Saturday, December 08, 2007

Out of the Gutter #3

It's hard not to compare Out of the Gutter with Murdaland. Both started up at about the same time, and both offer an alternative to the other print outlets for short mystery fiction. Murdaland is slicker and more "literary," but it nevertheless offers cutting edge stories that might have trouble finding a home elsewhere. Gutter flaunts its in-your-face attitude. If anything, it seems to take an anti-literary stance, not that there's anything wrong with that. I enjoy reading both of them, and I'm wish them both long life and success.

The theme of the latest Gutter is "War is Hell," with the term war being fairly broadly defined. For example, Pearce Hansen's "Good to be a Man" would probably fall into the "man's war with nature" category. Good story, though, and there's an interview with Hansen that's well worth reading.

Dave Zeltserman's "Adrenaline" should get you cranked, but it's certainly not for the faint of heart. It's a man vs. man story, but it has its origins in war, as does J. D. Rhoades' "So Round, So Firm, So Fully Packed." It's not for the faint of heart, either, but then I didn't read a single story that was. Don't say I didn't warn you.

In case you're wondering about some of the cover stories, the midgets with AKs appear in "The Bitch Pit." I haven't gotten to the chicks with chainsaws yet.

There's nonfiction, too, from 9/11 conspiracy theory to gun control, and there are lots of flash stories. Even poetry.
Ror the stout of heart and strong of stomach, Out of the Gutter #3 is full of the kind of stuff you're looking for. Check it out.

[Sort of an aside: I have to argue with the squib at the bottom of page 35, though. It says that "The last surviving Civil War veteran, Judge Thomas E. Webster, actually died in 1940 . . . ." I guess the facts are in dispute, but in 1959 I attended the funeral of Walter Williams, who was supposedly the last Civil War vet. The Franklin, Texas, homepage mentions that his grave is in the community cemetery there. I once wrote a short essay about the funeral for the ACWL BULLETin.]


Matthew Louis said...

Shit. Don't know how that happened. Feet are gonna get kicked off of desks here at the OOTG headquarters! PRIMARY SOURCES from here on in! No more quick Google searches between Internet porn sessions, I promise!

Seriously, glad you found some enjoyable stuff in there and thanks for giving us a mention.

Matt Louis

Bill Crider said...

A great issue. There's a bit of controversy about who the last living vet was, but I'm going with the guy in Franklin, Texas, since that's the funeral I attended.