I wrote a prose short story titled SCRIBBLES FROM THE UNDERWORLD which you can now find in Crime Factory 14 available through the Crime Factory site.
I’m really proud of this short. I wrote it just weeks after my second was born. I spent a lot of time rocking her, sitting with her, and pacing the house trying to keep her asleep/quiet/happy/all of the above. All that pacing and holding kept me from my desk but I was not going to let that stop me writing. I wrote a few different things on my phone in those first weeks/months (a one-shot, some other scripting, some reviews and articles) but I found the small screen size and my even smaller sized brain from lack of sleep and light most of the time to not be conducive to delving into the good and deep stuff. I wasn’t going to work on any epics on my little iPhone 3.
Then I saw a post on Joe Hill’s tumblr about a prose short he’d written about action figure obits – it’s awesome, scope it out – and it sparked a little corner of my brain. Then, around the same time, he was asked a question and his response was basically, write what you can when you can. Short, small, inconsequential, gargantuan, just always add grist to the mill. Both of those posts sparked me to write SCRIBBLES FROM THE UNDERWORLD.
My story is actually a fictional magazine article about the writing detritus found in a Victorian pub when the cops raid it. Notes in pockets, scribbles next to the urinal, it’s all tallied. So, the narrative has no cohesive whole, but I like to think it still paints one hell of a picture. It’s not long to read but I’m sure you’ll get a kick out of it, especially if you hail from old Frankston way like I do…did.
To wet your whistle, here’s a little tease:
‘On the stormy afternoon of Friday the 11th of June, 1982, a squad of police officers raided the Downtown bar and made a slew of arrests and acquisitions. A known hot spot for the Melbourne underworld, thirty-five arrests were made with seventeen successful convictions stemming from the day. History would dub this day ‘The Last Drink’ as the Downtown would shut its doors and never reopen. Those who scurried away from the long arm of the law found new places to imbibe and plan for another rainy day.
The names and photos from ‘The Last Drink’ went down in history but what was never revealed were many of the material items recovered from the raid. Numbers of weapons and street value of drugs made good headlines but the little things that could fall through the cracks could and did. Until now.
With the aid of Victorian Police, we can present to you some of the stranger evidence collected on that day in the Downtown. Below you can read samples of the quirky paperwork taken from the thugs’ pockets, hidden cracks between tables, written on the bathroom walls, and crumpled in the bins. In their own words, we present to you the men of the Melbourne underworld and their secret thoughts and musings.’
Download Crime Factory 14 – scope my story on Page 99 – enjoy yourself.