It is true – I received this book a few months ago.  Usually it doesn’t take me so long to review a book, but things have been hopping around here.  (Check out my new venture.) I haven’t had as much time as usual to really sink my teeth into a book, but I’m very happy to have had ParaSpheres: Extending Beyond the Spheres of Literary and Genre Fiction: Fabulist and New Wave Fabulist Stories along for the ride.  At over 600 pages, this meaty collection of stories may seem overwhelming at first blush, but for the short story reader it’s a blessing between two paperback covers.  ParaSpheres, published by Omnidawn, gives readers such as myself such an escape from the normal, the humdrum, the darkening skies of November that make me grit my teeth until the porcelain begins to shatter, that I’ve been only too happy to bury my nose in nothing but this for the timebeing.

If you’re looking to give your favorite bookworm something unusual and unique this year for Christmas, you can’t go wrong with ParaSpheres.  There’s something in it for everyone, even literary snobs who are afraid to step away from the Classics section.  (I know from whence I speak – been there, read that.) It even includes a work from a carp(e) libris favorite, Justin Courter, plus a bit of his novel Skunk.  As usual for me, Courter did not disappoint.  

As you may suspect from the title, ParaSpheres is filled with the unusual, the hard to categorize, the “fabulist”.  If this sounds like the book for you, or if you want to impress a big reader at Christmas with a weighty tome beneath ye ol’ tannenbaum, I’ve got an extra copy to give away.  Can anyone say “Thank God for Media Mail rates”?  Yes, but in the end it’s worth it and you’ll come back to thank me later.

4 Ways to Win:

1.) Tell me a bizarre two- or three-sentence story or event.  It doesn’t have to be wordy or true or feasible.  Maybe aliens ate your lunch, I don’t care.  I just like to be entertained. (You may enter once a day – following entries don’t require you to answer the question.) Remember, leave an interesting comment.  If I cannot contact the winner, you might be chosen instead based on your comment.

2.) Email subscribers get an extra entry for as long as their subscription is active. 

Already a subscriber?  Leave me a separate comment on this post to let me know you’re interested in this giveaway. 

Want to subscribe? Just plunk your email address in the little white box to the right.  (Please make sure to verify your Feedburner subscription by responding to the email they send you. If you do not receive it, check your junk mail. Only verified subscriptions are entered for all the giveaways.)

3.) Blog about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to this post. Come back and leave me a Comment with a link to your blog post.

4.) I’m feeling Twittery.  If you Twitter a link to this giveaway, come back and comment here to let me know your Twitter name for another entry!

Do all four, and you’ve got four entries to win! You have until midnight EST on Saturday, November 27, 2008, to enter.


  1. Pingback: ParaSpheres Short Story Anthology | Mom Giveaways

  2. I, in fact, wrote all these stories and the authors have plucked them from my mind.

  3. I saw a cougar run across my driveway the other day. Thanks for the giveaway!

  4. more of a funny story- but when one of my kids was really constipated then all of a sudden got the runs- he said the aliens came up and invaded his insides because he sat so long on potty trying to go! that was a gas to me

  5. subscriber

  6. The night that JFK Jr, his wife, and her younger sister, Lauren, died in a small plane crash, I dreamed that I, my “husband” (I’m not married), and my younger sister “Lauren” (which I don’t have) died in a small plane crash. (True story.)

  7. I subscribed to your newsletter!

  8. I twittered about this giveaway (stinawins)!

  9. Let’s see … well, there was the time my family spent a few nights in a famously “haunted” hotel. My dad and my brother spent an evening ghost-hunting, and I was alone in my room all night, and nothing happened. My mother (who doesn’t believe in ghosts), had “someone” enter her hotel room and then disappear one morning while the rest of us were eating breakfast.

    Figures that the strange event happens to the one person who doesn’t care or believe 😀

    Green Yaks last blog post..Grab Bag of 10 Paper Gift Bows

  10. After my grandparents died, I moved into their house. Odd little things occurred. I lost a necklace and two weeks later, after I’d swept the floor, I saw something shiny, and there it was. A ring went missing and turned up months later in a box I know I hadn’t been anywhere near. Nothing scary, just strange. Also, the dog would suddenly jump up and stand staring at the stairway to the upstairs, making half-growl noises in her throat. THAT was creepy and those nights, I slept on the couch with the dog right next to me,

  11. Tuesday entry!

  12. This story actually IS true – I had a best girlfriend who moved away to a city 90 miles from me, and we really missed each other’s companionship. One morning I awoke from a dream that something terrible had happened to her and that she was being rushed to a hospital! I tried to phone her, if only to share my dream, but there continued to be no answer. We were poor college students at the time and neither of us had a car, so I felt compelled to hop on a Greyhound for an hour-and-a-half ride to make certain that she was ok. When I arrived at her new apartment she was just unlocking her door, and had a bandage around her head! She had been walking in a park and some guys in a truck threw a huge ROCK at her head, she fell and a bystander called an ambulance! She ended up being ok but I really did feel her trauma as it was occuring and ran to help her -but my mind kept trying to trick me and tell me that it was just a dream! I’m glad I went, though, because being there with her just helped her get over it sooner, psychologically.

  13. Did you see that a man from Topeka won two cars from two different contest in one week. Now that is lucky! I would feel lucky just to win this contest. Thanks for the chance.

  14. Gabe, is forced by a hysterical girlfriend to descend into New York City’s sewers, into which he has just flushed her aborted baby. Arriving there, he finds that fetuses populate the sewers, along with an animal population composed of similarly disposed-of crocodiles, whom the fetuses ride, and the word “Croatoan”, crudely lettered on a wall near the entrance to the sewer. The story ends with the narrator’s hysterical realization: “I am the one they have been looking for all along….They call me father.”

    “Croatoan” was also carved into a tree at the deserted Roanoke colony, possibly referring to the Croatan Indians, whom many believe the survivors joined with when they left the colony, or Croatoan island.

    Croatoan by Harlan Ellison

  15. Jennifer Goertzen

    Several weeks ago, I was scratching my belly. When my finger strayed to plumb the depths of my belly-button, something inside it bit me! It hurt like the dickens, and, after I’d doused my finger with alcohol and bandaged it, the examination of my navel resumed. Stretching back the skin and peering inside it revealed a circular lamprey-like maw complete with a perfect double ring of tiny teeth. It gnashed and slavered at me. I lowered my shirt, lit a cigarette from my quitter’s secret stash, and promptly suffered a psychotic break. Since then, I don’t leave my house much. My savings have dwindled, but I’ve been managing to feed my “lil’ nipper” from free food samples sent to me from companies on the internet. I

  16. Jennifer Goertzen

    Several weeks ago, I was scratching my belly. When my finger strayed to plumb the depths of my belly-button, something inside it bit me! It hurt like the dickens, and, after I’d doused my finger with alcohol and bandaged it, the examination of my navel resumed. Stretching back the skin and peering inside it revealed a circular lamprey-like maw complete with a perfect double ring of tiny teeth. It gnashed and slavered at me. I lowered my shirt, lit a cigarette from my quitter’s secret stash, and promptly suffered a psychotic break. Since then, I don’t leave my house much. My savings have dwindled, but I’ve been managing to feed this abomination from free food samples sent to me from companies on the internet. Of these products, “Lil’ Nipper”‘s favourite would be chewing gum (although I do find ourselves bloated afterwards).

  17. We once had a poltergeist, it would move things around the house, and turn the water on in the kitchen sink!It seemed to be pretty friendly.

  18. During the summer of 2007, some friends and I went on a camping/kayaking trip to Squam Lake, in Holderness, New Hampshire. I befriended a rooster in the parking lot of the rustic campground, who must have been owned by someone who lived nearby. He followed us for the twenty minute walk to our campsite. He stayed the night with us, and even traveled back to our trucks in a kayak after we broke camp and towed our camping gear across the lake in a raft. We dropped him off at the parking lot where we found him. I wonder whether his owners realize what an adventurous bird they have!

  19. Julie MacDonough

    My mother, being rather strange in her gift giving ability, once gave everyone (grown children and spouses) shorts with elastic waistband, because I was pregnant and she wanted everyone …. oh hell, I have no idea why she did it. It was so strange. She is on a fixed income and that all she could afford, I do not know. She is sometimes delusional. It was strange to open presents christmas gathering and pulling out shorts that were from dollar general. Thanks mom. just smile and bear it.

  20. coumt me in.

  21. I made pea soup for dinner the other. The 13 year old ate it and had seconds and never voiced one negative comment. How bizarre is that? Proof, I say, that aliens have turned him into a pod person.

  22. this looks like it would be a good read

  23. This is a true story. I was driving home from work one day and kept hearing a farting noise every 10 seconds or so. I thought I was losing air in my tire or something was happening to the engine, I was checking out the cars behind me and next to me to see if it was them, nope it was my car. As I am driving and still hearing this noise, I look at my windshield wipers because it is raining a little but as I looked closer, I noticed some leaves caught in the wiper and everytime the wipers moved, the farting noise started. My car wipers evidently had too much gas that day!

  24. I have a vivid memory from last summer. I was walking across a hot grass field to a small town air show when I was struck by something. I thought it was a rock. I spun around quickly to see where it went after it bounce off of my chest, and was surprised to see a huge grasshopper-like bug flying away. After the air show, walking that same strip of grass, an elderly man collapsed and my husband and father had to hold him until help came.

    Alyces last blog post..Tuesday Thingers – November 25

  25. I am a subscriber.

  26. Oh, I am so glad someone wants to listen to this. When I was growing up we lived in an old house. About 3 times a week a figure of a man would stand over my me as I lay in bed. He would pinch me repeatedly.He would say, “Don’t scream, don’t scream for you mother” He would continue to pinch whatever part of me that was outside of the covers as I lay paralized in fear. Some how I would get up enough courage to let out a scream that would bring my mother tearing into my bedroom to check on me. The man would vaporize away in a gray mist only to return a couple nights later. This continued for years until we finally moved into a new home when I was in the sixth grade. I was never bothered again. The old house was torn down to build a receation center for the town. Now the paranormal fascinates me.

  27. Pingback: Book Titled ParaSpheres Short Story Anthology | Mom Giveaways

  28. A gormless man from Texas was the executive branch of our government for the last eight years.

  29. Entries #14 and #15 by Jennifer Goertzen are repeats. She should not have 2 entries.


  30. Another day, another entry. Count me in!

  31. subscribed

  32. Once upon a time, there was a world where, since time immemorial, the female of the species chose to undergo a condition that can cause a state between irritation and even, outright death. They made this sacrifice because, as ancestors that came before them have been telling their daughters, it needs to be made for the well being of the future of their race. They were a superstitious lot all around.

    This condition can cause nausea, vomiting, headaches, fatigue, rash, pain, diabetes, heart condition, mood swings, swelling and a headlong rush to the other side, either to life – or death.

    This place is earth, the condition pregnancy, as you may have guessed. Amd the result a wonderful miracle of life. I chose this condition late in life – at 36- Although there are many children in the world who cry each night for homes I chose to bring a wonderful little person to my world.

  33. When I was at the store today, I saw an empty box that once contained macaroons. I guess someone got hungry. If that’s not bad enough, there was a half full bottle of Pepto Bismol a couple of isles away.

  34. It happened in July 1974. Me and my old hound were headed to Daytona for spring break. Needless to say (Sam) the hound gave me wrong directions. Made a right turn somewhere in the middle of South Carolina onto a highway numbered 600000000…. that never seemed to end. Woundup in a mountain populated by a race of inbred Rod Searling cannibals. POSTED TUESDAY JULY 21 1974: I won’t be back to NYC. Official Report will say I am a missing student. Truth is I met Brenda and found out I love this lifestyle and have a lot in common with the people. Brenda, pass me some more of those eyeballs. They are delicious. Oh by the way congraulate me and Brenda. We are having a son. Cheers.

  35. This story is true and something of a ghost story. My grandmother’s parents moved to the United States before she was born, so she never saw her grandparents who were back in Austria. One night when my grandmother was young, she awoke from her sleep to hear a man sobbing. She looked out into the dining room and saw a man sitting at the table, crying. After a moment, the man faded away, like a dream. The next morning, she described the man to her mother. Her mother told her the description fit her grandfather. Later that day they received notice that her grandfather had passed away in the night. Spooky, eh? Thanks for the great give-away.

  36. this looks like it would be a good read

  37. I was attacked by a bird at the zoo once and it grabbed a bunch of my hair and took off.

  38. I’m a current subscriber.

  39. The aliens are hiding in my tummy & are forever hungry!
    Late at night they have a banquet feast with dancing drums & hula girls.
    They keep me up all night…..going to the frig over & over to feed thier hunger lust.

    Help me please…….won’t some one help me.

  40. I found out that there’s a movie coming out about the perennial tabloid staple Batboy.

  41. I subscribed to your blog.

  42. My mermaid life is quite a journey, searching for the perfect home, with seahorses and stars for pets, and angel fish that like to roam…

    I like to swim the Seven Seas, and wear a crown of seaweed leaves, and love to read a sassy book, short stories new, unusual…. look!

    ParaSpheres sounds great for me, as I sip my seashell tea!

  43. Real sad i’ve not seen this earlier …

    Cristina Alvess last blog post..Ar – Geoff Ryman

  44. Here’s a bizzare thing. I was around 7 years old and I needed to go to the bathroom. When I sat up, a heat force on my back slowly pulled me back down. My eyes were bulging from my sockets. I lay there, stiff and scared. I finally fell asleep and in the morning, I jumped from my bed to the door. Told my mom. She just thought I was a silly girl. Well, I’m a big girl now and still remember that experience.

  45. Do you guys have a recommendation section, i’d like to suggest some stuff