The short fiction in Midnight Laughter is very funny and very unsettling…
“These are fantastic, absurd, coruscating, disturbing and laugh-out-loud funny gobbets of communication from journeys into that bizarre realm between dream and reality. Brilliant testaments to the power of the human imagination and the mad computer of the brain, each of these little detonations of alluring oddness make the world seem simultaneously stranger and sounder than it is. Superb stuff.” Niall Griffiths
“I absolutely loved Midnight Laughter and will be pressing it upon everyone I know. These are precision cut gems of stories – little shards of darkness, pathos, unexpected tenderness and wicked humour. A beautifully crafted collection.” Catherine O’Flynn
A sample flash from the pamphlet can be found below.
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One morning at breakfast Pete was a foot shorter than he’d been the night before. His PJs tripped him up as he shuffled through the kitchen. “Watch out Mr Clumsy,” said his wife. He ate his kippers as she talked about the day she had in store; should she purchase him some platforms from the shops?
Next morning he was two feet shorter still, his nose scarcely level with the kitchen counter. He struggled with his kippers, the size of barracuda on his plate. “Eat up,” said his wife, who pinched his cheeks between her fingers, “You’re getting cuter by the day!”
Next morning he was less than two feet tall and wore her blouse as a dressing gown. She spent some time ruffling-up his hair, sat him in a highchair, and flew him flakes of kipper on an aeroplane fork: “My darling Petie Weetie!”
Next morning he was half the size again, and she calmed him with a dummy dunked in kipper juice and spit…
Time shrank. He couldn’t tell how long it was before he was so tiny he could fit inside a capsule, its headache powder contents tapped-out on the draining board ready for his fingernail frame. The trip down her gullet made him squeal, the sound of which diminished to a dot. If you’ve ever wondered what a dot would sound like. It sounds like that.
TALKS & READINGS
Catch Paul McDonald at these events - don't worry, none at midnight!
‘Writing Very Short Stories’ - a public talk at University of Wolverhampton (Stafford Campus) on Tuesday, 2 April 2019, 11am-1pm.
‘Writing Very Short Stories’ - a guest speaker talk for Walsall Writer’s Circle, Walsall College (Wisemore Campus) on Thursday, 9 May 2019, 7-9pm
Reading at ‘Poetry Alight’, Kings Head, Lichfield on Tuesday, 1 October 2019 (evening)