Category Archives: Short story

"The Fireline" is up at Flash Fiction Offensive

“The Fireline” is a story I originally wrote four or five years ago.  I was reading a lot of Freud and Marcuse at the time and the piece ballooned to a linked 10,000 word long story, and went nowhere.  A couple months ago, I take a hack-axe to it and came up with the 1000 or words you’re going to go click to right now (right?)  Convenient clickable linky 

A preview:

“We’re going to do it,” Silas said. “With or without your say-so.”

Pa scrabbled down the roof and leaped off the eave, coming up spry as a jackrabbit. He strode within a pace of them. The boys stepped back.

“Is it true, Lord?” Pa said. “Did I raise up a pack of back-talking hellions?”

Convenient linky, repeated

“The Fireline” is up at Flash Fiction Offensive

“The Fireline” is a story I originally wrote four or five years ago.  I was reading a lot of Freud and Marcuse at the time and the piece ballooned to a linked 10,000 word long story, and went nowhere.  A couple months ago, I take a hack-axe to it and came up with the 1000 or words you’re going to go click to right now (right?)  Convenient clickable linky 

A preview:

“We’re going to do it,” Silas said. “With or without your say-so.”

Pa scrabbled down the roof and leaped off the eave, coming up spry as a jackrabbit. He strode within a pace of them. The boys stepped back.

“Is it true, Lord?” Pa said. “Did I raise up a pack of back-talking hellions?”

Convenient linky, repeated

A very bad thing happens to Stumpy

Go find out what: my story Stumpy Got Away The First Day is up at Staccato Microfiction.

Thanks to Chris for taking the piece, rejected 17 times by at least 17 editors who didn’t see what he did.

A preview:

After the second football practice of fall me and Pete snuck up behind Stumpy with the Gatorade cooler. It was one of the big ones you use for a Gatorade bath after winning the big game. The Gatorade cooler was empty. It had been sitting out in the sun all summer. The tracksters must not have cleaned it out too good the spring before because it reeked like something died in there. We thought that would make it the funnier.

Persistence above all: "Long Christmas" is up at 50 to 1; Staccato takes "Stumpy Got Away The First Day"

My little 50-word ditty, “Long Christmas” is up at 50 to 1.  You’ve got 17 seconds to spare to read it, don’t you, and maybe another 17 or so to comment?  My thanks.

Another little flash of mine, “Stumpy Got Away The First Day” will be up this Thursday at Staccato Microfiction.

I’m kind of proud of this little guy.  It endured 17 (!) rejections before Chris at Staccato saw fit to take it in.  I thought this one might have a little trouble getting published, but 17 rejections seems a tad harsh.

In publishing, persistence above all.

Persistence above all: “Long Christmas” is up at 50 to 1; Staccato takes “Stumpy Got Away The First Day”

My little 50-word ditty, “Long Christmas” is up at 50 to 1.  You’ve got 17 seconds to spare to read it, don’t you, and maybe another 17 or so to comment?  My thanks.

Another little flash of mine, “Stumpy Got Away The First Day” will be up this Thursday at Staccato Microfiction.

I’m kind of proud of this little guy.  It endured 17 (!) rejections before Chris at Staccato saw fit to take it in.  I thought this one might have a little trouble getting published, but 17 rejections seems a tad harsh.

In publishing, persistence above all.

"First Water" is live at FCAC

A third installment from my novel manuscript has gone live at FCAC.  “First Water” features Delia and her family, trying to make it through on the hardscrabble high plains.  Go on over and have a look, please.

Delia & co. have also appeared in Midwestern Gothic (print only) and decomP.

“First Water” is live at FCAC

A third installment from my novel manuscript has gone live at FCAC.  “First Water” features Delia and her family, trying to make it through on the hardscrabble high plains.  Go on over and have a look, please.

Delia & co. have also appeared in Midwestern Gothic (print only) and decomP.

An acceptance – The Fireline makes it into Flash Fiction Offensive

Here’s something that doesn’t happen every day – “The Fireline” got scooped up by Flash Fiction Offensive before it had a chance to get rejected anywhere.

When does this happen?  Well, in my (very limited experience) with non-rejection, it happens when you dispense with being pretty, and just tell a story.

I wrote this story a few years back when I was reading Freud and Marcuse, for reasons no longer clear to me, and I was struck by the primal story of the sons rising up to kill their father in the dust and blood of a primeval cave.  Pretty heavy material, which I didn’t much know how to handle at the time.  About 5 years and a lot of learnin’ later, though, I pared it to down the elemental aspects that made the vision powerful in the first place: in other words – a story.

You just have to keep slicing away the accretions of literary pretension, to find the story.  Funny how that works.