Jan/Feb 2006

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(These are excerpts—click on the title to view the whole piece!)

Children in Need Marathon Writers' Eclectica Prizewinners

First, Second, and Third Place winners of the first annual Children in Need Marathon Writers' Eclectica Prize for Flash Fiction, sponsored by Alex Keegan's Boot Camp. Also included: nine Honorable Mentions and a bonus story from Alex Keegan.

Various Authors

All the Way to Grangeville

Trish cleared her throat and sat down, blushing like the sweet, innocent Mormon girl she must have been, or maybe still was underneath her whore crust.

A. Ray Norsworthy

Sex in the Jungle Room

While Hunter and I played a game of football using beer bottle caps and our fingers, Margie Taylor asked, "What's the one thing y'all want to do before you die?" With frizzy hair, fleshy stomach, and short legs, Margie had teeth the color of movie-theater popcorn butter.

Stephanie Storey

Hospital Girl

Part of me worries what this will do to her, being accosted by a fellow patient in the mental hospital, but that is only how it appears in the extreme. If the newly awake girl decides to view what is happening in that light, I cannot stop her.

Kate Hall

Leaving on a Wide Angle

Right now she's standing off-camera, just as she's always done, flexing her fingers or fixing her hair for something to do while she hangs around to clean the table, put everything away, and lay a new, white tablecloth.

Steven J. Dines

Two Flashes

The sirens' sudden trumpeting startled a somber man who had almost reached his building from his morning walk. The hysteresis of his mind, wired for alarm, would not let him relax. A hook wrenched him up by the back of his collar and suspended him for the rest of the day.

Sam Kean

The Kurdebi

Merab flicked his cigarette butt into the darkness and turned around to stand in the doorway. His eyes, liquid black and sad, were his best feature, and when Nana saw them she remembered that he played the guitar after dinner and his voice was beautiful, that he loved taking Misha downstairs to feed the pigeons in the morning, that no matter how many times she lost her temper with him, he never yelled back at her.

Irakli Iosebashvili

The Price of Fish

They all of them gave me what for when Blind Betty cracked her head open. This is not what we pay you for they said. I think I shook my head yes but I don't remember ever getting paid by them even once.

Robert Lopez

The Passover Pugilist

Ian tried to apologize to Eddie, but the bleeding Abruzzi descendant only responded with, "You're fuckin' dead, Greengrass."

Allan Wasserman


The muscles in her back are rippling, but she's making little progress. She'll need some encouragement.

Antonios Maltezos

Delete Forever

The shaking started as I walked over to the carpet, as the bodyguards looked at me and had me nailed a mile away. Press. I wasn't talent. I was a beggar with a tape recorder.

Caroline Kepnes

Rules Rules Rules

"I can't remember. What does it matter?" She clenched her fists and let out a kind of growl. "It was all rules rules rules. No passive voice, no redundant passages, everything has to play a part. Stop wriggling your ankle, it's annoying me."

Walter Smith