Two Stories by David Cranmer

David Cranmer, co-editor of Beat to Pulp, has two recent stories on the web (as well as one in print in the latest issue of Needle). Over at The Western Online is the latest in the on-going adventures of Marshall Cash Laramie, "Kid Eddie," published under the pseudonym Edward A. Grainger. In this tale, Cash is on a mission to escort wanted criminal Edward Morash, aka Kid Eddie, from Vermillion back to Cheyenne. The problem? Kid Eddie appears harmless as a fly, so sweet that even the Vermillion jailer has got the creeps. Cash has been warned that Kid Eddie is fast, but anything can happen on the trail, and the resourceful Cash is prepared for anything.

On top of a great ambush scene, "Kid Eddie" boasts strong conversations, especially between Cash and Eddie. From the contrast of their conversations and Eddie's physical behavior (particularly in the fight sequences) emerges a vivid, nuanced portrait of a complex villain, one whose depth belies the brevity of the story. And then there is Cash, the world weary Marshall who sees the world beyond the black-and-white moral dichotomy of those around him. I anxiously await a longer, novel-length Cash Laramie.

Meanwhile, Cranmer's "The Great Whydini" was the story of the month in August over at All Due Respect, a new online magazine. Tonally, Cranmer takes a different direction -- it is a darkly comic story that takes place behind-the-scenes as a magician practices a daring underwater escape routine while he is chained to cement blocks. The ending packs a devilish punch that it would be criminal to spoil. But just like "Kid Eddie," David's writing is concise and controlled, with potent kicks smartly paced throughout.

Check out his stories, then head over to Beat to a Pulp for this week's jab, "The Wanted Man" by Matthew Pizzolato.


"Test Tube Baby" by Sam Fuller (1936)

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