Stories We Love

From outcast to Africa’s “golden voice”

People said he was cursed. Schoolchildren avoided him. His father sent him to live on the streets when he was a teenager. Mali musician Salif Keita could be a bitter, angry man, but instead, he writes beautiful songs about life, love and fighting prejudice. His most recent is the plaintive …

Oklahoma

Inspiration Behind My First Novel Bloodlines

The bones of the Bloodlines story rattled around in my head for nearly a decade. The main character, Zane Clearwater, was an intruder into my original story. He had a minor role as a love interest to another character. But as I wrote and rewrote the story and worked out the …

Flash Fiction Friday

Fiction in a minute: Superstition

My wristwatch was stuck at half past two, even though the morning sun indicated otherwise. Most people would get a battery, reset the time and move on with their day. But I had old superstitions rattling around in my head, a legacy of my Nana’s myriad household warnings and omens–like …

Flash Fiction Friday

Fiction: Opportunity Knocks, Part 3

Robin slid limply down the side of the turbine until she could feel the cold tile floor through the seat of her pants. His fall played on repeat in her head. He was just a man, blood and flesh and bones like all of us, the power he held completely …

Flash Fiction Friday
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Fiction: Opportunity Knocks, Part 2

You can read Part 1 here. The bus carrying the VIP entourage of commissioners was king of the parking lot, tall enough to let its passengers look down their noses at lowly cars and trucks driving alongside. It pulled up outside the power plant with a low rumble followed by …

Flash Fiction Friday
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Fiction: Opportunity Knocks, Part 1

The first time it happened she was at the laundromat. Then there was another occasion, a few weeks later, while pushing her cart at the supermarket. Initially it was terrifying, but now it happened nearly every day and Robin was starting to like it. It was certainly more gratifying than …

Los Angeles

Homelessness in LA | Let’s Not Look Away

There are more homeless people in Los Angeles in 2015 than there have been since the homeless census in 2007. The biennial homeless count, released in mid-May, reported a 16% increase in the number of men, women and children living on the streets or in shelters. And the most notable …

Flash Fiction Friday
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Fiction in a Minute: Dude, Part 5

Editor’s note: you can read Part 4 here. He knew as he walked to the waiting room with Melly that he couldn’t leave. He texted Ray that he was tied up, then slumped into a chair like a man knocked down by a haymaker punch he never saw coming. His …

Flash Fiction Friday
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Fiction in a Minute: Dude, Part 4

Editor’s note: you can read Part 3 here. The smell of diesel fuel and exhaust hit Neil’s nose, then gave way to the disinfectant and alcohol smell of the emergency room. Last time Neil was in an emergency room, his mother was still alive, a cut on her head needing …

Flash Fiction Friday
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Fiction in a Minute: Dude, Part 3

Editor’s note: You can read part 2 here. Still in shock, Neil found himself walking ten blocks back to his car, a dark green Toyota mini-pickup, not sure how it had come to be that he would to take Melly to the hospital. There’d been some confusion after Linus was shot, during …