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Podcast title The Lone Drunk Readeth
Website URL https://www.gcmckay.com
Description The Lone Drunk Readeth is a storytelling podcast that features one short story per week, narrated and edited by the drunken writer and actor that is Gareth Clark McKay. The majority of fiction included is horror and dark comedy, with a mixture of existential themes. Recommendations for future shows are always welcome, from readers and writers of all kinds. Please visit www.gcmckay.com to send any suggestions and subscribe for future news and upcoming releases.
Updated Wed, 22 Jan 2020 18:19:51 +0000
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Category Arts
Comedy
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Link to this podcast The Lone Drunk Readeth

Episodes

1. The Big Toe
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Description: G.C. McKay welcomes Alex Swery's The Big Toe onto the lowly Lone Drunk Readeth stage; a folk tale for no ordinary folk.  Taken from the short stories collection, For Whom the Bell Jingles. Visit  to discover more books, reviews, a blog and whatever else Alex has tucked under his deviant sleeve.  Send requests to Twitter: @garethcmckay G.C. McKay, author of    

2. Happy Endings
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth welcomes another Margaret Atwood piece to the show with her delightful tale: Happy Endings. This story is the first metafiction piece to feature on the show, which was news to me. It's quirky, amusing and a little bizarre. Comes with a small author note at the beginning and a few updates regarding the show.  I'm off to work on the business side of my short story collection: Sauced Up, Scarred and At Sleaze for the next few weeks. Until then... Subscribe here: Or email here: Twitter: @garethcmckay

3. The Story of an Hour
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Description: By complete dumb luck or a potentially subconscious leaning, GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth selected a piece of feminist literature for this week with Kate Chopin's The Story of an Hour, which just happened to coincide with International Women's Day. So, yeah... yay for me. This piece is one of her many works which fought against the social conventions of the time, usually making a social commentary regarding the freedom of women and their limitations within society during the late 19th century. It's a short and sweet number, beautifully structured and a perfect example of the less is more approach to quick, to the point storytelling. A delicate and elegantly told tale depicting the harsh realities of the time. Check it out!    Twitter: @garethcmckay  

4. The Dripping
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Description: GC McKay's got a gritty and grim one for you this week on The Lone Drunk Readeth with David Morrell's The Dripping. Taken from the collection of shorts called Black Evening, this piece was where it all started (publishing-wise) for the author in what has since turned into a career of four decades that is still going strong. Word to the wise, this is probably the darkest, most horrifying story to feature on TLDR to date.  Enjoy!  Twitter: @garethcmckay Email:

5. Cinderella
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Description: GC McKay's going for a classic this week on The Lone Drunk Readeth with Cinderella (Ashputtel) by the Brothers Grimm.  As this story needs no introduction I'll keep it brief and say this version is probably not what you're expecting, especially so towards the latter stages.  Peck, peck! Peck, peck! Hurrah and enjoy! Twitter: @garethcmckay  

6. The Nine Billion Names of God
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Description: snuggling up with some sci-fi on The Lone Drunk Readeth this week with The Nine Billion Names of God by Arthur C. Clarke. Apparently even the Dalai Lama himself reportedly told Clarke that he found this tale to be very amusing. I can only hope that you will too.  Prepare yourself for some suspect accents, a mission of absurdity with some profound quips and a little bit of philosophising from myself at the end. To infinity... and nothing!  Let me @garethcmckay know what you think and if you fancy it, send over your own stories for a future reading,   

7. Orientation
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Description: We're getting up and close and personal during our first day on the job this week on GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth with Daniel Orozco's Orientation.  For anyone who's ever worked in a call centre or office surrounded by cubicles and the like, this one's for you. It's your first day, you don't want to be late do you? Come on, get listening now. If you don't pretty soon, you may have to be let go.  Keep an eye out for this Daniel Orozco guy, I've got a feeling it won't be the last time we see his name in print.  @garethcmckay (Twitter) www.gcmckay.com

8. To Build a Fire
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Description: GC McKay's feeling the chill on The Lone Drunk Readeth this week with Jack London's naturalist tale, To Build a Fire.  This story mainly focuses on man vs nature, particularly focusing on the latter's cold (excuse the pun) indifference in regards to the former. So, wrap yourself up in a blanket, snuggle up to your pooch and warm up your cockles with a hot whisky and honey and get listening. Or, alternatively, make a fire and tune instead.  Enjoy.  Twitter: @garethcmckay

9. The Tell-Tale Heart
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth is proud to present another classic Edgar Allan Poe tale; The Tell-Tale Heart, which is widely regarded as one of his best. This quintessential descent into madness/unreliable narrator story had me questioning my own sanity whilst editing it so overall, I think Poe knew a thing or two about losing your shit. If you care to share, let me know what you think about it . Take it easy and be sure to avoid eye contact at all times. Works for me. Twitter: @garethcmckay

10. The Lady, or the Tiger?
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Description: GC McKay's getting allegorical on The Lone Drunk Readeth this week with Frank R. Stockton's famous tale The Lady, or the Tiger? First published in 1882, this work still asks a lot of questions about human nature and our helplessness when it comes to certain ideas and their potential outcomes. Whatever your interpretation regarding this tale, I think you'll agree that there's no straight answer. It all comes down to the individual and their own personal leaning. But don't take my word for it, find out for yourself by listening! For more stories like this hit me up at or visit and drop me a suggestion in there.

11. The Hitchhiking Game
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Description: GC Mckay's The Lone Drunk Readeth presents Milan Kundera's The Hitchhiking Game, a story about a nameless young couple on the road during the first day of their two-week vacation. The title sufficiently describes the concept which follows.  Most famous for The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Kundera has been likened to Kafka and Nietzsche as strong influences, whilst being blacklisted in Czechoslovakia and having his first novel, The Joke, banned. “The Greek word for "return" is nostos. Algos means "suffering." So nostalgia is the suffering caused by an unappeased yearning to return.” @garethcmckay

12. The Lone Drunk Readeth - A Perfect Day for Bananafish
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth presents A Perfect Day for Bananafish by J.D. Salinger to its humble stage.  Originally published in the new yorker (1948) after a year of editing, this story depicts Muriel and Seymour Glass, notably more focused on the latter. The family were used frequently amongst his other works.  Another short which may be released at some future date is Slight Rebellion off Madison, which features Holden Caulfield as the protagonist, the love-him-or-hate-him teenage anti-hero most famous for his first-person narrative in the infamous Catcher in the Rye, which still sells over 250,000 copies a year to this date.  GC McKay hopes you enjoy his reading and off-the-cuff analysis of this splendid tale, which details the aftermath of the second world war in America during the thriving boom of capitalist consumerism.   Please visit gcmckay.com for more information and send your suggestions to  for future shows.  Happy listening. 

13. The Lone Drunk Readeth - Signs and Symbols
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Description: GC Mckay's The Lone Drunk Readeth is proud to present Signs and Symbols by the brilliant Vladimir Nabokov, a touching and quietly depressing tale of an old couple and their mentally-unstable son.  Away from the satirical genius of Lolita ("light of my life, fire of my loins"), this tale examines the harsh realities of life and what it has to offer, examined through a series of seemingly unrelated events, which their son would view as all about him. Originally printed by The New Yorker as Symbols and Signs, the original, which the author reverted back to after its release, is named here. Though, in honesty, either way round sounds fine.  Here's a quote from the man himself:   "The cradle rocks above an abyss, and common sense tells us that our existence is but a brief crack of light between two eternities of darkness." Enjoy  garethcmckay@gmail.com

14. The Lone Drunk Readeth - Dark Christmas
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth welcomes Jeanette Winterson's chilling festive tale, Dark Christmas to the stage. Also featuring is Neil Gaiman's Nicholas Was... as well as some motivational words from the narrator, as always. Merry Christmas, keeping it brief this week as I'm pretty sure nobody is ever fucking reading this crap. For anyone who might know it, today's main feature is a story from the author of Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit. Enjoy. Have a good one, see you next week. www.gcmckay.com @garethcmckay - Twitter Gareth Clark McKay - Facebook

15. The Lone Drunk Readeth - A Friend In Need
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth is proud to present one of William Somerset Maugham's many pieces; A Friend In Need.  Most known during the 1930's, Maugham was one of the few living writer's of the time to make a living out of his craft. He became a sensation upon the release of Of Human Bondage, a semi self-autobiographical novel about his experiences growing up as an orphan, being raised as a Catholic and falling for a cold-hearted shrew who very nearly ruined him. A voluminous amount of his works were adapted into films, including Of Human Bondage (twice) and The Painted Veil, the most recent one to date, to name just a few.  If you haven't heard of him, what better place to make your acquaintance than with The Lone Drunk Readeth? Rip a beer from the ring-holder and sit back and relax with this easy to digest story.  garethcmckay@gmail.com

16. The Lone Drunk Readeth - A Clean, Well-Lighted Place
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Description: presents Ernest Hemingway's A Clean, Well-Lighted Place. Known for his no-nonsense style, this piece offers no exception, except maybe from a philosophical viewpoint. First published in 1933, before the existentialist movement of the late thirties and early forties, A Clean, Well-Lighted Place explores the degree in which man is a nothing and how, as a whole, we attempt to handle this inevitable realisation.  Simple in its nature, yet deceiving in its complexity, Hemingway's opinion could be extrapolated from the title, from one angle at least, but reading it forms an array of far more interesting ideas. Visit to let me know what you think, leave suggestions for future episodes and subscribe for future updates and all that jazz.  Gracias, Salud!

17. The Lone Drunk Readeth - Sleeping Beauty
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Description: Gather round kids, GC Mckay's The Lone Drunk Readeth's in town with the juicy fairy tale, Sleeping Beauty (aka The Sun, Moon and Talia) for all your storytelling needs. Today I'm going to be reciting a delightful story about the beauty of sleeping through life, the untouchable power of royalty and how helpful make-believe fairies can be.  This podcast is dedicated to Sarah Hall from Newcastle, for her recent bitching about the tale to her local school. Please check The Independent for the half-arsed article responsible for the dedication.  Also includes a fable from Aesop, entitled The Cat and the Cock.  Enjoy.  Please send suggestions to gcmckay.com or  and subscribe while you're at it.  Cheers.  

18. The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Other Place
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Description: This week welcomes The Other Place by Mary Gaitskill to the stage.  Noted works include the short story Bad Behaviour from the collection of the same name, which was later adapted into the film Secretary, which I'm sure a lot of you out there have seen. Apparently, it's pretty different from the original tale, but the overall gist is the same.  The Mare was a novel published a couple of years back, which I've heard a few good things about.  During my brief, half-arsed attempt at researching her background and works, I found this little gem of a quote, regarding Marquis De Sade and whether he was an influence on her work:  "I don't think much of Sade as a writer, although I enjoyed beating off to him as a child."  And with that I now fancy her. Enjoy. Subscribe at gcmckay.com and stick this into your podcast feed if you haven't already: 

19. The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Doll
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Description: The Lone Drunk Readeth that is GC McKay is sinfully proud to welcome The Doll by Daphne Du Maurier into his realm.  Most known for her still in print novel, Rebecca, Maurier was also the writer of the short story Birds, which Hitchcock adapted into a film, as well as many other great works, including Don't Look Now (also another short).  During her time she was known as a 'romantic novelist', which, going by the titles mentioned and the content of this podcast, seems rather ludicrous. Her writing is dark, morally evasive and appears to be more about human suffering than how redeeming love can be. This piece, as the picture may suggest, is about a human-sized sex doll. A work massively ahead of its time, with a refreshing switch of gender for its would-be possessor.  Seeing that these things are going to be ruining many a relationship in the upcoming years, I felt it was an appropriate sign of warning. You have been cautioned. Warning: Contains melancholy. Please visit gcmckay.com for more information and subscribe for the occasional update. Cheers!  

20. The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Frolic
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Description: is disturbingly proud to welcome the juicy short that is The Frolic by Thomas Ligotti to his low-rent, makeshift excuse of a stage. If anyone out there remembers those sweet, cynical and bitingly funny diatribes on the pointlessness of human consciousness in the True Detective TV series, you should know that Ligotti's work was the inspiration behind it. As the writer of The Conspiracy Against the Human Race once said, 'the bloody inventions of horror fiction pale in comparison with the bloodier horrors of actual living.' So, with that in mind, let's dive deep into the terror of reality...  For those unaware of this great writer, here's a quick-read  of Ligotti's Songs of a Dead Dreamer by The Guardian. Enjoy!

21. The Lone Drunk Readeth - A Collapse of Horses
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth proudly presents the spine-chilling A Collapse of Horses, written by Brian Evenson.  Taken from the short stories collection of the same name, this piece demonstrates why you do not require any monsters to create a horror piece to perfection. Eerie, haunting and frankly, one of the best shorts I've read in a long time. It's always great to discover masters in the field of horror, and I'm happy to say that Brian Evenson is now on my list of next buys. Fantastic stuff. Please visit  for future suggestions, recommendations and any other things you may want to share.   

22. The Lone Drunk Readeth - They're Not Your Husband
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Description: presents They're Not Your Husband, by Raymond Carver. Printed in three anthologies, this piece examines the difficult nature of a suburban marriage during a somewhat tough time.  Clear and to the point, if you're a writer at the beginning of your career, you wouldn't go wrong by dipping into some Carver stories; especially if you're into gritty realism and prefer concise prose over the whimsical. With seventy-two short stories under his belt, as well as over three-hundred poems, he'd keep you busy for a while.  In other news, I've given my website a makeover, reviewed Alex Yehorenkov's guide, . Oh, and my two short stories, Squirm and Bloodhound Lust are now both available for free. Head over to  and subscribe to read all three of them. Last note. I mention Writer's Fight Club during the post-story section of the show. For anyone interested and ready for battle, it's a facebook group for storytellers with zero tolerance for bullshit. Join today, but remember the first rule. You suck.

23. The Lone Drunk Readeth - Stone Mattress
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth podcast presents Margaret Atwood's Stone Mattress, from the collection of shorts of the same title. More famous for her speculative fiction works such as The Handmaid's Tale and Oryx and Crake, Atwood is also a keen humanist, feminist and overall a pretty decent and seemingly genuine person, going by what Wikipedia has to say anyway.  She describes the pieces in the Stone Mattress collection as "tales" rather than short stories, as they draw from the mythical and fantastical aspects associated with fables and fairy tales, rather than from conventional literary realism. Whatever this means seems immaterial here, I found the featured short story to be centred around realism, if not a little stretched in places. But then again, what piece of fiction isn't? We have to make interesting, you know.  Visit  for eleven other episodes now available. All mostly dark, twisted and fucked-up, just the way we like it. Cheers.  

24. The Lone Drunk Readeth - Shooting an Elephant
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Description: welcomes George Orwell's Shooting an Elephant to the stage. Fact or fiction? Nobody knows. Orwell served in Burma for a period of his life, which must've been where the story originated, but how much truth is bent, or indeed fictionalised, remains unknown. Notable and recommended works (from me) include Animal Farm, Down and Out in Paris and London, Keep the Aspidistra Flying and of course, the masterpiece and final work that is 1984. Please keep in mind that I'll have my beady little Orwellian eye on you whilst you're listening, just as a nod to the great man. I've got your back, big brother George.

25. The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Professor's Teddy Bear
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth proudly presents The Professor's Teddy Bear by Theodore Sturgeon, most known for his novel More Than Human. He wrote more than 200 short stories and some episodes of Star Trek. The Professor's... is a horror story, about... well, the clue's in the name. I'll probably end up doing some of his work at some point, maybe something more on the science fiction side of things. Send your requests and/or stories to  and visit  to subscribe and receive updates about the show, upcoming releases and all things dank. Cheers. I'll leave you with a quote:  "Ninety percent of [science fiction] is crud, but then, ninety percent of everything is crud." - Theodore Sturgeon.

26. The Lone Drunk Readeth - Guts
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth podcast presents 'Guts' by Chuck Palahniuk, most known for his masterpiece, 'Fight Club'. It's happened to be the first short story I've read from the man, I have to say, as a narrator and indeed a writer, I was thoroughly impressed. The subject matter is hilarious, the pacing is smooth and engaging and the ending packs a punch. Listen with a drink in your hand, but keep food at a safe distance. Cheers. Check out www.gcmckay.com today for a full list of the short stories available and send some recommendations, suggestions or even your own work (if you're a writer) to hear it on the show. Provided it's any good, of course. Peace. The First rule of Guts is that you must listen to Guts.

27. The Lone Drunk Readeth - An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge
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Description: presents An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge by Ambrose Bierce. One of the most famous short stories of all time and also one of the first to experiment with the 'stream of consciousness' genre, as well as not adhering to what the reader's of the time would've been expecting. He even half-takes the piss out of them, which I love.  Author Kurt Vonnegut wrote: "... I consider anybody a twerp who hasn't read the greatest American short story, which is 'An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge,' by Ambrose Bierce. It isn't remotely political. It is a flawless example of American genius. Enjoy comrades. 

28. The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Dream of a Ridiculous Man
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Description: With a focus on similar themes touched upon with his first novel, 'Notes from Underground', the Russian Prophet (as dubbed by his compatriots), Fyodor Dostoevsky gives us 'The Dream of a Ridiculous Man'. An exploration of nihilism, Christianity and, in a sense, what it means to be human. The existential master takes a more positive spin with this particular tale, to the chagrin of the narrator. GC McKay promises that The Lone Drunk Readeth will deliver less hope next week. Enjoy. 

29. The Lone Drunk Readeth - All the Assholes in the World and Mine
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth presents Charles Bukowski's All the Assholes in the World and Mine. A short piece about hemorrhoids, featuring a futuristic German accent, plenty of profanity and slowly going insane. I'll definitely be doing more Bukowski in the future, this short was a great place to start; hilarious, to the point and a blast, like most of his work. 

30. The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Yellow Wallpaper
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Description: One of the best short stories ever written, a classic in gothic style literature about the horrors of marriage, oppression and most importantly, isolation. Check out gcmckay.com for a free PDF for further reading. Cheers. 

31. The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Raven
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Description: The best poem that was ever written. Fact.  

32. The Lone Drunk Readeth - Suffer the Little Children
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Description: One of the many Stephen King shorts out there, and one without much explanation for the occurrences that happen. As the man himself once put it: "'Suffer the Little Children' is a ghastly sick-joke with no redeeming social merit whatever. I like that in a story."  Couldn't agree more with King, it's a shame I can't find publishers who feel the same. Check out  for more bullshit.

33. The Lone Drunk Readeth - A Hunger Artist
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Description: Being a big fan of Kafka, I thought I'd start out with one of his later works and one of my personal favourites. I shall probably do more of his work in the future. Please let me know what you think of it at  Warning: Depressing as fuck.

34. The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Black Cat
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Description: GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth presents The Black Cat by Edgar Allan Poe. One of my favourite Poe tales and the first of his I ever read, seemed like an inevitable choice for the debut show. Please visit  to give feedback and to check out some of my own work. Please listen with a beer or cocktail in your hand.