Tag Archives: freaks

Relic – Sequence

The landscape was barren.  Nothing but tusks and the shattered exoskeletons of the creatures that once populated these plains.  Wherever an animal fell, there it rotted.  There were still faint tread marks in the dirt.  The ones who did this were systematic and efficient.

Men rolled out in heavy transports with ugly weapons, shooting the creatures for sport.  With flame and chemical, they sterilized the surface.   Nothing could survive it…not a blade of grass, not an insect, not even a germ…nothing was left to interfere.

There was a special mineral in the soil and they wanted it.  It was dynamic, flexible and highly conductive…more valuable to them than life, obviously.  It changed everything, replacing and expanding human technology over night, even MY brain was made of it.  It made them rich, but to get it they stripped this land down to its bare bones like a swarm of locusts.  And when they were done, they abandoned it and moved on.

I too was abandoned…damaged during the final round-up.  One of those desperate creatures lunged at me, trying to escape while we slaughtered them… but I was not worth fixing.  It was cheaper to replace me.  I was left in a trash with all the other broken tools.  By the time I managed to repair myself, they were long gone.

I don’t know where to go or what to do now.  I’m a relic in the wasteland among the tusks.  Hopeless… but for the tiny sprouts that  emerge from wherever my footprints have broken the hard, scorched crust…  end.

***The red sketch is the approved rough drawing for an illustration originally published in the May 2012 issue of Analog Magazine, the final image, along with it’s new short story can now be found on page 74 in our new book, “A Short Burst.”  You can find and buy all our books at www.sallemander.com or go straight to etsy.com and search EEWbooks.   -Marsha

How Do I Look – Sequence

Nothing actually happened for a solid fifteen minutes after Eddie drank the formula.  He turned to us (once again) with a forlorn look and asked, “Any change yet?  How do I look?”

We knew he was crazy.  He was one of those people: perpetually dissatisfied, determined to prove that he was ‘special’.  He wanted fame, popularity, success (despite being an already brilliant scientist) and he was driven…you know, crazy…AND he had full use of the company’s laboratory.  He had access to all the good stuff too;  plasma reactor, laser diffractional transmogrifier, crazy glue – not to mention ebola, thermite and flu vaccine…and I think our awkward, mild mannered (crazy) Eddie used all of it on this new batch.

By the sixteenth minute, everything changed and Eddie’s fondest wish was realized.  He began mutating wildly, spreading outward in every direction, emitting the strangest squeaking moan.  He shook, twisted and bloated.  He grew tendrils, sprouted claws and screeched Latin gibberish from three of his seven worm-haired monkey faces as horns emerged from his leathery spine.  He puffed a sweet yellow smoke, shed tufts of pink fur and dribbled buckets of gooey puss.  He was a frightful sight…but he was just sooooo excited we didn’t have the heart to terminate him.

When he finally slowed and stabilized, he turned all of his seventeen eyes-on-a-stalk to us and in a clever series of musical farts, he asked, “Okay!…How do I look now?”

***The featured rough blue sketch is the original rough for an illustration that was supposed to be a 2 page spread for a story in Asimov’s Sci-Fi Magazine, just as those corporate cheapskates were choosing to eliminate all interior art (to save money).  I managed to convince them to let me do it as a cover, which was my first cover for the company.  The story above and the final art is featured in my new book, “A Short Burst”.  Find it and buy it by going to etsy.com and searching EEWbooks.   -Marsha 


Zig-Zag the Clown has a wonderful wife,                                                          the kindest, most generous partner for life.                                                She’s slender and lovely and cooks like a saint,                                            the perfect companion without a complaint…                                        Except when he comes home at quarter to four,                              smelling of booze and the funk of a whore!                                              That’s when Pandora, his wife, has a FIT!                                                    …and her perfect composure slips, just a bit.

***This rough drawing of Pandora is featured as a finished, full page, full color illustration in our book, “Bludgeon the Clown.”  Find it, filled with over 100 other illustrations (most of which you will NOT find here or anywhere online) at www.sallemander.com.   -Marsha

***I revised the image for this post to the final art, so only people who come to this blog can see it.  We only post a limited amount of art and material from each book (15-20%) so the people who buy them get the privilege of exclusive original material.  We’re not concerned about going a little over the limit here because hardly anybody visits and blogs are pretty much obsolete anyway.  -Marsha

Bludgeon the Clown

Bludgeon the Clown was shit-faced-stoned,                                                surly, loose and frisky,                                                                                              barely able to handle his car                                                                                      on crack cocaine and whiskey.                                                                    Bludgeon was stopped by the cops that night                                              and battered under arrest,                                                                                          for jerking too much as the tazers hit                                                                  and sobbing in fierce protest.

***Here is the original rough sketch for Bludgeon, published as a 2 page spread on page 28 & 29 of our first book, “Blue-ish Freaks.”  As John the illustrator always says, “It’s not art if it doesn’t piss somebody off!”…and this one definitely does.  Find this and the rest of our books at www.sallemander.com (follow the links).   -Marsha

The Buttox Brothers

The Buttox Brothers were unlucky chaps                                                      who answered to Rupert and Rory.                                                                  Don’t ask me how they got this way,                                                                    it’s a REALLY disgusting story…                                                                                  but wait ’till you hear how we got ’em apart.                                                      It was bloody …and smelly …and gory.

***This is the rough sketch for an illustration from our third book, “Bludgeon the Clown.”  Since shitty rough sketches seem to be working out so well, and will play an important part in our next book, here’s a step back to some cool older work.  If you ever want to see the final art for this sketch,  follow the links and buy the friggin’ book!  I only ever post about 15% of the art from any book project on social media so people who BUY my stuff get exclusive, original material.   -Marsha

Ice Pops

Pops was starting to get pretty old                                                                    and everyone loved the geezer,                                                                                so we poured him into a popsicle mold                                                              and kept him fresh in the freezer.

***My Mother was recently in the hospital for a surgery.  At 78, I guess she’s planning to resuscitate her waning modeling career.  The whole time she was there, she complained incessantly about how COLD her room was, and it WAS cold!  To shut her up, I finally had to explain that at her extreme old age, it was just refrigeration ….probably a malpractice liability thing.   -Marsha

Spindle the Clown

Spindle the Clown was really old, so he went to Miami for rest          but drank more vodka than he could hold and collapsed with a pain in his chest.

He died that night in his hotel suit but not before fouling his shorts and hurling his lunch from his chest to his feet in retching, heaving, snorts.

Nobody knew he was there, by chance, having very few friends, to be sure, and his room was paid for the month in advance with “DO NOT DISTURB!” on the door.

So his body sat in the heat to bloat and his organs turned to soup and flies laid eggs in his nose and throat and beetles infested his poop.

Rats and roaches came up through the shower, the odors were pungent and fresh and feasted on Spindle for 93 hours, stripping his bones of flesh.

When housekeeping finally entered the room, hardly a crumb remained. Spindle the Clown was completely gone, except for his creepy brain.

***We met Spindle the Clown a few years ago while researching death rituals among the Clown species.  We spent a week  documenting his demise – only to witness him defy death in the end.  Sadly, his brain grew up to be a corporate banker…..very tragic.  John insisted that we use this image for our first post (back in Oct., 2015) for some strange symbolism that only idiotic artists understand.  Spindle was featured in our first book, “Blue-ish Freaks” which you can follow the links to find and buy.       -Marsha

Boogey Man

Boogey Man Dan was alive and well                                                                        and couldn’t believe his good luck.                                                                      Up until now he lived up my nose                                                                      and was rather hopelessly stuck.                                                                      Now he’s stuck to my finger,                                                                                    like a glob of cold runny eggs.                                                                                    At least he got out in one solid piece                                                                    with all of his fingers and legs.                                                                              But what to do now?  Where should he go?                                                  His entire life lay ahead!                                                                                        …until I decided to knead him to bits                                                                and flick his corpse away…..dead.

***I’m travelling again and I’ve noticed that in every American airport there’s a special line for rich, rude, entitled people who pay loads of extra money so they can be first in line and feel important (I guess), even though we all get on the same plane, breathe the same air and arrive at the same time.  THEY get to be first, at the front, like the petty popular kids in grammar school…and I just have to  laugh at the silly people.  The last time I was in Moab, Ut., there was one such dignified, aristocratic fellow who spent the entire trip to Philadelphia picking his nose, which inspired me to write this little ditty on the plane.    -Marsha


Baby Sitter

At first we thought all the babies blew up.                                                   We found them that way in the morning.                                             They’d suddenly grown to enormous size!                                                  We had no idea…no warning.

Well, people freaked out.  They lost their minds,                                   (and some of us got really drunk),                                                                     but didn’t take TOO long to understand,                                                    that THEY didn’t grow…..WE SHRUNK!!!

Body Piercing

They called it ‘Body Piercing.’  It was very rare, very risky…for both the acrobat and the victim.  Frisbee the Bouncer contemplated the origins of the maneuver he had just failed to properly execute.  Willy the Clown (the victim) was finally settling down a bit, allowing Frisbee some time to think: you see, audiences had gotten bored with traditional tumbling and acrobatics, even parkour had lost it’s charm…free-runners traversing buildings, flipping and spinning across rooftops and bridge rafters, bouncing about from car to car in midtown traffic…I mean, it’s not as if everybody could do it nowadays, but people got bored seeing it all the time.

New ideas evolved to shock and awe the masses, each more extreme, risky…deadly.  The ‘Tongue In Cheek’ was already banned in 17 states, the ‘Cockeyed Cock’ was responsible for 3 temporary deaths, 12 online divorces and 41 spontaneous abortions (in Tennessee alone)…then came ‘Body Piercing.’  It was like a grizzly car crash on the turnpike that you can’t help staring at.  Frisbee recalled that the most difficult part was the need to make an entrance (not what you’re thinking).  How does an acrobat bounce right through the center of an unsuspecting victim’s body (without using an existing entrance – or exit?).  Well, Frisbee was quite certain he had it all figured out…but…..well, look at the picture!

Willy the Clown went quickly from surprise to horror, screaming bloody murder for 30 minutes straight…now he was just pissed off at Frisbee, who kept mumbling, “That should have worked!…Why didn’t that work?” over and over and over.

Somebody call an ambulance…!?!

***I wrote this piece last week, sitting out in my new back yard, atop the loveliest snowdrift in the midnight sun, watching the flying reindeer dogfight overhead.  I’m so happy in my vacation house at the North Pole.  The image is a raw, red, rough sketch for my “Body-Oddies” book.  The publisher refuses to let us post any final artwork until the release date (tentatively May 1).  Meanwhile you can find our first 4 books for sale by following the links to my website or at our Etsy shop (search EEWbooks).  -Marsha