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A Consternation of Monsters– 

consternation, as you should remember from grade school, is the collective noun for monsters.  I thought it a fitting title for a collection of short stories that each contain monsters of various sorts and shades.  In these tales, a creature of make-believe proves difficult to disbelieve, a trickster-god takes an unkindly interest in witnesses, eldritch horrors can be summoned with a quilt, frustrated wolves face dangerous prey, the angel of death wears a plaid sport coat, wise old women are to be feared and heeded, Elvis remains king, the corpses of legends can be perilous to have around, and where one of the most powerful objects in the world is a fork.

The settings for the stories span from rural Mississippi, Appalachia, the desert southwest, Alaska, and on to Memphis, Tennessee.

Writer Belinda Anderson has described Eric’s short story “Wolves Among Stones at Dusk” as Quentin Tarantino fighting Jack London. (The author would amend this to read: Quentin Tarantino fighting Jack London while Walter M. Miller, Jr. watches, but he digresses…)

A Consternation of Monsters is also being adapted into audio podcast form by the author himself.  Episodes of the Consternation of Monsters podcast can be found at its page on this very site.



A playwright as well, Eric’s short plays have been produced in a variety of theatres and outdoor locales.  Check out more information about them at the Plays Page.


The Author

Photo courtesy Aaron Christensen

Eric Fritzius writes things, edits them, and occasionally acts.  Sometimes he teaches others how to write, and/or directs them how to act.

His plays …to a Flame, …and Tigers and Bears, Honey Do, A Game of Twenty…, and Fargo 3D, have been produced at the Greenbrier Valley Theatre in Lewisburg, W.Va..   …to a Flame and …and Tigers and Bears were also produced by the Independent Theatre Collective in Wheeling, W.Va.   Fargo 3D has also been produced by the Lewis Theater in Lewisburg, the 0 to 60 Play Festival at Longwood University in April 2017, and the MadLab Theatre’s 18th Annual Theatre Roulette in May 2017.  You can read some of them via his page at the New Play Exchange.

the actor

From left Jordan Kaplan (AEA), Eric Fritzius, and Courtney Susman, in the Tragedy of Hamlet, 2015, Greenbrier Valley Theatre. Photo by Valerie Pritt courtesy of Greenbrier Valley Theatre.

A frequent actor at the Greenbrier Valley Theatre, he has appeared in numerous productions since 2003.  Among his favorites are: Ain’t Nonthin’ Quick N’ Easy, Y-Mains, Oliver!, Variations on the Death of Trotsky, Degas C’est Moi, Phillip Glass Buys a Loaf of Bread, Floyd Collins, The Crucible, A Christmas Carol, Occupy My Mind, The Greenbrier Ghost,  The Night Thoreau Spent in Jail, Dracula: A Rock Opera, The Drive-In, Man of La Mancha, Babes in Toyland, The Skin of Our Teeth, The Tragedy of Hamlet, and To Kill a Mockingbird.  He has directed the short plays FISH SCHTICKS (2014), PROPERTY RIGHTS (2015), FOREVER (2016), and The Magic of Niagara (2017) for GVT’s New Voices Play Festival.  For two years he appeared as Duncan Mall in the Ronceverte amphitheater outdoor drama Riders of the Flood (2005-2006).  In 2007 he co-directed the sequel to Riders… called Big Dreams, Restless Spirit.  For the past two summers he has directed dramatic productions for the Pocahontas Drama Workshop at the Pocahontas County Opera House in Marlinton, W.Va.  These have included The Opera House PlayFest (2016), A.J. DeLauder’s play The People at the Edge of Town (2017), and The Opera House PlayFest (2018).  

For eight years he has served as the script coordinator for the writers’ camp portion of Summer Scholars Onstage, an annual three week camp for gifted and talented junior high and high school students, at Mississippi State University.  A former camper himself, Eric enjoys returning each year to help the writers campers craft a three act musical comedy in the space of a week.  It’s one of the more stressful and enjoyable weeks of his year and has produced some of his favorite theatre experiences.

A former secretary and president of West Virginia Writers, Inc., he currently serves as the organization’s webmaster and as the producer and host of the West Virginia Writers Podcast.

In 2014, Eric was invited to give a TEDx talk for the TEDx Lewisburg event.  His talk “Awaiting My Nobel Peace Prize” can be found on YouTube. While it has the feel of a tongue-in-cheek speech, he truly believes the world would be a better place if people would follow the simple advice he dispenses within.

Eric teaches creative writing for the Federal Correctional Institute Beckley, W.Va., though he often believes he is learning more from his students than they are from him.

He and his wife live in Greenbrier County, W.Va, along with an inadvisable number of dogs.

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