Tag Archives: Edgar Allan Poe

Courting Casualties: The Oval Portrait, by Edgar Allan Poe

In which I read a story of art and madness.

Intro/Outro music is Ghost Story by Kevin McLeod, used under the Creative Commons License.

Counting Casualties is also available through iTunes! If you enjoy the show, please consider subscribing. Have a suggestion for a future episode? Tweet me @ExquisitelyOdd.

Thanks for listening and, as always,


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For my Patron Saint, on his 205th Birthday

In honor of Edgar Allan Poe’s 205th birthday, here’s one of my favorite short stories: “The Oval Portrait.”



Edgar Allan Poe has had one of the greatest influences over my writing life. I own him a debt I can never repay but for my adoration. Though it’s doubtful the Poe Toaster will make his appearance this night, I raise my glass of cognac in Poe’s honor and leave three roses on my desk.

Happy 205th Birthday, Mr. Poe.

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January 19, 2014 · 1:28 am

In Which I Read “LIGEIA”

It’s a day late (not really, I posted it Tuesday night), but I wanted to give you a gift this holiday season, and what better gift that reading Poe-etry? I picked a bit of “Ligeia” to share with you. Happy Christmas, Glorious Winter, or simply have a nice Thursday.

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December 26, 2013 · 12:55 pm

Break Out the Wine, The Draft is DONE!

Also, I found the Labyrinth.

If you couldn’t tell by the title, THE KILLING TYPE IS FINISHED! Which means I get cake, and you get an entry about what it’s like having finished a draft.


As of Wednesday night, I am officially done with the first draft phase. It’s a bit shorter than I’d intended, but that’s always fixable. 71,000 words, 47 chapters. The documents have been sent to my beta readers and I eagerly await their comments. So what was it like finally being done after two years?


Not to mention the elation of writing that last sentence. I was giddy. It’ still unbelievable to think it’s done. Well, not done, but drafted. I sent the emails to my readers. I sat down at my computer and remembered it was done. It’s still really strange to think I won’t be writing it until I get my critiques back.

At this point, the nervousness is setting in. Everyone’s expressed how excited they are to read it… and I hope they aren’t disappointed. First drafts are shit. I just hope it’s not ridiculously horrible.

In the meantime, I’m going back to work on Living Dead, the short story I started in October. I hope I can polish up Deadbeat too and get them both ready for hopefully eventual publication.

In other news, Karson took me to the Center for Puppetry Arts here in Atlanta for my birthday. She went on and on about how this puppet show (which was a strict secret) would be my favorite thing in whole history of the world.

And it was.

Because it was an Edgar Allan Poe puppet show. It was amazing. They did such a good job interweaving Poe’s poetry and stories. The only part that wasn’t my favorite was the inclusion of Message Found in a Bottle. However, they had The Raven, The Oval Portrait, The Black Cat, Berenice, The Bells and so many other tales that I could forgive them. The set was gorgeous.

2013-02-21 20.01.29The Puppetry Museum was also really cool, expect for that one room where they move on their own. I know they’re wired and on timers, but when the giant clown puppet moves toward you, it’s time to get out of the room.

Best of all was their Jim Henson display. There were Fraggles, and a Cookie Monster, and, be still my heart, an entire wall devoted to Labyrinth. I think I scared the desk girl with my shriek of joy as I torn through to the Labyrinth display.

2013-02-21 18.42.41Sir Didymus was there, one of the Doorknockers, the hands from the tunnel, and these guys.

2013-02-21 18.42.21The Blue Guards are on the other side, but it was too dark for my prohibited photo-taking. They are TALL. I kept looking at them, expecting them to speak or move. It was freaky, in the best way possible. I could not have been happier.

Funnily enough, ten minutes before we’d be talking about siblings and how I’d attempted to summon the Goblin King with my sister. He never showed. I was ten, and very disappointed.

As we were walking back to the museum, I said My Right Words.

They really do work.

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