Notes from New Sodom

... rantings, ravings and ramblings of strange fiction writer, THE.... Sodomite Hal Duncan!!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

From Scotland With Love

MacKenzie, you poor man's McGonagall,
rank mediocrity of wank and shite
that Burns wid ca' a bawheid's doggerel,
Ah'll spit a rhyme for ye: Ye cannae write.

A decorated poet? Aye! A dick
drawn on yer foreheid wi an inky wid
be fine and fitting, a humungous prick
and fuckin big block capitals: NAE GUID!

Naw, wait! Fuck drawing! Wi black biro and
a set of compasses, ah wid tattoo
yer fuckin travesty of verse by hand
aw o'er yer skelped-arse face in blue

of Picts and fitba' strips, the Scottish flag,
so's every one ae us Jock Tamson's Weans
at wan swatch ae yer ugly mug wid gag,
boak like at reekin pants wi squittery stains.

Yer rhyme for Trump's inauguration wank?
Huv ye drunk his spunk? D'ye fuckin swallow?
Like pus squeezed fae a beilin pluke, it's rank.
Ye've pisht on the Muses and Apollo.

Best of McLeod? Don't make me fuckin laugh.
Yer tangerine nazi rapeclown's fuckin loathed
by Scots who mind when rebels wurnae naff
gold-shittered gobshite Emperors unclothed.

Wallace and Bruce? Did ye watch Braveheart then?
Rob Roy wi Liam Neeson? Yer a joke!
Try John Maclean. Nae bonny hills and glens;
try our Red Clyde, ye fascist fuck, and choke.

It's fit, but, ah suppose, yer numpty's praise
shid come in scansion painful as the worst,
the world's worst, poor McGonagall: the days
aheid, we'll aw be sufferin, fuckin curst.

And aye, yer Tumshie Trump Train's on its way
Towards it's ain disastrous silvery Tay,
And yer best hope, McKenzie, is yer shitty fuckin rhyme
Will no be remembered--
      wi yon prissy-lipped and fright-wigged
      fake-tanned baby-handit Nazi bandit's
      treasonous dismantling of the USA--
Will no be remembered--
      wi yon tragic bawbag's Special Day,
      remembered wi Traitor Trump's Inauguration,
      remembered wi the Death of a Nation,
      remembered as a literary punch bowl turd,
      to poetry as Trump is to the presidency: a crime.
--remembered for,
      in the world's worst poet's words,
      a very long time.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Coming Soon

Details presently.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

New Sodom (view) from Hal Duncan on Vimeo.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

On Identity Politics

If you're a Leftist even thinking in terms of "identity politics" you need to ask yourself: Would you lump all activism on homelessness, drug and alcohol related causes, mental health related issues, battered womens' shelters, LGBT youth kicked out of the family home, squatter culture, Roma and traveller issues, refugee housing, and suchlike as "indigency politics"? Would you then emblematise that by the most strident & callow moralism of the bourgeois post-adolescent dilettantes any Leftist cause attracts? Would you neglect the bulk of activism trying to tackle physical issues--like food & shelter--to characterise this "indigency politics" by everyday moralism like pulling someone up for scorn of "gypsies" or "freeloaders" or "junkies"? Would you then problematise the mode of activism so conjured as alienating those unaffected by such issues, blaming their reactionary entrenchment & outlashing on this "indigency politics" activism? Would you argue that for a Leftist party or movement to be successful it must eschew this "indigency politics"? Would you say that in order to achieve the goals of socialism, we must abandon this jejune politics so obsessed with the destitute?

If you would not, then you must ask yourself why? Is it not because an "indigency politics" so conjured would be transparently just a rhetorical gambit to isolate out all activisms on a specific but loosely defined front and delegitimise them? Is it not because the reactionary entrenchment and outlashing against "indigency politics" would be transparently just a counterattack on socialism for challenging the Rightist's "I'm all right, Jack" anti-socialism? Is it not because you can't be a socialist who advocates not challenging such anti-socialism--who's socialism for, after all, if not people destitute in exactly this sort of way? Is it not because the strident & callow moralism that jumps on stigmatising terms would be being centred & problematised as The Problem of "indigency politics" precisely because the opposition to all activisms on that front is rooted, in no small part, in the stigma, the prejudice justifying refusal of empathy? Is it not because the term itself would be transparently an exploitation of that prejudice, tapping into the belief that the destitute are unworthy to focus attention on defences of them that can be argued unjust--born of selfishness, activists from the abject groups having a chip on their shoulder, expressing unwarranted entitlement, seeking special treatment, being shrill and uppity and over-sensitive and unrealistic? Is it not because the very purpose of conjuring this spectre of "indigency politics" would be to undermine socialism as a whole by scapegoating those abject groups as the cause of its defeats, its failures to persuade the Rightists of its principles?

For a Leftist to buy into that scapegoating by accepting the rhetorical gambit in the notion of "indigency politics" would be to turn against a core principle of socialism: that the destitute must not be just left to fend for themselves. Is this any less true of "identity politics"? I don't believe it is. I don't believe that socialism can really be called socialism without having at its core a principle that the subaltern must not be just left to fend for themselves. It is not merely a liberal principle of tolerance by which lynching or gaybashing or domestic abuse are rejected as bigotry enacted. It is a socialist principle that the community protect those disempowered by unjust power structures, surely. Hence the "social". A socialism taking recourse to a 19th century focus on economic class, abandoning the 20th century development into anti-fascism, is not full socialism. If you're a Leftist thinking that "identity politics" is The Problem, ready to compromise on your anti-fascism in that respect, you may not be doing so due to your own bias re those abject groups affected, but you're buying into the Rightist rhetoric born of their bias. And to do so can only render your socialism unfit to purpose.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Butcher's Boy

Butcher's Boy from Hal Duncan on Vimeo.

A wee treat for Halloween! For access to hours more readings of stories & poems, sponsor me on Patreon for as little as a dollar. Sonnets! Scruffians! Sodomy! Stuff! All of it free to see to patrons, with downloadables available for a few more bucks, even collector's edition quarterly chapbooks for the true champions among yez. Step right up!

Thursday, November 19, 2015


Praise for VELLUM:

"Overwhelming in its complexity, sumptuous in its recitation, this is a truly monumental work."
-- The Good Book Guide

What you have been taught, lover of the sublime, is a lie that made you live a lie...

In the 21st century, a scalpel slices bible pages, passages spliced to restore lost truth. In the days of King Herod, the messias rises, calling to black sheep: walk with me. Now, here, between two aeons and across Æternity, a beloved student rebuilds his Gospel for the era of Anonymous: anarchist, socialist, atheist, revolutionary. Forget the tale you were spun and open your ears to the teacher who said, I will have mercy and not sacrifice. From the Hebridean fishing village of Capernaum, to a Jerusalem under Il Duce Pontius Pilate.

The Empire ends today.


The Boy Who Loved Death

Praise for the previous short story collection, SCRUFFIANS!:

"... a wickedly entertaining collection of short fiction fantastical and queer in nature—full of “scruffians and scamps and sodomites,” with some pirates and fairies besides. These stories range from comedic romps to lyrical and meditative explorations on the nature of meaning-making, while Duncan’s engaging and clever voice resonates throughout as a strong thread connecting the various different sorts of pieces."
Brit Mandelo,

An anarcho-socialist Big Bad Wolf blowing down the houses of the Powers-That-Be. An Erocide cop lamenting the many ways people murder love. A vampire sworn to the light of Reason, engaged in experiments of gruesome rigour. A multiversal rebel invading the movie Casablanca to save his lost love from the Nazis. From the savage and joyous to the jaded and sorrowful, whether mournful or madcap, these eighteen stories from award-winning author Hal Duncan take a twisted look at death, the truest love you'll ever have.

Table of Contents

The Chiaroscurist
The Last Shift
The Tale of the Six Monkeys'' Tails
The Face of the Divine
The Wolf and the Three Wise Monkeys
The Drifter's Tale
The Liberating of the Devil Boy*
Broken Hearts in Bullet Time
The Last Straw
Join the Club
The Boy Who Loved Death
The Death of a Love
The Toymaker's Grief
Styx Water and a Sippy Cup
Last Drink Bird Head
The Beast of Buskerville
Die, Vampire, Die!
A Scruffian Christmas

*Previously unpublished


Monday, October 19, 2015

Fantasycon Schedule

Having managed to scrape up some dosh and cadge a lift, this coming weekend I shall be at Fantasycon in Nottingham. Here's where you can find me:


Room: The bar
X.00pm Arriving, Drinking, Saying Hi
Do they have Guinness? Hey, how's things? What're you having? Can you watch this while I go for a fag? Wait, what time is--fuck, I have a panel!

Immoderator: Hal Duncan
Panellists: You?

Room: Conference Theatre
8.00pm Doing ‘It’ Right: Love, Romance & Sexy Times
Why are we often so reticent about love in genre fiction? Conversely sex seems to be everywhere, often done badly. How do we show love in a better light and balance plot tension with sexual tension? Warning: adult references (& childish innuendo)

  • the perfect sex scene: making up making out/making love
  • a matter of taste: where are the ‘no-go’ areas?
  • is love undervalued as a character motivation?
  • how can our characters express their feelings without mawkishness?
  • diversity and sexuality in genre fiction: what works and what doesn’t?
  • are ‘romance’ and ‘conflict’ mutually exclusive terms?
  • finding the right words: choosing appropriate vernacular

Moderator: Den Patrick
Panellists: Hal Duncan, Cassandra Khaw, Kim Lakin-Smith, Foz Meadows

Room: The bar
X.00pm Drinking, Saying Hi, Getting Drunk
Do they have apple juice? Can I have a rum and apple juice then? Hey, how's things? What're you having? Can you watch this while I go for a fag? Wait, what time is--fuck, I have a reading!

Immoderator: Hal Duncan
Panellists: You again? Maybe some other folk?

Room: Wherever the readings are at
10:00pm I do a reading
Will there be words? Will they be read? Will it be me reading them? Will it be sexy times in keeping with the panel, or will I go for something timely like a snippet of TESTAMENT? Can I be bothered to bring my suit? Will I remember to mention the Patreon for readings?

Immoderator: Hal Duncan
Panellists: One glass of dark/spiced rum & apple juice


Room: The bar
Will I be drinking all day in celebration of the release of TESTAMENT? Will I be happy to sign books, possibly even sell them? How early will I make it to the bar after the previous night? Will I leave the bar at any point other than to go outside for a fag? Will I actually eat something at any point?

Immoderator: Hal Duncan
Panellists: Some copies of TESTAMENT probably, in hand or available from the dealer's room


Room: The bar
X:00am The Glory of Irn Bru
Join us in this homage to Scotland's other national drink. And then start getting squiffy all over again probably.

Moderator: One glass bottle or two cans of Irn Bru, depending on availability
Panellists: Two Anadin Extra

Room: Not sure
12:00pm Mass Signing
Do you want your book signed? Did you buy one or more of my books? Did you know my brand new novel TESTAMENT would be available from the Eibonvale Press table? Did you know I'd also be bringing down copies of BFA-nominees SCRUFFIANS! and RHAPSODY? Are they at the Eibonvale Press table too or am I lugging some around? Do you know that ERRATA and FABBLES:1 will be purchasable too--six quid each or two for a tenner? Do you want ALL THE THINGS signed?

Imperator: Your booklust
Panellists: ALL THE THINGS

Room: The banquet hall
X:00pm British Fantasy Awards Ceremony
Will I lose twice for double the failure? Will Neil Williamson and I jinx each other? Will I get a chance to slip the phrase "in all modesty" into an acceptance speech? Will a single victory by one or t'other turn Neil and I against each other, turn the car journey home into a slow-burning drama of bitter jealousy corroding friendship, leading ultimately to a devastating tragic dénouement? Or will we stand united, ever the proud Scots, resolute in our capacity to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory? Or even from the jaws of defeat?

Moderator Furiosa: Lady Luck
Panellists: The jury members

Room: The bar
X:00pm And One More for the Road
Will I be celebrating or commiserating? Will I be having a last wee drink either way before we hit the road? How many boozes can I booze in half an hour, or fifteen minutes, or five? Shall I stick to spirits so I don't need a piss like ten seconds after we set out?

Moderator: Neil Williamson
Panellists: Hal Duncan, Hal Duncan's Id, Hal Duncan's Liver