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The Big Toe

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 Sauced up, Scarred and at Sleaze


Happy Endings

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:...


The Story of an Hour

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...


The Dripping

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 FacebookEmail:



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


The Nine Billion Names of God

GC McKay's 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...



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...


To Build a Fire

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


The Tell-Tale Heart

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 here. Take it easy and be sure to avoid eye contact at all times. Works for me. Twitter:...


The Lady, or the Tiger?

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,...


The Hitchhiking Game

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...


The Lone Drunk Readeth - A Perfect Day for Bananafish

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...


The Lone Drunk Readeth - Signs and Symbols

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...


The Lone Drunk Readeth - Dark Christmas

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....


The Lone Drunk Readeth - A Friend In Need

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...


The Lone Drunk Readeth - A Clean, Well-Lighted Place

GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth 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...


The Lone Drunk Readeth - Sleeping Beauty

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...


The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Other Place

This week GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth 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,...


The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Doll

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...


The Lone Drunk Readeth - The Frolic

GC McKay's The Lone Drunk Readeth 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...