The Drunken Odyssey with John King: A Podcast About the Writing Life

In this week’s episode, I talk to the novelist Vu Tran about the appeal of detective fiction, the importance of literary substance over style, the problem with femme fatale characters, the Iowa MFA experience, and many, many other things,

Vu Tran

plus Jared Silvia sings another Woody Guthrie number in honor of Labor Day, as part of his annual Labor Day musical project.





On September 30th, Richard Blanco is coming to Valencia College for the Winter Park Writers' Festival.

Richard Blanco's reading is FREE, but you MUST reserve a seat via the Festival's Eventbrite page.


  • Location: Winter Park Campus, Valencia College, Rooms 237/2424
  • 4 PM: Community Writing Class with Richard Blanco
  • 5:30 PM: Open Mic Reading (Emceed by John King)
  • 7:00 PM: Richard Blanco Reading

Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_223.mp3
Category:Arts/Culture/Writing -- posted at: 3:41pm EDT

In this week’s episode, I talk to the poet and novelist Ryler Dustin near the end of his residency at the Kerouac House in Orlando, after a weeklong tour of weddings.

Ryler Dustin

We speak about the horrors of what happens to poetry in educational environments, the dawning sense of contemporary poetry as a form of play and life, as opposed to some kind of stillborn puzzle. Ryler also talks about the poetic impulse overtaking him before he even knew what poetry was, and walks me through his experience in slam poetry and MFA life, and the creative writing PhD, and the drive to move beyond genres. For some reason, I bring up my favorite bit of dialogue from the movie Major League despite Bull Durham being a much better movie. The role of honesty and novelty in writing also brilliantly come up. (We were both sober.)


  • On September 30th, Richard Blanco is headed to Valencia College for its 2016 Winter Park Writers Festival.
  • Rest in peace, Mr. Sundrop (Episode 213), or else let your caterwauls join the heavenly chorus.

Mr Sundrop

Episode 222 of The Drunken Odyssey, your favorite podcast about creative writing and literature is available on iTunes, or right click here to download.


Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_222.mp3
Category:Arts/Culture/Writing -- posted at: 12:20am EDT

In this week’s episode, I share There Will Be Fan Fiction 2, a special edition of Jesse Bradley’s prose reading series, There Will Be Words.


[gallery ids="16266,16265,16263,4775" type="rectangular"]


This installment features the fan fiction of Shauna Basques (Jason Todd-era Batman), J. Bradley himself (The Mighty Ducks/Fatal Attraction crossover, obviously), Brontë Bettencourt (Frozen), A. C. Warner (Star Trek: The Next Generation, as read by me), and me (Flash Gordon).


Check out the first installment of There Will Be Fan Fiction, which featured Teege Braun writing Small Wonder, Jared Silvia writing King of the Hill, Stephanie Rizzo writing about a post-apocalyptic Lewis and Clarke, Genevieve Anna Tyrrell writing Dexter, and me, that is John King, writing a Benny Hill Show/Ace Frehley crossover that includes David Foster Wallace, Yoda, My Little Pony, and a hint of Cthulu.

Also check out J. Bradley's latest book, Jesus Christ, Boy Detective, and here us talk about it back on episode 216.


Check out Brontë Bettencourt's blog, 21st Century Brontë.

Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_221.mp3
Category:Writing -- posted at: 2:48pm EDT

In this week’s episode, I talk to my friend, fiction writer Sam Slaughter, who I met back in 2014, when he wrote a little something about Denis Johnson's Jesus' Son for the show. We talk about his short story collection, God in Neon, his chapbook, When You Cross That Line (inspired by Florida Man stories), alcoholism, how we evolve as writers, and the Orlando writing scene.

Sam Slaughter
Photo by Oxley Photography 2014

plus Tom McAllister of Book Fight fame reads his personal essay, "A Brief History of World Travel (Part 8): Notes on Baltimore, MD."

Tom McAllister


God in Neon

When You Cross That Line

The Sheltering

Bastard Out Of Carolina


  • Check out Sam Slaughter's website.
  • Hear Sam read his essay about Denis Johnson's Jesus's Son back on episode 119.
  • Or hear Sam read his essay about his misadventures in brewing beer back on episode 126.
  • Or hear Sam reads his essay about helping himself to some sacramental wine as part of our Repeal Day 2014 show back on episode 129.
  • Read the text of A Brief History of World Travel (part 8) - Notes on Baltimore, MD, or check out Tom McAllister's other essays in this series, and his other work, on his website.
  • Consider pre-ordering Tom McAllister's forthcoming novel, The Young Widower's Handbook.

Young Widowers HandbookListen to the music of The Bambi Molesters.


Episode 220 of The Drunken Odyssey, your favorite podcast about creative writing and literature is available on iTunes, or right click here to download.Sonic Bullets


Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_220.mp3
Category:Arts/Culture/Writing -- posted at: 12:56am EDT

Episode 219 of The Drunken Odyssey, your favorite podcast about creative writing and literature is available on iTunes, or right click here to download.

In this week’s episode, I share a recording of Loose Lips, the monthly current events literary thing hosted by the inestimable Tod Caviness.

Loose Lips_3

The line up on that evening was Ryan Rivas,

my awesome self,

 Mary McGinn,

Logan Anderson,

and Amy Watkins!


Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_219.mp3
Category:Arts/Culture/Writing -- posted at: 9:44pm EDT

In this week’s episode, I talk to historian and creative writer Todd James Pierce,

Todd James Pierce

plus Heather Whited reads her essay, "The General."


Three Years in Wonderland


Check out the Disney History Institute.





Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_218.mp3
Category:Arts/Culture/Writing -- posted at: 1:17pm EDT

In this week’s episode, I talk with Vanessa Blakeslee about On Writing, a book of selections from Charles Bukowski's letters,

Vanessa and John 2

plus poet Henry Hughes writes me a letter about his own correspondence with Bukowski back from 1989 and 1991.

Henry Hughes

On Writing



Bukowski Hughes letter 1 Bukowski Hughes letter 2 Bukowski Hughes letter 3Bukowski Hughes letter 4Bukowski Hughes letters 5Hughes 1Hughes 2Hughes 3NOTES

Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_217.mp3
Category:Arts/Culture/Writing -- posted at: 7:27pm EDT

In this week’s episode, I talk to J. Bradley about his new novel, Jesus Christ, Boy Detective,

Jesse Bradley

plus Tom McAllister reads his essay, "A Brief History of World Travel, Part 6."

Tom McAllister Alaska


j_bradley-jesus_christ_boy_detective-front_coverFR_40_1 - front cover


  • For those of you who'd like to read "A Brief History of World Travel, Part 6," or follow Tom McAllister in general, go here.
  • Subscribe to The Florida Review for only $15 a year.
Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_216.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:24pm EDT

In this week's episode, I interview actor and author Lisa Wolpe about her one woman show, Shakespeare and the Alchemy of Gender, plus Mistie  Watkins reads her essay "Why I Write."

Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_215.mp3
Category:Arts/Culture/Writing -- posted at: 12:48pm EDT



Direct download: The_Drunken_Odyssey_Episode_214.mp3
Category:Arts/Culture/Writing -- posted at: 10:41pm EDT