Smug language sending me round the condescension bend

Greetings Lovers, Siggy F here.

Obviously I spend the majority of my life immersed in books and wine, and very fine that is too.

But sometimes I can’t escape some of the more repulsive uses of the language. (If the following shit ever works its way into books, I’ll cut my eyes out – woah, calm down. Ed).

Take ‘hope that helps’.

Is there a more ball curling phrase?

Like so many of today’s linguistic flourishes (online anyway), it is invariably redundant, but always manages to contain a sickening dose of smug condescension and passive aggressive needle.

It’s right up there with ‘I’ll just leave this here.’

Think about that for a moment.

(That’s obviously one too).


If your point is so lame it requires you pointing out to someone they need to think about it, then it has clearly fallen short.

But again, it’s this modern trend to absolutism. Like everything in life, nuance rules. But not for the twats using these phrases. They descend from on high to clear up your apparent confusion.

Nah mate, I can just entertain both sides of an argument.

Absolutism has given us a divided country, and… oh fuck that. That’s a debate for another time.

Hope that helps (take as long as you need).

I’m going for a wine, my loves.

Til next time. I’ll be in a better mood then…

Hanman’s Bananas

Now then sweet ones.

We all like travelling yeah? Here’s a vignette by Ed Spencer, and a trip to India…

Got stoned with Hindhu monks once in Hampi, on the top of a mountain, deranged monkeys everywhere, terrorising people. They’d already stolen my bananas. Some sort of offering to hanuman, the monkey god, in whose honour this high-altitude temple had been built. Then the monks asked me ‘what is the meaning of life?’ I said, ‘er, to have fun.’ ’no it is not!’ they shouted. ‘it is..’ whatever the fuck it was…

Nice eh?

Take it easy

Siggy x

Do you know what would be really nice…?

Now then you lovely fellas. How’s your week? Bearable, I hope.

To be honest, we’ve had a corker. On Monday, Ed Spencer’s short fiction collection The Last Thing Anyone Needs Is A Dribbling Crisis (And Other Small Talk) was published. If you’ve been reading our blog lately, you will have read some of his stuff. Especially over the last few days.

These are exciting times for us as a small publisher.

At Sigmund Fraud Books we like stories that laugh at the darker aspects of the human experience.

And we like work that says something not only about people, but the systems and ideas that govern our lives.

We like satire, speculative fiction and anything blackly comic.

Our latest two collections (far left and far right on below pic) are our response to producing fiction for the smartphone age. Yes, we can carp all we like about withering attention spans and all that, but you have to play it as it lies.

These two new collections are packed (PACKED) full of short stories, flash fiction, vignettes and snapshots. Almost always funny, they are poignant, thought-provoking, frequently visceral, and occasionally painful. They also fit in your coat pocket. They are perfect to read on the bus, wating for your date to show up, or if you fancy a five minue burst of great writing but are too knackered to read a novel.

So why not get yourself a copy? £5.99 each. I mean, that’s about a pint and a quarter isn’t it? It aint much. And while booze is great, these books are better.

If you fancy Asylum For The Half-Baked, go here.

If you fancy Dribbling Crisis, go here.

And if you fancy a brilliantly satirical novel, that is serious but fun, Absurdia can be acquired here.

Thanks. We really appreciate your interest.

Siggy, Abi, Cosmic Sky Bran and all at SFB x


A lovely walk is nice. If it goes well

Monday started. I went for a walk and got savaged by a dog.

Soon after, nursing wounds, I strolled through an internal market. As I smelled the whiff of the butchers I looked at people in the makeshift yet grand cafés and thought, Christ, who could have a nice relaxing coffee with that stench in their nozzies?

Twelve seconds later I was in one of those cafés ordering coffee, nozzies filled with carcass stench.

It was incredible how my mind blanked or contradicted itself with no worry or preoccupation with contradiction. Which was entirely contradictory to what I espoused in my every walk of life. That anyone, anything, everything, must, at the very least, conform to its own logic.

Then, of all people, my ex (the last important one) sat down at the next table.

‘I think you were an important relationship for me,’ she said. ‘I didn’t think so at the time, immediately after we broke up. I think we were both in a period of transition.’

I’d just felt like I always did.

I must always have been in a state of transition.

‘I think we could be friends.’

‘Do you really?’

I walked off, leaving my coffee.

Soon I heard –

‘Christ killers!’

An Evangelist was shouting at some Jewish people.

‘Erm. Didn’t Jesus have to die so you could get a religion? Dying for your sins and all that?’

The Evangelist had nothing to say to that, and walked off.

So a pint then? OK.

‘Feelin the effects of last night are we, Pog?’

‘You’re not wrong, Lew.’

‘You know what, I sometimes get a hangover-like headache in the morning if I eat cheese late at night. Gets me really dehydrated.’

‘Aye, well the reason for mine is I neglected my own advice. I swear by a cuppa tea before going to bed to nullify the effects of a hangover, and last night, I forgot.’

‘You know what I don’t understand about tea? It’s that if you leave a cup for a certain amount of time, and then over the same amount of time drink a different cup of tea, taking sips regularly, why does the drunk tea seem hotter than the one that is just left there?’

‘Aye it’s a conundrum, Lew.’

‘Similarly, adding sugar after it’s made makes it colder.’

‘In that case gimme a pint and one for yourself.’


The Last Thing Anyone Needs Is A Dribbling Crisis

Hello lovers!

Yes sir. Dribbling. Crisis. Last thing you bloody need, aint it?

TODAY, Ed Spencer’s short fiction collection is out!

For Ed, life is a black comedy. Whether at home, out and about, or further afield, absurdity stalks him like a demented wolf.

In this blackly comic collection of thoughts, observations and things that probably shouldn’t have happened, expect the humdrum and the downright unusual, from Kafka-esque trips to the doctor, unwanted chivalry and bad breath, to overcoming a curse, and a life on the run from the murderous twitterati.

Ranging from the ridiculous to the painful, these Brautigan-inspired snapshots cover also the etiquette for interrupting a suicide, choosing the right post box, the impact of mushrooms on love, and how things turn out if your mother’s a vegetarian in a tribe of cannibals.

Challenged to create a collection for the modern age – dwindling attention spans and all – these varied pieces are perfect to read in doses, on the bus, in a doctor’s surgery, or waiting for your Tinder date to show up.

If you like laughing at the darker aspects of life (we do), these are the stories for you.

Get it here! (It’s only £5.99. Bloody bargain!)

If in doubt, why not treat it as a joke?

As I approached his flat I could see him at the window. It began to open and I could see he was struggling with something. A great long what? sheet? flopped out.

He began unfurling the long white fabric. It was a banner and as it became equal to its task, huge red and black painted letters were revealed with the message:


When he let me in he was dressed in drag & suspenders.

‘Alright mate,’ he said.

We went through to his lounge and in there sat a very attractive brunette in her mid-twenties.

‘Alright mate,’ she said, smoking a spliff.

I had to laugh when I recognised her. She was a friend of one of the bridesmaids at the wedding I’d been to that weekend. I’d been given a plus-one and had invited Louie – the man stood just there in drag & suspenders who’d unfurled the banner. He’d got confused and turned up to the wedding dressed as ET cos he thought we were going to a fancy dress. It made people wonder about my choice of cohorts but evidently played well with the ladies.