I've sent another story to Tharg*.
I really must stop doing this.
I've been at it since I was 14 and it's a filthy habit which I really don't appear able to control. Each time the urge seizes me I just have to hunch over the computer and squeeze out another short story with a twist.
That's how Tharg recruits new writers. He lets them write a short story with a twist. That's how he's always done it. Once you get writing them though it becomes something that your mind gets a weird kick out of. There's an elegant obvious beauty to short stories which arouses my mind. The greatest short story writer in my opinion is Edgar Allan Poe. "The Black Cat" and "The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar" being two particularly notable examples**.
Initially my imagination alone was enough but the more into it you get the more you crave stimulation and added layers of meaning. Soon you're composing stories which don't even make any logical sense.
Actually - that's true. I once wrote and submitted a story (couple of years ago now) which really doesn't make any actual sense. I read it to a couple of mates and they had to admit they had no idea what any of it meant. I thought I did at the time but looking back at it it's sheer drug induced nonsense***.
Each time once I've got rid of the story the urge settles for a bit and I can get on with my life. But sooner or later the consequences of what I've done catch up with me and a rejection letter lands on my doorstep.
This time it'll be different though. This time people will all love my story!
*Tharg is the 'alien editor' of The Galaxy's Greatest Comic 2000AD. It's a weekly comic which, if you're looking to get into the artform, you'd do well to subscribe to. It's the home of Judge Dredd and various other well known British comic stories. It's one of my reasons for living. Their website is: www.2000adonline.co.uk
**What do you mean you haven't heard of them? For f#cks sake! Go print them out and read them then: The Facts in The Case of M.Valdemar and The Black Cat.
***I do not and have not taken any drugs. This is a joke.