Best Small Fictions 2018

The new Best Small Fictions 2018 (edited by Sherrie Flick and Aimee Bender) is out this month and available here.  My story “The Truth About Alaskan Rivers,” originally published at The Forge Literary, was chosen for the anthology, and my story “I Want to Believe the Truth Is Out There,” published in Jellyfish Review, was a finalist.  It’s funny, “The Truth About Alaskan Rivers” was not my favorite story of mine published last year, and I sometimes wonder how I wrote it — it’s so disturbing.  But I guess that’s good, right?

I can’t tell you how excited I was to receive the book!

LA-based authors published in Best Small Fictions 2018 will be reading their stories at a location and date soon to be disclosed.



Whole World Is Desert, part 2

Just a quick one here, since I’m trying to finalize a chapbook manuscript and draft an outline for a flash novella.  Yesterday, Longform picked “The Whole World Is Desert” as its pick of the week, something I’m very grateful for!

I have another story (a flash, a micro! this time) coming out in Lost Balloon next week, and that should be the last of the stories for this year.

happy Friday the 13th!


Whole World Is Desert

Today, The Rumpus published “The Whole World Is Desert.”  This is the first story I wrote after I took a break from writing after I had my daughters.  It was started in the desert, at a writing retreat in Desert Hot Springs, in an funky old resort, in the heat, in between dips in the hot springs and coaching sessions with our workshop leader, Rachel Resnick.

The voice is what came to me first, a bored teenage girl complaining about a trip with her mother.  I knew I wanted to set it in the most incongruous place for this young girl.  I’d been obsessed with Central Asia, especially Uzbekistan, since the late 1990s – and finally traveled there in 2010.  And then I ran with the story, generating more than 35 pages and alternate scenes, until Beth Gilstrap helped me scale it down and pointed to the ending image.

This is but one of several stories which contain the same characters:  “Dress Rehearsal” (also published in The Rumpus), “E Ticket” (published in Little Fiction), “Tuberose” (published in Atticus Review), “No Problem, No Problem” (published in Jellyfish Review), and “How I’ve Been Without You” (published in Cheap Pop).

I created a Pinterest board for this story, using images that inspired the story.  Be glad that you did not sit through the original slide show of photos I took from Central Asia, during a very vodka-fueled party we had one Friday night to a packed house who thought that Uzbekistan was a mystery.


Surfers and Upcoming Publications

I have a flash up at Sick Lit Magazine, “How to Date a Surfer.” Surfing in 1970s LA, full of crochet bathing suits, Leif Garrett, and “Vals Go Home” graffiti.

I’ve been writing a lot about middle school and friendships.  Two of the flashes from these series are coming out this fall — “Butterfly” in Third Point Press and “Body Like Paper” in New South Journal.  I’m excited to see these two come out! “Butterfly” is based on my own experiences in middle school, and “Body Like Paper” on my daughter’s, at the same middle school.  So we’ve got the late 70s with charm necklaces and roach clips, and the present with Facetime and ballet.  Social dynamics the same.