The River

She waits by the river. Alice knows it's over. She watches the ripples in the water and wonders why they make her feel so calm. Alice is feeling old, too old to change. She knows your negativity has brought her here.

Alice tries to catch her tears as they fall into the river. She sobs knowing there is no other way. She has always stored her memories as if they were gold but today Alice is unlocking them. She must let go. She watches as her memories drift into the river, many dark, some shimmer and shine. Alice watches as each and everyone flows downstream. Finally, she says goodbye to the friend she never had.

A forest full of trees tower above her, rows of flowers loom and the birds sing their morning song, at last Alice feels at peace. She removes her clothes. Alice is surprised at how warm the water is. She closes her eyes, descends and lets the river take her...


Interview with Dustin LaValley

Dustin LaValley first wrote 'Party Girl' as a short story in his book 'Lowlife Underdogs' published by Raw Dog Screaming Press. Party Girl has now been made into a film, directed by Jayson Densman.

Q. Party Girl is more than just a pissed off woman, could you briefly tell everyone what the story is about.

A. Sure. Party Girl begins and remains an innocent soul, a victim turn judge, jury and executioner.

Q. When you first viewed the Party Girl film what was your initial reaction, has it done justice to your script and were many changes made.

A. There were changes made, but all were in my approval which I thank Jayson for making sure I got a hand in editing. My first viewing could be summed up in the words "Holy Goddamn!" I believe those were my first words after viewing it the first time, after the second time and thirds I just kept thinking wow!

Q. Do you think (or hope) many people will be shocked by some of the violence in Party Girl.

A. I'm hoping they will be shocked, yes. If it shocks them, it is more likely to stick with them, behind their eyes when they go to sleep and on their tongue the next day to spread in their circle of friends.

Q. The subject matter is powerful, are you trying to say something in this film or is it pure slasher entertainment.

A. I am attempting to speak out, it's not only a slasher film, I consider it a psychological slasher. The states have done very little to protect the population. The revolving door is more than a cliche it's an accurate euphemism. Sex offenders are 90% likely to become repeat offenders upon their release.

Q. Did you have any say in the film directions or were you happy to leave that task to Jayson and crew.

A. Jayson and Pat, Candace and Tom, Evil John Mays and the rest of the crew... everyone treated me with respect, they were great and are great people. I was allowed much input, many times things would not move forward until one of the crew had my input. And I thank them all very much.

Q. What was it like to be a victim of your own Party Girl. :-)

A. Surreal. I may use that word too much describing the events that took place on the shoot, as it was very much like what I had in my head when visualizing the film. It was a lot of fun to get cut up and bloody.

Q.There are many horrific, blood splattering scenes, what would you say is your favourite scene in the Party Girl film.

A. I couldn't pick a favourite, I could pick favourites but that would be like the girlfriend telling you it's her or the dog, a hard decision, though I would most likely be the one to keep the dog. Okay, for me it would be very easy, the dog stays and goodbye... But, where are we... Okay, one of my favourite shots is when the first kill happens, the look on the victims face as he sees Party Girl aiming a shotgun at him...

Q. Do you have any other scripts that have been turned into films, if so what are they.

A. Yes. Rise of the Ghosts was the first, for SV Bell/Black Flag Pictures. A good sci-fi/horror feature. I also wrote the short nod to the 80s slasher, You're Next 3: Pajama Party Massacre for NFTS Productions as well as the segment "Dinner Date" for the anthology feature Terror overload, also for NFTS productions.

Q. Are you writing another script at the moment.

A. Currently I'm working with a production company on their second feature film which I have great expectations for and I also have a few short films in pre-production. I can't give much more information but I can tell you that they will be splendid, entertaining and fun.

Q. Who are your favourite writers, how have they inspired you. And what is your favourite film.

A. Easily, my top authors are Edward Lee, Joe R. Lansdale, Jack Ketchum, John Edward Lawson and Ronald Damien Malfi. Each has their own unique voice, whether it be extreme hardcore horror or subtle and psychological, they are in my opinion the top of the field. For film, Terry Gilliam, Quentin Tarrantino, and David Cronenberg and of course... Mel Brooks. As like the authors above, all have a very unique and special talent that they bring to film and without the influence of said authors and screenwriters, I most likely would not be participating in this interview.

Q. Does your daily life have an effect on your creative life and do you write everyday.

A. Everyday life has definite input, most of my stories have been sparked by a situation close to the plot or motif of the story. Everyday I do attempt to write, but with political strife at home and abroad, how can one sit and type all day? No, I don't get to write everyday but I do attempt to.

Q. How would you sum up Party Girl.

A. Party Girl is the result of the primal urge that unfortunately too many of our species haven't outgrown. She is brought to life by an event of sexual abuse and takes it upon herself to set into motion the hand of self-righteous justice. A very brutal and violent penalty that will not give any sway for repeat offenders.

Dustin, thank you for the interview, it's been a pleasure.


Her Calling

It was a flash in the day. It was a crack. She wipes the tears. You are under her skin, you are in her hair, you are driving her crazy. Julianne screams 'Why the new girl. Why not me? Shit, shit, shit, my head is so fucked up' then slams down the phone.

After the hours pass she remembers the most. The day you said goodbye, Julianne never saw it coming, your words knocked her like punches. She was dead on the floor for days. Now she has risen.

You are everywhere but you're not here. What can she salvage, did you really take it all? Unhook this fish, free this demon. Julianne shivers and laughs like a little girl. She is suspended. She spends her last seconds afraid. She spends her last seconds watching the hangman.



You can correct him if he's wrong but he's always right. Huxley shakes his head 'This will never do,' he doesn't need to add more, after all he is a genius. Bob, the insane master, wears his clothes inside out, counts everything three times over and never goes out after dark for fear of alien abduction. Huxley, the black dog hasn't always been black but that was how he rolled. Today, Huxley teases Bob, just like every other day. He runs away when called, drinks his own whiskey and then begs for Bob's. When Bob wants silence Huxley barks and laughs when Bob scolds him for peeing in the house. Yet Huxley isn't a naughty dog. He craves attention so he plays the clown. Bob has grown bored of his old dog. Every night Bob comes home from work feeling tired and sends Huxley out in the yard and tonight will be no different from any other night. Huxley hates the yard. Huxley is lonesome.

Huxley is no ordinary dog. He is a poet and an alcoholic. Dogs in the neighbourhood gather round each day to listen to Huxley read his poems. Sometimes silly verse. Sometimes tragic. When the crowd gather, this is when Huxley feels isolated. They admire his talents from afar. Huxley has no friends. The hours pass, Huxley weeps.

One day Huxley is flicking through one of Bob's magazine's and some picture excites him. The big city and its dazzling lights. Huxley jumps up and down and wags his tail. 'That's where I want to be' he shrills 'The big city must be full of new friends.'

Huxley pours out one more whiskey and drinks it down in one gulp. He places his notepad and pen in his suitcase and walks quietly down the stairs. Bob is still sleeping in his chair. Huxley feels it's best to sneak out the way he sneaked in. 'Will Bob care when he finds me gone?' Huxley shakes his head sadly and exits out the door.

'It's such a cold night' Huxley sobs. As memories surface, Huxley tries to block them out. His heart hurts bad as he thinks of Bob. 'Where did the love go?' Huxley reaches the end of his street and lets out a howl. With a little doubt but full of hope he tells himself there is a better world waiting around the corner.

Huxley turns on his ipod and dances towards the city lights, singing along with The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Huxley sings 'Fly away on my zephyr, we'll find a place together...'

Huxley continues 'Woo Woo Woo Woo Woo Woo Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah'



She tried to say she liked you. Damn it, look at you now, you fool, head in your hands, you suffer like no-one ever could. Time has moved mysteriously since she last saw your face. She was wild and insecure. You were an introvert, a bastard, a sweetheart. Grace was your friend, she pulled you out of the hole you dug so deep. Now you are distant, communication has shut down.

Today, Grace is stepping out, while someone new moves in to take her place. Forever watching the same repeats, living the same old shite. There she goes again, clasping her tales of woe.

Someone slap her quick, she is drifting, she's surrendering. Grace longs to tell you she is sorry. Thoughts dart back and forth. She is tied in knots. Her tears fall for you, guess you've hurt her some.

Grace, colourless and despondent, she feels like a blank page turning once in a while. Lend her your horse, let her ride away. Let her roam the world. She wants to have fun again, play cowboys and indians, play the damsel, play the whore, anything to escape her non-existence.

'It's no big deal' Grace tells herself, but she can't fight it. Grace is sick of the dreams. Sick to death of the stories. Sick to death of the bullshit.

Grace is thinking about her life, her plans. Out in the parking lot, is she looking for you? A gun in her hand, will she shoot? She counts down from ten. Sadness engulfs her.


Interview with Keith Young

Author of "The Kaluza Concept". A subtle cocktail of Physics and Metaphysics.

Q. What inspired you to write this book.

A. For quite a few years now, I've had various disparate ideas about paranormal events buzzing around in my head, and it always bugged me that they were always written off as inexplicable or mysterious. All the stuff I've read on this never seems to go far enough, probably because the authors have reputations to uphold and don't want to expose themselves to ridicule. So, I thought I'd have a go at that further step, bringing all the disparate ideas together and making some sort of attempt at trying to explain them in terms of modern physics. "The Kaluza Concept" is the result! It was either this, or go mad!

Q. What is your background in Relativistic Physics, Quantum Physics, String Theory and Psychology and are you at all daunted, given that physicists universally agree that we are a long way from unifying quantum and relativistic level theories, that you have chosen to jump two steps ahead of them by unifying not only these theories but the disparate fields of psychology and metaphysics.

A. I originally trained as a science teacher back in the weird-hair days of the eighties, but since then, I have studied numerous courses on the first two subjects with the Open University, and have done extensive reading on the second two, but nothing formal. I would love to be able to boast that I have unified quanturm and relativistic level theories in the sense that physicists would like (!), but by unifying certain ideas from Psychology and Metaphysics, and marrying these to ideas from Quantum Physics and Relativity, I suppose there is a certain holism which perhaps wasn't apparent before! It would be ironic if the unification physicists seek were to be brought about intervention from psychologists and metaphysicists!

As for being daunted... not really, as I've no reputation to damage. I've nothing to lose.

Q. What are the obstacles and pitfalls for a layperson entering into the complex and intensely mathematical arenas of physics treated in your book.

A. Probably the complex mathematical bits. But you've got to remember that, daunting as it may look, it's only a descriptive and predictive tool, although if you're not familiar with the lingo, it can form an impenetrable wall. I personally find the study of mathematics as an end in itself quite boring, although some would disagree. To me, studying mathematics for its own sake is rather like studying a spanner for its own sake, without learning anything about what it's used for. The best way to get your head out of the complexities is to, wherever possible, picture it geometrically, which is the only way it is presented in the book. There's no mathematics in here... It's all translated into drawings... honest!

Q. How does Kaluza-Klien relate to modern string theory and M-theory. How has it been superseded, and what are the fundamental problems with each approach.

A. The original theory proposed by Kaluza posited an extra curled up dimension at each intersection of spacetime, so tiny as to be indiscernible from our viewpoint. After some initial interest from Einstein himself, and further elaboration by Klein, the red carpet treatment afforded to the emerging Quantum Theory ensured that Kaluza-Klein theory spent quite a lot of time rummaging through dustbins, sleeping in subways and busking to make a living. However, the development of String Theory required extra dimensions. String Theory proposes that each fundamental particle is the result of a certain vibration frequency on a tiny "string", and for these vibrations to occur, extra dimensions are required to act as a sort of resonance chamber. Without these extra dimensions, the required frequencies, mathematically, could not occur. So Kaluza-Klein Theory was re-housed and given a bowl of soup, and even more dimensions! It hasn't been superseded as such, merely incorporated and elaborated upon. The fundamental problem with String Theory and its elaboration, M-Theory, is the mathematics, which hasn't yet been fully developed, but what theoreticians have so far looks promising. It's only a matter of time.

Q. Why did you focus on special relativity rather than general relativity and in what ways does this limit your conclusions.

A. The strange warping of perception of timeflow which Special Relativity encompasses lent itself rather well to the idea of a consciousness freed from the three dimensional shackles of a physical body being able to manipulate, and interact with, the timeline, as easily as you or I walk from room to room. Its liberation, as I see it, into the extra dimensions suggested by Kaluza-Klein and M-Theory, would facilitate this. Special Relativity thus represents our limited perception of higher dimensional possibilities which a liberated consciousness, after physical death, realises in full. In this way, concentration on Special Relativity inspired my conclusions, rather than limiting them.

Q. Do you accept the axiom of the rule of the excluded middle and if so, how do you resolve the mathematical contradictions which arise in any attempt to unify quantum and relativistic physics. If not, what is the axiomatic basis to your logic.

A. I feel that for a view of the everyday world we live in, this axiom must be accepted in order for things to make sense, but when you delve into the underlying probabilistic substructure of reality, the axiom isn't quite so clear cut. In my view of the world of Quantum Physics, the actual "reality" we experience is just one outcome of an infinite number of superposed realities, just one of which is real-ised when our conscious mind "concentrates" on, or "collapses the wavefunction" of, this particular version of events. In this one version of events, the axiom of the rule of the excluded middle holds, but in the "big picture", it is transformed into a probabilistic form, with no exclusions whatsoever. Anything is possible. I personally feel that this is the reason for the mathematical contradictions arising in any attempt at unification of Quantum and Relativistic Physics, as relativity relates to just one version of events, the universe we live in, whereas Quantum Physics relates to the whole superposed panoply of potential realities which are waiting to be real-ised. The two are completely different animals! This view forms the axiomatic basis to my logic.

Q. How do you derive conclusions about psychology from unifying fields. Are the conclusions necessary correlates or merely compatible hypotheses. How rigorously have you tested the compatibility of your physical theories with modern psychological theories and the underpinning evidence.

A. Actually, the conclusions about psychology actually formed in my mind, and then I tried to find a logical (to me) way of fitting them into a physical theory. Not just one major physical theory, but as many as I could muster, so this is where the apparent unification probably comes from. Rather ambitiously, perhaps, I have tried to form a complete view of physical reality, derived from modern Physics, and how consciousness fits into it, and is indeed an integral part of it. I don't think rigorous empirical testing really entered into this work, as it is, at this moment in time, very speculative, but quite a lot of psychological theory (modern and otherwise) could be interpreted in a compatible way. But then again, that's the beauty of speculation. Who can say you're wrong.

Q. How do you respond to the mainstream view in modern psychology and neurology that dualism is an outmoded view which fails the test of Ockham's razor and is actively contradicted by experimental evidence.

A. I would tend to say, "Oh shit", there go the reductionists again! How would these people explain the multitudinous paranormal events that occur every day. How would they explain the fact that some people on the operating table, whilst unconscious, have actually looked down on themselves and witnessed the conversation of the surgeons and nurses operating on them, which they couldn't possibly have done physically. And visited their relatives in other rooms. I must admit, I don't hold to many mainstream views in anything, and I would suggest that their experiments are, at this moment in time, inadequate. I feel that the test of Ockham's razor is subjective in the sense that it relies on the extent of knowledge at the time, or the world paradigm as such, and in such a way, concepts which fail the test today may pass the test in years to come, albeit in a more succinct form, as Ockham would have liked.

Q. Do your metaphysical views flow from the requirements of physical and psychological theory. If so, how. If not, how did you arrive at your metaphysical views and how have they influenced the development of your scientific theories.

A. In answer to the first part... not really. My metaphysical views stem from years of casual reading and study, not holding to any one particular school of thought, and imbibing bits and pieces of disparate ideas from many viewpoints, including much on the subject of the paranormal. Almost subconsciously, these gradually condensed into a self-consistent idea of the nature of consciousness, but I couldn't quite figure out how it would fit into the view of reality posited by physicists. Much more reading on this latter subject gave me a few basics ideas about Quantum Theory, String Theory Relativity and associated concepts, such as Hilbert Space which, when tailored accordingly, seemed to fit the bill. So, it was the metaphysical views which stimulated the development of my scientific viewpoint, which is necessarily much more flexible than that usually put forward by hardline scientists.

Q. Where do you go after you have your Theory of Everything.

A. Good question Marilyn. Cleethorpes, perhaps. Ice cream and doughnuts. Nah... I'm currently writing, in a lazy way, and as a total departure, a satirical novel, hopefully much funnier than "The Kaluza Concept" I've been told it looks promising so far, but it's very sloooooooooow!

Q. How do you chill. :-)

A. Absolutely love "Family Guy", "House" anything vaguely paranormal (of course), listening to music such as Radiohead and The Pixies, any mod/scooter music, any mod/scooter paraphernalia, drinking Stella (whenever she's in), keeping fit, reading, socialising (whilst drinking beer, usually Stella). I'm a pretty chilled dude really, to the point of driving the wife to distraction.

Q. If you could be anyone, who would you be.

A. That's a hard one. How's about Brain Molko, from the band Placebo. I would not only write superb songs, but my wife would salivate every time I walked into the room. Closure. It's been a pleasure, Marilyn... Ta.

Thank you, it's been interesting. Now go and have a Stella for me. Hope she's in. ;-)

You can check out Keith Young's site here:


Interview with Brett Williams

Author of Forfeit Heart, The Dare, Back in Black and Family Business.

Q. When you're setting out to write a novel do you have to be in a certain state of mind, do you draw from life experiences and are any of your characters based on people you know.

A. Not typically, but I do pull from life experiences as do all writers. I do utilize character traits of people I know, but I do not transplant entire people from my life into characters. That would not be entertaining to me to write. Although I did write about a friend and her guitar in a particular short story featured on my website.

Q. Do you have to be in a certain state of mind to write. Do you have any daily rituals.

A. I usually have specific songs I use as a soundtrack for each story. If I get stuck, I play the song or songs and it will kick start the ideas flowing and get me into the mood. Also, I try to write every day at the same time of day.

A few examples of song/soundtracks would be Fiona Apple's "Criminal" which helped inspired me to write Forfeit Heart. That and "Angel Heart." I played Danzig's "Bodies" a lot while writing "Back in Black." Of course I listened to AC/DC, too. ;-)

Q. Do you think self publishing is good and worthwhile.

A. Self publishing gets a bad rap a lot of the time, but it has been good to me. Not that I am getting rich self publishing, but I am getting my work out to readers and getting the attention of professional publishers.

I would like to point out that I started self publishing because it was more cost effective than printing out manuscripts for friends and family. Things quickly snowballed from there. Now my most recent work features artwork by my friend Christa St. Jean. Another friend of mine helped with light editing. "Family Business" is a very polished product that readers have been clamoring for. I sold out a limited, signed edition in just a few days.

Q. You write strong female roles, you seem to understand the mind of a woman. Have women had a profound effect on your life when growing up.

A. Thank you. I have received the same comment from other readers. I'm very proud of the way I write female characters. I'd probably have to credit the females in my family for helping me develop this writing ability as they are all women with strong wills.

Q. You describe your writing style as literary rock and roll. Would you love to be a rock and roll star and has music been the inspiration for any of your stories.

A. Definitely, music inspires me as I pointed out in an earlier reply. I'll never be a rock star, but for me, writing is my version of being in a garage band, hence the self publishing. How many great bands started out with a demo tape recorded in a garage? Maybe some day something I have written will be "playing" in a large bookstore.

Q. Your writing is fast paced and full of suspense. It's all sex, drugs and violence. Why do these subjects appeal to you so much.

A. What appeals to me are down-on-their-luck characters. They have flaws. They have addictions. They want to get laid. They get mad and beat the shit out of other people. They are so much more entertaining to write and to read. The pace is sometimes fast because these characters jump from one bad situation to the next. Sometimes the suspense is because not even the characters know what they will do next.

Readers can relate to this and feed out of it. It helps to keep them hooked.

Q. Do you plan your stories, do you know where you're heading, or do you prefer to let it take you on a journey.

A. I've done it both ways, but never totally planned out. It's more like having a point A and B but I don't know how the story will get from A to B. Sometimes it skips directly to point C. Some stories have more preconceived checkpoints planned from the beginning than others.

Typically, I know roughly how the plot will go, but the subplot (s) grow from the primary plot line.

Q. What authors inspire you and why.

A. Anything I read can inspire me, or give me ideas. But the authors who most consistently inspire me would be Richard Laymon and F. Paul Wilson.

Laymon knows how to entertain and build suspense. He also goes above and beyond by screwing with his readers' minds.

I also love F. Paul Wilson's work because he really knows how to write thrilling novels and build three dimensional characters.

Q. What is your favourite novel.

A. If I had to pick one, I'd pick "The Travelling Vampire Show" by Richard Laymon. I love that novel. It's a great coming of age story with tons of suspense. And Laymon really screws with the reader in that one. Could the vampire be real? Is it all a hoax? You've got to keep reading to find out. Wow.

Q. Can you tell us about the novel you are writing at the moment.

A. Currently I'm writing a sequel to Family Business. It pulls in characters from previous manuscripts and expands on themes utilized in the other novels and manuscripts. Eventually, there should be four novels which are loosely connected.

Q. Do you have a favourite character from any of you stories.

A. That is a very tough question. I will have to pick Kat only because she appears in four different stories of mine. Kat has always been a secondary character so I feel funny selecting her as a favourite. Of my published novels, she only appears in a single chapter of "Family Business".

Q. If you could be a cartoon character who would it be.

A. Tweety Bird. He's cool and ornery.

Q. What advice would you give to aspiring writers out there.

A. Write, write, write. It's the only way to gain experience and skill.

Brett, thank you for the interview, it's been great.

Thank you, Marilyn, for my first of hopefully many interviews. It has been a pleasure. It's great that there is a community to support and grow readership of new authors. Without folks like you and the readers willing to give us a shot, the reading landscape might be frighteningly dull.

Keep up the good work. Keep reading, I'll keep writing.

You can check out Brett's site here: