8FOLD/RACCIES: Eightfold Round-Up Aught-Eight

Tom Russell milos_parker at yahoo.com
Fri Dec 19 23:25:33 PST 2008

Hmm.  It's been a slow year for Eightfold.  While there might be a
couple more stories before the year is up, and while one of those
stories might introduce Eightfold's Fabled Third Writer, at the
moment, I count a paltry 11 stories-- our lowest ever in terms of

As far as quality is concerned, however... I think each of the eleven
issues enumerated below are a testament to the same high quality
you've come to expect since April of 2005.


DOOMED ROMANCE # 3 [JAN 08]: "Leon"

DOOMED ROMANCE features male-narrated stories of failure, of romance
thwarted from the inside out.  In this case, we are introduced to
Leon, a man so completely cut off from his emotions that he is
convinced they don't actually exist.  When his coldness drives his
girlfriend to suicide, a moment passes in which he suspects he might
have felt something; he can't really be sure, though, as he has
nothing to compare it to.

KINKY ROMANCE # 2 [JAN 08]: "Elise"

KINKY ROMANCE is in many ways the opposite of DOOMED ROMANCE, as it
centers of female-narrated stories of success-- of orgasm.  I try to
emphasize the psychology of sexuality rather than the physiology, and
in this case that goes to an extreme; Elise isn't turned on by any
physical or visual stimuli, but by the _absence_ of stimuli.  This
leads to some frustration and resentment on the part of her husband,
Patrick.  In the end, though, he wants her to be happy, and for her
birthday buys her a session in a sensory deprivation tank.

DOOMED ROMANCE # 4 [FEB 08]: "Tuck"
KINKY ROMANCE # 3 [MAR 08]: "Gem"

This two-part story is the first crossover in Eightfold's history.  It
centers on a person, Tuck/Gem, who begins life as male but has a sex
change operation.  This does not sit well with Tuck's wife, Cordelia,
and they are divorced.  Years later, Gem runs into Cordelia several
times and Cordelia does not recognize her as the man she once loved--
at least, not until the story's ambiguous ending.

Andrew Burton had this to say about "the overall hopelessness of Tuck/
Gem's life... how one decision, which even in hindsight seemed like
the more right choice, can shatter two lives and one relationship.
Cordelia and Tuck as a whole seemed to be happier than Cordelia or
Tuck/Gem separately. At the same time, the Cordelia+Tuck being can't
survive if its parts are, well, falling apart."

"Cut Out My Heart" is very humbly submitted before you as a candidate
for Favourite Crossover.


JOLT CITY # 12 [APR 08]: A Beginning...!
JOLT CITY # 13 [MAY 08]: The Strange Menace of Abner Schrebel!
JOLT CITY # 14 [JUN 08]: The Secrets of the Contessa!
JOLT CITY # 15 [JUL 08]: The Death of Moses Mason!
JOLT CITY # 16 [AUG 08]: ... The Fourth Estate!
JOLT CITY # 17 [AUG 08]: Totem!

At this moment, this is the work of fiction of which I am the most
proud.  It is also the work that is the most personal for me-- more
personal, indeed, than the original Green Knight miniseries.

I could attempt to summarize the plot, as it's not particularly
convoluted; at the same time, understanding it in terms of plot is
understanding it in the shallowest way possible.  It's about people
and feelings, not twists and rising action and denouement.

It's about Derek Mason, and about how he becomes a man; it's about
Martin Rock, and about how he becomes a man.

It's about Erika Fumetti and how tormented she is by the evil inside
her; it's about Ellis Banks and how he feels no torment at all for the
evil he does; it's about an anger building up inside of Derek Mason,
and about the anger that's been building inside of Martin Rock since
day one.

It's about good and evil.  It's about letting go of anger.  It's about
forgiveness.  It's about love and hate.  It's about what it means to
be a man.

I think it's absolutely terrific; your mileage may vary.  I humbly
submit it for your appreciation both as a nominee for Favourite ACRA
series and Favourite Storyline.  A collected edition will be coming

JOLT CITY # 17.5 [AUG 08]: The Costume

I generally don't do "half" issues, but I really had nowhere else to
put this vingette/physical description that takes place in the time
between issue seventeen and next year's issue eighteen.  Here, Derek
creates his costume and chooses the codename of Blue Boxer, both as a
nod to his late father's career as a pugilist and to the device used
by phreakers-- tech-geekery being one of his passions.


And that, as they say, is that; though, as I said before, there just
might be one or two more stories coming before the end of the year.
At the moment, however, there's eleven, which brings our grand total
up to 72.  72 stories, and not a bad one in the lot.

Here's to next year!

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