Our menu tonight goes something like this:
"In Memory, Yet Crystal Clear" - is a Science Fiction tale of how one man can change the world. This was my first short story ever to get published in a magazine way back in 1992. It is a work of Social Horror. I have updated it for this book as the technology in it as it was getting dated. I had also updated it before it was originally published as I had written it some years even previous to that, in the 80s. Originally it was written as a dare, a lark, a challenge, when I had jokingly said one day to some friends while we were partying together one night, that I could make any storyline plausible. Due beware of making such claims as it was a lot of work from then on.
"Gumdrop City" was published in 2010 in Zilyon Publishing's "The Undead Nation Anthology". It is a horror story, pure and simple. I originally heard about from a Professor in my University Abnormal Psych class. He told it to us as a psychological study. It is however, a true crime story. I fictionalized the father and daughter in it, as well as a few other things but once you walk through a certain door, the fundamentals there are despicably true. I have since worked up a treatment for this story as a screenplay with the help of a Hollywood Producer. So it is possible that one day, this short story could hit the silver screen.
"Quantum History" was done as a friendly experiment between three friends to choose a theme and write it, then compare stories. It is a Science Fiction Comedy for all intents and purposes. There are two other versions of this theme floating about and I'm willing to bet that other than mine, those other two will never see the light of day.
"The London Mea Culpa Document" is a document about the document called "The Mea Culpa Document". It is a one page description from the "authoritative journal" it was published in.
"The Mea Culpa Document" following the "London" piece, was originally written back in college with the help of a Theater Professor who is into Medieval Literature (he also helped me with "Poor Lord Ritchie", see below). It is a story about a great burden that an idealistic Witch Hunter has to bear in the Medieval Ages in England. Mea Culpa documents used to be documents that some used to write out all their sins and then typically burn them. But in this case, this document was stored for posterity, for reasons that will be made clear.
"Poor Lord Ritchie's Answer to a Question He Knever Knew (on the Night that the Knight Lost All)", was chosen by actor Rutger Hauer (as the "Replicant Roy Batty" in the Ridley Scott film, "BladeRunner" and so many other films) as a winner in his International Short Story contest that he ran for two years back in the late 1990s. I entered it because I just knew that he would like this story most out of all of my stories. It is a surreal tale of a confused Medieval Lord who has been abused by genetics and his position. It is about a man lost and his descent into either temporal displacement, or madness; in the end, let it be your decision.
"Sarah" has now been built into my screenplay, "HearthTales" which I've been sending out to production companies. Sarah is a woman lost in the misery and dementia of Alzheimer's Disease. I had heard some examples of what it was like to live with someone suffering from this disease, from a girl in, once again, my Abnormal Psych class at our University. She told me about her grandmother and some of her experiences. They were such moving stories that I had to find a way to share them.
"The Fall" was a recent exercise in an online writer's group I participate in; one of several. Another story, "Simon's Beautiful Thought" (on Amazon KDP and Smashwords) was another exercise coming out of that group, just previous to "The Fall". "Simon" was about obsession. "The Fall" is about madness or the descent into it, depending how you take it. It is about how romance can intertwine with insanity to lead to the worst of all possible of life events.
"Japheth, Ishvi and The Light" is my first attempt at a full blown Zombie story. It is based on the Biblical tale of Abraham and his son Isaac and is about the religious commune they live in. Throw in some devastating confusion, a few soldiers, God, and well, there you have it.
"Andrew" is the story of a very young boy, the child of a very brilliant married couple who were also rather unusual scientists. It is a story about how Andrew tries to deal with an event more traumatic than anyone should ever have to experience, no matter what age they are. This is then juxtaposed with how he learned to deal with it as an adult, who he developed into by that point in his life, and where his parent's efforts end him up. Yes, there is certainly a lot more than that going on.
I hope you find these tales as entertaining to read as I found them to write.
JZ Murdock lives and writes from his home in Suquamish, Washington, nine and a half miles across the waters of the Puget Sound from Seattle and home to the grave of Chief "Seattle". Located on several forested acres in the Pacific Northwest's incredibly beautiful Olympic Peninsula, there is definitely something magical about this area that evokes creativity. He lives with his faithful German Shepherd and his two adult offspring also live locally in the Northwest.
With a degree in Psychology from Western Washington University and a minor in creative writing including screen and script team writing, some of his writings from back then are contained in his first book, Anthology of Evil. The novella in that book is the basis for his next book, Death of Heaven, a massive story about things not being at all like we believe them to be and the horror that comes sometimes, with learning what is true in the world.
During his time working at the University of Washington for just over seven years in computers, some of his work included volunteering with the Psychology department's Martial Research facility which led to his being involved in a BBC documentary. Around that time he became a Viacom Public Access TV producer.
Lately he has been concentrating on screenplays and film production, but is regularly putting out short stories in anthologies with other authors. Two of his screenplays have been requested by a London production company. One being a biopic of his first week long gig as a bodyguard at eighteen back in 1974; thus aptly titled, "Teenage Bodyguard". The story details his protecting a murder witness and local strip club waitress from the local mob until she could escape town.
After getting involved with Stage32.com a few years ago, he has started working with local director Kelly Hughes on producing his newest horror film.