• Flash Fiction

    30 November: It\’s a Wrap

    It\’s done, this year\’s Blogidays. A whole 30 days of … whatever this has been.I\’ll pop in from time to time as Madame Muse makes her appearances. I am grateful for the inspiration she deigned to lend for this month as it is usually a rare occasion that she gives up so much for so long.Until our crossroads meet again in the vastness of the universe, may your travels be pleasant, may the journey be an adventure, and may the love you leave as you wander between the stars be a balm to the souls of those you encounter.

  • Flash Fiction

    29 November: After Nuclear

    It was nothing like they said it would be.Yeah, sure: there was the mushroom cloud, the heat, the cold, some death, but it wasn\’t anything near as tough to get through as they thought. Who you ask? Those people in the government. It\’s good to wake up in the morning and know we don\’t have any of that anymore.After the blast and once things settled, we realized they were gone. No one knows which one started it, but DC was essentially wiped off the map. Moscow, North Korea, gone.They had no idea that the very thing many of them said…

  • Flash Fiction

    28 November: Giving Thanks

    So the US thanksgiving \’holiday\’ was last week.I don\’t capitalize the word \’thanksgiving\’ here because doing so suggests that is what the day is about.Sure, there\’s the whole Hallmark sentiment of gathering with good friends, good food, and celebrating what we are thankful for, right? But what is the day supposed to represent?The history lessons in elementary, junior, and high school that I got suggested thanksgiving day was created to celebrate that first meeting between the pilgrims and indigenous folks on this continent. Or something like that.The true history and treatment of indigenous peoples in the US speaks to a…

  • Flash Fiction

    26 November: I (Don\’t) Got Jokes

    I had a few items in my shopping cart. I didn\’t recognize the two young men at the register — the cashier or the bagger. They quietly joked about something, smiling as they mumbled to one another while I put my things on the conveyor. As it was just after the Thanksgiving holiday, the \’regulars\’ were not working; I only saw one familiar worker as I traversed the market from end to end. Lucky her …After the cashier asked me the required questions (\’Did you find everything you needed today?\’ and \’Do you have your discount card or number?\’ and…

  • Flash Fiction

    25 November: Apology Necessary

    It was 23 November (yeah, a coupla days ago) and I was busy working away so as not to get too far behind on work assignments. Plus, I\’d had an email conversation with my direct supervisor about time off. It seems the days I had assumed were holidays for my workplace weren\’t entirely. We\’d had the initial discussion because I\’d put in for a day before the Christmas holiday to lengthen an already (assumed to be) lengthy break. My supervisor messaged me to let me know that the days in between Christmas and the New Year were not actual time…

  • Flash Fiction

    24 November: You Jab, I Duck

    I used to enjoy a good prize fight.That\’s what my Nana and others of her generation called boxing. I think because at first, what happened in the ring was a true brawl: the gloves were thinner, the matches were longer, and the outcomes felt earned, like a prize.I don\’t mean to suggest the newer generations of boxers don\’t earn their \’prize\’, but it was just … different … when Larry Holmes and Muhammad Ali were on the ticket.Those dudes knew how to throw a punch. They also knew how to duck and weave.I\’ve never been in the ring (and when…

  • Flash Fiction

    23 November: Against Foul Magicks

    I had the children stand in a circle surrounding the teleportation spot. I didn\’t know what would come through but it would be bad. The children were the last defense, the last class of mind soldiers, trained to fight foul magicks with the power of their thoughts. It was my job to keep them alive to pass their final test.The problem was, today was merely a demonstration: they were to watch me as I subdued whatever came through. From my example, they would see how quickly their skills would be called upon to save the populace when the portals were…

  • Flash Fiction

    22 November: Nothing Like an External Conscience

    I thought a discussion of the future robots would be the last in my discussion of AI but I realized as I wrote it that I couldn\’t walk away without a post for Teddy.Teddy was like an external conscience. He gave (oft-ignored) suggestions for safety, he warned David of do\’s and don\’ts. However, as a voice of reason inside a creaking teddy whose timber was similar to grinding metal, it was often tough to imagine really attending to him.After all, he was downright creepy.But to have a conscience outside ourselves that could walk and talk … is that something we…

  • Flash Fiction

    21 November: Like Gods

    Oh, aren\’t they just magnificent? After a thousand years or so, mankind is gone, erased itself from existence I suppose. To a frozen tundra, now a paleoresearch location(?), future aliens come. Like gods, they restore frozen David (and Teddy — who will get a nod tomorrow) and give him what he wants.After all, isn\’t that what everyone wants gods to do — give them what they want?However, in real life (or some unreasonable facsimile thereof … as a speculative fiction writer, how much do you expect to find here that is exclusively real?) it seems gods often want more than…

  • Flash Fiction

    19 November: The Worst of All

    If you\’ve hung in these last few days as I wandered through the film AI, hopefully you\’ve also paused to read the articles and editorials at the photo links.Okay, I\’ll wait….Right — informative, weren\’t they?I would vote for Martin as the worst of all humans. Ever.Martin is the Monica character\’s \’real\’ son. He awakens from a coma(?) and I wondered if he was as horrid prior to ending up in it as he was when he woke up. He is so horrid (how horrid is he?) that the average person might have questioned Monica\’s choice for who to take to…