xTx is a writer living in Southern California. She says nothing at notimetosayit.com.
After reading Normally Special, if I knew xTx’s legal name, I’d file a restraining order. Maybe she’s Aileen Wuornos. Maybe she’s a wiccan living under A.M. Homes’s bed. I don’t know, she freaks me the hell out.
Though sometimes brutal, sometimes devastating, I couldn’t look away. Especially not from the skill. Not from the beauty. Not from the truth. xTx is a voice unlike any other I know.
Understand that this is bone goodness wrapped in massacres of lovely, & if I wasn’t before, I am now an official fan of xTx.
xTx’s stories embody the terrors, wounds and deep emotions that tremor through our bodies as we walk around in our daily lives, pretending everything is alright. Nothing is alright of course, but xTx turning our hidden selves into meaningful stories helps a whole hell of a lot.
When I was a little girl, my father told me many times that he believed there was true evil in the world. It wasn’t until years later that I fully understood him, that I knew people could be evil, would be evil, would do evil things.
The backbone of xTx’s “The Mill Pond,” a story in Normally Special, is that unnamed darkness, a violence that can only be hinted at, a horrible act that cannot be spelled out, maybe because anything else would be unbearable.
In “The Mill Pond,” xTx fills us with sugar and evil.
We are trapped in our Tinkerbell’s body and small shirts, we are salivating and lusting after rainbow-hued Kool-Aid cups, sweet Suzy Q’s, stolen cookies. All of the treats are spelled out for us, described, they evoke a visceral reaction in us and our Tinkerbell.
The treats are under the light of Tinkerbell’s narrative, they are a clear desire we share with the character.
What we do not share are the awful things. Mister Dean is described, but his actions are mostly a shadow. Mister Dean does things so evil our Tinkerbell doesn’t have the vocabulary to describe them yet.
This story is the pulse of a young girl on the brink of learning the language of the awful, of the horrible, of the worst things in the world.
When did you learn there was true evil in the world?