Ted Morrissey is the author of the novels Mrs Saville (2018), Crowsong for the Stricken (2017), An Untimely Frost (2014), Men of Winter (2010, re-released 2013), the novelettes The Curvatures of Hurt and Figures in Blue, and the novella Weeping with an Ancient God (Twelve Winters), named a Best Book of 2015 by Chicago Book Review. Mrs Saville won the Manhattan Book Award. Crowsong for the Stricken won the International Book Award in Literary Fiction from Book Fest, the American Fiction Award in Literary Fiction from American Book Fest, and it was a Kirkus Reviews Best Indie Book of 2017. His short stories, novel excerpts, poems, essays and reviews have appeared in more than eighty journals, including Southern Humanities Review, Glimmer Train, The Chariton Review, PANK, Writers Ask and North American Review. He is also the author of three scholarly books: A Concise Summary and Analysis of The Mueller Report (2019), Trauma Theory As a Method for Understanding Literary Texts (Mellen, 2016), and The Beowulf Poet and His Real Monsters (2013), which won Edwin Mellen’s D. Simon Evans Prize for Distinguished Scholarship. He holds a PhD in English studies and lives just north of Springfield, Illinois. A William H. Gass scholar, several of his presentations on Gass’s work are archived at his 12 Winters Blog.
Contact: jtedmorrissey (at) gmail (dot) com
(September 7, 2020) The Tunnel at 25 Online Symposium launched, a site I’m hosting dedicated to William H. Gass’s magnum opus. I contributed two pieces to the symposium: “Stripping the Master of Kohler’s Rags” and “The Tunnel: A Chronology & Bibliography,” as well as the Introduction.
(August 21, 2020) Grand Little Things published my sonnet “Mass,” part of my Laertes Sonnet Sequence.
(August 10, 2020) Pollen Press has acquired three of my critical essays on William Gaddis to translate into Russian, in conjunction with their translating and publishing Gaddis’s novel Carpenter’s Gothic.
(August 1, 2020) My abbreviated story collection, which is also a novel in progress, First Kings and Other Stories, has been accepted for publication by Wordrunner as an e-chapbook.
(July 22, 2020) My sonnet “Shroud” is featured at Christal Cooper’s Backstory of the Poem series.
(June 25, 2020) Mrs Saville won the Manhattan Book Award in Literary Fiction.
(June 4, 2020) Belle Ombre has accepted my story “Hosea” for publication.
(February 27, 2020) My interview with Greg Gerke regarding his essay collection See What I See was published in spring 2020 (25.1) issue of Rain Taxi.
(February 22, 2020) I presented my paper “The Movement of Matter in Mind’: William H. Gass’s Transformative Translations of Rilke” at the Louisville Conference of Literature and Culture Since 1900.
(January 12, 2020) “The Artist Spoke,” an excerpt from my work in progress The Isolation of Conspiracy, has been accepted for publication by Litbreak Magazine. It is the sixth chunk of the novel to find publication.
(December 11, 2019) “First Kings” has been named runner-up for the Editors Reprint Award by Sequestrum journal.
(November 17, 2019) North American Review has published “First Kings” in its fall issue.
(November 15, 2019) North American Review has posted my piece “On ‘First Kings'” at their blog. My short story “First Kings” appears in the fall issue of NAR. It is an expansion of my 2017 novel Crowsong for the Stricken.
(November 7, 2019) My paper “Beauty Must Come First: The Short Story as Art Made of Language” has been accepted for presentation at the 16th International Conference on the Short Story in English to be held next summer at the University Calabria, Italy.
(September 19, 2019) My review of The William H. Gass Reader has been posted at the North American Review website.
(July 12, 2019) briars lit has accepted my story “Weird Soliloquies” for publication. “Weird Soliloquies” expands the narrative of my 2017 novel Crowsong for the Stricken.
(June 12, 2019) My new book, A Concise Summary and Analysis of The Mueller Report, has been released by Twelve Winters Press. It’s an accurate buy highly readable distillation of the Special Counsel’s report on Russian interference in the 2016 election and Trump’s obstruction of justice.
(May 30, 2019) My poem “Ingots” has been published by Haunted Waters Press as part of their Splash! showcase. “Ingots” is from my Laertes Squence of sonnets.
(April 21, 2019) I presented my paper “Writing Too Good to Publish: A Disheartening Dispatch from the Heartland” at the North American Review Writing Conference in Cedar Falls, Iowa.
(March 30, 2019) Edify Fiction has accepted my poems “Awakening” and “Dignity” for publication. They’re part of my Laertes Sequence of sonnets.
(March 27, 2019) I’m pleased to accept a position on the editorial board of the Journal of Science and Education, School of Education, Hue University, Hue, Vietnam.
(March 18, 2019) Central American Literary Review has published “Madison,” Part IV of my work in progress The Isolation of Conspiracy. Other pieces have appeared in Floyd County Moonshine, Lakeview Journal, and Adelaide Literary Magazine (two issues).
(February 23, 2019) I found a receptive audience when I presented my paper “From Tender Buttons to the ‘Heart of the Country’: Gertrude Stein’s Structural Influence on William H. Gass” at the Louisville Conference on Literature and Culture Since 1900, University of Louisville. In another panel, I read an excerpt from my long story “Vox Humana.”
(January 16, 2019) My sonnet “Pilgrim” has been published in the tiny journal. It is the first published poem of my “Laertes Sequence.”
(December 18, 2018) My paper proposal “‘Danc[ing] to Organized Noise’: The Loss of the Literary Voice and Its Consequences” has been accepted for presentation at the MLA International Symposium in Lisbon, Portugal, July 2019.
(November 29, 2018) Spencer Stephens has posted a review of Mrs Saville at his blog (also on Amazon): “The author fits the pieces together with a seamless and terrifying logic. He shows a nuanced understanding of the darkness that lives within us all. He summons a literature-lover’s fantasy and adds context and texture to a landmark novel that many thought had already been examined from every conceivable angle.”
(November 15, 2018) Mrs Saville was named an Awards Finalist for the Best Book Award in Literary Fiction by American Book Fest.
(September 23, 2018) “Medieval Music from Midwestern Universities,” an excerpt from Part III of my work in progress “The Isolation of Conspiracy,” has been published in Adelaide Literary Magazine (#16). Earlier excerpts have appeared here and there, including Adelaide, June 2017.
(September 19, 2018) My sonnet “Shroud” has been accepted for publication by Bellevue Literary Review. “Shroud” is part of my “Laertes Sequence,” which I wrote to my father, who passed away suddenly in 2013. “Shroud” is my first honest-to-goodness poetry publication. Previously my poetry has been written in the service of my prose.
(September 7, 2018) My novel Mrs Saville, a sequel to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, has been published in hardcover, paperback and Kindle editions. The paperback includes the short story “A Wintering Place” and an Afterword by yours truly.
(August 20, 2018) “Medieval Music from Midwestern Universities” has been accepted for publication by Adelaide. The piece is an excerpt from Part 3 of my work in progress, The Isolation of Conspiracy. Adelaide published an earlier piece of the work in their June 2017 issue.
(June 1, 2018) “Vox Humana” (a Crowsong Universe story) has been published by Blue Lake Review.
(May 30, 2018) My prismatic novel Crowsong for the Stricken has won the International Book Award in Literary Fiction 2018 from Book Fest.
(May 30, 2018) I had the honor of being a keynote speaker at the Fifth Annual Conference on Language, Society and Culture in Asian Contexts, May 25-26, in Hue, Vietnam. My speech was “Locating Our Common Humanity through Expressive Writing,” and is available in its entirety here.
(April 24, 2018) My novella The Curvatures of Hurt is available in paperback and Kindle editions, and soon an audiobook featuring the voice of Jenny Bacon, who wrote an Afterword for the book. “The Curvatures of Hurt” is also part of the prismatic novel Crowsong for the Stricken.
(November 12, 2017) I’ve uploaded a video of my reading “Beside Running Waters,” a piece from Crowsong for the Stricken which originally appeared in Constellations and was reprinted in the anthology Literature Today (volume 4) and at CommuterLit.com.
News: (November 6, 2017) Crowsong for the Stricken is now available in paperback (as well as hardcover and Kindle editions).
News: (October 25, 2017) Crowsong for the Stricken was reviewed at Spencer Stephens’s blog. “This is a book you can savor in different ways. . . . You’ll experience a slightly erotic shiver when you finish this remarkable work and decide that you should hurriedly read it again. Halloween’s almost here, after all.”
News: (October 18, 2017) Crowsong for the Stricken received a starred review from Kirkus Reviews. “References place the book in the mid-’50s, and the author describes the small, unnamed town in loving detail, but there’s also a feeling of detachment, as if all of this is happening in a place apart from our own. It also hints at the supernatural, especially when different characters encounter people in crowlike outfits, but it never presents events that couldn’t be ascribed to the natural world. A work that resists easy description; recommended for those looking for something strange and beautiful.”
News: (September 20, 2017) I’ll be reading from my new novel Crowsong for the Stricken at Lincoln Land College’s literature festival Sept. 28. It’s a group reading with John Paul Jaramillo, Allison Joseph and Jon Tribble, from 5 to 7 p.m. in Menard Hall. I’ll be reading an excerpt from “Season of Reaping,” one of the twelve pieces that comprise the novel.
News: (August 27, 2017) My novel Crowsong for the Stricken has been released by my press, Twelve Winters. It’s available in hardcover and Kindle editions. Check out the trailer:
News: (August 2, 2017) My story “Planes” is included in the new (and final) issue of ink&coda. The editors write, “We wanted this issue to stand as the fullest realization of our aesthetic. We believe we’ve succeeded; however, we were surprised by how haunting the whole of it is. Something unknown has crept to the surface in 4.2—perhaps a deeper, unrealized aesthetic, or perhaps our feelings about this issue being our last. Either way an appropriate farewell.”
News: (July 19, 2017) A video of my reading “Communion with the Dead,” a short story of mine published in the Chariton Review in 2008.
News: (July 18, 2017) ink&coda will be including my story “Planes” in their forthcoming issue. Unfortunately this will be the journal’s final issue. The material they have published will, however, be archived at their site. My story “The Drama of Consonants” appeared in the journal a few issues back. Both “Planes” and “The Drama of Consonants” are parts of my prismatic novel Crowsong for the Stricken, which will be released in a few weeks.
News: (July 1, 2017) The Southern Humanities Review (51.1) which includes my story “Sheol,” part of the forthcoming Crowsong for the Stricken, is out.
News: (June 13, 2017) Southern Humanities Review 51.1 will be out soon. It includes my story “Sheol,” part of the forthcoming Crowsong for the Stricken.
News: (May 11, 2017) My story “Beside Running Waters” is posted at CommuterLit.com. The story was originally published in Constellations and it was also anthologized in Literature Today, volume 4.
News: (May 7, 2017) “The Glance of Orpheus II” appears in the new issue Adelaide. It’s an excerpt of Part II of my work in progress titled The Isolation of Conspiracy. Part I, “Meditations on the Word” appeared in Floyd County Moonshine, and the first part of Part II appeared in Lakeview Journal.
News: (May 6, 2017) The story “Erebus” appears in the new issue of Everest.
News: (April 19, 2017) The international literary magazine Adelaide has accepted “The Glance of Orpheus II” for publication. It is an excerpt of Part II from my work in progress The Isolation of Conspiracy.
News: (April 13, 2017) A writing career first. I had two pieces come out in different journals on the same day — both excerpts from my work in progress The Isolation of Conspiracy. Part I, “Meditations on the Word,” is in the journal Floyd County Moonshine; and an excerpt of Part II, “The Glance of Orpheus,” is in Lakeview Journal.
News: (March 11, 2017) Floyd County Moonshine has accepted for publication “Meditations on the Word,” Part I of my work in progress titled The Isolation of Conspiracy. Part II, “The Glance of Orpheus,” is forthcoming in Lakeview Journal.
News: (March 1, 2017) I’ve been invited to join a prearranged panel at the American Literature Association Conference May 24-28 in Boston. The panel is The American Recluse: Contesting Individualism in Narratives of Isolation and Withdrawal, and my paper is “In the Heart of the Heart of Despair: Seclusion in the Fiction of William H. Gass.”
News: (March 1, 2017) I presented my paper, “Modernism’s Last Gasp and the Architecture of William H. Gass’s The Tunnel,” at the Louisville Conference on Literature and Culture Since 1900 Feb. 23. I also been read an excerpt from my long story “The Curvatures of Hurt,” which is part of the forthcoming book Crowsong for the Stricken. The paper is available here.
News: (October 4, 2016) Mrs Saville, a novel in progress, will be published serially at Strands Lit Sphere.
News: (September 20, 2016) Trauma Theory As a Method for Understanding Literary Texts (Mellen) is available for pre-order and will be released November 2.
News: (August 2, 2016) An excerpt of the second section of my novel in progress, The Isolation of Conspiracy, will be published in Lakeview Journal. It will appear under the title “The Glance of Orpheus.”
News: (May 25, 2016) My story “Planes” (originally published by Lavender Wolves Literary Magazine) was a finalist for the Sequestrum Editors’ Reprint Award.
News: (April 29, 2016) I have joined the MFA in Writing faculty at Lindenwood University as an online instructor, and will begin by teaching a literature course on the “The Long Story and Novella” this fall.
News: (March 28, 2016) “The Pedigree of Self-Publishing,” a short article, is included in the newest issue of North American Review (301.2). Available for purchase here.
News: (February 2, 2016) “Crowsong for the Stricken” has been published by Flyleaf Journal. “Crowsong” received the Editors’ Reprint Award 2015. From the email informing of the award: “Although you were in good company with many other accomplished contributors, we were absolutely enchanted by your story and its unique premise of a small town plagued both by disease and paranoia. The style of the language and the overall tone seemed to harken back to the stalwarts of the literary fantasy and horror genres like Ray Bradbury and Shirley Jackson.” The story originally appeared in Noctua Review, and it will be the title story of a collection released later this year.
News: (January 7, 2016) My story “Beside Running Waters” has been reprinted in Literature Today, volume 4.
News: (December 28, 2015) The novella Weeping with an Ancient God was included on the Chicago Book Review‘s list of the Best Books of 2015.
News: (October 4, 2015) Fiction on the Web has published the my long short story “The Curvatures of Hurt.” It is the final story in a collection of related stories that will come out next year, titled Crowsong for the Stricken.
News: (August 4, 2015) Southern Humanities Review has accepted the my short story “Sheol” for publication. It is part of a collection of related stories yet to be released.
News: (June 30, 2015) Everest magazine has accepted the my short story “Erebus” for publication. “Erebus” is part of a collection of related stories that may be out next year.
News: (June 13, 2015) I presented my paper “Fictionalizing the Life and Voice of Washington Irving” at the North American Review Bicentennial Conference. The paper was about his writing of the novel An Untimely Frost. Visit my 12 Winters Blog to read the paper.
News: (May 18, 2015) “A Hot and Cold ‘Frost,'” a review of the novel An Untimely Frost, is in Chicago Book Review: “There are moments of true brilliance in An Untimely Frost. It reads like a post-modernist emulating Henry James, which proves to be an intriguing combination. The novel’s ending is as strong as many, and the author’s writing is in turns funny and harrowing.”
Update: (March 24, 2015) My post, “Professor Tolkien’s Rebel Readings of Beowulf,” expanding my review of Tolkien’s translation is on the North American Review blog here.
News: (March 20, 2015) My review of J.R.R. Tolkien’s translation of Beowulf, “A Dragon-Worthy Treasure,” has been published in the North American Review (300.2).
News: (December 1, 2014) my story “The Ancient World” has been accepted for publication by The Snapping Twig. “The Ancient World” is one of a nearly complete collection of connected tales titled A Murder of Stories, which should be out in book form in 2015. The stories in the collection are all set in the same Midwestern village, usually in the 1950s, with reoccurring characters, themes and motifs — but each is a unique experiment in narrative style and/or structure.
News: (October 28, 2014) My short story “Bitterness on the Tongue” has been published by the Blue Bonnet Review. “Bitterness on the Tongue” is one of a growing collection of connected tales, titled A Murder of Stories. Others have appeared in the Tulane Review, Noctua Review, Constellations, and Black Denim Lit, while others are forthcoming in Stone Crowns Magazine and Lavender Wolves Literary Journal. The stories are set in the same unnamed village and have reoccurring characters, themes and images. Yet each is a unique experiment in narrative style or structure.
News: (October 27, 2014) The short story “Planes” is a featured “Scary Story” on WUIS public radio. Listen here.
News: (October 4, 2014) Anne Drolet reviewed An Untimely Frost in the fall 2014 North American Review: “In An Untimely Frost, Ted Morrissey takes us on a haunting journey through mid-19th-century London. . . .The novel becomes an engrossing mystery and more than a simple historical novel . . . a wonderful read that draws the reader in. . . .” News: (August 29, 2014) My story “The Drama of Consonants” is in the summer 2014 issue of ink&coda. “The Drama of Consonants” is part of a series of related stories. Others have appeared in the Tulane Review, Noctua Review, Constellations, and Black Denim Lit, while others are forthcoming in Stone Crowns Magazine and Lavender Wolves Literary Journal. The stories are set in the same unnamed village and have reoccurring characters, themes and images. Yet each is a unique experiment in narrative style or structure.
News: (August 24, 2014) Weeping with an Ancient God, a novella, has been released by Twelve Winters Press. The book includes illustrations by Adam G. Perschbacher and an interview by Beth Gilstrap. News: (August 8, 2014) My story “Season of Reaping” is in the August issue of Festival Writer. “Season of Reaping” is an especially experimental narrative, combining prose from multiple characters’ points of view, and villanelles embedded in the text of the story. It is part of a series of related stories. Others have appeared or are forthcoming in the Tulane Review, Noctua Review, Constellations, Black Denim Lit, Stone Crowns Magazine, Lavender Wolves Literary Journal and ink&coda.
News: (July 26, 2014) The Beowulf Poet and His Real Monsters continues to be added to notable collections around the world, recently the British Library and the Library of Congress. Other noteworthy libraries include Notre Dame, Duke, Pepperdine, Purdue, Nebraska, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts, as well as research libraries in Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Iraq, and elsewhere. See the complete list on WorldCat. News: (June 28, 2014) My short story “Planes” will be included in an upcoming issue of Lavender Wolves Literary Journal. “Planes” is part of a series of related stories. Others have appeared in the Tulane Review, Noctua Review, Constellations, and Black Denim Lit, while another is forthcoming in Stone Crowns Magazine. The stories are set in the same unnamed village and have reoccurring characters, themes and images. Yet each is a unique experiment in narrative style or structure.
News: (May 29, 2014) Men of Winter is now available for Nook — and has been reformatted for Kindle as well. News: (May 25, 2014) The audiobook edition of Figures in Blue is available from Audible.com, Amazon and iTunes. News: (April 14, 2014) My brief article “The Loss of Intellect” has been posted on North American Review’s blog. It’s an extension of my review of William H. Gass’s novel Middle C based on Gass’s mid-1990s predictions about the effects of technology and the Web on young minds in particular.
News: (March 8, 2014) My short story “Scent of Darkness” is in the March issue of Black Denim Lit. “Scent of Darkness” is part of a series of related stories, others of which have appeared in the Tulane Review, Noctua Review and Constellations.
News: (January 7, 2014) The novel An Untimely Frost is available in paperback from Amazon as well as for Kindle, from Barnes & Noble, including for Nook, and from Espresso Book Machine. Visit the Twelve Winters Press site for a complete list of sellers. News: (December 2013) The poem “A Painful Commerce” has been collected in The Muse: An International Journal of Poetry, volume 1, issue 2, edited by Pradeep Chaswal, Deepak Chaswal and Mohammad Arif.
News: (December 2013) WUIS Public Radio has aired an interview with me, discussing the novelette Figures in Blue and the forthcoming novel An Untimely Frost, among other topics. See the Interviews page for others as well.
News: (November 18, 2013) North American Review posted “The Psychic Origins of Creativity” on its blog.
News: (August 2, 2013) Men of Winter, a Revised & Expanded Edition, has been released by Twelve Winters Press and is now available in paperback from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Espresso Book Machine. It will soon be available in a variety of formats from multiple sources. Download a printable flyer. News: (March 12, 2013) The monograph The Beowulf Poet and His Real Monsters was released by Edwin Mellen Press. It is the first time that the postmodern critical model of trauma theory has been used to gain insight into the classic Old English poem. The book is available in various formats, and scholarly journals may request free copies for review. Please see the monograph’s page for further details. Update: Edwin Mellen Press awarded the monograph the D. Simon Evans Prize for distinguished scholarship–the Press’s highest honor.