Published

Belts

belts
image : sandipointe.com

This piece is less about being a band geek in high school and more about adolescent humor and bad judgement. It stars my pal Charlie Banks and kindly published in July 2018 by Twenty-Two Twenty-Eight.

Belts

by DL Shirey

It went like this: Two high school buddies square off in mock confrontation, voices brimming with testosterone. Mine’s longer than yours. No way, mine’s longer. Belts are unbuckled, giving the impression to nearby girls of an imminent comparison of penises. They are whipped out with a flourish–the belts, I mean–and held up to one another to see who wins.

This was foreplay in 1973, when I had no idea what it took to attract the opposite sex. Acting the buffoon was a way to get attention, as was ’70s fashion statements like bell-bottom Levi’s, flower-print shirt and a white belt. I even had a pair of platform shoes, which, thank God, went out of fashion before the year was up.

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Published

In Time

infinity-clock
image : videoblocks.com

What events would occur in the preliminary phases before time travel was perfected? To me, the electronic transmission of messages through time would be developed before a living creature or an object crossed that threshold. At least that’s the premise for this short story. Published by Theme of Absence Magazine, they were also quite kind to do an author interview.

Published

The Sleep Game

sleep-game-60p
image : pxhere.com

Those who expect something speculative will find this a change of pace, a sweet story about a little girl and her auntie. This short story was first published in July 2018 by Ariel Chart.

The Sleep Game

by DL Shirey

This is wrong, stealing money from Aunt Maybelle. At month’s end, no less, when choices get made by the day, by what’s needed most. Like last night, Mom shuffled the pile of envelopes on the kitchen table. “Pay that,” said Mom and tossed it with ones that had big red-stamped words. “Not that,” as she put the envelope on the taller stack.

Here at Aunt Maybelle’s, choices are different. “Child, bring me my pills,” and I do. It’s a long plastic holder—sort of like my pencil box—with snaps covering divides, each decorated with letters like M, T, W. Auntie chooses not to take all the pills under F. And this morning she saved the bowl of dry cereal Mom and I brought her. She hasn’t eaten yet.

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TSL

The Short List

small38 new entries on The Short List this month. Over three dozen more places to send your shorter short stories and flash fiction. As creative as the writers are whose work appears in these journals, I am quite amused with the titles of the publications themselves. New to the list this month are three journals that ampersand fun words together. First is Bourbon & Blood, which accepts up to 3,000 words, as long they’re “hard, gritty and raw.Rhythm & Bones tops submissions at 1,500 words and prefers minimalist work: “the bare bones of literature.Wyrd & Wyse is also in the 3,000-word category and prefers submissions from those who “identify as woman/femme/genderfluid/non-binary and a witch.” Yes, everyone will find a place to send their writing among the 800+ listings.