I have been writing science fiction and fantasy short stories for many years.
Recently, my first fantasy novel, The Crystal Warrior, was released.
I am currently working on the sequel.
I also have a science fiction collection out called Skin Of Giants, a Twilight Parody out called How To Keep Sparkly Emo Vampires Off Your Lawn, and a poetry book out called End Of The World Love Songs
on Aug. 13, 2011
In Mental Shrillness, Todd Russell explores fear, pain, betrayal, and darkness. These short stories remind me of growing up watching Night Gallery and Circle Of Fear, late at night in a dark room.
This is a collection of work that was originally posted online at AIN (Amazing Instant Novelist) back in the ’90s. I can relate to the recapturing of older stories. I have done it myself in my SF collection. There is something about the interactions online in the pre-broadband days that brought out the best in many writers. Much like today, we hung around together and traded words. It was just a whole lot slower. I’m glad Todd preserved these stories. Many writers who wrote online back then don’t have a record of their work anymore.
These stories sneak out of the shadows and bite. Surreal, sharp, surprising, and gory, they shine a light on different aspects of the human condition. We are full of vices. And these stories point out some of them. If you are a fan of horror and a fan of short stories, you will enjoy Mental Shrillness. Personally I love short stories, and flash fiction. There is something poetic and primal about telling a story in a small, deadly package. There’s not room for a lot of unnecessary exposition. The words have to count. And thus I think the impact is heightened.
If you want a slice of darkness, to read by a fire late at night, pick up Mental Shrillness by Todd Russell. It will make the hair on the back of your neck stand up, and the lights in the room flicker.