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“War Story” Accepted by Fearsome Critters: A Millennial Arts Journal

“War Story,” an existential crisis story I wrote a long while ago, after learning that the United States was at war with Iraq (again), has found a home in the inaugural issue of Fearsome Critters: A Millennial Arts Journal, which will be published by Green Tower Press in April-May 2018.


Since I was born in 1980, I consider myself part of the micro-generation clumsily known as “The Oregon Trail Generation,” “Xennials,” or “Generation Catalano,” but the grand sweep of history (and this magazine) defines we “cuspers” as the very oldest possible millennials, so here I am!

I’m looking forward to the launch of this exciting new journal, and am pleased to be included.

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“The Happy Family” in Sundress Publications’ Curious Specimens Anthology

My little Barnum Museum short-short “Case No. 37: The Happy Family” has been included in Curious Specimens, a Sundress Publications anthology of the odd, uncanny, and macabre, curated by the marvelous Wren Hanks and Beth Couture.

You can read the whole book for free here! “The Happy Family” lives on page 67.


A 501(c)3 non-profit literary press collective founded in 2000, Sundress Publications publishes chapbooks and full-length works in both print and digital formats, and hosts a variety of online journals.

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“One Trick Pony” is a Pushcart Prize Nominee

“One Trick Pony,” my story about the traumatic filming of Jesse James (1939), has been selected by Big Muddy: A Journal of the Mississippi River Valley, as one of the journal’s Pushcart Prize nominees for 2017.


Essentially, this means the editors of Big Muddy have chosen “One Trick Pony” as one of the six best pieces published in the journal this year, and are making it eligible to be considered for the annual Pushcart Prize anthology.

The Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses series, published every year since 1976, is one of the most honored literary projects in America, collecting the finest work from small literary magazines across the nation.

“One Trick Pony” is forthcoming in issue 17.2 of Big Muddy. This is my third Pushcart nomination.

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“The Lost Hoof of Fire Horse #12” Accepted by Footnote: A Literary Journal of History

“The Lost Hoof of Fire Horse #12,” my short story about an unexpected equine amputation in our nation’s flammable capital, has been accepted by Footnote: A Literary Journal of History for publication in the spring/summer 2018 issue. The story is also a semifinalist for the Charter Oak Award for Best Historical, which is awarded annually by the magazine.


Published by Alternating Current Press, Footnote is “an annual literary publication dedicated to historical and contemporary views on history. It contains poetry, maps and historical photographs, fiction, essays, articles, and nonfiction by various authors, both contemporary and historical, about any topic of history.”

In the meantime, you can read the inspiration for this story at the National Museum of American History’s blog at the Smithsonian Institution:


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Reading at 33 Wine Shop and Bar, St. Louis, 5/24/17

The fine people behind the publication of Big Muddy: A Journal of the Mississippi River Valley, have invited me to join them for a reading this Wednesday, May 24, at 7 p.m. at 33 Wine Shop and Bar here in St. Louis. The event is free and open to the public.


Also on the evening’s roster:

Ron Austin
Born and raised in St. Louis, Ron A. Austin has received a 2016 RAC fellowship and published short stories in Ninth Letter, Story Quarterly, and Black Warrior Review.

James Brubaker
Author of Liner Notes and Pilot Season, with stories in Zoetrope: All Story, Hobart, and Michigan Quarterly Review, among other venues; he is an Assistant Professor at Southeast Missouri State where he also directs the University Press.

Charlotte Covey
Charlotte is currently pursuing an MFA in Poetry at the University of Missouri – St Louis, and she has work published or forthcoming in journals such as Salamander Review, The Normal School, and CALYX Journal.

Daniel Crocker
Teaches at Southeast Missouri State University. His upcoming book is called “Shit House Rat.”

Marisol Ramirez
Marisol Ramirez earned her MFA in poetry from the University of Missouri–St. Louis and was UMSL’s 2014 poet laureate.

Victoria Walls
A Nashville TN native with an MFA from UMSL, Victoria Walls teaches at SLU and UMSL, and serves as an assistant editor at WomenArts Quarterly. Her poetry appears in two issues of Slippery Elm Literary Journal.

It should be an eclectic and fun night of poetry and prose (and wine).

Hope to see you there!

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Interview at Cartridge Lit

I recently had a conversation about video games, animals, and video game animals with A.A. Balaskovits, fellow woman-who-games, fellow Cartridge Lit editor, and singular author of the recently published (and luminous!) short fiction collection Magic for Unlucky Girls.


This happened because last October, Cartridge Lit was kind enough to publish “A Horse Draws Near!” my lyric essay about the many horses who have appeared in video games over the years.

Click here to read the interview!

Click here to read “A Horse Draws Near!”

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“One Trick Pony” Accepted By Big Muddy

“One Trick Pony,” my story about the mounted cliff jump stunt in Jesse James (1939) that led to the American Humane Association’s supervision of animal action in movies will appear in a future issue of Big Muddy: A Journal of the Mississippi River Valley.


Part of Southeast Missouri State University Press, Big Muddy publishes general submissions, as well as “work and topics dealing with the 10-state area that borders the Mississippi River, from the United States/Canadian border to Louisiana’s Gulf Coast.”

Watch this space for a release date.

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Reading At Maryville University, 4/27/17

I’ll be giving a home-team reading at Maryville University’s Morton J. May Foundation Gallery at 3 p.m. on Thursday, April 27 to celebrate the release of Ashland Creek Press’s Among Animals 2, which features my short story “Shooting A Mule.”


Billy, alas, will not be attending.

This reading is part of Writes of Spring, Maryville’s annual showcase of emerging and established writers, and is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided, and copies of Among Animals 2 will be available for sale and signing after the reading.

Previous Writes of Spring guests have included Luke Rolfes, Monica Hand, DuEwa Frazier, and Dana Levin.


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“Fred W. Loring and His Mule, ‘Evil Merodach,’ 48 Hours Before Death” Wins 2016 Winter Anthology Prize

My short story “Fred W. Loring and His Mule, ‘Evil Merodach,’ 48 Hours Before Death,” former winner of the Midwest Short Fiction Prize at The Laurel Review, has been selected by the poet Donna Stonecipher as the winner of the 2016 Winter Anthology Prize. This national prize includes online publication and an honorarium of $1,000.

You can read the story here!


The man and mule of the hour.

Founded in 2009, The Winter Anthology is an online “collection of contemporary literature informed by history and older art, as well as 21st century science and philosophy.”

Michael Rutherglen writes: “The project is a vehicle for writings that continue to privilege density, precision… sensitivity to the numinous. The editors contend that nowhere else in print or on the web can such a concentration of these particular values be found… writings collected in The Winter Anthology are neither sentimental atavisms nor naïve attempts at reconstruction. Rather, they are elegies for art and artists, some explicit, many more implicit…”

In addition to being my first national prize, this honor is especially appreciated as I am now expanding Mr. Loring’s story into a novel.

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Now Editing Fiction @ Cartridge Lit

This happened a little while ago, but I’m just now finding time to post here: I’ve been selected as a fiction editor for Cartridge Lit, the world’s only online literary journal exclusively devoted to fiction, poetry, and essays about video games and video gaming. The journal was kind enough to publish my lyric essay, “A Horse Draws Near!” last issue.


As an avid gamer since the days of the Atari 2600 and Colecovision, I’m excited to help discover the best new fiction about video games alongside editors-in-chief William Hoffacker, A.A. Balaskovits, and brand new poetry editor Philip Spotswood.

From the journal’s website:

“We want games-inspired lit that takes risks and tempts edges, that sparks and burns. Send us your Uncharted prose poems. Final Fantasy VI flash fiction. Segmented essays on transformation and mutation in games. Chrono Trigger. Donkey Kong. Minecraft. The Last of Us. Games new and old.

We want to showcase the power of what games-inspired literature can do, what it can be. Break our hearts or light our minds afire.

We’re here. Press play. All your games lit are belong to us.”

Submissions are now open!

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