Friday Flash Fiction: The Sketch Artist

photo of a shirtless man kneeling on the floor and paintingWhen ’Nathan posted this picture last week for his Friday Flash Fiction piece (which you should go read), it brought to mind something I wrote about four years ago. At least, I think it was four years. My memory is not what it was.

(Narrator: his memory was never good.)

I wrote a half-finished draft of a novel based on some conversations and some letters with a wonderful woman I met while in graduate school, a retired lady who had this antique desk with a secret drawer full of letters. She showed me the letters and let me make copies of them and said, “Maybe you can find a story in them.”

How often does someone just give you a story like that? Her generosity is still humbling to me. And makes me a little ashamed that I haven’t picked up that manuscript since 2016.

But that’s another story. There’s a scene in the manuscript about one of the main characters, Evan, whose mother has recently died (what is it with me and dying mothers? I have no idea) and who is trying to reconcile with his estranged sister. Evan’s a painter, but he works in an art supply store to get by and sucks at dating. A friend of his makes him sign up for a dating app and, well, here’s how one encounter ends. Continue reading “Friday Flash Fiction: The Sketch Artist”

A Simpler Plan (Friday Flash Fiction)

One of the things I like about short stories—or any fiction, really—is imagining the lives of the characters beyond the last page. If the story continued, what would they do next?

When it’s my own story, I can answer that question fairly easily: write more!

And that’s what this bit of flash fiction is. Back in 2012 I wrote a story called “Scorned,” which appeared in an anthology called The Lavender Menace: Tales of Queer Villainy.It ended with a new beginning of sorts for the main character, Marcus, who goes by the name Megawatt because he has a (deadly) way with electricity.

So when ’Nathan posted the photo below for a recent Friday Flash Fiction, it led him to revisit his story in that anthology as well. In my case, flames are not the same as electricity, but close enough.

This story also contains a passing nod to a character in an unpublished story, one that I never sent out because I wasn’t sure where to send it. In the same way that villains are fun to write, sidekicks frequently deserve more exploration, and combining worlds from different stories and books is so much fun for me as a writer, and as a reader.

I might send that story out to my mailing list, so go sign up, yo. Meanwhile, read on and enjoy.

Image of a raised fist enveloped in fire

Continue reading “A Simpler Plan (Friday Flash Fiction)”