“Someone Else’s Story”

Been a while since last update. Been busy—no notable updates worth mentioning.
In the meantime, here’s a short story featuring a young drifter who stops in a small diner and finds himself caught in the middle of a conflict that may be much more than it initially appears.

Enjoy ….

“Hey, I already told you: you can’t sleep in here!”

I thought the cook was yelling at me, but he pointed at the woman sitting in the booth behind me. Her head jerked up, as if stirred from a bad dream. She had a single cup of coffee in front of her that looked like it had been sitting there untouched for some time.

“Sorry,” she said, rubbing her eyes. She glanced at her coffee and tightened the strap of her shoulder-bag. A cane or walking stick sat on her lap, wrapped in cloth. She held it close and looked out the window as if expecting something.

I didn’t mean to stare, but there was something very striking about her. She had long, dark hair and pale skin, which made her look almost like Snow White. She was beautiful, but looked exhausted. I couldn’t tell if the circles beneath her eyes were from lack of sleep or running make-up, but either way, she looked like she was in dire need of rest.

The cook appeared from around the back and approached her. “Look, lady,” he said. “I’m not running a hotel. If you’re just going to sit there all night, I’m going to have to ask you to leave. I’m sorry.”

“No, no,” she said. “I’m fine. Really. I, um, I’m waiting for someone. Someone’s coming to pick me up.”

She took a sip from her coffee and offered a weak smile, as if to assure him she wasn’t wasting time or taking up space. I felt sorry for her and was tempted to say something on her behalf. From the look of it, even if she did have somewhere to go, she didn’t want to. Continue reading

“The Gray Kings” Update & Excerpt

I don’t have much to say.
Progress on The Gray Kings is moving as ever, but painfully slow. I’m still working on the second draft and getting what writing I can done in my free time—which isn’t much.
The price of a 40+ hour work week.

It sucks.

But I thought I’d update the site anyway with an excerpt.
There’s a good chance this won’t end up in the final draft—or at least not in this form—but I figure I’ll post it anyway. Continue reading

Kirkus Review of “Ones & Zeroes”

“Walsh (The Jinxed Pirate, 2017, etc.) assembles a collection of horror and fantasy tales populated by dragons, aliens, and other creatures in the shadows.

“In ‘His Friends,’ Cynthia is bored at a party with her boyfriend Jon’s tactless friends. But their company is preferable to that of the mysterious entity that’s lurking outside—something that’s odd, misshapen, and most definitely not human. Walsh often treads conventional territory in these stories, offering mood-setting lightning flashes; vague, moving shapes in darkness; and even a babysitter getting creepy phone calls from a stranger. The familiar setups, however, typically beget surprising turns, as in ‘Someone Else’s Story,’ in which one man’s attempt at playing the hero for a woman in trouble doesn’t quite pan out due to an unexpected twist. ‘Damsel’ also toys with readers’ expectations when a young woman named Gwen tries to find a way to escape a determined murderer. The author employs other tried-and-true horror methods to great effect, often by merely hinting at the appearance of a monster or killer. In the Lovecraft-ian ‘Look the Other Way,’ for example, Laurie Brooks and her husband, Tom, encounter a terrifying creature that Walsh reveals only in snippets—and its backstory is also eerily murky. (‘Finding Bosco’ is an equally good companion piece, taking place in the same town of Faicville, where twins’ search for a lost cat leads them to what may be the very same monster.) The collection also includes fantasy stories that, like the horror tales, have gloomy overtones. There’s a princess in both ‘Collision’ and ‘The Mouse & the Dragon’; in the former, a cleric plans on sacrificing her, and in the latter, she awaits someone to rescue her from a dragon—but over thousands of days, she only sees repeated failures. Throughout, Walsh portrays various spooky things with bold imagery. For instance, the narrator of ‘My Window,’ while lying in bed, stares at a creepy silhouette that she describes as ‘some kind of nightmarish shadow puppet.’

“Unnerving stories that turn traditional plots into fresh, original scares.”

Kirkus Reviews

Continue reading

“Ones & Zeroes” Excerpt

Here’s a brief snippet from one of the stories featured in Ones & Zeroes,
“The Mouse & the Dragon”

The knight charged forth, shield up and spear ready. His armor glistened despite the dreary overcast sky like a chrome beacon amidst his hellish surroundings. The horse’s neigh was loud and triumphant as the clopping of its hooves echoed on the scorched cobblestone. The knight’s banner, an orange lion against a black background, billowed in the wind.

He would’ve been a majestic sight to behold had Hildy not seen it already or known what was coming. Continue reading

“Ones & Zeroes: A Short Story Collection” Now Available

A collection of my short stories is now up for sale on Amazon

kindle coverLook behind the curtain for 14 tales of horror, action, humor, and fantasy…

A babysitter contends with not just an intruder lurking outside, but her own mind…A drug addict saves the world from an alien invasion…In a sleepy town, an abandoned sewage treatment plant houses a sinister force…Man and insect clash in the middle of the night…Mercenaries collide during the sacrifice of a princess…A damsel in distress tries to escape her own story…

Vampires, dragons, zombies, giant spiders and more can be found in this collection of stories from author M. Walsh.

Only $0.99 on Kindle

also available in paperback