Fiction Editor, Wilderness House Literary Review

In a new and somewhat surprising development, I’ve become the Fiction Editor of the Wilderness House Literary Review.

Steve Glines, EIC, asked me to take on the role and I, of course, replied, “You’re kidding, right?”

I think Steve chose me based as much on the similarity of our ages and life-experiences as on our reading and writing preferences.

I’ve often wondered what makes an editor say yes to story A and no to story B.

Well, in my case, the wondering is over. At least as far as Wilderness House is concerned.

The View from This Side of the Desk
There’s a staff of first readers I work with and the final decisions are mine. I agree with their evaluations, usually. On some occasions I’ll ask the basis for their yay/nay/neutral decision, more to educate myself than question them.

Sometimes I’m completely lost why they rejected/accepted something. That’s when the real learning begins.

Mine, not theirs.

But for anyone wondering what I’ll accept above and beyond all else?

Continue reading “Fiction Editor, Wilderness House Literary Review”

StoryCrafting and StoryTelling

“Interesting” is subjective. What doesn’t interest some people may excite others. 🙂

I take part in book review groups – you review mine, I’ll review yours – and I let people know going in I’m a tough reviewer.

The reason I’m a tough reviewer is fairly simple: I review books based on an author’s storycrafting and storytelling skills, not a book or story’s genre.

…good writing is good writing is good writing.

I’ve reviewed romance, poetry, chicklit, adventure, MG, and early readers, along with sf/f/h, and regardless of genre good writing is good writing is good writing.

Likewise, sometimes a writer is incompetent and their work sucks.

Storytelling – does the author have an interesting story to tell? Storycrafting – does the author tell the story in an interesting way?

For me, it comes down to storycrafting and storytelling. Storytelling – does the author have an interesting story to tell? Storycrafting – does the author tell the story in an interesting way?

Someone can have an amazing story to tell and do it poorly, kind of like a college prof who’s expert in their field and boring as heck in the lecture hall. That’s good story to tell told poorly. The prof who isn’t expert in their field and keeps the students interested has craft but no story.

Then there’s Door #3 – The prof who is both expert in their field and keeps the students interested, enthused about the subject and wanting to know more has both crafting and telling down cold. This is where you want to be if you want to be (in my opinion) an author worth reading.

The statement “What’s interesting is subjective” is true to a point. But yell Fire! or Rape! or Gun! and you’ll get people’s attention because some things aren’t subjective. Get someone’s attention first, they’ll decide if what got their attention is interesting enough to keep their attention.

But the key is getting their attention first, and that is done through good to excellent storycrafting and storytelling skills (and if you’re wondering what gives me the right to talk about such things, take a look at my patents and/or read Reading Virtual Minds Volume I: Science and History).

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FRIDAY’S FANTASTIC FINDS: Joseph Carrabis Featured Author of the Week

Patty Fletcher, kind, gentle, and giving person she is, interviewed me and published our exchange at FRIDAY’S FANTASTIC FINDS: Joseph Carrabis Featured Author of the Week.

We talked about

  • My drinking and smoking
  • Where I live
  • The true meaning of Friendship and what true friends really are
  • Living a different life
  • What makes something a favorite
  • My biggest pet peeve
  • My strengths and weaknesses as an author

All of which I enjoyed.

Now what I enjoyed even more?

Receiving this from Patty before the post when live:

This is the best interview I’ve ever seen.

I’m readying this masterpiece interview for my blog.

I would like to say, yours is the very best I’ve ever had in this column. That having been stated, I’m also going to place this in my Writer’s Grapevine Magazine.
I sent that draft to my publishers yesterday. They will be getting an updated copy to include this today.
You answered all the questions as I’d hoped people would do. When I was creating this interview questionnaire I first wrote favorites rather than favorite. Then, I thought, “Hmmm? What if I asked favorite? Would they only list one or would they declare that impossible?” None of my clients or guests have ever listed only one. However, no one has ever written so openly. My mouth literally dropped open in awe as I read.
Thank you so very much for participating.

Yeah, I’m liking it.

Those Wings Which Tire, They Have Upheld Me in Penumbric Dec 2k22

“Worthy of Philip K Dick himself. I would buy the whole magazine for this story alone. For fear of ruining the experience, I’ll simply say that a bullied child with a disability and the tech he relies on lead him to make a very unusual friend.”



Cowan was walking in the woods the first time he saw Angel. He was really looking for a haunted house the real estate lady told his parents was back there and he’d walked further into the woods than he’d ever gone before.


My “Marianne” now in Visions anthology

Kaye Lynne Booth gathered some amazing authors for Visions anthology. Reviewers can pick up a copy on Bookfunnel and readers can use this universal book link.

About the Author
Easiest way to do this is to head over to my About page. Alternately…
Joseph Carrabis told stories to anyone who would listen starting in childhood, wrote his first stories in grade school and started getting paid for his writing in 1978. He’s been everything from a long-haul trucker to a Chief Research Scientist and holds patents covering mathematics, anthropology, neuroscience, and linguistics. After patenting a technology which he created in his basement and creating an international company, he retired from corporate life and now he spends his time writing fiction based on his experiences. His work appears regularly in several anthologies and his own published novels. You can learn more about him RIGHT HERE! (exciting, isn’t it?) and find much of his work at

How the story came about? Continue reading “My “Marianne” now in Visions anthology”