KIERAN SHEA’s fiction has appeared in dozens of venues including Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, Thuglit, Dogmatika, Word Riot, Plots with Guns, Beat to a Pulp, Crimefactory, and Needle: A Magazine of Noir well as in some beefy-looking anthologies most of which will make you question the tether of his shiny, red balloon. To his self-deprecating astonishment he's also been nominated for the Story South’s Million Writers Award twice without sending the judges so much as a thank you note. He co-edited the satiric transgressive fiction collection D*CKED: DARK FICTION INSPIRED BY DICK CHENEY and his debut novel KOKO TAKES A HOLIDAY is out now from Titan Books. Kieran divides his time between 38°58′22.6″N- 76°30′4.17″W and 39.2775° N, 74.5750° W.


When Do You Write Better?

Today's late afternoon theme: disappointment.

My brother Tim used say (when we lived together briefly) that I cooked better when I was bitter or depressed. For a while (5 years) when I ran my catering business for sailors in Annapolis, I had the reputation and nickname "The Angry Chef" for reasons more centered on people's appetites for mediocrity than anything else. My loyal customers actually looked forward to my rages on wine, food, and the long gutless slide of chowderheads who'd rather have a questionable burger than my classic Thai Billabong Soup. Now I'm trying to write (quite a few rejections today--a hat trick with one bigger than the rest so I'm walking around in the nowhereland of self doubt). Sometimes I find that when I am angry, when I target my rage at someone or something I want to annhilate, I tend to write better. Or maybe I shouldn't even give a damn. How does one pull oneself up after so many blows to the head? I know, charge ahead. But goddamnit, it sucks.