• Urhi


Updated: Sep 1

For the tenth of our Beneath the Needle series, we are joined by Gustavo Bondoni, a novelist and short story writer with over three hundred stories published in fifteen countries, in seven languages. We highlight relevant character archetypes in relation to Lobster Bath, Gustavo's Flash Fiction feature included in The Needle Drops... Volume One. Naturally, we also discuss his upcoming work, horror media and veganism.

Gustavo spent some time in Zurich as a child, which cemented his consumption of all-things fiction...

Gustavo Bondoni is novelist and short story writer with over three hundred stories published in fifteen countries, in seven languages. He is a member of Codex and an Active Member of SFWA. His latest novel is Test Site Horror (2020). He has also published two other monster books: Ice Station: Death (2019) and Jungle Lab Terror (2020), three science fiction novels: Incursion (2017), Outside (2017) and Siege (2016) and an ebook novella entitled Branch. His short fiction is collected in Pale Reflection (2020), Off the Beaten Path (2019) Tenth Orbit and Other Faraway Places (2010) and Virtuoso and Other Stories (2011).

So, Gustavo - Lobster Bath centres a particular kind of person, one who is self-absorbed and ignorant to anything beyond his peripheral, to put it lightly. It’s a fantastic satirical critique -- where did it originate from? A person of note, or were you aiming at a broader target?

I think the workplace jerk has become a modern archetype, and they come in as many shapes and sizes as there are jerks in other walks of life. I’ve always found guys like this to be a bit creepy and cringeworthy, so when the idea for the lobster bath hit me… that was the guy I wanted to dump in there.

Being such a prolific author, with a publication count surpassing three hundred, could you share some notable memories of any of your short fiction you’re particularly fond of in retrospect?

That’s like asking me to choose among my children! But yeah, there’s always some that I love particularly. There’s a story called “A Sip of Pombé” published by DreamForge which I particularly love, because it addresses nationalism, haves and have-nots and the underdog while still having a happy ending. I also still love the first story I ever sold because it seemed utterly fresh and different to me back then (it still feels that way, even though I have more knowledge now). It’s called “Tenth Orbit” and is the title work of my first collection. Finally, On the fantasy / horror front I love a tale called “Bridge