Dispatches, thoughts, and miscellanea from writer Jon Konrath

King of Scotland

I can never justify writing in here anymore, because if I had the time to write an update, I would have the time to work on the zine, or finish the story I’m trying to write for it. There are five stories now locked in for the next issue, two from old regulars, and three from new people. I am hoping for more stuff this issue, maybe to press out the length a bit. Last time I think it was 168 pages. I could go up to about 200 pages and keep the cost under $9.99. I think I could push 300 pages and keep the price around $11.99. I’m still making absolutely nothing on that, but I’d rather make nothing and have a great read versus make money and have a piece of shit. Anyway, I’m still taking submissions for another month, so if you had something in mind, get cracking.

We went to see The Last King of Scotland last night. Very fucked up movie. It was well done, and I’m almost certain the story was fictitious in the sense that it was maybe biopic and the doctor character may have been largely invented to carry the narrative. But the Idi Amin stuff was real, and it’s one of those things that was largely ignored by the press here in the US while people made fun of Jimmy Carter or wringed hands over the hostage situation. Meanwhile, he kills 300,000 people, and it’s mostly brushed over in the history books. It makes me wonder what is happening now in some of these shithole dictatorship countries that is largely ignored by the media while they quibble over what the president ate for lunch. The other thing that surprised me about the movie (other than the gore) was that they shot in the capitol of Kampala, and it looked surprisingly urban. The film starts out in the sticks, where there’s nothing but dirt farmers and lean-tos, but the city of Kampala was bigger than pretty much every city in Indiana. (Shit, I just looked it up, and Kampala is almost twice as big as Indianapolis!) Anyway, I thought the whole movie would be in mud huts and straw roofs, but it’s a real shock to see such a big city with modern buildings and cosmopolitan looks. Sure, you’ll see the occasional Range Rover with a dead elk strapped to the hood, but it’s still a strange contrast to what you’d expect. It’s also a good example of how the wealth is concentrated, and the people that farm and live out in the rural areas are truly fucked over by those in power.

Not much else. It’s pouring rain outside, so maybe I will sit here and get some work done later. Most of my work lately has been focused on cleaning off my damn desk, going through bills and papers and filing them away, and throwing out or recycling what I don’t need. It sounds easy, but it isn’t. Maybe I should take a picture some time. Anyway, time for lunch soon.