Vernal Fall

He’s only a few steps behind her on the rock bridge when it happens—creeping along, cautious, watching his footing. A yard, that’s all, maybe less, but Garrett doesn’t see the slip, doesn’t see Mara’s foot fly out and her knee buckle, doesn’t realize what’s happening until he hears her one…
Source: Flash Fiction Online
Vernal Fall

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Women’s Work

At Mama’s funeral, the ghosts crowded around the casket, like see-through pallbearers. “Go away,” I said. “She gone. She can’t talk to you no more.” Miss Ruth, our neighbor, patted my arm. She thought I was talking to the mourners. “Oh honey,” she said, “I know you feel like that…
Source: Flash Fiction Online
Women’s Work

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Sex Sells Books


  Want to know how many books sex sells? Over $1 billion per year. That’s a lot of hot steamy romance novels. I believe erotic fiction should be celebrated not snickered at as a lower art form. Is it sensational? You bet. But that doesn’t make it less-than in any…
Source: Flash Fiction Online

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Hinterlight Abbey


  hinterlight, n. 1. The area surrounding the flight vector of a faster-than-light spaceship. Also applied generally to visible emissions from a generation ship in space. * * * The abbot pinged my cell a mere two hours into my sleep shift, leaving me cranky even before I heard his…
Source: Flash Fiction Online

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FXXK WRITING: ELECTION 2016 EDITION


It feels trite jumping back into THE GUTTERS of my salad days as a writer. The GUTTERS of today are far too real, horrific, and sad. The country elected a racist, xenophobic, homophobic, misogynist demagogue. Hard to get in the time machine and go back into the world of publishing’s…
Source: Flash Fiction Online

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A Menagerie of Grief


When my daughter’s chest fell and did not rise again, when her doctor looked at the monitors and shook her head, when it was over, really over, and still she lay there, my grief pushed its scaly head out of her chest. My grief was a dragon, with scales of…
Source: Flash Fiction Online

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Change is Inevitable


Change is inevitable, more frequently than some are comfortable with. Life changes almost constantly, yet so many of us worry ourselves sick over even the smallest changes in our self-perceived normalcy. Why is that? Change comes, worry or not. Change comes, wished for or not. “If I could change the…
Source: Flash Fiction Online

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A New Man

I entered NPR’s 5th three-minute fiction contest, where you have to write a “flash fiction” story in 600 words or less. The constraints were that the stories had to begin with the line, “Some people swore that the house was haunted,” and end with the line, “Nothing was ever the same again after that.”

I didn’t win, or even get into the final round, which is fine because the winning story was quite good. The winning stories in these contests tend to be more “literature” and less “popular”, which is more my style.

Regardless, here’s mine.

“A New Man”

Some people swore that the house was haunted. That didn’t bother me – it meant I was left alone.

Someone knocked at the door … Read the rest

What Can You Do in Twenty-Five Words?

NPR has a ‘3-minute fiction’ contest, which puts a word count limit at 600.
In the field, this is known as ‘flash fiction.’

The even briefer version is called ‘hint fiction’ and has a word limit of around 25.

The New Yorker has a review of a book on the subject, “Hint Fiction: An Anthology of Stories in 25 Words or Fewer”

Examples:

“Blind Date,” by Max Barry.
She walks in and heads turn. I’m stunned. This is my setup? She looks sixteen. Course, it’s hard to tell, through the scope.

“Houston, We Have a Problem,” by J. Matthew Zoss.
I’m sorry, but there’s not enough air in here for everyone. I’ll tell them you were a hero.Read the rest