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Daily Short Story Diary - Week 51


Day 350 Dec 15, 2019

PROTECTION by KC Grifant

Frozen Wavelets – 2019

Horror – 1 Page

Microfiction is a tough one. This one didn’t have a huge punch to round out the preceding words, but it did have some punch. Good imagery.

****

Day 351 Dec 16, 2019

GOOD HAIR by Marta Balcewicz

Tiny Crimes – 2018

Crime – 5 Pages

Fantastic. This one has a great setup. Immediately you feel for the vulnerability of the lead and everything from there is smooth sailing as far as being immersed in the story. Things quickly spiral into a great kind of weird. Good writing. Fun idea. Solid start to finish.

*****

Day 352 Dec 17, 2019

SHOOFLY by Richard Matheson

The Incredible Shrinking Man - 1994 (story originally published in The Twilight Zone Magazine, 1983)

General – 16 Pages

Strange story to end this collection on. A guy is flipping over a fly that comes to represent himself, making his actions self-destructive. It’s mostly fun, but pretty much middle of the road, especially for Matheson. Great setup though, make a story pretty relatable: office guy popping pills, has a sore back, has stomach problems, smokes until it hurts, paperwork stress, family stress.

***

Day 353 Dec 18, 2019

THE CROOKED PICTURE by John Lutz

Tricks and Treats – 1976, 2019 (story originally published in Man From UNCLE Mystery Magazine, 1967)

Mystery – 7 Pages

A closed-door mystery revolving around the often-occurring too revealing photograph of a rich lady, taken during her wily youth. Fun thing about this one, the answer’s solved without much consideration of the actual case. A man is brought in and tells a story and in doing so, explains the answer he assumes to be the solution. It has a medium heat kind of vibe, engaging and entertaining, but didn’t have a great deal of bang to the reveal, nor did it explain everything.

****

Day 354 Dec 19, 2019

CRONES IN THEIR LARVAL STATE by Hailey Piper

The Arcanist – 2019

Fantasy – 3 Pages (about, digital)

I suppose the intent was a social justice story that tugged at the heartstrings. Didn’t do much for me, the characters were fully neat and simply boxed. There’s not much by way of atmosphere or description. The themes are pretty predictable and trodden too often. The naïve, out-of-touch mother always feels like someone’s looking for a reason to justify a type of person’s potential for bigotry. Like they didn’t know or were from another time. Blah blah. Overall, not much to this one.

**

Day 355 Dec 20, 2019

THE WRONG ONE by Erica Wright

Tiny Crimes – 2018

Crime – 2 Pages

This is a grim little tale built on atmosphere and characterization rather than much by way of story. The build produces an immersive situation. Pretty good.

****

Day 356 Dec 21, 2019

WHERE THE SALMON RUN by Ray Cluley

Probably Monsters – 2015

General – 22 Pages

This one’s long and slow, and kind of obvious in what’s going to happen, though when it happened, it came with no texture or real description. I’ve read a bunch of stories by this author that I’ve liked, but I’m thinking most of them came after this collection. Twenty pages of build-up to one page of hinted suspense and then one with the thing that I assumed would happen. Did remind me of the time I was visiting at a trailer park and some other kids showed me a big mother fish that had died that day, burst open with her eggs poured out of her where she lay on sandy ledge.

**


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