Friday, June 16, 2017

Welcome World Readers!

click to enlarge
“Chaotic terrain” is an astrogeologic term to describe a jumbled landscape on a planet, such as Mars.  It’s a type of landscape not really seen on Earth, but I do think it is appropriate for our world on spiritual, cultural, and political levels.  At the same time, there’s incredible beauty everywhere.  I write stories that attempt to capture both the chaos and the beauty of life by embodying ideas that are often neglected or missing in literature—what I call, the missing elements.

After being a prolife/antiabortion activist since 1988 or so and writing countless letters to the editor and guest commentaries, in year 2000, I decided to write a novel.  It took a long time to rewrite and revise.  I didn’t finalize the current covers until a month ago.  And early this year I hired a recent seminary graduate to proofread the book again. The title is Universal Man, which is a turn on the concept of the holy, catholic (universal) church we ascribe to in the creeds.  Do I give away too much by saying that the main character, Stanley Timmons, represents the visible Church?  At least he does in my mind.  It was my intention to give him that role, though I hope I’ve made him to be a true-to-life person and not anything like an archetype. The primary characters, including Timmons, take their beliefs to the logical, often disturbing conclusions.

The book is in three volumes. An early reader called it a contemplative thriller.

My dear wife told me once that publishing short stories would bring attention to my novel.  That never came true.  Not yet anyway.  After the novel was more or less complete, I wrote about 30 short stories and got a number of them published in small places here and there.  But I got tired of rejection letters.  At about 250 rejections, I quit “submitting” stories, deciding rather to “dominate” them, hence my book When Earth Whispers & Other Mostly Speculative Tales, speculative meaning not strictly real-world, and that would include horror, contemporary fantasy, and science-fiction.  You can buy the book at Amazon, but since you probably don’t know me, I suggest you first read a couple stories here on my blog.  All of them are published or linked here and you can read them totally for free.  For this purpose I recommend one of the flash stories—complete stories in 1000 words or less.  Maybe try “Deprescience”.  A now retired editor at God’s World Publications said about it in the comments section at Every Day Fiction:

“This story is filled with surprises, the main surprise being its consistent and profound surprises themselves from beginning to end. Very well written, bolstered by obvious wisdom and literary panache. I was captivated by the scope of this quite brief masterpiece.”

So, you can find story titles and links on the blog column on the right.

If you like it, or are at least intrigued by “Deprescience”, try “Genius” or “Not the Wrong Planet”.  My almost shortest story is “Spark” at 544 words.  Then if you wish, try something longer, and when you’re ready, tackle the novel.  Or start with the novel.   After all, I wrote it first.  It is filled with surprises, too.  One interesting thing is that the novel contains numerous photographs of the real locations in the story, or locations that served as models for writing the scenes.  For ordering books, go to my “official website” ChaoticTerrain.com. It’s far more straightforward than this messy blog.

By the way, the monarch butterfly in the photograph is a male I raised in my house, and it’s perched on a milkweed plant (asclepias tuberosa) I grew from seed.  I had just released the butterfly and it had not yet taken its first flight.  But then it did and flew up into the wide world, perhaps to travel a thousand miles. Of course I hope that’s a metaphor for my stories, all of them and the novel, homegrown.

            -Meredith Eugene (Mickey) Hunt


(Not to distract you, but if you are fascinated by insects, watch my HD close-up video of a monarch butterfly emerging from its chryrsalis shell.)

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