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Mark Liam Piggott is the author of several novels, including “Fire Horses” and “Out of Office” (both published by Legend), and dozens of short stories published in anthologies, magazines and online. He has had hundreds of features published in the nationals, researched and presented for television and film, and been a guest interviewee on TV and radio. 

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#MilitantFactionsQuotes 99: Brad brought flowers and pills and a packet of condoms

Posted on December 19, 2021 at 7:00 PM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 99:

Brad brought flowers and pills and a packet of condoms and by the time they reached the bed was so blasted he couldn’t get hard. Honey was on her knees trying to work him with her mouth when out the corner of her eye she was movement: behind Brad’s stupid blonde head and his closed eyes mom tiptoed in on the thick wool shag and hit Brad over the skull with the claw end of a hammer.

-From "Honey Trap and the Trolls", one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 98: Felt a feeling never felt before, then it pass

Posted on December 18, 2021 at 6:00 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 98:

Sis open her legs and I tried waggling around. She sure thought it funny. But then a weird thing happen and little man grow big. Sis’s eyes bulge and her bit gets all gloopy and it slides in sweet as syrup. Felt a feeling never felt before, then it pass and I’m in the squished up van all hungry and too dirty to feel dirty.

-From "Little Man Inside", one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

*From 20-24 December 2021, all four of my published books will be available FREE on Amazon Kindle.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 97: Miller puts down the glass on her dresser and goes to the kitchen

Posted on December 18, 2021 at 5:55 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 97:

He wakes mid-afternoon. Miller rises, groggy, picks up the tumbler, sniffing the pink stain and proud he feels no urge to lick. Taking the glass over to Joanne’s bungalow he knocks: no answer. Pushing the kitchen door open he listens but hears nothing except the ticking of a clock. Her bedroom door is slightly ajar: she’s lying on her stomach, snoring. Her dress is hiked up, white lace on show. Miller puts down the glass on her dresser and goes to the kitchen, writes a note, then he takes her car keys, gets in the Holden and drives.

-From "Ten thousand hours", first published by Prole Books (2011), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

“Ten Thousand Hours” was a very striking story; its plot is masterfully conducted; the setting is oppressive but never stagnant, as the story ultimately has an interesting twist." - The New Yorker.

*From 20-24 December 2021, all four of my published books will be available FREE on Amazon Kindle.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 96: She watched villagers flee up mountains to disappear into the thin air of the desert heights where eagles hovered

Posted on December 17, 2021 at 4:25 PM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 96:

On the computer she watched barbarous men dynamite ancient mosques and crucify non-believers, make women their chattels and bury crying children to their necks in the earth. She watched villagers flee up mountains to disappear into the thin air of the desert heights where eagles hovered, vultures dined.

-From "The Night News", one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

*From 20-24 December 2021, all four of my published books will be available FREE on Amazon Kindle.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 95: Now I remembered where I was: amongst the enemy

Posted on December 17, 2021 at 1:50 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 95:

Now I remembered where I was: amongst the enemy, a thousand miles from home. I knew what the Russians did to captives: I had heard of a woman from NKVD who was worst of all, with terrible ideas and never expecting answer.

I was pushed into a cell much like the fox-hole, which had already taken on an alluring air, wrapped in warm nostalgia: here was a small room excavated out of the side of the river bank with hole for toilet and luckily no window. There were twenty within, German and Ukraine; no others of my country.

-From "The Angel of Stalingrad", first published in “Greetings” anthology (Enthusiastic Press, 2019), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

*From 20-24 December 2021, all four of my published books will be available FREE on Amazon Kindle.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 94: It couldn't last. One by one we were picked off by the streets

Posted on December 16, 2021 at 3:25 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 94:

It couldn't last. One by one we were picked off by the streets. Mainline fell under a train - one of his bouts of narcolepsy; Mekong put his dick where it had no business: Pedo likewise, an outraged stepfather. Just me and Mick: drinking and fucking and doing our best to change things.

-From "Meat City", broadcast by 4'33" (2011) and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 93: How the hell could they close a glacier?

Posted on December 15, 2021 at 1:45 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 93:

The place looked closed, but the guy waved happily enough when he saw us squinting through the door. I thought all these guys were meant to be depressed. Maria flirted with him as we browsed. Not that we needed much: cigarettes, snacks, whiskey for Maria. I could sense him looking at the car; his eyes screamed we were crazy. It was winter, and this was the only road. The only place it led to was the glacier. He followed me out to the car and as I pumped gas he looked solemnly at me, his cheeks red from generations of cold.

“You know the glacier is closed.”

Behind him I watched Maria lift shit from the till. Chocolate, water. In a world of ice she wanted water.

“What?”

“The glacier. It is closed. For winter. The snow gets too serious. Tourists stop, the fishermen go elsewhere. There is no rescue for people. I close in two days and I go to the city.”

Maria laughed shrilly. I knew what she was doing: impressing herself upon him, upon his consciousness. She was chickening out. I was angry. I didn’t like her much, but she was cheating on herself. It was like exams: as the teachers always told you, when you cheat, you only cheat yourself. I never cheated in school and I failed. Failed in everything.

How the hell could they close a glacier?

-From "Crystallize", first published by Aesthetica Magazine 2006, and one of the short stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions". Available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

*From 20-24 December 2021, all four of my published books will be available FREE on Amazon Kindle.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 92: All the pain, selfishness, friendships forsaken and lovers forced out by my obsession...

Posted on December 14, 2021 at 3:00 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 92:

On that strange afternoon when I heard my novel had been accepted I sat in my study, Linda’s photograph looking down. When I thought of those who’d hurt me I felt vindicated; when I thought of those I’d hurt, I felt sad. The two cancelled each other out: I just felt numb.

They might not believe me but I never set out to hurt anybody – except, sometimes, myself. Nevertheless, sometimes people got hurt. All the pain, selfishness, friendships forsaken and lovers forced out by my obsession; was it really worth it? As I sat there, I had to remind myself I had no choice. There was nothing else I’d ever wanted to do. So: now what?

-From "This is the fierce last stand of all I am", first published in “The View From Here” magazine (2009), now published in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" - available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 91: It was probably the only time I was both young, and knew that I was young

Posted on December 13, 2021 at 1:50 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 91:

London, June 2010

It was that journey around Europe that first gave me some idea as to the size and complexity of the world, giving me a travel bug that ails me to this day. It was probably the only time I was both young, and knew that I was young. It wasn’t so long ago, yet there were these things called lira and franc, drachma and peseta; instead of cybercafés we had post restante; there was no Eurotunnel, just the cold dock at Dieppe. Not long in terms of the universe; but in terms of my life, a distant age, fading memories: fading pictures.

-From "Beware the Undertoad", first published @ 3:AM Magazine (2010), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 90: Nothing has prepared me for Cable Beach...

Posted on December 12, 2021 at 6:10 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 90:

Nothing has prepared me for Cable Beach: the dinosaur layers, the vicious reds, the camel trains and 4WDs leaving temporary signatures on hard wet sand – the perfect sun, slipping into the ocean, the fucking SCALE. So awesome your heart hurts – I taste blood, tears form unbidden, my throat betrays me. It’s like Mars underwater. We go driving across the Martian sand (because we’re not allowed): it’s like skippering a hovercraft, afloat but not quite in control.

-From "The Boab Sentinels", first published @ 3:AM Magazine (2008), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

*From 20-24 December 2021, all four of my published books will be available FREE on Amazon Kindle.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 89: Hemingway would have taken a goat skin of wine to recover; I take Ibuprofen

Posted on December 12, 2021 at 6:05 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 89:

We head north east to Soria, a small town in Castilla y Leon of Oi! graffiti and churches capped with the enormous nests of white storks and their broods. But I can’t take it in: I’ve been struck down with a combination of sun stroke and a heavy cold, and insist we stay in a pension: the Hotel Viena (36 euros), with cramped toilets, a bar, TV, and two soft beds.

To recover Hemingway would have jumped out of bed and wrestled a bear, or shot a fascist. I just lie and groan, allowing Lynda occasionally to dab at my brow with a damp cloth as I wait for the Paracetamol to work. It doesn’t take long - they’re soluble. I can’t swallow pills.

A real low point: I sneeze, and bang my head on the corner of the bed unit, puncturing the skin, snot everywhere. Hemingway would have taken a goat skin of wine to recover; I take Ibuprofen. Of course, Hemingway had the advantage that global warming hadn’t then been invented. He might have found blowing up a fascist bridge harder if he’d had to worry about applying Factor 4 to his moustache first.

-From " Fever Espana: the sun also surprises” (or, “The Road to Pamplona: Fiesta In A Clio)", a shorter version of which appeared in TNT Magazine (2002), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

*From 20-24 December 2021, all four of my published books will be available FREE on Amazon Kindle.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 88: Floating above the paddy fields in an Indian helicopter

Posted on December 12, 2021 at 6:00 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 88:

Floating above the paddy fields in an Indian helicopter, flashes of colour all around: painted elephants, greedy buffalo, colonial villas ruined by the sun and the vines. Everywhere we visit becomes short hand for somewhere else, other paths we have travelled: the blue/white houses of Panaji could be Portugal, the sleaze and sloppy pancakes of Calungate Benidorm, Vagator and Chapora’s Hampstead posse smugly smoking bongs on the beach with cows Kohs Samui or Pha-Ngan.

Travelling nowhere, but eating well; fish curries swell. Only I go to India and gain weight.

-From "The Cockroach Clause", first published @ The Writers Link (2001), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

*From 20-24 December 2021, all four of my published books will be available FREE on Amazon Kindle.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 87: In the summer of 1983, I was fortunate enough to spend a night under the stars

Posted on December 11, 2021 at 5:00 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 87:

In the summer of 1983, I was fortunate enough to spend a night under the stars. Although I had known homelessness with my mother as a small child, and would know many more years of housing insecurity, I can point to that night on a park bench in a place called Three Bridges and say, 'you made me.' Everything in my life I place before or after that night, full of revelations, an epiphany worthy of Joyce; I finally resolved that, for me at least, there was no God- my own personal a priori was established, as I stood (or rather lay) on the brink of adulthood. I resolved that I would always have to do things, 'get on', for and by myself. And, most relevant perhaps to this essay, the recurring themes of homelessness, rootlessness and alienation in my writing would be given a legitimacy no-one will ever be able to snatch away.

-From "Pixelation", a collaboration with photographer and artist Martin Toft. Read the whole text in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 86: Deirdre's folks had a caravan in Wells-next-the-Sea

Posted on December 11, 2021 at 4:45 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 86:

It was Mickey’s idea to go on holiday: me, Mickey, Marsha and her mate from police school, Deirdre. Deirdre scared me: she always wore pink dresses and pink bows in her hair like a little doll but beneath those flounces and frills she was pure evil: just Mickey’s type. Deirdre’s folks had a caravan in Wells-next-the-Sea and Deirdre had a key cut without them knowing.

“It’ll be canny,” said Mickey on the Thursday, as we planned the trip in the Favourite. “Norfolk and Broads, eh? Norfolk and Broads!”

He liked playing on words, Mickey: I knew what he meant, but with his accent, it sounded like he was saying “no fucking broads”.

-From "Norfolk & Broads", first published by Literary Commune (2015), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 85: The West, where even the sun went, destination for the hungry world

Posted on December 10, 2021 at 2:10 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 85:

The woman sat in the booth watching the film, frowning, puzzled: so was Donald. The world portrayed - some rich American suburb of golden retrievers, wide grassy sidewalks and detached square houses - was his world, according to the papers: the West, where even the sun went, destination for the hungry world. She drank hot cocoa and ate plain bread as her blankets dried on radiators. When the last film was over she went out to the street with her warm blankets and full tummy and disappeared.

She never said thank you. He respected her for that.

-From "Titanic II", one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 84: A truck pulled up past the charred hotdog stand by the empty grey beach

Posted on December 9, 2021 at 2:15 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 84:

A truck pulled up past the charred hotdog stand by the empty grey beach dotted with driftwood or dead seals. Honey looked round: mom nodded from her Cherokee. Teetering in her heels Honey walked up to the cab and smiled. The little ladder was like a ladder, leading up to a trapdoor which was open. A hairy hand reached down. A giant in his cloud.

-From "Honey Trap and the Trolls", one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 83: -When I was a kid, he said, -mum took me to the big shop in town and I sat on Father Christmas's knee and he got a boner

Posted on December 8, 2021 at 3:05 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 83:

-When I was a kid, he said, -mum took me to the big shop in town and I sat on Father Christmas’s knee and he got a boner. Never liked Christmas since.

Well that set them off, Giles spraying warm mist, Coll fluttering those long eyelashes and Smithy looking round to make sure they were laughing then laughing too with additional gusto. Gaz a bit irritated at the way they’d received his little anecdote he’d held inside like a hairy great turd these forty years and decided he didn’t fancy getting pissed tonight he’d see his kids ex or no.

-From "Fathers 4 Jaundice", first published by Literary Commune (2015), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 82: The first tethered hot air balloon flight took place in Paris on 19 October 1783

Posted on December 7, 2021 at 2:00 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 82:

The first tethered hot air balloon flight took place in Paris on 19 October 1783, designed by the Montgolfier Brothers and carrying Jean-François Pilâtre de Rozier, Jean-Baptiste Réveillon and Giroud de Villette. Almost exactly sixteen years later, on 22 October 1797, André-Jacques Garnerin became the first human to jump from a balloon using a parachute he designed himself. Garnerin had beforehand undertaken a series of experiments with varying levels of success, using more than one dog. To Adam, cats made more sense: they had more lives to spare and anyway, he didn‘t like them.

-From "Never Trust a man with Egg on his Face", first published by Prole Books (2011), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 81: Cutting his clothes away I set to work. Not much blood: heart stopped pumpin'

Posted on December 6, 2021 at 1:55 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 81:

Cutting his clothes away I set to work. Not much blood: heart stopped pumpin’. The toes were easy, feet not so bad; it was easy to imagine it was just meat, pushin’ through the window-crack. But the closer we got to the middle the harder of daddy it got and it took a lot of thought to think it wasn’t daddy. I remembered that little man inside, that bad little man who’d squatted there and maybe meant to kill us both. If I kept cutting maybe I’d cut him out and daddy’s soul would rise through the trees to heaven or wherever he was required.

-From "Little Man Inside", one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 

#MilitantFactionsQuotes 80: He didn't get off with Sarah and good job too

Posted on December 5, 2021 at 6:25 AM


#MilitantFactionsQuotes 80:

He didn't get off with Sarah and good job too. I heard she once had a boyfriend who she loved. One morning she found him dead, overdose. She loved him so much she got a knife from the kitchen, slit open his balls, rubbed her fingers in his sac, and shoved them up her cunt, the better to have his offspring by. But he was sterile, like we all are. We liked her. Even if she was a Yank.

-From "Dreamers, Lovers, Absentees", first published in Buzzwords magazine (2005), and one of the stories in Mark Piggott's fiction/non-fiction collection "Militant Factions" available in paperback or Kindle from Amazon.

 


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