A truck driver has the fright of his life in the woods of Finland. A couple who've never met make a strange and sinister pact. A teenage runaway finds himself the plaything of an older woman. A man seeking oblivion in a small Australian town unexpectedly finds friendship. A seagull takes revenge on a perverted teacher. English football hooligans in Russia discover a terrifying new drug. Post-Brexit Islington falls apart.
Two thirds of the stories in this collection have been published in, on or at anthologies, magazines, and literary websites, and are joined by nine original stories. Set in the US, Australia, Finland and Iceland, plus London, his home for over 30 years, this is Mark Piggott's debut collection. Bleak, humorous, erotic and shocking, the stories are very different but are all, in their own way, examples of a style the author calls "savage whimsy."
Militant Factions also contains some of Mark's creative non-fiction, including some acclaimed travel pieces, brief sketches of his strange life, and a 20,000-word examination of homelessness in London in collaboration with artist Martin Toft. Extracts from Mark's three published novels ("Fire Horses", "Out of Office" and "Kidology") complete the anthology, demonstrating the incredible versatility of this provocative, original writer.
Praise for Midnight Hollow (first published in the "Still" anthology, Negative Press, 2015)
“An old man named Edward explores the empty town hall where he used to be a caretaker. He finds his old floor buffer, and gives the place a polish for old times’ sake. This piece is a poignant evocation of time passing, and reflecting on what’s been lost in a life. And the ending is a real shock to the system…”
-David Hebbelthwaite (Huff Post contributor)
Praise for Hatful of Holloway (first published in the "Down the Angel and Up Holloway" anthology, Pulp Books 2006)
“’Hatful of Holloway’ by Mark Piggott is a helter-skelter, cultural reference loaded pub-crawl around Holloway, with the suicidal son of a Scottish Earl, and his pal, Murf, a loquacious Dubliner with an appetite for a nasty brand of porno mag. This is a mad-cap adventure, deserving of a few readings to fully appreciate its density and tragi-comic heart.”
— from The Small Press Review Issue One, July/August 2007 p23
“Ten Thousand Hours” was a very striking story; its plot is masterfully conducted; the setting is oppressive but never stagnant, as the story ultimately has an interesting twist."
-The New Yorker.