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New short short fiction posted at Stirrring

Stirring : A Literary Collection - November 2011

Stirring : A Literary Collection - November 2011 (art by Claire Schwartz)

A frog made frog sounds in the bushes. It kept me awake with its frog sound. The rain on the roof was louder than those frog sounds. The rain tapped a noise I could tune out. Each croak came at random intervals. Random: I could not tune out.

From my story “Indian Summer” in the November 2011 issue of Stirring.

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Podcast: Hunger from MonkeyBicycyle 8

Matt Briggs podcastThe latest podcast comes from Matt Briggs, whose story, “Hunger,” tells the story of a man whose dishwashing routine becomes more and more difficult as his fingers start to disappear, thanks to his girlfriend. It’s a surreal and beautiful story that we hope you check out.

Listen to the podcast here

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What software do you use to write?

I realized the other day in talking to some friends that I use a few more pieces of software than other writers. I use, or instance, FreeMind (a great opensource Java mindmaping tool). I’m kind of curious, what do you use?

I posted my full list on PLUMB Blog here.

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Desert Storm: Memories of an Unreal War (Tumblr)

Last year I collected some images from Desert Shield/Desert Storm and posted them here.

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Review of The Strong Man at Pilot Books

Pilot Books - 100% Indie LitSummer Robinson, the proprietor at Pilot Books in Seattle, wrote some observations about my new novel and the recent screening of Werner Herzog’s Lessons of Darkness at Jack Straw Studios at the Pilot Book blog.

The Strong Man, a new novel by Matt Briggs, was one I started under the worst possible conditions. Not only do I know the author’s name, I heard a full synopsis of the plot at his book release. But I started reading anyway. Probably because the novel addresses one of my favorite topics: moral complicity. Now it has me by the eyeballs.

For the entire review (or to reply). The book is in stock at Pilot Books.

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Review of The Strong Man in The Oregonian

Strong Man reviewed in The OregonianKatie Schneider reviewed my new novel The Strong Man in The Oregonian this morning.

The Strong Man is a novel of absurd inaction, where dealing in black market bacon takes on as much significance as an aerial bombardment. Briggs has a keen eye for detail, whether it’s a line of Douglas firs at Fort Lewis or the anachronistic scent of beer being brewed in a Saudi Arabian hospital. He isn’t afraid to write moral ambiguity. Wallace is neither hero nor villain — more than anything, he’s malleable and not too bright. As such, Briggs has created a character that reflects our uncertain, narcissistic, post-Cold War age.

For the entire review.

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My Name’s Roy at Necessary Fiction

Part one of the eleven stories in The Remains of River Names, a novel in linked stories. The book will appear this month on Necessary Fiction.

Before I shake my older brother Milton awake, I eat all the food—a hard dinner roll and a teaspoon of peanut butter scraped from the bottom of the Adams jar. I set the empty jar quietly in the trash so I won’t wake Milton. He grunts in his sleep and I stop my loud chewing. If he knows that I’m eating the last of the food, he’ll seriously beat my butt.
for the full story

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Taibi Mastelse paints Shoot the Buffalo

Shoot the Buffalo by Taibi Mastelse

Shoot the Buffalo by Taibi Mastelse

Brooklyn artist Taibi Mastelse posted a picture of a small painting she made based on my novel Shoot the Buffalo. It is oddly evocative of the novel in ways I hadn’t thought of — star bursts on linen. Too, my father has been taking snapshots of his hiking trips for decades. He is not exactly a nature photographer. His pictures are quick snapshots like family photos. Instead they are of lakes, trees, and rocks. There aren’t any people in his family photos. I used to spend a lot of time drawing with my friend as a child. We had endless drawing contests, and my friend always won. We would draw sheets of customs, sequences of animal/human hybrids, and a lot of 18 wheelers. Mastelse’s drawing remind me of these drawings (only better of course). She has drawings of cat people, dresses, and other things. Check it out. Thanks for the painting, Taibi.

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Student’s “Music Video” for Frances Johnson by Stacey Levine

Chioubacca posted this video “as part of a project I did for my Postmodern Lit class. It’s based on the excellent book, Frances Johnson, by Stacey Levine. The song is “Happy Alone” by Earlimart, off of their album Mentor Tormentor, all rights reserved to them and all that. Starring Claire Williams, directed/edited/etc by me.”

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Short Story in TRNSFR Magazine – The League of Bears

I’ve been meaning to post that my two copies of TRNSFR Magazine, featuring two alternate covers in a kind of perfect bound matchbook-style wrap around cover arrived in the mail a couple of weeks ago. The magazine includes a ton of great work by the likes of Jac Jemc, Nate Pritts, AD Jameson, Heather Momyer, Cris Mazza, K. Silem Mohammad, Jennifer L. Knox, Marc Olmstead, Shya Scanlon, Kathleen Rooney & Elisa Gabbert, Keith Higginbotham, David Ehren-stein, and Paul Maliszewski. They published my story “The League of Bears,” which I wrote for the first Opium Magazine Lit Death Match in Seattle, where I was defeated by Ryan Boudinot. Boudinot was in turn defeated by Matthew Simmons. I believe TRNSFR is accepting submission for issue three right this minute. My story begins this way:

My wife bloomed in her late thirties. She had always been pretty, but pretty in a cute kind of way. Her inner geek trumped any fashion sense. When our old Mac PowerBook, which was known for running way too hot, hot enough to leave second degree burns, cooked its hard drive, she was the one who unscrewed the lid, and cut open the protective foil with an Exact-o knife to swap the drive. Late in the summer of her 37th year, she experienced a transformation. She lost a bit of weight. She focused her geeky energy on vintage dresses. She began a regime of mild exercise and became sexy, kind of as a hobby.

I, on the other hand, began my rapid decline into middle age. I had expected this based on the physical appearance of my uncles. They were short, bald, fat hermits who lived frustrated lives of randy irritability.

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