Stayton Bonner

By Stayton Bonner:


Naked in Galveston

by Stayton Bonner | Thu, Sep 30, 2010 at 20:11 CST

Piney Wood Pulp

Like most of Nacogdoches-based Joe R. Lansdale’s work, Vanilla Ride is set in East Texas. More Flannery O’Connor than Elmer Kelton, East Texas is not the landscape most people envision when thinking of the Lone Star State. Its tightly looped … Read More


Where the Wild Things Are

The rubber Sasquatch head stared with glassy eyes from atop its pedestal. Beneath its gaze, Bigfoot Conference attendees milled about Tyler’s Caldwell Auditorium. Children peeked at the hairy visage from around parents’ legs. A pale man wearing black cowboy boots … Read More



Why the salmonella scandal was the least of Plainview’s worries.

Fourth in an occasional series on recession-era Texas. Locked chains snake through Plainview’s Peanut Corp. of America plant fence, clinking in the wind. Grain elevators dot the flat Panhandle horizon. Standing in the deserted building’s gravel parking lot, you feel … Read More



In Search of a Panhandle Windfall

While I waited for the safety instructor, my eyes wandered to a laminated photograph on the wall. Among motivational posters of sunset kayakers and snow-peaked mountains, a nervously grinning man held up the drooping carcass of a 9-foot diamondback rattlesnake … Read More


Writing the Wave

Anthologies are usually released after the end of a writer’s creative heyday, but the project is complicated in the case of Austin’s Bud Shrake, who perhaps more than any other Texas writer has continued through the years to reinvent himself, … Read More


Golden Days and Olden Ways

There’s no Chisos Basin, no Santa Elena Canyon, no Mule Ears in Texas’ Big Thicket National Preserve. Unlike Big Bend National Park, the only other United Nations International Biosphere Reserve in Texas, the Thicket entertains few visitors. Blackwater swamps, hardwood … Read More


Playing For Tips

The last time I played Fort Worth, the bartender showed me a naked picture of himself. He stood in front of a run-down venue, his large pale body intermingled with falling snow in a Rorschach blot that wasn’t blotted enough. … Read More


The Serendipity Wrangler

Bill Wittliff and the Southwestern Writers Collection

The Southwestern Writers Collection is located on the top floor of the Alkek Library on the Texas State University campus in San Marcos. White walls, wooden doors, Saltillo tile floors and Indian rugs give its exhibit halls and conference rooms … Read More


Bound and Determined

Imagination helps small bookstores survive

Hidden deep behind the East Texas pine curtain, Beauty and the Book is almost certainly the world’s only beauty salon-bookshop, where visiting authors are treated to a facial and perm before talking about their books. “The funny thing is that … Read More