“Sillyverse” is my blog for posting stories and making cultural observations. The current serial is To Ride the Lightning Bolt, a story about a young American woman who’s a disappointed demigoddess facing an unwanted marriage.

Why do such a thing? Well, back in 2012 I wrote a story, “The Troubles of the Farnsworths,” in daily installments on Facebook, partly because I was going stir-crazy, partly for the amusement of some friends. The story did well enough that I decided to write a sequel, which became The Dragon Lady of Stockbridge: A Tale of Magic in the Gilded Age. The sequel was going to be too long for Facebook. And I wanted to tell it in weekly installments. So here we are. And that story line has kept going in odd ways, most recently in Summer of the Netherfield Witch.

As the name of the blog implies, some of these stories share a common conceptual universe. My girlfriend named this the “Sillyverse” a while ago. I liked the humor and meaning of the name, so I’m sticking with it for now. “The Troubles of the Farnsworths,” The Dragon Lady of Stockbridge, Nightfeather: Ghosts, and Prophecies and Penalties, Summer of the Netherfield Witch, and As the Wyrm Tyrns are all part of the Sillyverse. Some of my posts, such as the ones on “Using magic in fiction,” “Magic in Dragon Lady,” “Dragon Lady chapter 9 and the Secret Service,” “A forgotten chapter in the history of the Sillyverse,” “Abigail Lane: a biography,” and “Abigail Lane begins her investigation of the Office, 1934” explain in increasing detail the rules and history of the Sillyverse.

If this sounds like a lot of historical background for a fictional universe, blame my training as a historian. That’s also the reason why in past I’ve often post historical articles, especially ones relating to the fiction I’m posting at the same time. So, for example, chapter 16 of The Dragon Lady of Stockbridge features a hotel called the Double Eagle, so I posted an article on money in the late nineteenth century, including a picture of the very coin for which the hotel was named. I’m also posting historical articles unrelated to my fiction over at sister blog Sillyhistory.

There’s other material on the blog as well. There’s a fictional letter from an actual historical figure, George S. Boutwell (1818 – 1905), that serves as a bridge between The Troubles of the Farnsworths and Dragon Lady. On Huckman Causeway“, “Dead Cellphone“, and “Death and Professor Appleton” are just horror stories I wrote for Halloween in 2012 – 2014. They have no connection to the other stories here, nor to the Sillyverse. At least I don’t think they have. “The Troubles of the Farnsworths” wasn’t meant to be part of the Sillyverse, either, but it is. And Magician’s Misfortune is a Sillyverse story that’s sort of a sequel to Nightfeather: Ghosts, but I’m thinking of writing it out of continuity, because I have a better sequel in mind.

Just as I’ve attempted horror stories for Halloween, I’ve tried my hand at ghost stories for Christmas. I’ve already mentioned Nightfeather: Ghosts, which was 2013’s lengthy story. The much shorter “When the ghost came in from the cold” was my 2014 story; unlike its predecessor, it is not part of the Sillyverse.

Finally, I’ve taken two stabs at the vampire genre. “My First Paranormal Romance” is a fragment of a story meant to satirize the vampire romance genre. And Martha’s Children is a longer and more serious exploration of what life was like as a vampire in the Chicago of 1969.

Who am I? My name’s Brian Bixby. I grew up in New England and still live here. You don’t really need to know more about me to enjoy the stories I’ll be posting, so I’ll shut up for now. If you need to reach me, posting comments on my posts and pages is fine. I’m also available by e-mail at the gmail.com account Sillyverse.


5 Responses to About

  1. Dan Allosso says:

    Brian, this is SO COOL! I’ve been thinking about starting a fiction project — on top of everything else! — and putting it up on the web as a serial. You’ve inspired me to start.

  2. Brian Bixby says:

    Thanks for the compliment. I’m honored. Let me know when you go live with the project!

  3. crimsonprose says:

    Brian, despite I’m following your blog, and usually your postings show up on my Reader, I have only today discovered your post on Criticism, and that by visiting your site. I would have added my comment earlier, elsewise. I’m posting this here because it’s not really part of the stream.

  4. Judy says:

    Brian, I have a Very Inspiring Blogger Award for you if you wish to have it!! Your stories have both transported me from my own little world, made me laugh, and made me just plain anxious for Friday each week for the next installment. Of course, Nightfeather is different since I can get near instant gratification with daily installments. Your writing and your friendship have encouraged me no end. Thanks!

    • Brian Bixby says:

      Judy, I thank you, for the tribute as much as the award.

      Now, I have to add that I chuckling about this for a reason YOU KNOW NOTHING ABOUT . . . yet. I’m just glad the timing worked out the way it did. I couldn’t have done it better if I had known about this. And I will say nothing more, until you figure out what I’m talking about. You will, guaranteed! 🙂

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