where the writers are

Max Dunbar's Writings

Short Story
Mar.04.2009
  Do you love? - Stephen King, Skeleton Crew Prologue   The Stalker appeared before the young man, and set him a challenge.             ‘I defy you,' the Stalker said, ‘to find true love before the end of the year.'             This was November 30, 2007.             They were standing on Whitworth Street; the young man was waiting to get a cab. The...
Article
Mar.04.2009
Pulp: My Manchester
  Oxford Road I was always drawn to cities. For a writer, the city is a goldmine. Cities are where a thousand stories converge. Perhaps it's part of growing up in a small town. I come from a part of Cheshire where the young get out as soon as possible and no one moves in, except to die. The League of Gentlemen was filmed half a mile away. As adolescents we...
Article
Mar.04.2009
3am
  Khomeini's Ghost: How Religion Poisoned Revolution Follow anyone you like, anyone except Khomeini. For following Khomeini shall lead you knee-deep in blood. - Rumoured last words of the marja Borujerdi, quoted in Khomeini's Ghost, p100 Reviewing this biography in the Observer, Dominic Seabrook castigated its author for his insufficient respect for the Ayatollah...
Article
Mar.04.2009
ReadySteadyBook
If you follow literary competitions - and I accept that many of you will stop reading here - you will have been aware of Radio 4's National Short Story Prize. Launched last year, the contest offered a cool £15,000 for the winning entry and was part of the story campaign, which aimed to ‘increase the profile, prestige and presence of the short story in our culture...
Article
Mar.04.2009
LitMob
  The Magician's Book   When asked to describe the single book that had most influenced her, the cofounder of Salon.com considered fawning over a weighty university set text before realising that ‘the books we've loved best are seldom the ones we esteem the most highly - or the ones we'd most like other people to think we read over and over again...
Article
Mar.04.2009
Butterflies and Wheels
The Cliché That Won't Die                                                                                                                             I recently enjoyed the new Richard Dawkins series on Britain's Channel 4, in which the scientist explores the world of alternative therapies - therapies which have little health benefits but are nevertheless funded...
Article
Mar.04.2009
The Book Depository
    Rogues, Writers and Whores Civilisation has much to be said for it, but I have never seen the point of our obsession with the rituals of food. Why will people happily take three hours to eat a meal? Why do we heap admiration on people whose only talent is to heat and prepare food?             Rogues, Writers and Whores explains why I'm wrong. Written by a...
Article
Mar.04.2009
Adbusters 70
  In Search of New Comrades In the late nineties there was a film called Injustice about deaths in police custody and the bereaved families' struggle to bring the perpetrators to trial. I saw it with a couple of undergraduate friends at the Showroom in Sheffield. South Yorkshire Police had tried to take an injunction out to stop the film being shown. To my mind,...
Short Story
Mar.04.2009
Straight from the Fridge
  The Prophecies The bridge was a great concrete structure that, despite its functionality, inspired something in me. It had bar lights on the underside. Birds nested in the gaps between the wall and the ceiling, and you could hear them fly across in relays above your head, to the other side. It wasn't a bad end to the summer; I'd been offered a lecturing job at...
Short Story
Mar.04.2009
  On the Jump Train For the last quarter (or perhaps longer, or less - time got a bit wonky over there) he had been in the Enlightened Lands fighting the Faith. Battling crazed young martyrs with God on their side and blood on their hands. Now he was drinking Guinness in the Citric station bar. They had the Verve on the sound system. His train had been delayed...