Tom Strelich, Author

Fiction slightly askew

 

 

 

 
 
 
 

© Alison Strelich

 

 
 
 
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I’ve always operated under the belief that you can’t make up stuff any weirder than it Really is.  No need for magic wands or alien life forms or mystical powers, just characters, their circumstances, the events that overtake them and their responses -- all of it happening in a world just like the real one we live in, but not quite the same, a realistic, or at least recognizable world just like ours, only a little bit off to the side, and tilted at an odd angle - fiction slightly askew.


Novels

Dog Logic

Hertell Daggett, the damaged caretaker of a failing pet cemetery discovers a time-capsule, actually a vast time-cavern full of people who’ve lived beneath the pet cemetery since 1963, part of a long-forgotten Government program to preserve Western civilization in the charred aftermath of the massive nuclear war triggered by JFK’s assassination – at least that’s what their computer simulation predicted.  Hertell leads the duck-and-cover civilization into this world, our astounding, mystifying, and often dismaying world which had simply wobbled on without them, only to discover that the post-apocalyptic Dystopia we were always warned about, is actually Thystopia, the world we've actually been living in.  Available on line and in bookstores in October 2017.

Hertell Daggett, the damaged caretaker of a failing pet cemetery discovers a time-capsule, actually a vast time-cavern full of people who’ve lived beneath the pet cemetery since 1963, part of a long-forgotten Government program to preserve Western civilization in the charred aftermath of the massive nuclear war triggered by JFK’s assassination – at least that’s what their computer simulation predicted.  Hertell leads the duck-and-cover civilization into this world, our astounding, mystifying, and often dismaying world which had simply wobbled on without them, only to discover that the post-apocalyptic Dystopia we were always warned about, is actually Thystopia, the world we've actually been living in.  Available on line and in bookstores in October 2017.

Water Memory

Dog Logic Sequel -- The earth's magnetic poles have reversed, and people are starting to forget things.  Civilization has just had its clock reset to the great cosmic flashing 12:00am from almost a million years ago.  And humanity, and everybody in it, has pretty much forgotten everything it learned since the last time.  This novel (in progress) tells the story of what happens after the end of Dog Logic and is due in 2018.

Dog Logic Sequel -- The earth's magnetic poles have reversed, and people are starting to forget things.  Civilization has just had its clock reset to the great cosmic flashing 12:00am from almost a million years ago.  And humanity, and everybody in it, has pretty much forgotten everything it learned since the last time.  This novel (in progress) tells the story of what happens after the end of Dog Logic and is due in 2018.

Mustard Seed 1.0

Dog Logic Prequel -- This novel tells the story of how the duck-and-cover Mustard Seed civilization came to live beneath Hertell’s Lil'Pal pet cemetery, what their lives were like in their underground world while our world raged on above their heads for over half a century, and how an accordion player would ultimately lead them to Hertell and our world above.   This novel (in progress) tells the story of what happened before Dog Logic and is due in 2019.

Dog Logic Prequel -- This novel tells the story of how the duck-and-cover Mustard Seed civilization came to live beneath Hertell’s Lil'Pal pet cemetery, what their lives were like in their underground world while our world raged on above their heads for over half a century, and how an accordion player would ultimately lead them to Hertell and our world above.   This novel (in progress) tells the story of what happened before Dog Logic and is due in 2019.


Plays

Dog Logic

This dark comedy is a hilarious but disturbing study of devotion to ideals in the face of urban sprawl.  Hertell Daggett is the physical and spiritual caretaker of a run down pet cemetery in the California desert.  His solitude is shattered by an aspiring real estate magnate,  an ex- wife,  and his long lost mother (presumed dead but actually living in Sacramento) who want to turn the property into a shopping mall.   Hertell's fight to protect his forty burnt-out, dried-up acres from the forces of reality and real estate is a mix of the sublime and surreal -- dinosaurs, cave men, Egyptians, Godzilla and gospel music to answer the primal question: what makes man different than all the other animals?

This dark comedy is a hilarious but disturbing study of devotion to ideals in the face of urban sprawl.  Hertell Daggett is the physical and spiritual caretaker of a run down pet cemetery in the California desert.  His solitude is shattered by an aspiring real estate magnate,  an ex- wife,  and his long lost mother (presumed dead but actually living in Sacramento) who want to turn the property into a shopping mall.   Hertell's fight to protect his forty burnt-out, dried-up acres from the forces of reality and real estate is a mix of the sublime and surreal -- dinosaurs, cave men, Egyptians, Godzilla and gospel music to answer the primal question: what makes man different than all the other animals?

Best and Final Offer (BAFO)

BAFO is a scathing black comedy set in the declining SoCal defense industry.  It takes a group of middle class white men and one black woman from HR on a hilarious downward spiral from affirmative action to downsizing to a disgruntled ex-employee on a small arms rampage who asks each one for their "best and final offer."  Described as "Dr. Strangelove" meets "Dog Day Afternoon", BAFO is an unapologetically testicular satire that asks the primordial question, "Where's the threat?" 

BAFO is a scathing black comedy set in the declining SoCal defense industry.  It takes a group of middle class white men and one black woman from HR on a hilarious downward spiral from affirmative action to downsizing to a disgruntled ex-employee on a small arms rampage who asks each one for their "best and final offer."  Described as "Dr. Strangelove" meets "Dog Day Afternoon", BAFO is an unapologetically testicular satire that asks the primordial question, "Where's the threat?" 

Neon Psalms

The setting is an isolated trailer near Boron, California: site of the world's largest open pit Borax mine where the fragile truce between Luton Mears, a retired heavy equipment operator, and his born again wife Patina is disrupted by the unexpected arrival of their daughter Barbara, divorced, lost and bottomed out.  She moves home, just to get back on her feet, only to find herself trapped in a comic but progressively vicious cross fire between Luton and Patina until a blast of hilariously fresh air arrives with the propane delivery man, Ray, who describes a bizarre but strangely comforting future. 

The setting is an isolated trailer near Boron, California: site of the world's largest open pit Borax mine where the fragile truce between Luton Mears, a retired heavy equipment operator, and his born again wife Patina is disrupted by the unexpected arrival of their daughter Barbara, divorced, lost and bottomed out.  She moves home, just to get back on her feet, only to find herself trapped in a comic but progressively vicious cross fire between Luton and Patina until a blast of hilariously fresh air arrives with the propane delivery man, Ray, who describes a bizarre but strangely comforting future.