My First Book Is Out!

I must say, after over a year of focused work, it’s a great feeling to open a box and see books with my name on it. It’s a grand feeling to finally hold it in my hands and know it’s real! 🙂

Beautiful Nonsense is an anthology of 35 funny and odd short stories, in the vein of Monty Python, Blackadder, Jack Handey, Peter Cook and Dudley Moore. Here’s my official description below the photos.

BN2

BN1

An out of touch father trying to teach his bored son a unique form of martial arts.

A flashy superhero who cares more about his image than actually doing anything heroic.

A shy Martian longing to fit into high school in the American Mid-West.

The thirty five short stories within Kris Bather’s debut range from the bizarre (elderly friends hazily recounting their glory days) to the even more bizarre (competitors in a chili eating festival happily willing to die for first prize).

Surreal and silly, Beautiful Nonsense embraces the inherent oddness of interactions, both human and otherwise, and takes them to hilarious extremes.

You can buy the digital version for only $1.49 from the Amazon Australia store. The print version as well as the digital version are also available from Amazon’s other sites worldwide, including America and the UK. Canada! France! Brazil! India! Germany!

You can check out a preview of my book on the links above, but it is a random preview, so you may not get my complete stories. However you can check out full previews on my Wattpad.

It’s published through CreateSpace, which is effectively Amazon’s self-publishing arm, and I highly recommend it. Anyone can publish their books via CreateSpace and with Amazon’s global reach, it makes a lot of sense for indie authors like myself.

It’s been a challenging process at times, but also a very rewarding one. If you do buy a copy, I hope you like it and please let me know what you think.

My Spider Cars Story

It’s been far too long since I’ve written a short story. So, here’s one. I was inspired at the start of the month by popular science/pop culture site i09 and their weekly Concept Art Writing Prompt features. They choose a cool pic and encourage site readers to create a story based on the image. My entry needs some editing but I wrote it in about 20 minutes.

Below is the story, and original pic, and here’s the post from 109.

“They’re not beetles though are they?”

“What?”

“Look at the legs. They’re spiders. Obviously.”

“I was just trying to be funny. You know – VW Beetle, because they’re half car and half insect.”

“More like a third car, really.”

Davis rolled his blue eyes and sighed; a familiar response to his younger sister’s annoying habit of never laughing at his witty observations.

Molly was a genius though, and despite being a typical pre-pubescent girl in some ways, she was more like Albert Einstein or Stephen Hawking in many more. Underneath her freckles and pigtails was a brain that defied expectations. She purposely wore pink dresses and shirts with unicorns and rainbows on them to surprise people. She loved being the smartest person in the world, even more than she loved her hippy parents on the commune. Molly figured that she was either adopted, or a freak of nature; more a product of a daring genetic experiment than two unschooled hicks from the American backwoods.

“Here will do,” ordered Molly in her usual fashion.

Davis stopped peddling his rusty bike by the side of the only road to their sprawling farm complex and scratched his scrawny legs. Molly hopped out of the large basket on the front.

“They’ve stopped.”

“Of course they have Davis. They’re hungry.”

Davis took off his NY Mets baseball cap and ran his hand through his messy hair, looking around the silent brown and greens of their environment. “But there’s nothing here. They’ve eaten all the cows,” he said. “What else can we give them? Everyone at home already hates you for taking away most of their food.”

“That won’t be a problem for much longer Davis.”

Davis squinted and looked into her sister’s eyes, oblivious to the harsh calculations being made behind them.

“I don’t know why you made them like animals anyway. You should’ve just left them as sculptures or something,” moaned Davis.

“It was an accident. Sort of. A happy accident,” replied Molly with a feint yet crooked smile.

The so-called accident that created the pair of automobile monstrosities was a success in Molly’s eyes. After experimenting with toy cars and parts from a dishwasher, she found she was able to create life with parts of abandoned military hardware from the recently destroyed army bunker just outside of town. Finding two abandoned Volkswagens in Mr. Harris’ field, her and Davis dragged the struts of a fallen water tower, for the arachnids’ appendages.

As the two mechanical monsters lumbered towards the siblings, Davis noticed they were increasing their speed.

“Weird.”

“What is?” Molly asked with a knowing grin.

“Usually they stop when they see us. I thought they were scared of us.”

Davis looked behind him, awaiting Molly’s response, but she was at the bike, taking something from the basket.

“They’re changing, Davis,” Molly said as she walked towards him, carrying something heavy behind her.

Davis turned to look at the moving beasts. “Huh. Cool.”

“Indeed,” replied Molly as she put her hand on her brother’s shoulder and raised the greasy wrench as high as she could.

“Cool.” Molly brought down the grey weapon on to her brother’s skull three times, with increasing force. Davis collapsed, face first in to the bitumen, as his blood mingled with the grass.

Molly took a few steps back as the cars paused.

“Lunch time,” she said, fully aware that her creations couldn’t understand her. “See you tomorrow.”

Three Short Stories

It’s been ages since I’ve done any creative writing, But when I was at Uni a few years ago, I was quite productive. I though I might as well start uploading them, so here’s 3 of my short stories (in a rare serious tone) as part of a Creative Writing sampler.

“His World”

His was a dark world. Devoid of all the good things that gentlemen and educated women often discussed.

No friends. Nor family meetings. Only whatever social contact was necessary to achieve the task.

Few could live this way. Few have.

A predator amongst men. Anything with breath; a potential target. As long as they breathed evil. He would have no part in erasing good. It was a rarity in his experience. Something to be valued, protected. A smile to a stranger. A tip for an earnest waiter. These were valid attempts. He went further. He fought the encroaching evil. RO 12:9 “Cling to the good. Avoid every kind of evil.” The book of Romans. Chapter 12. Verse 9. His only distinguishable feature. A seemingly insignificant tattoo on his right palm. His gun hand. His motivation, his mantra. To be etched on his tombstone , if he were allowed one. No matter. Recognition was a weakness. It was necessary neither in death nor life. Invisibility was perhaps his greatest ally.

“The Rebel”

He made his mark alone on the wall he’d spied on for quite some time. How many people passed this wall? How many minds ready for rebellion? It surprised him that no-one had exploited this brick canvas before. Or, maybe someone had. The cops quelled any anti-United Earth sentiment with brutal efficiency. He wanted to take the chance. That’s why he came here. These streets offered some cover at nightfall, but the feeling of the city remained the same during waking hours. It wasn’t what it used to be. It was far worse, and not because of the constant patrols and intrusive surveillance. Big Brother was semi-welcome here. The people were desperate for peace. But now that they had it, they questioned its price. Not publicly of course. The facade could never be questioned. One doubtful, fearful voice could quite possibly ensnare others. Then where would it end? Everyone knew the city could easily revert to what it once was. An ugly place. A mass of hate and danger. Humanity was at a loss here.

“Emily Ross”

Emily Ross is 9 years old. She had a party planned. All her friends from school and netball were going to be there. At least her 8th birthday was fun.

Here, the nurses were nice. Her Mum bought her dinner each night. Spaghetti. Her Mum always made the best spaghetti.

Strangely, she did miss school. Not the homework, but Miss Fanelli, her Italian teacher. And playing at lunch-time.

She could sit up and watch netball on TV though.

Whenever she had visitors from school, she put her wig back on. It was itchy, but she felt weird without out. Emily Ross likes netball, and spaghetti, and Italian.

Emily Ross was 9 years old.

 

Have I Got a Story For You!

Yes, indeedy. Check the new Stories page for occasional updates as and when I get my act together and get back in to creative writing with more disciplined passion. To kick things off, here’s one of my faves from a couple of years ago. Excerpt below, with the full short story on the new Stories page. If you laugh, let me know! By the way, you’re supposed to. It’s a comedy. So, here is, “Sorry, Captain Freedom’s Already Taken.”

“Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the winner of “Search For A Super Hero” – Tad Adams!” Tad lunged on to the stage groin first, like a well-endowed ballet dancer. This grand entrance certainly got the ladies’ attention. But psychiatrists recommended children under five be moved back a row.

The crowd gasped with wonder at their new hero’s turquoise body stocking. It was tight.
And shiny.
But mostly tight.
And with good reason. Tad had a body to die for.
Hans, Gunther and Erik had in fact paid that price. Three Swiss mountaineers who od’ed on steroids. Tad found the bodies and took the parts he liked. The rest he left for the wild she-goats.
“Hello good citizens!!” Tad boomed. He had a deep voice, like a burp in a wind tunnel.

For the continuation of Tad’s adventures, go here.

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