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Mellick, Carlton, III

Entry updated 27 June 2022. Tagged: Author.

(1977-    ) US author,who began to publish work of genre interest with "Playroom" in Parchment Symbols for December 1999. He has been recognized as the central creator of what he may himself have dubbed Bizarro Fiction (not connected to the earlier Marvel Comics super-Villain Bizarro or the DC Comics Bizarro world), a term which describes stories whose narratives are bizarrely and arbitrarily intrinsicate with tropes and topoi from any genre available (see Absurdist SF; Equipoise), including of course both sf and any other aggregate of storyable moves normally, in this encyclopedia, referenced under the Fantastika descriptor. Bizarro stories can have an effect of attempting to pull off unconscionable in-your-face scams, but seem absolutely not genuinely intended to deceive, for their point is to give joy through complicit outreaches of exorbitance. Perhaps consequentially, Bizarro Fiction cannot easily be understood to embed or convey significant story-engines of recognition and/or projected transformation.

Many of Mellick's numerous Bizarro texts contain fragments of sf, and his longer works are listed below on the plausible assumption that sf, along with almost any fantastically adjacent trope, in whatever tongue-in-cheek guise of quotation, can be detected in many or most of them. His first novel, Satan Burger (2001), features a protagonist surreally locked into the Perception of himself as a body inhabited in the third person, a metafictional concept radically harshened by the fact that, simultaneously, the tale presents the deadly effects of a Pandemic that afflicts those over twenty-five. Cybermetrix (2008) conveys a spoof Cyberpunk narrative en passant. Apeshit (2008) contains in the bricolage of its presentation the presence of Mutants. The Terrible Thing That Happens (2016) is set in a Post-Holocaust world. Neverday (2018) introduces Time Loops. But as noted almost all his tales contain something of sf interest, though inside-outside perhaps, or in drag, or manifestly beside the point, if the tale is sufficiently unBizarro for a detachable point to be recognized, perhaps only for an instant. [JC]

Carlton Mellick III

born Phoenix, Arizona: 2 July 1977

works (selected)

series

Satan Burger

  • Satan Burger (Portland, Oregon: Eraserhead Press, 2001) [Satan Burger: pb/Helmut Wolech]
  • Punk Land (Portland, Oregon: Eraserhead Press, 2005) [Satan Burger: pb/]

individual titles

collections and stories

links

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