing planes. But nothing stirred anywhere. Things went roar on the other side of the building, but here? No other airplanes but mine, no people, no hustle, no bustle. The air was still. I walked across the tarmac, arriving at the five stairs leading up to the entry. I stopped, looking around for someone to lead me in, be interested—anything at all. Nothing. I stepped up, peeked inside the entryway, eight seats, tightly packed, no one. No one sitting or standing, no one in the cockpit. I turned and looked out and over my new desolate world. Someone appeared from the same entry hole I had. I went back down the stairs, and waited for the man, also attired to do some business, who nodded at me as he came up.
“Strange,” he said, looking back over his shoulder.
You can read the rest of it by CLICKING HERE TO READ BARELY AIRBORNE
Thanks for coming round.
When, at odd moments during the day, when Roger moved his hand, it blurred. Which caught his attention. He dropped everything to stare at his hand. Waiting for it to come back into focus.
Later, his hand affected his arm, and it too became a bit blurry. And now standing naked before the bathroom mirror, he didn’t see himself. He saw a blur. He reached out toward the blur, but that too turned out to be a blur.
“Honey, come see. I’m out of focus.”
“What do you mean, again?”
The cat was a stranger to us; a fully-grown calico I discovered on the street in front of this house where I was living back then. Corner of a semi-busy street. I was stretching, gazing out the window to see whether there was any interesting life out there, how the traffic was doing, and noticed something twitch in the gutter.
I opened the door, went outside, stood by the curb where a cat lay. It had been run over by a car, and its spine was hopelessly twisted. It jerked spasmodically. I examined it without touching. Bent closer to see.
One of its eyes was blinking and darting in horror and panic, while the other remained open, fully dilated and blank, not responding to light, not moving, much like a doll’s eye.
It had obviously suffered severe brain damage, yet parts of it continued to function.
I stood up from the animal, watching it pant.
A six-year old child of the woman I lived with at that time became a concerned though ineffective nurse. She brought the animal in off the street, found a box for it, lay the cat in there. She proceeded to sit over it in the living room and stare, respectfully, mournfully, waiting for it to die. It didn’t. She became bored with the beast in the box and left to find something more interesting to do.
The damaged cat became active. It managed to flop about, even climb out of the box and stumble a few paces. There was no semblance of a cat’s finesse remaining. It turned tortuously, the rear of its body bending to the left. It never meowed, or shrieked, whether from pulverized vocal chords or brain damage I had no idea. It tripped and struggled in aimless determination, falling on its snout or plopping on its hind quarters, then laying inert, panting, worn-out, unable to orientate itself.
First discovered in the morning, it was still alive by mid-afternoon.
The decision, adult and reasoned, was to destroy it.
In those days, there was very little extra money to take this stranger’s cat to a vet and pay for its humane extinction.
So the few other solutions remaining were considered. None of them good. I recalled having favorite pets taken from me in childhood by reasoning parents and gassed to death somewhere where I could not see it.
I followed in these traumatic footsteps.
I took the cat by the scruff of its neck from its tortured place on the floor, carried it to the kitchen and stuffed it into the oven. I closed the oven door, switched on the gas and left the room.
Returning later, I stood in the kitchen doorway, head cocked. I heard it within the gas stove: nothing, then a thrashing about. Reluctantly opening the oven door, it immediately flopped halfway out, mouth ajar, unmoving tongue stuck out, breathing, laying there. The undead.
Discouraged, dismayed, half of me impressed, even pleased, with its determined clinging to life; the other half of me impatient at its rude desire to keep panting on in spite of my faulty expedient of gassing it out of its misery.
So the next, last, foolproof alternative was taken: drown the panting bastard.
In the patio, after filling a large, yellow bucket with water, I wrapped an old dish towel round its head. Taking a big breath myself, I stuck the beast’s body deep within, head first.
At first, there was absolutely no reaction. Thank God it was going to go peacefully, quietly, quickly.
Then the first tremor of protest, followed by a panicked jerk. The body began quivering mightily and struggling, but with a lack of coordination or strength.
Upside down in the bucket, with a single hind leg that still functioned, the leg jerked upward with its claws out, kicking the air. It sought a hold to latch onto, to hoist itself clear. It sought survival still. I observed the wet hind leg continue to jerk in the air, seeking, trying. To this day, I still see vividly that single hind-leg kicking hopelessly in the air.
I kept its head pushed down toward the bottom of the bucket.
It quivered; I quivered—in a rush I reached into the bucket and snatched the towel away from its head to insure that all the water possible filled it lungs…. My hands were still plunged into the water, holding it down. There was horror, there was desperation.
Finally, it ceased to move; no bubbles rose from its mouth to pop on the surface. Its heart continued to quake under my hand in what I took to be spasms.
I stood back, letting it lay upside down in the water, all unmoving, its one now motionless rear leg still sticking out of the water. Still no bubbles, nothing stirred.
I lifted it out by its tail, laid it down, and then, saw under its fur the movement of its heart. I yelped and backed away. “Look!” I pointed, “Spasms–” and again – “They have to be spasms…”
I wrapped it in rags, dug a hole in the backyard, tossed it in, and covered it with dirt. I never dared check again whether its unobliging heart still beat on.