Fiction. The 23 stories in DANCE MOVES OF THE NEAR FUTURE open with a sentient cactus and close with a crash of rhinos. In between you'll find a high-strung parrot, untenured yahoos, an amorphous, mind-controlling blob, optometrists in a strip club, a dash of Old Testament shenanigans, and weighty ontological concerns. These stories are unpredictable—even volatile—but they all share a wicked sense of humour, and a piercing eye for human (and inhuman) fallibility. Conley's prose whipsaws between carefully observed realism and batshit insanity to create surreal, compact worlds from fine grains of truth. Whether they're sketching the familial fallout of a stentorian patriarch or teaching the eponymous dance moves to survivors of the apocalypse ("With the rise of the invertebrates, spinelessness has never been so hip"), these stories are all marked by precise, engaging prose, dark humour, and a demented imagination.
Tim Conley is the author of several books of fiction, poetry, and criticism, including DANCE MOVES OF THE NEAR FUTURE (New Star Books, 2015), COLLAPSIBLE (New Star Books, 2019), and Unless Acted Upon (Mansfield Press, 2019). He teaches modernist and contemporary literature at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario.Author City: ST CATHARINES, ON CAN