As I receive contracts and final edits from authors, I’ll post a teaser from their story here and on our Facebook page. You know where to get the rest, right? Comments are welcome.
The Bright Air That Breathes No Pain
“Dig,” the girl said. Her dress was the brilliant white of sun-smacked snow, her hair pale as straw and she ran a pink comb through it as she talked. She used Pert shampoo, a fact she had revealed to Todd during recess, even inviting him to smell the botanical aroma. Smell but not touch. She pulled away when he pressed too close to her curls.
Was that why he had followed her into the woods?
“I’m tired.” Todd’s palms were tender and dirty and he could feel the beginnings of a blister. More than one. He thought he might cry but resisted the tightness in his chest, the pressure behind his eyes. Girls always carried tales.
“The only work worth doing is hard work,” the girl said with evangelical conviction. She shook her hair and it glittered in the dappled light.
So, why did we take this story? We are not a literary anthology, but we do enjoy literary technique applied to speculative themes. This story was haunting in its language and situation. We had issues with accessibility; the plot was a little too obscure for us, though we very much liked the way the story came full circle in an evocative way. We asked Eric to address this concern in revision and he did so very well. It’s not your “typical” spec fic story by any means, but it’s a darned interesting one. The original was 4700 words; final edit is 4925 words.
Tune in tomorrow for our next tease. The full Table of Contents is here.