HomeFeaturesMarcus Spiegel’s writing career continuing to blossom

Marcus Spiegel’s writing career continuing to blossom

Last June we had a story about Marcus Spiegel, a young writer originally from Winnipeg whose parents are Esther and Jeff Spiegel, and whose in-laws are Neta and Yair Bourlas. At the time Marcus had just had one of his short stories published in the very prestigious “Pushcart Book of Short Stories.”
The story, which is titled “A Tale of Two Trolls” was first published in the Santa Monica Review, which is a national literary journal sponsored by Santa Monica College.
As we noted in that June article, Marcus’s story tells the story of two misfits named Yuri and Winch, who are both college dropouts. They have a YouTube show and podcast, and they purport to be “alt-right” activists, but their primary ambition in the story is to exact retribution on a former professor of Yuri’s by the name of Baendorf. It’s all quite mindless – and hilarious, especially when Winch dresses up as a frog wielding a samurai sword as he prepares to attack Professor Baendorf.
After talking recently with Marcus’s mother Esther, we asked her whether Marcus has published anything of interest since we wrote that article in June? We asked specifically whether Marcus had finished writing a piece about wrestling which, when we spoke with him last year, he said he was working on. Esther said that Marcus has indeed been busy and suggested we get in touch with him to find out what he’s been up to.
Here’s what Marcus wrote back after we asked him how his writing career has been going:
Hi Bernie,
Hope you’re doing well. Thanks for your interest again. So, yes, I have continued making some progress since we last talked. I’ll just clarify that I don’t have a full book out yet, but my wrestling piece, which is published in a book or journal alongside work from other writers appeared a couple months ago, and that is the piece from Boulevard, which publishes out of St. Louis, Missouri. The piece is called “The Inferno on Prime Time: Reflections on Vince McMahon and the WWE” and is available for print or online (though you need a digital subscription). Anyway, if you’d like to check it out a link can be found on my website (marcusspiegel.com), which will also give you a summary of my forthcoming publications. There are three others upcoming that I’ll mention here.
The first is a nonfiction piece that is set to come out in March at Sycamore Review from Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana. This piece is called “The Inglorious Beatitude of the Mall Cop.” I think of it as a kind of suburban picaresque. It recounts my misadventures as a mall security guard while I lived in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Mostly, as you will see in the piece, if you read it, I spent little time reprimanding troublemakers in the mall and more time trying to sneak off and pursue my literary education. But I also became addicted to Scratch and Win lotto cards for a period.
The second is also a nonfiction piece, entitled “Portrait of a Flat Earther,” that is supposed to come out in the late spring from Pembroke Magazine out of the University of North Carolina. This piece recounts how an old friend of mine, a Winnipegger who I’d become estranged from, reemerged into my life in recent years, as a dialogue sparring partner on the telephone. Even though we shared many of the same ideas as youths, I discovered that my old friend had deviated drastically since I’d last spoken with him. He’d become Far Right, and had become absorbed in various conspiracy theories, the most absurd of these being Flat Earthism. This little piece of comic and psychological memoir concerns my attempts to reason him out of Flat Earthism and when that plan fails, to try to figure what could be attracting him to his strange beliefs in the first place.
Lastly, Santa Monica Review, where my Pushcart Prize winning story, “A Tale of Two Trolls” first appeared, will be publishing a new piece of fiction called “The Corporate Jester” though not until the fall, or perhaps in spring of 2024. This short story involves the Californian television mogul Wayne Vortman’s attempt to keep producing a reality game show during the pandemic. In order to do this, he enlists his three sons and daughter, as well as servants into the cast. His daughter, though, not exactly pleased about her father’s dedication to creating lurid forms of spectacle, disobeys, prompting a weird family initiative to draft her into the Vortman army, as it were. All of this leads up to a surreal dialogue at four a.m. at one of the Vortman mansion’s jacuzzis between daughter and Dad.
On the writing side, I’m continuing to split my time between short fiction and nonfiction. Some of my nonfiction has involved me traveling to Pennsylvania and Arizona for research. Recent themes of my writing have dealt with the metaverse, country music, internet dating apps, historical anachronism societies, scuba diving, and an organization that seeks to prepare its members for the afterlife.
Thanks again for your interest at the Jewish Post.
Best wishes to you and your family,
Marcus Spiegel

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