Selected Concoctions

SHORT FICTION

Esme lasts two more days before finally admitting it. She’s not six anymore, she has a fucking cellphone, a computer, but no, sure, this knocking thing. She’ll give it a go. They’ll both be poltergeists tonight.

— “Horse Girl”

Juana woke up to find her hair had come alive on her pillow. It might’ve startled her if not for the elderly voice, so small and papery, “Don’t scream, girl, whatever you do. My ears can’t take it.” It almost sounded like her abuelita’s voice. Except, of course, not dead.

— “The Daddy Thing”

They chucked rocks into the black water, feigning the occasional chill. They whispered What was that? as if they’d heard something. Their thoughts slithered as they looked for ways to frighten each other, so many glinting silverfish wriggling around the dark folds of their brains.

— “The Hunted”

My first night alone in Raimy’s hipster dream home. It isn’t eerie at all. I’m not suddenly afraid of the dark just because it’s hanging around in someone else’s rooms. I’ve already made my inventory of everything that’s normal and typical and boring. I checked all the closets, no roaches or monsters to be seen. I put my dishes away in the washer instead of leaving them out in the sink. I checked every lock. I checked every faucet. Normal. It’s all normal.

— “Quietly Gigantic”

I’m alone in my apartment but I have the TV on so it sounds like a bunch of people are in here talking. This way people in the hall won’t walk by and think that I’m alone. I can hear the neighbors laughing through the wall. Is it me? Are they laughing at me?

— “The Joke”

The worms—it’s complicated. I don’t want to put that pressure on my lover, to become something he talks to his therapist about. But I feel them. The squirming, clammy draw of these things. The kind of feeling that makes you tear your fingernails. The kind that makes you send one too many text messages.

— “Late at Night, After He’s Fallen Asleep”

We took Emmaline on what promised to be a particularly stormy night. It wasn’t hard to do, especially since all the police and alarm company people were right there in the mob with us. Her mother, Rebecca, had to be restrained by five different people; the sheriff even had to lock her in a holding cell to keep her secured.

— “The Feast”

  • In the Oven,” a micro-story, Prime Number Magazine, Summer 2017
    • Winner of the July 2017 53-Word Story Contest
  • “NoonTurn,” a short story, F(r)iction, Summer 2017
  • “Key-holders,” a short story, poemmemoirstory (now called NELLE), Spring 2017
  • Chameleons,” a short story, Cold Mountain Review, Spring 2016

Ecstatic births are rare—all the books and websites say so—but Clara figured there wasn’t anything quite as rare as a grown woman giving birth to a baby octopus, so who was to say what was rare or common in her case? Who was to say that every human delivering an octopus wouldn’t get a little bit ecstatic?

— “Chameleons”

  • Zebra Skin,” a flash story, Fiction Southeast, Winter 2016
  • “Destiny,” a flash story, NANO Fiction, Autumn 2016
  • Girls with Blood in Their Veins,” a short story, Bartleby Snopes, Summer 2016
    • also available in the Editor’s Choice final print issue, Spring 2017
  • “A State of Dismal Woe,” a short story, Zone 3, Autumn 2016
  • “The Soup,” a short story, Natural Bridge, Winter 2016
  • “The Spyglass,” a flash story, Cease, Cows, Spring 2016
  • “New Skin,” a short story, Menacing Hedge, Winter 2016

SHORT NONFICTION

INTERVIEWS & BOOK REVIEWS