Weekly Challenge Results.


I have sent out the following stories for publication:

“The Redness at the Edge of the Sore”

“Craft Time in Watering Station, Minnesota”


“Red Lockbox” (formerly “Seventy Times Seven”)

“Last Stop”

The latter two were the most changed. I cut 2/3 of “Red Lockbox, leading to a leaner, meaner scare story.

As always, I will keep you updated on my progress on this site.

By the way, I celebrated my success at Donny Dirk’s Zombie Den. It’s the official zombie bar of AxelKohagen.com. If you want to feel like a 50s biker, resurrected and drowning in great beer, you don’t want to be anywhere else. Someday I’m going to write a story, from start to finish, sitting at one of their booths. If I’m lucky, maybe I’ll get a beer out of it.



Falling (Back) On Hard Times – And Happy As Can Be.

I called an audible and skipped the bar scene. Instead, I went to the only coffee shop I’ve ever known tough enough to look like the vampire bar in From Dusk Till Dawn.

I hadn’t been in Hard Times Cafe in well over five years, and going back for a Cafe Miel and editing session brought back college memories. Except this time I wasn’t smoking, I couldn’t handle strong coffee, and my outfit didn’t look like something on a GI Joe guy no one bought (as my college RA described my fashion taste).

If you don’t know, Hard Times has coffee with the kick of a good whiskey and a punky style of decoration. It’s a place people go to discuss the “hegemony of hipsters” (something I actually heard being discussed today), or to sell pictures of themselves blowing fire (a memory from a college visit).

When I was in college I went there to work on writing, and I once celebrated making an 10 minute silent film about a murderous college student at Hard Times. Back then, the cigarette smoke was Bogart-movie thick. Now, the smoke is gone, but the place still has the right feel.

Between my time at Hard Times and the rest of my editing at home, I finished revising all three remaining stories. One of them, “Last Stop,” forced me to take a break until the shivers went away. It’s on probation right now – it may be too cynical for me to consider publishing.

By the way, I had planned on printing up “Mudwife” and not “Last Stop. I feel like there’s some sort of fate involved here.

Still hoping to get one more story out tonight. Time for more caffeine.

– Axel


Weekly Challenge Update.

Earlier in the week, I challenged myself t0 send out 5 stories for publication before the end of Sunday.

My status, now that the week has almost passed me by?

A little behind, perhaps, but by no means giving up.

My short stories “Craft Time at Watering Station, MN” and “The Redness at the Edge of the Sore” have been submitted to magazines. By the end of the week “Mud Wife,” “Someone Else’s Song,” and “Seventy Times Seven” will begin their journey next.

I may take the final three stories out with me on Friday night. I’ll  settle in the darkened corner of some pub, have a Newcastle or two, and make the final three stories of this challenge presentable.

Those three stories are all sad, regretful, and brooding. I believe this rules out Chuck E. Cheese’s. Any suggestions?

Unleash the Hounds.

Here’s what’s happening:

— I’m setting a very public goal for myself. If I fail at this goal, all who read this may mock me without mercy.

I WILL send five short stories out for publication this week. They’re written. Why aren’t they out trying to get jobs?

I have until the end of next Sunday to accomplish this mission. Too many stories sitting round, taking up space. A line must be drawn.

— The HooseCows is very close to being ready for submission. I’d love to see it out by the end of the year, so I can annoy everyone by insisting it’s the Christmas gift of the season.

— Over the last few months, I’ve had the opportunity to learn more about film making by shadowing the folks at TriWar pictures. Working with them has been a great experience. They’re all friendly and ego-free over there, but they meet deadlines and get work done in the most professional of ways. I may have the opportunity to get some advice on my slasher camp screenplay A Good Death. I’m very thankful to have made that connection

New Online Novel.

As I settle down to the precise, detail-oriented work of preparing stories for publication, I realize I miss writing and publishing online too much to skip writing a novel this year.

So, if you need some American Gothic Ghosts and Romance, head back to cfcows.com to check out chapter one of my new serial novel.

Lots of things are going to be happening on the riverbanks this summer. Tune in and dig it.





I Never Could Dress Myself.

Looking at my website, I realize it just doesn’t look quite right.

Truth be told, I’ve been looking at this website quite a bit and I just can’t gussy it enough to make it pretty.

I have the same problem trying to get myself to look presentable before leaving the house. In the days before my wife Michelle, I wandered around college wearing:

1) pleather pants and Hawaiian shirts

2) a blaze orange shirt-vest and an orange, purple, and white head scarf.

3) Black jeans and a black military shirt.

Don’t think I’ve grown up, either. I would still wear any one of these outfits if given the chance (read: Michelle takes a vacation or loses her vision for a brief period of time). I’m incurable.

Because my bad taste is terminal, I’m going to need help. If you’re reading this, please look around this website. It’s not much now, but it’s going to be the place you can go to check up on my writing progress.

What do you want from this site? What does it need? I need your help. Otherwise, the next time you see this website it could be blaze orange.