Oct/Nov 2023

e c l e c t i c a
f i c t i o n


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


Ellie and Ray knew the secrets neighbors know. Despite never speaking to each other, Ellie knew Ray's dad had recently bought a tricked-out Jeep after divorcing Ray's mom and moving to some mid-life-crisis bachelor pad where Ray spent his weekends. Ray found it uncomfortably comforting Ellie already knew these awkward details.

Bobby Crace

Winter in Italy

They met at a non-descript café two blocks from the university. Just a few chairs set up on the sidewalk, a convenient spot to meet someone if you'd both been studying. The wind blew lightly, tousling the top of his hair. She wanted to reach out and touch it, push it further up his forehead. Her fingers almost tingled with the effort of not touching him.

Andrew Bertaina


They left the school gym and started walking the dark road to their homes two miles away. It was 38 degrees. The other boys had left long before, but James and Lonnie had stayed to help the managers pack up and then saw them off. They thought Coach had gone, too, but it's just that he had walked to school that day, his car in the shop. He'd been in the coaches' room, mapping out some plays for the next game. That's how he heard them. And then he saw.

Michael W. Cox

Don't Look Directly At It

Yesterday, I came home with plastic bags slung over my arms, only to see a Nigerian woman standing in the middle of our living room wearing black slacks and a green polyester blouse. I could hear Dana in the kitchen, rattling around. The bags filled with groceries were leaving impressions in my skin, and so I heaved all of them on the dining room table before addressing the visitor.

Brooke Turner