TSL

The Short List

smallThanks to everyone who visited this site in 2019. You came from far and wide, according to my WordPress statistics. The top five countries viewing my blog were: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, India and, for reasons which escape me, Palestinian Territories.

Visitors came primarily to view The Short List, which now features 1,200 entries. There were 265 additions to the list this year, an average of 22 new publications per month. Other than Facebook, Twitter and WordPress Reader, the top five referrers to this blog were: Scribofile, Sandra SeamansChristopher Fielden, Winkwriters  and 805 Lit. I appreciate you spreading the word.

The Short List is for writers of flash fiction and short prose. The list is organized by word count, providing links to the submission guidelines and potential publication. These were the top five publication links that were clicked this year: Akashic Books, The Folded Word, Martian, Unstamatic and Purple Fire. I also keep an ever-growing list of departed publications. A moment of silence for those we lost this year.

Other than The Short List, a few other of my blog posts received top clicks: 1-800-CALL-GOD, Barbarism, 6:58, A Fortune, Yesterday’s Pictures and Webs of Flesh. It is no secret that these posts are for stories I wrote. In fact, 14 stories of mine were published or reprinted in 2019. Click on over and give them a read.

Here’s to a Happy New Year and for more words in print in 2020.
Published

The Difference Blood Makes

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image : hiveminer.com

Horror writing has always been part of my speculative toolbox. When I started writing these stories, there were things I vowed NOT to do: werewolves howling at the moon, unearthing a mummy or the same old vampire tale. This pledge came with a disclaimer, that I would give myself the go-ahead if I found a unique way to approach tried-and-true monsters. “The Difference Blood Makes” is such a tale. Now available in ebook or print as part of the third Weird and Whatnot anthology (11/16/19 issue).

Published

Curveball

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image : alamy.com

With some short stories, persistence pays off. Curveball has been searching for a home for nearly four years. I knew the characters were interesting and plot was good, but the story didn’t fit neatly in a genre; it touched the supernatural and a crime was involved, but it fell somewhere in-between. Submitted 25 times and rewritten twice, this tale finally found an editor who liked it enough to publish it on their website.

Published

Yesterdays’ Pictures

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image : community-preschool.com

Everyone who reads this piece asks if it’s true. Thankfully, no. The story is fictional and was originally submitted to Reflex Fiction in April 2019. It didn’t win the contest, but they were moved by it and decided to publish it anyway.

Yesterdays’ Pictures

by DL Shirey

The boy beams when finished. Beams. Like the face of God’s son whose name I no longer invoke. For eleven years he’s smiled whenever he sees me. Smiles when I feed him yoghurt. Smiles as I clean up shit and vomit. Gabe is a happy child. Happiest when he finishes a drawing.

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