Micro fiction: The Water Curse by Kim Dixon Perez

Elinor screamed as her treasured magnifying glass dropped in the water.

Rumor was: this shallow puddle never evaporated. If you touched even a drop – you were cursed. Back in ’06, Jimmy Flanders dared, and boy did he regret it. Or he would regret it, if he were still capable of clarity.

But Elinor had explorer blood. Couldn’t help it. If she could study the water, she’d know its depths. Using tongs, she slowly retrieved her magnifier. The tongs slipped. The glass dropped. Water splashed. Cursed.

Now Elinor’s brain can only consume memes dispensing self-righteous half-truths. Incapable of seeing anything whole.

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Kim Dixon Perez ghostwrites for executives and entrepreneurs by day, and lets her word-goblins loose at night for some fun toggling between short fiction and APA-style academic nonfiction in pursuit of a master’s in environmental management. Find her at kimdixonperez.com.

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Micro fiction: Ordinary Diversions by Rachel S. Reed

Plodding down well-hewn gashes of the south Arroyo, we escape grand houses that question our presence. Laughter splashes up from the regimented pool of extracurricular children. We joke that, not long enough ago, we would’ve found an idealized underbrushed overlook to share the revelations found in a cloud of skunk. Reigniting that haze promises madness. Age has saddled us with reputations and tremulous futures that depend on them. The grand houses lurk aloof, waiting to withhold their equity. Stay the trodden trails. The dead squirrel merits half a pause, and we continue descending. We give no time for its truth.

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reed-rachelRachel S. Reed is a Pasadena-adjacent writer spinning whimsy during her down-time. She has a soft spot for sci-fi and quells her irrepressible penchant for nostalgia with frequent hops on the lindy circuit. You can check in with her on Twitter and relive the adventures of inanimate objects by subscribing to her newsletter.

 

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Micro fiction: Horace Parker’s Mind by Petrea Burchard

Horace Parker had known he would lose his mind one day, he just hadn’t thought he would lose it in the back yard.

“I had it only a moment ago,” he thought. “It must have bounced.” Then he forgot what “it” was.

He was on his knees, weeding among the tomatoes, when he felt it fall, like so many feathers brushing past his ears. His reaction time was quick; he reached out his garden-gloved fingers to catch it in mid-air. But when he opened his palm he found not one, single feather. Only tomato leaves, shriveled and brown.

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Micro fiction: The Bus by Paula Johnson

After months of glances and weeks of conversation, he worked up the nerve to suggest dinner, but was drowned out by the blaring bus horn. They laughed. He tried again. She accepted. Several regular passengers applauded.

She blinked back tears when he did not appear at the restaurant or answer his phone. While she died a little inside, he died outside under the front wheels of a crosstown bus.

“He ran right in front of me,” the bus driver said.

“Why was he in such a hurry?” an old man asked.

“Who were the flowers for?” asked his wife.

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In addition to publishing 1,000-word flash fiction stories, the Rose City Sisters now accepts your micro fiction. Keep your story to 100 words or less (not including the title). Submit by email.

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Story Kitchen workshop starts Feb. 11

kitchenAll writers get stuck. That’s what writing is: the hard work of making it great.

Novelist Petrea Burchard and screenwriter John Sandel are teaching a new workshop on the essentials of great storytelling. Their premise is that a lifetime of consuming stories makes you an expert storyteller. Sometimes you just need someone to show you how much you already know.Continue Reading

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