Hell-o, Halloween

Halloween display, Meridian, Idaho, 2019. Can’t find who to credit this with.

Welp, had to drive to work yesterday in fog so dense I nearly drove off the road, twice. Fun.

It finally rained here in Oregon East. An actual rain. We plunged into near winter temps! It might snow in the valleys! Nah, not yet but winter wants to pounce.

I want to enjoy Halloween and all its orange, black and sparkly glory, but the American midterm elections throw a giant moist pall over everything. Moister than moist. Dripping wet with racism, sexism, fascism and all the other crappy isms imaginable and then some. Who is taking all these polls? It does not seem to reflect anything but what is expected– that the Gross Old Perverts sweep everything and Biden gets made to look like a doddering, shitting himself in public, gibbering fool. Um? And yet so many people registering to vote and yet…mmm.

I just want this all over so I can start breathing again and plan accordingly. Do I still live in a ‘free’ country or do I have to practice my salutes, wave a flag with savage frantic grins plastered across my frozen face? Shout randomly, in public, about eagles and freedom and no more open borders? We don’t have open borders, what the fuck is that noise?

Idaho, by the way, is almost an Ida-don’t go there, stay away, avoid avoid avoid. We do have scary states here in ‘murica and that is becoming one of the scariest.

The Aryan Nations that used to be a joke, who used to live under rocks and only appear if you whispered something overtly racist near an open sewer…have now virtually taken over that state. It’s sad and tragic and awful. Aryan Nations meets QAnon nonsense, has weird disgustingly awful sex, produces a mutant baby and here we are!

And my state, by the way, has a trumpian Gross Old Pervert running for guvvie. I just. No. No!

I do have scary movies lined up, as the midterms causes eye twitches, drooling, screaming when a leaf drops from a tree too near me. It’s tense here, y’all. Tense. Golly, vote for sane people or batshit trumpfucks? I mean no offense to actual bats, who just wish to live their bat lives in peace.

I have had a few acceptances roll my way, but mostly, lately, it’s been rejection city. Sigh.

Need to sacrifice something to Satan, I guess. Maybe he’ll accept an IOU? Will hand over the flies stuck to the fly strip. They’re already dead and am just gonna toss that strip otherwise. Why be wasteful? Satan? Hello?

It’s Happy Month

Artwork for the Abominable Dr. Phibes movie.

Oh, my fellow babies and compatriots for this thing called life– it’s the happiest month of the year. For me. Cause. Halloween.

Pumpkins. Pumpkin patches.

Ghosts and goblins and ghouls, oh my.

Creaky vampire movies with capes and crosses.

American Werewolf in London time!

The weather cooling the frack down.

The Halloween baking competition with its black garlic cupcakes and four-layer oozing lime basil cake with Italian buttercream something or other. Make entire scary scenes from cake, pumpkins, rice crispy treats and sugar work!

Oh yes, oh please, amen.

I have pumpkins about ready to be plucked. I have gourds. I want to make bread.

I feel energized and ready to watch scary movies with all the lights off.

I have the original Night of the Living Dead tucked away. There’s a compulsion within to find the DVD and WATCH IT the old-fashioned way. On my television through a DVD player. No streaming. No computer involved. Old-fashioned out the disc in, push play when prompted. With a big cup of ho-cho in hand.

Of course, it’s still rather hot here in the day. The nights have cooled off a bit. I now need at least a blanket. Kitters has even taken to napping a bit on me so it must be getting cold outside or she misses me as I’ve been working. I call my cat Kitters, though her official name is Jaws. As she showed up with a broken jaw a couple Halloween’s ago.

So. I hope TCM shows horror movies I’d like to watch. I hope hope hope they show the Abominable Dr. Phibes, with Vincent Price. Where he speaks only through a record. It’s so acid-trippy, weird and satisfying. I’m so glad no one has ever tried to remake this one. Why would you? It’s perfection. From that first scene with the bats to the bitter, bitter end. Dang. And there’s sequels, which I hear, are not as good but still. I will also probably watch the silent Swedish made up documentary on witches, because it’s just so good. Haxan or something like that. 1923 or hereabouts. It’s on Youtube. As are a lot of silent horror movies. Like M or the Cabinet of Dr. Caligaleri. [Spelling?]

Halloween month. It’s the happiest month of the year for me. From baking to horror movies I’ve seen a gazillion times already to new horror films I might discover. I do like discovering some offbeat, nobody’s heard of it, frightfest. Like the Blood on Satan’s Claw [Satanic children, 70’s] Or even something like Only Lovers Left Alive, with Tom Hiddleston as a mopey vampire. It’s a gorgeous film, by Jim Jarmusch, and also boasts a sparkly performance by Tilda Swinton. It’s as slow as frozen molasses and it’s not so much a horror movie as a test of your patience but hey, it might hit a sweet spot or two.

Hey, speaking of Halloween and spooky stuff and scary things…I have two recent novels out that deal with zombies and cannibal bikers. Yay!

Aftermath: Boise, Idaho— where Hannah kills herself to escape death by zombie horde only to wake up in a world run by sentient zombies.

There’s also The Remarkable Women of Brokenheart Lane, where three elderly sisters hiding out in a small Nevada town after a catastrophic world war nuclear event, become embroiled with the decimated cannibal biker gang that’s limped into Fallon.

There’s also Oregon Gothic. The opening tale, Bailey, is about what a real vampire is like and the costs of thwarting that vampire’s will. There’s also the necrophilia-smeared love story of Prince Charming Finds His Sleeping Beauty, which will be in an anthology coming out this year.

Halloween month. Pure joy filling my soul right now. Just pure happy wonderful joy.

Road Trip

My one sunflower. It regally lives among the ever-spreading squash plants.

September. It’s almost over. The weather here is finally cooling a bit. I’ve rescued the same toads from the dog pool many mornings now. The big one that squeaks at me if I handle it too much, the smaller ones that pretended they were frogs, so I’d leave them alone. That was when the water levels were much higher. I dug a giant hole to put the rubber tub into, and it has this valve that keeps turning so all the water leaks out. Why would you put such a valve into a tub designed to hold water? Oh sure, to drain it but still. It’s entirely too easy to brush against it and turn it the wrong way. I blame liberals for this. Is that how that works?

Snark, sarcasm and hissing gently from the shadows. That’s me!

Job? I don’t know. Nobody cares so let’s move on.

Road trip. I am going to go to Mountain Home, Id-eee-ho, for a literary event. I know!! It’s for the Whistle Pig Literary Magazine launch, held this year at the Mountain Home library. I even got myself a hotel room so I wouldn’t have that long drive back, in the dark, with the extra bright lights in my eyes. I probably need to go see the eye doctor about that…yikes.

Or just deal with it because, hey, who has insurance?

Rimshot! I’ll be here all week, try the chicken.

My story for the Whistle Pig is called Lovesmoke. I based it off a short play I wrote ages ago, about a nearly mute man who’s in love with his brother’s girlfriend. She just wants to get married, have a normal life as her boyfriend is about to lose everything due to bad cattle prices and the bottom falling out of that market. The brother in love goes about collecting rocks and such to sell at the various festivals in and around the Western states. If you’ve ever been to small town festivals, with booths– that’s the type of person Salinas is.

In my prose version, I set it in Weiser, Idaho, with the about to lose everything brother having already run off and the other brother crossing the Rubicon, so to speak, by declaring his love for Lily. It’s bittersweet and it seemed to write itself, once I found that balance between manipulative monster versus clumsy overtures of affection toward another. I sort of blended the two extremes of puppet master and hopelessly bad at romance tropes, so to speak. That happy medium? Eh.

I did play with having them end up together but it just didn’t gel, it just didn’t flow, it just didn’t…yeah.

Rewrote a short story in the last couple days, turned it from vague woman-empowered claptrap to murderous psycho monster baby claptrap. Wheee!!!! I also realized my lead character is the least of my three in that story. I need to, ahem, punch her up a bit. Or not. I also need to look at the ending. It might be awful or okay, depends on mood, weather, snack consumption and coffee levels. The title also needs changing. Willa and the Mist to perhaps Baby Lamb or The Graveyard Baby or something equally provocative. Two On A Meat Hook? I’d have to add a meat hook. Dang it!

I’ve been reworking short stories that keep getting rejected. It keeps me busy and out of prison, so that’s good.

That’s it.

Oh, for those panting to know– I have pumpkins. I also have three giant gourds growing away. I’m so excited! I researched and it said to wait for first frost to collect them. We are nowhere near a first frost. I’m also watching the pumpkins closely, looking for that all-over orange color. Still a bit green underneath. Small sugar pumpkins, for pies but still so gorgeous. I do love the color orange.

Halloween is close. I have a happy feeling somewhere close by. And then the drudge and stress of the ‘holidays’. All those damn turkeys to bake. God damn it. I’m already sick and tired of turkey. I just want to buy a bunch of frozen dinners, call it good from here until next January. Want a fancy meal? Here ya go– Hungry Man Salisbury steak!

Oh my, I should adjust accordingly, eh? Holiday season hasn’t even officially started yet. Not until Hallmark starts constant Christmas movie rotation BEFORE HALLOWEEN USUALLY. Notice that?? I noticed that last year. Syrupy cookie cutter movies that bring numbness and a sort of Zen blankness if you watch too many in a row. Lifetime, also, has a host of these things.

And the Halloween Baking contest is back. Happiness is oozing icing the color of infected flesh dripping down over a rotted pumpkin face chocolate cake. Or pies with top crusts that look like tortured human faces. Happiness and bliss.


Started new job. Training. I suck. I feel very stupid and incapable. Never done this kind of wok before so maybe I should go a bit easier on self? Huh. Hotel work. Yeah.

Rescued four toads this morn from sunken dog pond. They were very cold and sluggish. I need to put something in there that wildlife can cling to or climb aboard if I don’t get out there in a timely manner.

Trying to get stuff written and submitted.

Oh hey, I have a new book out. The Adventure of Grumpy Odin and Sexy Jesus. It’s a fun, breezy read. No, really, it is. There’s some gore, violence, a bit of sex, even…I know!

That’s all I got. My brain is a blank hunk of quivering jelly.

Grumpy Sexy

June. It’s June. My birthday is soon. Can you do me a boon? Go take a gander at my book. I won’t rhyme anymore. It might make some of you darlings a bit sore.

I do believe the Kindle is $3.99.


Odin knows better than to trust Newbie Jesus, in a borrowed flesh suit, but Jesus might actually deliver on getting back everyone Odin lost when God attacked the gods that came before him with holy fire. Maggie, head secretary to God, has a total crush on Odin, which lands her in unexpected very hot water with her rather smitey boss, as well as shove her down a path she never, ever saw coming. Poor Suzi finds out the very hard cost of loving a minion but there might be unexpected benefits that go along with her plight. Click and Clack might be holding onto some power that could come in handy during a batboy attack, and possibly useful to the only son of God. Add in some Karaoke Nites at the shared hangout of minions, secretaries and has-been magical riff-raff, along with secrets, betrayals, the Alvord Desert and a small stuffed rabbit, and you just might find yourself cheering for the Adventures of Grumpy Odin and Sexy Jesus.

The Adventures of Grumpy Odin and Sexy Jesus – Kindle edition by Wuehler, Ann, Schneider, Derek. Literature & Fiction Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.

Remarkable Women

Good mornin’! It’s chilly here in East Oregon. Wind’s blowin’. I am considering a run to town but I’d have to take a shower, find my town clothes, put on real shoes. Ugh! But we are out of lettuce.


Hey, Remarkable Women of Brokenheart Lane, my dystopian cannibal biker versus elderly sisters in what’s left of Fallon, Nevada novel, can be read for FREE ON KINDLE at the moment.

Basically– three elderly sisters, Lily, Violet and Laura, are squatting in Lily’s house in Fallon, Nevada. They’ve made the house look abandoned as there are human monsters roaming about in what’s left of the world and they’re just trying to survive another day, another day after that. The Werewolves, a cannibal biker gang that’s tangled with the Glitterbugs, yet another cannibal biker gang, limp into Fallon and possibly their Waterloo. It’s Laura, the silent sister who discovers her voice and then some, who pushes the other two into a possible showdown with the actual forces of the universe itself or maybe she’s gone completely crazy, cooped up in a moldering house living on boiled pee and deformed mice or whatever Violet can scrounge from the surrounding area. But the actual threat might very well arrive in the form of church ladies on bicycles– the legendary Snitty Ratballs. This apocalyptic threat has managed to make it over the booby-trapped Rockies, intent on law and ordering the remnants of the Old West. Who will survive??! Why is there a lion? Will the sisters join the Werewolves? Will Gut Bucket ever make it to Utah? Can Amy Octopus ever be believed?


If you do read it, hey, leave a review.

Ain’t too proud to beg for reviews at this stage of my utterly barffling life. I added an ‘r’ to ‘baffling’. I think I’ll let it stand.


Monday. Here’s the blurb to go along with novel number five, the Adventures of Grumpy Odin and Sexy Jesus:

In The Adventures of Grumpy Odin and Sexy Jesus, Odin and Newbie Jesus team up, uneasily, to take on God in a power struggle that might rip the known universe apart. Click and Clack might be something other than your normal minion scum. Maggie, who has the hots for Odin, finds herself in the middle of an actual holy war. Zadkiel begins to think for himself a bit, which is rather rare for a batboy. Poor Suzi discovers that loving minion Minette lands her in strange places yet allows her to help everyone but herself. Swiss Charlie’s, under the stellar management of Stella Lou, seems the place to be for karaoke and intrigues gone very wrong!

The Adventures of Grumpy Odin and Sexy Jesus is a fantastical fantasy adventure story that has a lot more jokes in it than any holy scriptures and makes the bible seem like a fairy story!

Misery Porn times a thousand

Zip along if you don’t wish to read about an obscure Netflix show. Or maybe not so obscure, I am out of that loop.

Anne with an E. WTF, Netflix?

The good. It’s beautifully shot. I do mean gorgeous. I’m thrown back to the Megan Follows version, with Kevin Sullivan at the helm. The one with Colleen Dewhurst as Marilla. The good one.

The scenery has that superb lushness we associate with Prince Edward Island. There’s giant fields of flowers, there’s waving seas of grain, there’s forest thickets just perfect for trysts and adorable walks by imaginative girls…okay. The backdrops for the series are just about pitch perfect. Great. Good! Well done.

The actress, Amybeth McNulty, playing Anne Shirley embodies that nearly archetypal character as best she can. As written for this series, Anne is a frantic, charmless waif who seems shellshocked and off-center far too much to win anyone over, let alone gain the love of the two who live at Green Gables. She reminds me of those dogs that are deprived of attention and correcting measures. The ones that leap up at your face with frantic ‘lovemeloveme!’ energy that’s so off-putting and even alarming if the dog is big enough to knock you down.

Which is not at all how Anne appears in the first book of the eight book series. Anne, as written, is a voluble, charming child you can’t help but love. She’s amusing and bright, with practical streaks among the fancies.

Yes, there are eight books. The last one takes us through WWI. Rilla of Ingleside. It blends tragedy and humor so much better than Anne with an E ever tried to.

I do like the latest versions of Marilla and Matthew. Both are given some time with their love gone wrong backstories to explain their present single states. It is hinted at in the books that Marilla and Gilbert’s dad were perhaps sweethearts but I cannot remember anything love-ward with Matthew. He was written as too leery and scared of women to ever go courting. He has to overcome a lot to get Anne’s dress with the beloved puff sleeves made, for instance.

Marilla here is portrayed as far less harsh and rigid. The Dewhurst version came straight from the books, with Marilla’s nature slowly revealed as she falls in love with her charge and starts thinking of her as a daughter. Not so with the current, much softer Miss Cuthbert. We get to see a lot more of her pain. She has actual emotions!

Did nobody read the books they based their series on?? Fine. Okay. Fine!

I also love the current Mrs. Lynde. The actress has this low, rich theatrical voice as well as a truly sweet, old-fashioned face, so you can forgive her quite easily for her ‘gossipy’ ways.

And let’s take on the mean girls of Avonlea school, shall we? Holy crap.

Anne blunders her way through the first day of school and it’s a nightmare to watch. She goes from telling tales of her life and what she knows of men and their ‘pet mice’ to pariah supreme. What the actual fuck? Everyone hates her by the end, Diana has to run interference and Billy Andrews has been turned into a abusive bully.

There’s even a hint of sexual violence toward Anne when he sneers about getting her alone to teach her a lesson.

Yes, such things happen in the real world and happened back then. Yes, they did. Do I want that much reality intruding over into the Green Gables world? No, I freaking do not.

We have Josie Pye turned into every last mean girl stereotype out there, from being a domineering megabitch to an unforgiving one-dimensional megabitch supreme. We have the other girls just falling in line with her and Diana coming across as more of a coward than anything else when she attempts nothing to defend her new friend from these vulturous sorts. Other than promising to ‘talk’ to them to smooth things over. Who wants a friend like that?

Anne is further traumatized by all this, we see flashbacks of her being tortured with a dead mouse by girls at the orphanage and holy buttons of bullshit, what am I watching???

A term crosses through my befuddled head at this point. Misery porn.

This is misery porn.

The heartaches, tragedies, meanness of the world and so forth, piled high over poor Anne Shirley like a tsunami about to rip apart miles of inland range.

Granted, I’ve only seen the first season of this.

Did I mention Anne only gains some grudging acceptance when she helps fight a fire at the Gillis household? Ruby Gillis, one of the easily led about girls from Josie Pye’s gang of Mean Prairie Girls, has to go stay at Green Gables as her house gets repaired. She throws an actual fit but grudgingly comes to like Anne but we know the second there’s some whiff about Anne that doesn’t seem right to the other girls, she’ll be against her again.

And we see Anne try to conform to what everyone wants her to be, which creates even more trauma and conflict for her. Ugh! Yes, real world shit but in the rather magical reality that is Avonlea kindness and sweetness, no. No!

And Gilbert. The bane and eventual love of Anne’s life. If you do not already know the Anne of Green Gables tale, well, sorry. This post is probably not for you, anyway.

Oh dear. This Gilbert is also tarred and feathered with the constant tragedy brush. His dad is sick, super sick. Consumption is my guess as he went to Denver, CO for the air, which is where people went, if they could, so they could breathe in the ‘healing’ this or that of mountain clime. Gilbert, at about fourteen or so, is in charge of the entire farming operation as well as caring for his father. He does stand up for Anne, and yes, calls her ‘carrots’, which earns him her ‘eternal’ scorn. And she’s been warned, by the other Mean Prairie Gals, that Gilbert belongs to Ruby.

This does ring true. Girls do do this at school and in life. They mark their territory, as it were. My mother said women were like horses. That we have a lead mare, that we fall in line with that lead mare. Mm.

Anne, desperate for love and approval, obeys this edict that she not have anything to do with Gilbert and we’re off!

I did like when Anne got her period. A subject never once addressed in L. M. Montgomery’s writing. Pregnancy was also not discussed beyond it being a ‘blessing’, well, as long as you were properly married. Ahem. Remember that Lucy Ricardo, of I Love Lucy, was the first to show pregnancy and such, in the 1950’s. Women and their bodies have pretty much always been under extreme scrutiny, control, shaming and even taboos.

We also get a glimpse into how women of that era dealt with menstrual flows, by pinning folded over cotton strips to their underwear. We even get tips on how to wash these pre-Stayfree pads by Marilla, in a rather kind, practical voice that was welcome yet jarring. The actual Marilla would probably not have been so understanding and helpful and soothing.

We also get a whispered scene where the schoolgirls discuss their own forays into new womanhood. Ruby, of course, has not yet gotten her ‘courses’.

You so rarely see any scenes in movies or film that deal honestly and actually with menstruation, so the episode that covered this topic was perhaps my favorite of the first season. There was humor and pathos and we got to see the bonding of the girls.

We also got a great conversation between Marilla and Mrs. Lynde over this topic. How Mrs. Lynde, mother of ten, preferred being pregnant to having her period each month. It was a frank exchange that worked. I could hear women in that era discussing just that, with the men safely out of earshot as they canned veggies or fruits.

It was the same in my family. I heard the most interesting stuff when the women of my family gathered together. The same frankness. The use of language not ‘appropriate’ for ladies, etc, etc. My grandmother saying the C word, and how we all laughed, the dirty belly giggles of women having to pretend they didn’t know such words at all.

I’ll end this ramble with how much I enjoy the opening credits. I like the song and the art work is exquisite. Also, at the start of season two, we have Anne running about the woods, interacting with nature and I am hoping we get more of that joyful, silly Anne but it doesn’t seem likely as I read blurbs of following episodes.

I think I am tired and exhausted by the real world depravities, war in Ukraine, American extremism starting to ruin everything around me and general WTF? bewilderment over the news items rushing through the worst timeline, as ‘they’ put it.

Are we in the worst timeline for our times? Yeah. I think we are.

Do I want an Anne Shirley series steeped in darkness, near madness over abuses, townspeople and schoolchildren turned into monsters and so forth? Nope! Because there doesn’t seem to be anything to counter any of that misery gushing from every last scene of Anne with an E.

It’s a valuable lesson to me as a writer. Throw in some goddamn happiness once in a while. Message received!


Viking vampire clown

Our Flag Means Death. HBO. Taika Waititi as Blackbeard, Rhys Darby as Stede Bonnet.

Full disclosure– the title of this blog post is from HBO’s Our Flag Means Death. Blackbeard observes that he has been turned into a ‘viking vampire clown’ as he discovers an illustration of himself in a book.

I heard those three words slammed together and went, hey, what can I do with that? Is that a title? A monster of some kind? Some sort of for-me only porn novella?

It’s probably also a sign I need to get out of the house.

So, a short one. The Cherry of Her Lips got an acceptance from Black Hare Press, for their War anthology. I really like this attempt of mine to freshen up the hoary Snow White tale.

I’m also looking at having a fifth book published. The Adventures of Grumpy Odin and Sexy Jesus. It’s fantasy? meets mythology meets religious figures meets humans, Minions, ghosts and outer space monsters. There’s also Batboys or angels.

Basically, God wants Jesus to become the newest Satan, which would put Jesus under God’s thumb. This sets off a chain of events that leads to a strange showdown in Oregon’s Alvord desert.

Yes, I am working on how to plug this one. I have to invent something dazzling, interest-provoking and yet short that doesn’t have me trying to explain the plot in a thousand-word sprawl.

A bit blasphemous? Sure, why not but it does involve other gods, other mythologies and a nod toward the irreverent and sassy. Honestly, it’s not dark or hopeless or dystopian. It’s even funny in spots. I think so. There’s some actual character journeys taking place. Jesus, for one, gets a great big arc.

So, yeah.

Now. How to use ‘viking vampire clown’. Isn’t it odd what combo of words can bring you such fulsome, wonderful delight? Happy almost spring!

The potential cover!

Goblins and Wild Hats

O this month, thou doth weary me to the gosh darn bone.

Drama queen set aside for now, I am starting a new job. It’s already stressing me out and we’ll see how it goes whoop de doo.

A poem of mine got nominated for an award. A tiny little poem, really, about an imaginary goblin that lives in my pumpkin patch. Yeah. I was surprised and gratified to find that email. I needed it. I needed some slight nudge that, yes, I should keep writing and sending out stuff. As the rejection tsunami is rather daunting at present. Ouch. Ouch! OUCH.

Might have some new and revised novels coming out this year. Malheur Baby, Owyhee Days, The Adventures of Grumpy Odin and Sexy Jesus are ready or almost ready for a publisher to go over. And, gasp, Oregon Gothic, a collection of short stories, might get a revamp and some stories added into the mix already there.

My cat is doing well.

Finished Peacemaker and enjoyed it thoroughly. Fun, raunchy, sad, action-packed and gets better and better as the series toots along. It might not be everyone’s cup of peppermint, but that


[cameo from the Justice League made me snort and giggle. ]

Mrs. Maisel also started up again. I am not so charmed with it…for some reason. Mm. I dunno. Will I still watch it? You bet your best wild hat I will. I loved, loved, loved Imogene’s hat in ep one, with the pink flowers all over it. My grandmother wore such hats. I do love the clothes of that time period, they’re so gorgeous. I want Susie to win or have some sort of story beyond propping up Midge all the time. And I want season five to be where Midge doesn’t make it. Where she has to keep on doing standup for peanuts in shitty places. You know, like real life? Except real life seems tinged with actual blood and human screams anymore…yikes. Downer!

I need to go over Malheur Baby, again. It needs about ten thousand more words. It’s sitting at 48 thou. But it clicks along so well now as is. Maybe it’s a novella? Maybe I can pair it with Army of Flamingos. odd pairing but…! Found baby and man fighting back against the slowly awakening lawn ornaments of his mother. Mm?