"You know what? The bastard blows me out of the water. This guy writes Maine like Ardai writes New York. If you're not reading him, you don't know what you're missing." --Chris F. Holm, author of The Big Reap, The Wrong Goodbye and Dead Harvest.

"Bagley's got the poet's eye, but that doesn't mean everything is prettier in his work. It means the ugly stuff is more vivid. More intense. Like a sudden switch from analog to HD. And that's a trait to very much admire in his work." --Anthony Neil Smith, author of Hogdoggin', Yellow Medicine, The Drummer and Psychosomatic.




Thursday, May 2, 2013

A Start (Maybe)

Here's something I wrote last night, trying to set a mood. I don't where this piece might go, but it feels like an okay start.



Two years working on Elman Luce’s farm and Doyle had never once set foot in the old man’s house.  Now here he was, sitting at the kitchen table across from his boss while Mrs. Luce busied herself with fixing supper.  Doyle took in the cross-stitched Bible verses hung between the windows, the linen calendar, the electric range sitting next to the old wood-fired cook stove, the handmade oven mitts and the linoleum floor—spotless except for small black burns where someone had been careless when emptying the stove of coals and ashes.  It was house so unlike his own; even though he’d been asked in, he felt like an intruder.

Luce stared at the table, rubbing with his thumb at a worn spot in the Formica top.  The old man blew through his nose and pushed himself up from the table, lumbered over to a cupboard from which he took a bottle of whiskey that sat on a high shelf.  The bottle was mostly full.  With his wife scowling at him, Luce poured some into two tumblers and handed one to Doyle.

A cold feeling seeped through Doyle’s guts.  Elman Luce’s stinginess with liquor was just as legendary as Mrs. Luce’s hatred of the stuff. Whatever the old man had to tell Doyle, it wasn’t going to be a joke.

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