My short story “Under the Kudzu” has been selected for publication in Wicked East Press’ Behind Locked Doors anthology.
“Kudzu” has special significance for me. In September 2010, my friend Cynthia Wilson called me to ask if I’d seen photographs of structures that had been covered in kudzu. “Imagine,” she said, “what horrible scary things could be going on in houses buried by kudzu!”
She loved a good ghost story, so I suggested she write it. Her response was, “no, I want you to write it. I want to read what you have to say about it.” She then e-mailed me several pictures of the phenomenon.
So, I took a stab at it.
Unfortunately, Cynthia passed away before she got to read my first draft.
After much critiquing by a few writer-friends and a few rounds of revision, I promised myself that this year I would get it published—if she couldn’t read it, at least others could.
I achieved my goal.
When Behind Locked Doors hits the stands, I’ll let you know. If you’d like to see the photograph of a kudzu-covered house that inspired the story, you can view that online here.
A very good friend of mine, Cynthia Wilson—who wrote under the name C.L. Ross—passed away suddenly on Friday, December 10, 2010. I know that many of you on this list knew her or were familiar with her work.
Cynthia was working on a paranormal thriller series called The Llewellyn Legacy which was set in Ireland, a country she loved very much. She was thrilled to be returning to Ireland this coming February to complete the draft, and while there, she was going to be doing some paranormal investigating with her friends Mick Doyle and Ruth Deery of the Killarney Paranormal Society, of which she was a member.
She had, in the past year, built a website and invited several people to contribute to her blog on paranormal topics ranging from witchcraft to druidism to ghost stories. She was a proud member of the online pagan community WitchVox, for which she wrote many articles over the years; in addition, she had some of her short stories published in magazines and was actively working on polishing others to submit. And she had just recently discovered Twitter and was having a ball with it.
She held an MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College, which she had been awarded in January, 2010. Goddard is where Cynthia and I met. And we helped throw the best damn graduation party for the graduating class of January 2009 EVER…I’ll never forget us trekking all over Barre, Vermont to shop in the middle of the most brutal snow. It was me (a New Englander) and Julia (a Chicagoite)—but Cynthia the Southerner was driving the truck. Hilarious.
I decided that I would post links to where her work is available online, and also a link to her website, which for now is still up. She had just purchased the domain this year and I’m hoping against hope her password is someplace—or I can find it, because she gave it to me once but I don’t know if I kept it—so that I can renew her domain every year indefinitely. If anyone else knows where her work might have been posted, please let me know—I wanted to give everyone a chance to read what have turned out to be her last words.
“Sunshine and Stones”
Read Short Fiction
March 28, 2010
Voices from the Garage
The Smoking Poet-Cigar Lounge
“Fixin’ the Blues” (poem)
Issue #2, October 4, 2008
Issue #2, October 4, 2008
“Murder in Frogtown” (poem)
(this also contains the first publication of her poem “Fixin’ the Blues”—SWAMP had retained it as a reprint)
“Rebellious Bat” (prose poem)
The Pitkin Review
Cynthia’s C.L. Ross Website and Blog: includes many guest posts about the paranormal, witchcraft, Druidism, and legends; some of her otherwise unpublished short stories; and snippets of The Llewellyn Legacy.
There are a couple of her pieces available in expired print magazines; I just found one that I’m going to order and see if her work is in it. I’ll keep you posted.
If you wish to visit the “In Memory Page” her friends have set up on Facebook, you can do that here:
If you’re a Lynyrd Skynyrd fan, you’ll definitely want to head out to Read Short Fiction and check out Cynthia Wilson’s short story, “Sunshine and Stones.” This tale of teenage mischief on the day of the plane crash that killed Ronnie Van Zandt, Steve and Cassie Gaines, Dean Kilpatrick, and two pilots beautifully renders a moment in an era gone by–and serves as a reminder that nothing is the same once you have an awareness of your own mortality.
Read “Sunshine and Stones” here.