“Valerie’s mother is nagging and she’s doing it, frustratingly, from under the screwed-up paper towels and muddy-looking wipes in the sluice so Valerie can’t dig her out. She’s doing her best with the unfinished business but it isn’t easy with the constant interruptions. This time though, despite the noises, she hopes she has succeeded because, a few yards away in the communal dining room, Pete is turning blue.”
Excerpt from ‘God’s Scrubber’, finalist in the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities’ Pen2Paper competition and free to read as a PDF from their site http://www.txdisabilities.org/pen-2-paper. Winners to be announced on October 30th.
Anne is a writer of short stories that have a quintessential Irishness about them – soft and cosy and laced with tiny toothpicks of funny, wry, blunt honesty. There’s more here
Past entrant to a Mensa short fiction competition, Sequenced Heir didn’t win. Perhaps even they didn’t catch all the clues; perhaps you can … This Personal Space
It’s the time of year for them isn’t it, tiny helpless little balls of fluff that seem to have been abandoned? But we’re told to leave them be, they were put there, the parents are watching. Perhaps these people should have done the same with what they found, out there in a capsule in deep space. From the recycler, Baby Bird was published by Read Short Fiction in 2012. About 1500 words.
‘Lazy, idle, unreconstructed encumbrance,’ she remarked to the air. ‘Useless git!’ she added with satisfaction. Alice was peering down from the upstairs window at her sagging husband cocooned in his sagging lounger out on the patio. Dog Day is published by Cut a Long Story, price 99p.
When disease surfaces in a world long free of illness, the old techniques for containment must be put in place, if anyone can remember how. Incubators is free on Readwave 2705 words
‘Jesus loves her, Jesus loves her, Jesus loves the murdering bitch.’ Emmy chuckles to herself in that private way only people whose heads are somewhere else can do. She hunches up on the bed and grabs her knees; pulling them up to her chin, and hugging them like babies. ‘Pretty boys,’ she says; and bites into her knee cap.
Cut A Long Story, February 13th, 2015
From the re-cycler ; ‘Lovely Girls’ is a story about the life of a young woman in an institution for people with learning disabilities.
Amy watches the door; that grimy, finger-stained, gobbed-on portal to fleeting respite from the chronic stink that makes her eyes water.
First published by The Other Room Journal, it moved to Scribd when TORJ ceased operating. 1999 words.
Mrs Wilberforce, fending off the attentions of her visitor and bending forwards in an attempt to field the low grasps of his hands, while also pulling at the leg of her outfit, was reversing into the street, presenting a set of cheeks such as might be seen in an exotic zoo. 7269 words in the fine spirit of farce. ‘Emily Buckingham and the Major’s Madam‘, a paid download from Ether Books, September 2014.