Why Not You and I

Why Not You and I❮PDF❯ ❤ Why Not You and I Author Karl Edward Wagner – Oaklandjobs.co.uk ContentsNeither Brute nor HumanInto Whose HandsOld LovesMore Sinned AgainstShrapnelThe Last WolfNeither Brute Nor HumanSign of the SalamanderBlue Lady Come BackLacunaeLost ExitsSilted In ContentsNeither Brute nor HumanInto You and Epub Ù Whose HandsOld LovesMore Sinned AgainstShrapnelThe Last WolfNeither Brute Nor HumanSign of the SalamanderBlue Lady Come BackLacunaeLost ExitsSilted In. Look up and down that long lonesome roadWhere all our friends have gone my loveAnd you and I must goThey say all good friends must part somedaySo why not you and I my love Why not you and I? Attributed to Janis Joplin this melancholic tune is the leitmotif of this collection of genre transcending stories from one of the most underrated writers in the field of speculative fiction I became familiar with the work of Karl Edward Wagner by reading his series of dark sword sorcery adventures featuring Kane a man cursed with immortality and eternal failure for killing his biblical brother Kane is a homage paid to Robert E Howard and Fritz Leiber am anti hero travelling the darkest paths of the human psyche Yet Kane is just one facet of Wagner's personality It may be his most famous creation but it is not representative of the artist's incredible range of interests and styles Why Not You and I is a much better showcase for Wagner's talent a collection of subtle and personal accounts of trauma and mental anguish that is all the powerful for their real world setting and for their honesty hinting at autobiographical roots A couple of psychiatrists several writers publishers adventurers convention goers the leading characters in the stories all suggest Wagner went for inspiration to the places he is most familiar with Another recurrent note is the depression and the bitterness at the marginalization and derisory comments directed at the genre he loved best speculative fiction His gaze fell upon a familiar volume and he pulled it down with affection It was a tattered asbestos cloth first of Bradbury's 'Fahrenheit 451'Thank God you're dead and gone he murmured Never knew how close you were or how cruelly wrong your guess was It wasn't government tyranny that killed us It was public indifference Into Whose Hands is the opening gambit in the collection and offers us a glimpse at the reason Wagner renounced a career in psychiatry and dedicated himself to writing A night time resident at an insane asylum haunts the corridors of the sprawling complex witnessing all the pain of the world in the cries of the people who have slipped through the cracks of our social edifice Old Loves is a horror gem set in the world of popular TV shows and their fans A nerdy man who is editing a fanzine in his basement gets a chance to interview his idol Stacey Steele once the female star of a James Bond spoof More Sinned Against is another look at the sordid side of the Hollywood dream factory Katharina Oglethorpe a wholesome young kid from the Midwest dreams of a career in movies and becomes Candace Thornton Succes is elusive and several minor roles only prolonge her agony Things can always get worse though and Candace sinks even lower after meeting a predatory male lead As Candi Thorne she ends up playing in worse and worse sex flicks right until drugs violence and dissillusionment push her to the edge of suicide A little supernatural aid might bring back some karma balance Shrapnel is an even weirder example of karma revenge something that would work very well as an episode of 'Twilight Zone' A lawyer goes to a scrapyard to find a spare part for his vintage car There he gets delayed and exposed to the harsh light of the sun and to the heat one reason to suspect his visions of a different type of spare parts collection It looked like the wreckage of a hundred stained glass windows strewn across a desolate tangle of wasteland in a schizophrenic kaleidoscope The Last Wolf is my favorite piece a simple story of a man sitting at his typewriter punching out stories nobody is interested in reading His agent tries to convince him to write something popular or to get some articles for the news or maybe write for TV All of these options are refused as cheap trashy hack jobs unworthy of a true writer and disrespectful of his readers Pretty pictures advertisements mostly and a few paragraphs of captions Like the newspapers Not even real paper any They're just transcripts of the television news Pieced together by faceless technicians slanted and censored to make it acceptable and then presented by some television father image Outside of Goodreads the dismal landscape of people no longer reading books feels all to real in this decade of twitterings and doctored pictures of endless movie remakes and formulaic TV series The words written by Wagner three decades ago feel prophetic 'Not much reason to read those books not when everybody's already seen it on TV There just isn't any market for books in today's world You're like a minstrel when all the castles have fallen or a silent film star after the talkies took over You've got to change that's all''I won't say I can't use the money But I'm a writer not a hired flunky who hacks out formula scripts according to the latest idiot fads of tasteless media' I wish I could say the future has proven the last wolf wrong and there are definitely great stories stil being penned each year But the overall number of readers I believe is in decline and the image of the lonely man with the worlds of wonder spinning inside his head worlds nobody is interested in exploring is the portrait of Karl Edward Wagner that comes closest to a self portrait The last writer sits alone in his studyHis eyes glow bright and his gnarled fingers labor tirelessly to transform the pictures of his imagination into the symbolism of the page His muscles feel cold and his bones are ice and sometimes he thinks he can see through his hands to the page beneath Neither Brute nor Human follows two aspiring writers in speculative fiction over three decades of their careers mostly through meeting them at annual literary conventions From obscurity to world fame alcoholism and drugs and the demands of the public the uestions of integrity and value that were sketched in the previous story are further explored Do you ever wonder why we do this? he asked HarringtonFor fame acclaim not to mention a free drink?Piss on it Why do we put ourselves on display just so an effusive mob of lunatic fringe fans can gape at us and tell us how great we are and beg an autograph and ask about our theories of politics and religion?You swiped that last from the Kinks Damon accusedRock stars Movie stars Sci fi stars What's the difference? We're all hustling for as much acclaim and attention as we can wring out of the masses Admit it If we were pure artists you and I and the rest of the grasping lot would be home sweating over a typewriter tonight Why aren't we? It's because we're all vampires Sign of the Salamander is a homage paid to the golden age of pulps the longest novella in the collection embracing all the cliches of the adventure thriller with a supernatural twist You cannot deny my dear friend that there are in existence creatures who are neither man nor beast but strange unearthly creations born of the nefarious passions that arise in distorted minds The story has all the ingredients for success ace pilots from the first world war a deranged genius scientist a beautiful countess with hidden talents spooky settings in the Appalachians guns and blood and horrible dangers The true gem for me is the indication that horror is not an outside force but is born inside the twisted minds of men usually men driven to extremes by war famine and other atrocities Here in this hell world of barbed wire machine guns poison gas tanks dysentery aeroplanes mud and patriotism and wholesale slaughter Mordred would rant on and on about a spiritual Hell a Hell of actual demons and devils and elemental creatures and dark forces who shaped man's destiny Some of the images are reminding me possibly intentional on the part of the writer of HP Lovecraft at his best Man we agreed has little or no idea of the hostile cosmic forces that play with him He believes himself to be rational and his universe to be logical and bound by laws of science but this is a lie Mankind is but a struggling swimmer perilously floating over a vortex whose depths and currents are beyond his comprehension and What wonder that his closest friend whom he had grown to hate had returned to him from the dead? What marvel that this man the world proclaimed a brilliant scientist talked to him now in sober tones of medieval witchcraft and elder sorceries of creatures from time's dawn and monstrosities of depraved cities of Carsultyal and Carcosa and those who dwelt there of the Somme and Verdun and those who died there of ancient grimoires and suppressed tomes of forbidden research of fiends from blackest Hell and demons spawned by man himself NOTE Carsultyal is an ancient town from the Kane books Carcosa is the name of the publishing house Wagner established originating in an Ambrose Bierce story 'Alraune' is a story by Hanns Heinz Ewers mentioned in the text as a source of inspiration and as a reference Blue Lady Come Back is a ghost poltergeist story loosely connected to the previous pulp by making the protagonist Curtiss Stryker the writer of the 'Sign of the Salamander' and keeping the Knoxville Appallachian connection A psychiatrist Dr Russ Mandarin returns as the main character's side kick offering us two alternative views on the supernatural a hoax or a true story? I wandered alone one nighttill I heard an orchestra playI met you where lights were brightand people were care free and gayYou were the beautiful lady in blueI was in heaven just waltzing with youYou thrilled me with strange delightthen softly you stole away The two friends are called to investigate weird happenings in the house of a beautiful lady with fatal conseuences The recurring theme of the disillusioned writer of popular fiction returns with a vengeance Writers don't have friends Only deadlines And cheating publishers And meddling editors And carping reviewers And checks that never come when they're supposed to come and are always short when they do come I've scraped along for a living at this damn trade for over forty years and I'm still living hand to mouth and I'm just an old hack to my fellow writers The Blue Skirt Waltz serves as the theme song to this great example of Wagner's talent the blue lady his elusive muse I dream of that night with youLady when first we met We danced in a world of blueHow can my heart forget Blue were the skies and blue were your eyesjust like the blue skirt you woreCome back blue lady come backDon't be blue any Silted In is very short but packs a heavy punch It is also the most depressive story here not that the others are sunny side up in any way An old writer sits alone and drinks himself to death after he loses his beloved wife He is surrounded by books and he holds imaginary conversations with famous people that also made a mess of their lives after reaching the peak of their careers Joplin Hendrix Elvis Jim Morrison Oh wow You're buried alive man exclaims a rare visitor at seeing him surrounded by books and I cannot help but feel a chill down my spine knowing Wagner died so young from alcohol and depression virtually unknownThis was my last 'Halloween' read in 2016 and the cherry on the cake of my monthly horror journey I believe Wagner was and still is seriously underrated and his efforts as a poet novelist publisher editor critic and convention pillar deserve better from us readers Took forever to track it down amazingly disappointed Found it to be dated smug and hipster in ways that have not aged well This collection is like watching your uncle try on his ripped denim biker vest from the early 80's and discovering the buttons are now a foot away from meeting This might have been cool to someone back in the day for some long forgotten reason but it's not now Not really horror eitherTedious and self indulgent and that's coming from someone who wanted to like it I sold this book immediately while someone still wants it This hardcover is numbered 110 of 300 an is signed by Karl Edward Wagner and Ron and Val Lakey Lindahn Karl Edward Wagner most remembered for his stories about his iconic character Kane was also an accomplished editor and author of short horror fiction This is a collection of some his best works mostly from the 1980s Wagner was an interesting individual with many personal problems which led many people familiar with him to remark on the amount of autobiography in his stories He was a psychiatrist as well as a writer and many of the stories are recursive to one extent or another His writing was always rich and evocative and his short stories could by turns be different degrees of pulpish adventure eerie mystery and chilling horror Sure they may be a bit dated today but so is Poe yet we still read him Wagner may not be for everyone but he's definitely worth a try Wonderful There's a sense of realism in Wagner's prose lacking in others and yet he was able to channel the fantastic so well also Here's hoping I can find his other collection like I found this one Excellent book of short stories by a great writer KEW was a great author who tragically left us all too early He set many of his stories in and about Knoxville and it's so cool to read them and know where he's writing about Great characters and plots Karl Edward Wagner's 2nd I believe short story collection was a fitfully entertaining enterprise that I found unfortunately frustrating for how cold some of the stories left me Freuently I found Wagner's beginnings and middles really interesting and absorbing only to be disappointed by lackluster predictable or just plain confusing endings as in the stories Old Loves Lacunae and Blue Lady Come Back Oftentimes I felt as if I was missing something that I just wasn't picking up what hundreds of other horror lit fans were vibing on To be sure Wagner has a lot of good stuff here he has an energetic mix of pulpy prose and a clinician's understanding of the human heart that can be a cunning mix His skill at writing male friendships is readily apparent in the first and best story in the collection Neither Brute Nor Human a bromance about two genre fiction writers one of whom falls down the rabbit hole of fame into a place of madness and depravity I loved this story; Wagner's detailed knowledge of the publishing world is sincere laconic and funny and ends with a bang Unfortunately nothing else uite matched it although his pulp pastiche The Sign of the Salamander was a gorgeously junky entertaining read even if the follow up tie in story Blue Lady Come Back seems to go nowhere very special Other stories like More Sinned Against and Shrapnel were good but didn't leave much of an impression Overall I just have incredibly mixed feelings about this collection I need to read of Wagner's work before I form a solid opinion on him Good horror book expecially interesting if you followed Wagner's life at all The book was well written however only 2 of the stories were of interest to me I had been wanting to find a Karl Edward Wagner horror collection since I was in the 7th grade and learned about him from the Daw Year's Best Horror series one of which I remember I picked up at a bookstore on a field trip I had read Sticks in a Lovecraftian collection I bought just for that one story a few years ago and I had also read The Fourth Seal somewhere After years of searching and bafflement that Wagner's legendary influential horror is out of print and so hard to find I finally tracked this sucker downFirst off surprisingly these stories mostly were not what I would call horror stories More like that newer phrase that's mentioned a lot weird fiction My favorites were Into Whose Hands a uiet strange story that takes place in the dead of night in a psychiatric hospital Snack machines coffee skeleton crew flourescent lights crazy and not so crazy people a doctor who may or may not be fucking with the patients etc Very cool lonely atmosphereNeither Brute Nor Human I really didn't understand the title unless it's something to do with genre fiction tropes but the story following the two different lives of two genre writers from the beginnings of their careers to the death of one of them was very good Again barely horror at all though the end was a little scary in what it was saying about fame and fortune and how they can easily lead to the destruction of a personBlue Lady Come Back another mysterious title was a great round about supernatural murder mystery that cleverly involved the fictional writer of another long story Sign of the SalamanderThese stories were both longer than I had thought they would be and less scary but I loved the writing There is also something very lonely and negative about the stories which is hard for me to articulate but the stories about how much KEW drank seem to fit the image I have of the man who wrote these stories

Why Not You and I Epub ✓ Why Not  PDF/EPUB or You
  • Hardcover
  • 240 pages
  • Why Not You and I
  • Karl Edward Wagner
  • English
  • 22 August 2016
  • 9780913165263