Thursday, December 25, 2014

In general when a story gets rejected by one place it gets sent out to another. No big deal, just the way things are, most stories are going to get rejected. Yesterday a story subbed in August got rejected, on Christmas Eve, with negative reader comments, couldn't they have waited another couple of days?

Saturday, November 15, 2014

One of the publishers of flash fiction not only reads your work but they even send back comments. This is what I got back on a very short work (200 words):
Thank you for submitting to xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx. We have decided not to publish your piece, "Xxx Xxxx". Some reader comments:

"This was funny. Amusing. I know it was a build up for a punchline, but I liked it. It made me laugh. I can picture the over-dramatized man, struggling with this terrible 'burden', only to find out it's a lawn mower. It's clever. I guess I like that it starts out super-dramatized, but it's all for a laugh."

"I'm not charmed. I felt this relied on narrative tricks to get readers to like the piece. A lot of space was wasted on describing heat; that bored me. The piece doesn't go anywhere because there's no story here."

"The setup didn't interest me, and I didn't find the joke reveal at the end funny."

"There's no story here for me to emotionally invest in, because the whole piece is just a setup to a punchline. I almost never enjoy twist endings because I feel they deliberately mislead readers. Essentially, they set up a situation in which the joke is on the reader. I prefer a narrative style that takes readers into its confidence and treats them with respect. I say: put aside the cheap-twist gimmick and just tell me a good story with solid layers of humor and depth."

Best of luck, and please feel free to submit to us again in the future, 
 One out of four liked it, I'll take that as a win.  It was only 200 words long, their comments run 198 words.

Sunday, November 2, 2014
The author reads a bit of his story, I would like to hear him read my story in the same collection. Read it yourself in Cutthroats and Curses, priced at almost nothing on Amazon and the link is here on this blog.
I have a story in this collection, tried to sell it around but no takers so I gave it away. Hard to sell a holiday themed story. As I wasn't the only one willing to give away a story the whole collection is free at the moment on Smashwords, get it while you can.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Novo Pulp teaser
My name is on the list so watch this spot for more news when it goes on sale. A straight up sci/fi story about a relationship, not much humor and no horror. Not the kind of thing I have posted here on the blog.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

I have had a story accepted for the new Novopulp anthology. Details later.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Wolf Tears

The wolf is at the door, hungry like the wolf, wolf in sheep's clothing, cry wolf, like a pack of wolves howling in the night the nonsense collection of wolf idioms ran through her mind.

Why wolves? She was hungry and wolves are supposed to be ravenous, must be the reason why.

The door to her room was locked, not to keep the wolves at bay but to keep her inside with the pack howling in her head.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Monday, September 29, 2014

Blank White Walls

Blank white walls, they were a perfect metaphor for her life. Blank, empty and devoid of detail, her mind was a void.

They tell her she was in an accident, they tell her she had been depressed and may have attempted suicide. That explained why they treated her the way they did and the lack of sharp objects in the room, not even a mirror to break.

She sat on her bed staring at the wall wondering who she was, why had she been so unhappy and thinking she might not want to hear the answers.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Just Like a Spork

Everybody had said, “It will never work, they are too different, divorced in a month.” But Fred and June had been together for fifteen glorious years. Sure it hadn't been easy with the differences and all but they made it work. Compromise was the key.

Now even with all the years behind them the naysayers chorus was once again in full swing, “How will they raise the child? Who gets to decide? It will never work.”

Yes, they were still different, they were still each individuals yet they were also a couple. A happy couple who had a challenge before them but not one that their love couldn't overcome. 

The decision would be left to God and a coin toss, heads and little Patrick O’Brien would be raised Catholic and tails Protestant.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The great wheel turned, days passed and the grief receded. 
She gripped the steering wheel and over corrected in the deceptively tight curve. The rain slick road and her lack of concentration worked in tandem to send her off the embankment. She cursed her fug as the car tipped over the edge.
Time slowed to a near stop as it will when such things happen, she wondered if this is what it had felt like for him as he fell.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Watching in the Rain

It was raining. The perfect weather for her mood.
She watched the couple dance in joy as if it was a sunny day or starry night, she had felt that way once. Their happiness and love couldn't break her bubble of depression.
No, her bubble wall was growing stronger each day since her husband had jumped to his death.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

A random page from Capt. Tea and the Man in Black, my story in Cutthroats and Curses anthology on Amazon. Much of the story was written with a Sheaffer school pen loaded with Noodler's Rome Burning ink. It didn't make it easy for me later when I typed it out on the computer.
So, how many of you write in notebooks? How about with fountain pens?

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Stone Angel

VisDare 69: Vigilant

Each morning he walked by the angel. At first he looked and marveled at the beauty and the pose,
In time he quit seeing her, she became no more than a mile marker showing how much further he had to walk.

Each night he walked by the angel. At first he looked at her wings and was awestruck by the detailed feathers. Her unsteady seat and the curve of her back made her look alive. In time she became a landmark telling him he was almost to the market where he would purchase his dinner.

This morning she watched him, he didn't notice. A tear ran down her cheek.

Tonight she rose from her seat and spoke to him, “You have walked far enough.”

His eyes open to the sky, the rain fell, he had walked far enough.

There was page after page of documents. Filled with legal terms and jargon that only a lawyer could understand. The man from the insurance company was far more jovial than she take at the moment, he wouldn't take a hint from her body language. He kept referring to an investigation pending and how it would alter the terms and payout. Even without the extra payout for an accident her husband was proving to be worth more dead than alive.

Monday, July 7, 2014

The Ear Worm

  I was walking through the desert with the Beetles song
Norwegian Wood stuck in my head. The longer I walked the 
louder it got until it was almost deafening. Over and over
it replayed as I continued on.
  A loose stone and a careless step sent me tumbling. The
song stopped and its absence was a shock worse than the fall.
  Surrounded by sand, rock and silence I felt truly alone.
  I was not just lost but alone.
  The sun beat down but I continued on.
  Rocks reminded me of chess pieces. Chess pieces reminded me
of Murray Head's One Night in Bangkok.
  I no longer walked in silence.

Monday, June 30, 2014

New Shoes pt2

 This is the 321 word version

    “Well Detective we can tell you more once we get her down to the morgue but it looks like she was beaten by the classic blunt object and dumped here. Time of death would have been early last night from the liver temp”, Tommy the medical examiner's assistant gave his report to Detective Rob Mosley.

     “Her shoes were on top of the bag, what's up with that Rob?”, his young partner James Hoyle asked. Hoyle would ask such questions fully expecting Rob to have the answer. Rob couldn’t tell if the boy was stupid or suffering from a case of hero worship, either way it irritated him.

       “No idea Jimmy, could be she wasn't wearing them when she was killed.”

      “Well she is fully dressed and no signs of rape, must have been the husband.” Hoyle went for the husband every time, usually that is a good bet.

       “That her purse?” Rob nodded toward a purse on the ground next to the body.

       “It was in the bag with her when I took her out” Tommy replied, “guess it is but you're the detective.” 

        It had been hers, no husband, no steady boyfriend so they were off to talk to the co-workers.
They arrived at the office where she had worked. A small room on a floor of a building filled with similar rooms. A middle aged woman sat at a cheap desk ginning at them. A broken and bloody lamp was on the desk and blood stained the floor. The woman seemed to take no notice. The office manger told the detectives the woman's name was Linda Smith, a plain name. The woman was anything but plain, she was the most beautiful woman Rob had ever seen. 

        “Miss Smith? I would like to ask you about Miss Betty Wright.”

         “Betty is dead, she had big feet.”

         “Excuse me?”

        “Yes, she had big feet, her shoes didn't fit me at all.”

New Shoes

      The shoes didn't fit. The whole point had been to get the shoes and they just didn't fit. Such a waste of time and effort. 

     Betty had always lorded it over Linda, her higher pay, her better clothes, her dates, her extra title at work, just everything. Linda hated Betty and felt justified in doing so. 

      In little ways Linda got some revenge, when Betty would brag about the rich man she had slept with the night before Linda would take her pen when she was away form her desk. It would give Linda satisfaction but Betty never noticed. Linda would think about it for days and smile, imagining Betty looking for the lost pen. Betty though would just pull another pen out of her drawer and not even give it a thought, pens were nothing to her.

       One morning Betty was late to work, Linda had been there ten minutes early as normal, waiting. Betty had a key, Linda didn't. Linda stood by the door waiting, imagining that Betty had taken home a murderer from a night club and was now hanging over a bathtub like a side of beef, her life blood slow dripping down the drain. The thought made her smile and brightened her day.

      Her smile remained fixed but her eyes had no trace of joy when Betty arrived. The office was small, two desks, Betty had her name on the door Linda had her name on the smaller desk. Both desks were cheap but Betty's was wood. Once at work the door remained open so Betty could see the people from other offices walk by, Linda closed it when Betty was out. Linda didn't want to see the others, she hated them all.

     Betty had new shoes, they were very expensive so she made it a point to show them off to Linda. “Italian”, “perfect fit”, “feel so nice”, “cost as much as you make in a week”, all the hurtful things that just rolled off her hateful tongue. Linda imagined the gross things that tongue must have touched to get those shoes and smiled. Betty took that smile as friendly interest, Betty had never understood Linda and treated her like she would have treated anyone else.

      Because Betty had been late to work and had spent so much time showing off her shoes she hadn't finished her work and had asked Linda to stay over with her. Linda agreed, she always agreed. Another pen vanished from Betty's desk.

      The rest of the floor was empty, only Linda and Betty remained. Betty was holding up a leg moving her foot back and forth once again admiring her new shoes. Linda hit her in the back of the head with her desk lamp. Years of rage were in the blow. Her imagined injustices gave her the strength to hit over and over. Betty never noticed, the first blow had seen to that but Linda had a lot of pent up fury to work out. As the blows faded Linda felt exhausted but more at ease than she had in years. She sat back and enjoyed the feeling letting a warm glow wash over her, she so rarely experienced such joy.

      With Betty shoved in a mail bag Linda tried on the shoes. They didn't fit. Linda pouted and gave the bag a kick.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

five sentence fiction dazzles

She cut down her wedding gown to wear for the dance. It was the dress she had worn the day he died. She felt it was a fitting tribute to her late husband. A dazzling dance in virginal white at his funeral rather than an eulogy. He would have hated it.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

I have got to get away. The noise, the people the pressure of life here, I can't take it any more.
I just want to get in a boat and leave. Sail off into the sunset. Yeah, that's it, into the sunset. Find a big city with running water and leave this damn tropical island.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Marigje and Max

     1317 had been a year of famine but not for Marigje and Max, no it had been a feast year for them.
     Marigje was old, she didn't even know how old but she was old enough to have taken up cackling. Her only friend was Max, a rather distasteful cat that never purred and only killed for sport. They really were well suited to each other.
     They lived deep in the woods, so deep that wolves couldn't find their way out if they found themselves in her yard. But any wolf that was so careless as to find itself there deserved to be removed from the gene pool.
      A welcome sight greeted the duo that sunny morning. Walking down the path two children, a boy and a girl, hand in hand. Yet another pair of siblings abandoned by their parents.
     Yes, Marigje and Max were having dinner delivered tonight.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Bo shuffled along, his legs barely able to carry the very little left of a once proud horse. He hadn't eaten in days, food no longer interested him. When he was a young horse rocks had been placed to slow his eating, now grated carrots to try to spur him into taking a bite.
Liz had called him “little red goat” years back when he ate poison ivy out of the trees. He would want to come give you a horse kiss afterward. You didn't want that.
Bo, then good old Bo and at last poor old Bo. He aged hard at the end but only a few weeks before he had run like a colt with the youngest mare, he even bucked. But that would leave him sore the next day, still it was good to see.
The last few days he didn't come with the other horses for meals. I had to go find him, each time expecting the worst. The other horses would go to him after he was found and walk him to the barn. Yesterday Lucy, an old maid of a mare, gently pushed him along, letting him rest but keeping him going in the right direction. He didn't even eat the grated carrot. His face felt cool as did his ears, a horse should be warm not cold.
This morning he didn't show up so once again I went searching for what I expected to be a dead horse. I found him at last in the old graveyard in the woods. From the condition of the leaves and ground he had been walking in circles around a small tree, dragging his back feet in his unsteady shuffle. He was hanging on, forcing me to make the calls I didn't want to make.
I reached the excavator and arranged for him to come this afternoon to act as undertaker. The vet is very close by and she stopped by between other farm calls. It wouldn't take her very long to do her job. She sent me to keep the other horses back saying she could hold him and give the shot. She warned us that we would hear him fall. I turned back too soon and saw him fall, he was dead before he hit the ground.
Bo was my horse, my wife and I have horses but Bo was mine. She bought him for me when we were first married and we spent many happy hours in those days riding. She on her big bay mare Apple Pooh and me on little red Bo. We have all grown older, pooh has been dead for a few years and now so is Bo. 

Monday, June 23, 2014

“Hey Bob, we're down here with the body.”
The county Coroner, Bob Winston, eased his bulk down the steep hill while the deputies grinned at his unsteady progress. He slid and almost fell before the chain link fence saved him from that indignity.
Holding on to the fence he asked the deputy,”Where is it?”
“Inside the wolf enclosure but between the fall and the wolves there isn't much left”, the deputy replied with a lupine grin.

Friday, June 20, 2014

A woman and child walked along a narrow path. The sun was in their eyes so they only saw the man when they were almost upon him. A normal looking man, nothing remarkable.
“Why is he in chains?”, asked the child.
“He spoke the truth and was heard. Don't look at him”, said the woman.

I am having trouble responding to comments here and other blogs, I am doing something wrong or Firefox won't let me.
Cover reveal on Wombat's blog,
I am almost published.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Too Far

After the fight he rode off on his bicycle in the dark. He pedaled on brooding all night, reliving every hurtful word as he went.
The sun rose before him its beauty melting away his resentment. He saw a phone booth ahead and coasted to a stop.
“Lilly? I'm sorry. Can you come get me?”

Friday, June 13, 2014
I wish I had thought about the consequences before I chose this course. I may have been too rash, I may have been too hasty.  It doesn't really matter now there are some things you just can't take back. What is the old saying, you can't un-ring a bell? Most of all right now; I wish I hadn't jumped off that chair lift.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

 A second story for

 This chair lift ride had been a whimsical last minute addition to the ceremony,  I knew it was a sign.
She had accepted my proposal, it was because of her upraising, she wanted to please. I knew I would be nothing but a burden, a millstone hung around her neck. In time she would grow to hate me and I couldn't live like that so I may as well speed things up. When we reached the highest point I slipped under the safety bar, it was the greatest gift I could give her; she is free.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

    In For a Ride
By: Boyd Miles

   She had not mentioned this part, a ski lift. What was she going to think of him now? Her brand new husband frozen in fear because of his acrophobia, not the best way to start a marriage.
    She started to rock the car laughing madly, "let's do the roller coaster next", she cried out between bursts of laughter. 
    When he jumped into this marriage he didn't know how high a jump it would be.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

How about I muddy the waters and post a link to my other web location. Historical reproductions and good for Steampunk items. I don't do custom work but do take suggestions. Go to the web site, look around, it is poorly organized just like me. Some non fiction articles hidden around if you look hard enough.
Fit For A King
by Boyd Miles
105 words for VisDare 63: Poison

He had spent a full moon cycle on the planet the residents called “Earth”. Funny how every planet seems to have the same name just a different word for it.

From talking to the residents he found what he was searching for, a gift for his king. Not just any ordinary gift but a living creature. One that all the Earthlings he met had agreed was the most dangerous creature on the planet.

“Your Majesty”, he proclaimed before the royal court, “the most dangerous creature known on the planet called Earth”, as he pulled the drape off a large bottle marked poison, “an Earth woman.”

Saturday, May 24, 2014

This one is for:

The Ride
By Boyd Miles
150 words

How much longer? I can't keep this up but I have to.

“Try to keep her breathing, they think they can shut it off safely. Just try to keep going.”

Yeah right, easy for the fireman to say he is on the ground not swinging back and forth trying to keep some woman alive. Lucky me to end up in a cart with a woman that was going to die of fright or something.

It had started off just fine, she was laughing I was laughing then we saw a gear go rolling across the pavement. Then the kid operating the ride ran off and alarm bells began to ring. She quit breathing and I had to be the hero.

“We are going to start slowing the ride, just hold on.”

The cart stopped and the firemen rushed on. I walked away. Should have gotten her number before the ride.

Friday, May 23, 2014

The Anchor

By Boyd Miles

The Sun dimmed above him as he sank. Dan O'Seay had finally found just what it would take to get the level headed Captain Manz to turn murderous.

Sinking fast tied to the ship's anchor Dan knew that he couldn't hold his breath long enough to make it back up even if the Captain changed his mind. He wondered, watching the sun dim through the bubbles of his last exhale if he would be around to feel the jerk when the chain ran out.

The sun, or Dan went dark.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

This one got posted on
It is awaiting approval there so read it here first:

The Moth
by Boyd Miles
about 680 words

The moth landed on her eye. She didn't blink, she would never blink again. He watched in fascination as it walked about and occasionally shook its wings. How long he watched he didn't know. Time seemed to have stopped. It was dark but not dark enough to keep him from seeing the moth walk around on her unseeing eye.

It had been a spur of the moment decision, the trip. Just a quick run over to the Highlands of Virginia to buy some maple syrup candy. A silly excuse but it was all they needed. A drive through the mountains looking at the scenery and if they found a place that sold the candy all the better but if not it didn't matter. They had lunch at a dive and joked about how it would probably kill them from food poisoning. It didn't.

They came around a curve with the lowering sun nearly binding them with its glare. A truck was stopped in the road. He hit the brakes and skidded in the curve. Over steered and went over the bank, crashing through the brush and rocks. He thought first of the car, how were they going to get home with a wrecked car? As they went further he began to fear for his wife and himself, the brush and rocks didn't slow him as much as the sheer drop sped their decent. They hit a rock hard enough to set off the airbags but not big enough to stop them and now they continued on blind.

The car began to roll and he lost consciousness.

He came to hanging upside down with the steering wheel pinning him in place. He didn't feel any pain and was too pinned to move much of anything. He looked to his wife and just knew without touching her that she was dead. There was nothing there of her, just a shell of the woman he loved.

A moth landed on her eye and she didn't blink.

It was getting darker. He didn't know if he was passing out or it was really getting darker but it had been late in the day when he went off the road. There was a noise outside and small rocks and dirt slid down the mountainside. The rocks pinging against the car. He could turn his head a bit, not much but he could see the rear view mirror. In the mirror boots, then legs appeared. Two men were scrambling down the new path made by his crashing car. He felt relief, followed instantly by remorse. He was going to be rescued but nothing could save her. It was too late for her. No, he would get to live on with the guilt. He would ask himself why had he driven here, why had he been going too fast, why wasn't he paying more attention to the road. Questions he knew he would be asking the rest of his life.

The two men arrived. He called out to them but they didn't respond. They went around to the other side of the car and with what looked to be a great effort tore the passenger door open. It was too dark to see and now there was blood running into his right eye. He couldn't see them but could tell they undid or cut her seat belt. They grabbed her roughly and the moth flew off her eye and flitted around the car. They pulled her out and off beyond his field of vision. He guessed they were checking her for any signs of life and then would come get him out.
More rocks and dirt rained down and he could see in the mirror as they drug her up the hill by her legs. It was getting darker and he couldn't move his head enough to watch but for a moment before they were gone.

As night came on the temperature dropped. The moth landed on his lips and he couldn't brush it off. It walked around tickling his lips. Almost like a kiss goodnight.
post removed for submission to: 
They are looking for 50 stories for a charity project.

I have read that you must have a blog. I have also read you shouldn't. I will go with having.
This is my author's blog. I will try to keep it just stories and news about projects.