Category: Fiction


In this novel we find a dying man unreasonably self-possessed with the lack of control over the inevitability of his death, while he experiences the various stages of dying. Thus, in accordance with his life long characteristics, he lashes out at the nurse, Sister Agnes, and in an even more viciously, against Sheela Bacchus, his servant.  His inhumane treatment of both women, also serves to obscure his own guilt of having pursued and impregnated a fifteen year old child, Dalia Mendonza, the mother of his beloved son, Payton. Yet, in keeping secret the whereabouts of Dalia Mendonza, he hopes to emotionally and psychologically control their son from his grave.  Unrepentant, he seeks to avenge the family’s estrangement from him and Payton, due to hte younger man’s illegitimacy and link to the African blood line, through his...

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Recognizing Young Talent: Courtney Patkau and Dylan Magruder

Fiction is my thing. I spend my free time writing it, I’ve taken several classes for it, and I aspire to publish my own work someday. When I heard we were doing a creative writing contest at Here Women Talk, I jumped at the opportunity to manage the fiction submissions. So, now that the Devin Alexander Creative Writing contest has ended, I want to draw attention to those who didn’t get the recognition they deserved. Although they didn’t win, it wasn’t because they lack talent. Out of all the brilliant writers who submitted their work but just didn’t gather...

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Andy Warhol’s Greatest Fan

by Lauren McLaughlin Chase took her seat in the very first row of the cabin of the plane that was to take her from St. Petersburg, Florida to Kansas City, MO, and immediately began to notice a dozen things happening around her all at once.  Passengers were still streaming in right in front of her.  The flight attendant greeted a boarding passenger and directed a previously boarded passenger to the rest room, while answering a different question from another member of the crew at the same time. Generally a “nervous flyer”, Chase was far too busy people-watching to remember her usual pre-panic symptoms.  Her palms were dry, her heart was beating normally, and her stomach did not have the usual knots in it.  Her husband John, sitting in the seat next to her, was amused to see her so “settled”.  Even after the big door was closed, Chase was busy watching the flight attendants begin to prepare a beverage cart.  And when two of them sat down in jump seats in front of her, she forgot completely on take-off to cut off the circulation in John’s left arm as the plane lifted into the air.  She was having a good experience flying.  Imagine that, she thought. Looking for a place to put her tote bag because there was no “under the seat in front of you”, one of the...

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Available Fortune

by Keddy Outlaw Day upon day, year after year, it got worse.  The women he met shopped desperately for marriage candidates.  One woman told him she knew on the very first date whether the specimen at hand was husband material.  Shawn grew older and remained alone.  The lapses between small bursts of dating activity grew longer and longer.  His value as a marriageable commodity increased. Concurrent with Shawn Hammermill’s idiosyncratic allergy to women’s marriage agendas was a cold vein of fear that he was not capable of love, that he was doomed to solitude.  He heard other men speak of the Rule of Three — that if by the third date, you can’t identify a strong attraction, you better move on.  Moving on became his trait, and he rarely got past that portentous third date. One woman who had known Mr. Shawn Hammermill for years without getting pushy was Ms. Lacey Spooner.  At age thirty- three, she was once divorced and had about her a certain veneer of plucky independence.  She lived in a house at 10 Marigold Lane, not far from Shawn’s apartment.  It was a lavish house intended for the extended families of days long past, and she had filled its rooms with renters from the University’s International program. As Shawn administered the University of Albany’s graduate housing office, he had placed many students at Lacey’s residence,...

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by Anthony DeSantis After she retired, Mrs. Quaid only belly-danced andsat on our patio with us and her husband.They werehillbillies from Appalachia.No one knew why they moved to the suburbs of Florida. It didn’t matter where they lived, though. Mr. Quaid still played the banjo in his underwear on their front lawn at night as he smoked his pipe of sweet-smelling tobacco. Mrs. Quaid decorated their house with arts-and-crafts junk and showcased it all whenever someone would come to visit them. It always smelt like moonshine behind their house—so no wonder they spent so much time relaxing on our patio, instead. “We’re thinking about putting up a fence,” Dad said to Mr. Quaid one summer while we all sat on our patio. We pulled at our clothes as sweat stuck them to our skin. Our eyes ached as heat sucked the moisture out of our sockets. If irritation has a sound, the chirping of katydids and frog croaks drowned it out for the longest time. “How’re we supposed to see if it’s alright to come on over?” Mr. Quaid asked. Mom said it would be fine if they knocked. “No,” Mr. Quaid said. “For years now, we’ve been able to look out our kitchen window and see if people are out here—and that’s how we know we can come on over.” Mrs. Quaid begged us not to build a...

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Learning to Kiss in the Snow

by David Tarpley she: I love him.  I think I… I do… Yes, I definitely do.  He makes me laugh.  He is a thoroughly reliable man.  (Safe.)  He is always on time.  He is good to me and my family.  He even mows the grass.  So why is it, that when I look at him I feel nothing… less than nothing?  I feel sadness.  I feel as if every moment we spend together is a moment of my life wasted.  I feel as if I am missing something by being with him. It is cold out tonight.  The fat puffy flakes delicately dance through the air as they suicidally throw themselves towards the fluffy crunch blanket which covers the ground.  It is beautiful.  I love watching snow fall.  I told him once I liked kissing in the snow.  He said it wasn’t practical.  He said there was nothing sexy about being cold and wet.  I think that was when I first started hating him. I just smiled of course.  But how could I love a man who didn’t believe in magic.  Love is magic.  Love is butterflies stirring in your stomach when you look at the one you are with.  When I look at him I feel nothing.  I pull my scarf around my ears.  It is hard to do with one hand but I dare not let go of...

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