Olivia Mardwig | Practice

After rereading it you feel a weakness that draws out of you like a low tide until there are only raised boats in the mud and incredible want. Why didn’t the character in the story predict that? [...]

Thomas Molander | To See Abundant o

He reached into his briefcase, pulled out an apple, wiped it on his shirt, and took a large chomp. He watched himself chew in the rear-view mirror. He ate the apple’s core too because he had [...]

Lisa Piazza | The Beat Between

If you think I see Sibley, if you think I see Ruze, if you think I see Gran or my mom or Ms. K – sorry, you lose.  In Gran’s town, the streets don’t care if you are desperate or sad – the [...]

Ethan Feuer | Earjob   

Under her keyboard was a faint eeee. Feeble warble weakly insistent like a dog shut outside. The eeee was deep in her laptop’s guts. Her brother Mark was on video chat, her famous and handsome [...]

Leah Bailly | Paradise, NV

I also occasionally fell into a coma. I would dream of Las Vegas past, when I was a kid, when I flew down with my grandparents and we could still go to the Sands and the Silver Slipper and the [...]

Justin Brouckaert | The Grandmothers

The grandmothers walk through the front door, two and three at a time, bonding over talk of the weather. They lower their umbrellas, brush raindrops from their shawls and smooth their sheen grey [...]

Kristin Vuković | Barren

In Marko and Ana’s living room in Astoria hung a framed piece of Paška čipka—Pag lace—attached to a piece of creased cerulean paper. Last year when they were packing their bags to leave Croatia, [...]

Kimberly King Parsons | The Touch

Born landlocked, the animal trainer had been plagued all his life by whale thoughts. It made no sense. He had never seen one, would never, still his dreams brimmed with the giants. He couldn’t [...]

Simone Person | Bunny Man

Sheri shakes me awake. She’s half out of her sleeping bag, a flashlight pressed under her chin. It’s spreading shadows across her fleshy face. Most of her sleepover had focused on going through [...]

Kate Jayroe | Office Max

Two weeks ago, we packed our bags and left the civilized world. We moved into an Office Max. One with trouble maintaining full lighting. Downtown. Though it is the dead of winter, the hiss and [...]

Laurel Sharon | Buried Alive

Her parents had moved to a retirement community with low humidity and warm sun. There was tennis and golf, indoor calisthenics and shuffleboard on outdoor courts. There were daily walks and [...]

Kate Axelrod | A Third Party

Charlie breaks up with you over the phone but later you fly to Seattle and insist he do it in person. The initial conversation had gone something like this: You were exasperated and said, What [...]

Asha Thanki | Seven Days

I. On the first day it rains, we smoke in Arif’s basement. The table between us looks like it should be caving under the weight of the elaborate metal-and-clay hookah atop it. The pitter-patter [...]

Richard Chiem | Animal

Before anything else, he realizes he is a person. He has somehow reached this point in his success to consider the question of what is a good person? He is feeling quite detached from where he [...]

Matthew Phillp | The Impresario

Alex, suddenly cold and awkward in own his skin, clicked play on Jolene. Once Dolly was well into her desperate plea, he moved away from his desk through the leaning doorway, walked into the [...]

Jess Pane | Oh, How I Want to Go Home

In the Retreat Club Diner, Bud Howard drank his second morning coffee while watching the morning news on a small television set secured in the corner. The other regulars had a passing interest in [...]

Jesse Ruddock | from Shot Blue

Excerpt from Jesse Ruddock‘s story collection Shot Blue, out February 20, 2017 from Coach House Books. Available for order now here. Her mother tried to show her how to pack a suitcase, but [...]

Angie Sijun Lou | Jukai

After dusk in Seattle, look for the moon. Sometimes it burns pale fire over the tree line, other times it hangs crookedly nailed to the sky; a slivered hangnail bitten from God’s hand. Only [...]

Natalia Hero | Poison

  Listen, I know I said I’d go to meetings. I know I said I’d get a sponsor. But I’m busy. My work is my meetings. My work is my sponsor. I know what your face looks like [...]

Kristen Arnett | With Teeth

Sitting in the chair means the mouth of it swallows your ass. You don’t take to the chair, it takes to your body and keeps parts after you’ve risen from it. It hulks in the corner of the living [...]

Miles Preston-Clark | Two Flashes

Future Vision  I take myself to a movie because I think I deserve it. I go to one of those big chain cinemas downtown, the kind with the reclining vinyl chairs big enough for two and I watch [...]

Chris Ames | Gutting a Pale Fish

Gutting a pale fish with my father, the strongman. He turns it in his hands once, twice, plops it on the chopping block, belly up. Swallows the air. The thing about stinky little fish heads is [...]

Edie Meidav | MODERN PARABLES #1: THEFT

. Excerpt from Edie Meidav‘s story collection Kingdom of the Young, out April 11, 2017 from Sarabande Books. Available for pre-order now here. Don’t worry, I didn’t take all the soaps. I [...]

Blair Hurley | The Girl

The girl is dead. Is she a girl? She’s old enough for shimmer lipgloss, for a boyfriend. There she is in photographs, her brother’s arm large on her shoulders, grinning in low-cut jeans that show [...]

Ridwan Tijani | Capital Discourses

Roland was a Marxist—probably the only Marxist in Lagos or even the whole country, he was sure. He believed that there was a “ruling class” in Nigeria and he was sure people already knew that, [...]

Gabe Bump | Jonah and The Dunk

Excerpt from Gabe Bump‘s forthcoming novel Get Down, Claude. July before I started 8th grade, Paul had this scare. A fuzzy blemish on an x-ray. After tests and hours of chain smoking—nothing [...]

Brittany Bronson | Safari Night

At the Meet-Up event, most of the women wore sexy tribal costumes, but I dressed up as Pumba from the Lion King. The elastic snout kept falling down over my mouth, making it difficult to hold a [...]

Bridget Brewer | Moth

Moths died in daylight, nocturnal no longer.  That summer.  It was always one hundred and two degrees.  The moths and their noon wing death.  That summer.  It was hard for anyone to make sense of [...]

Caroline Crew | GULDIZE

Lizzie sits in a room because everything is a room. Right now, the room is a field and the field is corn. The sun is slow and turning the wheat, its chaff, golden. Lizzie waits for a runner. A [...]

Jono Naito | Center of the Earth

It is 6:56am PST, and I watch a car drive across a bridge. The passenger, who for this record I will call Child, presses her face against the window. The driver, who for this record I will call [...]

Jenny Xie | Once More, With Feeling

One day, when they were giving the dog a bath, he proposed. He swished his arm around in the tub and produced a ring that winked its white glaucomic eye. “Now, how did this get here!” he said in [...]

Abigail Oswald | Places We Weren’t

We weren’t in a barbershop. He sat in a wooden slat-back chair on our mother’s kitchen floor and looked up at me. His face was upside down from my view above him—his eyes, a forgiving periwinkle [...]

Zoe Goldstein | Walking Distance

1. The neighbor had upwards of eighty succulents laced around the wood beams of his staircase. You saw him every day watering the plants, sometimes in nothing more than a swath of white linen [...]

Fortunato Salazar | I Am Zelda

I am Seth Rogen’s Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, and I’m obsessed with the words “harlequin” and “inquiline.” The caryatid stops by our table one morning and asks if she can have a word with [...]

Mahreen Sohail | Heat Wave

Early on in the summer, my mother, my father and I ran out of adjectives to describe exactly how hot we were feeling. Then my mother caught depression. Also from the heat, my father explained [...]

Michelle Tea | Black Wave

Excerpt from Michelle Tea‘s novel Black Wave, released in September from Feminist Press. Michelle wasn’t sure when everyone started hanging out at the Albion. She had managed to pass the corner [...]

Stephanie Wong Ken | Face

INAUGURAL COSMONAUTS AVENUE FICTION PRIZE WINNER After much thought, Pam and I decide to fix our faces. We save up until we can afford what we want and get a referral for a plastic surgeon in [...]

Natalie Eilbert | Malignant

No one should ever speak to anyone else if they aren’t willing to risk total exposure. Alex had a nasty habit of twirling her hair, twisting it into beetle-dense knots, and tearing out the entire [...]

Naima Coster | The Spot

We used to come here for driftwood. That was when Sidney first took me in, when I wasn’t sure yet whether or not he was a perv. He kept his distance at home, only knocked on my door to let me [...]

Saba Waheed | The Crows

Pamir roared from the bottom of his stomach, clapped loudly, pounded his feet on the ground and screeched, “Keeeeeeek! Keeeeeeek!” But the crows lined up on the power line didn’t budge. They [...]

Andrew Cothren | West

Ben blows through a stop sign and I say You’re a goddamn jackass Ben. Two states from home and he’s already giving the cops excuses. Turn signals and speed limits I remind him. Stick to the back [...]

T.J. Kurita | Royal Jelly

There were no flowers near the house, no decorative plants. Just grass, cut short enough to kill it in some places and several trees. The grass was edged cleanly along the path from the driveway [...]

Meredith Alling | Two Stories

Excerpts from Meredith Alling‘s story collection Sing the Song, out November 18, 2016 from Future Tense Books. Available for pre-order now at futuretensebooks.com   Symbiosis I was in [...]

Ilana Masad | For Context

Charlie really wasn’t stalking her. Really. It took daily talking-to-self to convince Charlie of that, but Charlie knew. This wasn’t stalking. This wasn’t the first time [...]

Mika Taylor | The Botanist

She planted a single seed in each of his ears while he slept, tweezing in the first, then waiting patiently for him to turn. They weren’t seeds she could readily identify, mustard or melon, maple [...]

Sarah Brown | Lessons from the Sea

Out where we’re from, anything unpredictable is female. Countries, weather, the sea. “She’s gonna be some hot,” Henry would say when we climbed aboard in the wee hours. Or “some windy,” or some [...]

Katherine Fustich | Michelle

When it’s hot, I think of Michelle. Usually, when she crosses my mind, I’m filled with a regret that makes my pores sizzle with dread. For that reason, I try to avoid thinking of her at all [...]

Angie Sijun Lou | Uterus Lotus

When I wake up my eyes are crusted shut. When I wake up under a cotton candy sky my eyes are crusted shut. When I wake up to a cotton candy sky my eyes are crusted shut and I can see that Lukas [...]

Carly Rosalie Vandergriendt | The Host

The sound wakes me. A dull thud. I pop up in bed like one of those inflatable air dancers, the kind used to advertise blowouts at furniture warehouses and car dealerships. Reality skids back into [...]

Gregory Sullivan | Coyotes

When we came upon Number 15 the last time, he’d already been killed, having been shot fatally by local law enforcement in a Northwest Georgia carpet-manufacturing city, which had been getting [...]

Julia Chan | Stinging nettle

She grips the handle of her suitcase hard, so hard her fingers begin to cramp. The wave of passengers buoys her toward Arrivals. A sudden intestinal twist in the corridor reveals a large glass [...]

Erin Khar | David

I woke up this morning thinking about David. I woke up this morning, next to Graham, my sleeping husband, thinking about David. I woke up this morning, next to Graham, my sleeping cheating [...]

Julie McArthur | A Polite Woman

Marla was a polite woman. If a man wanted to sleep with her she never refused. With each new man, she adopted a cat—Fluffers McGee for John, Marion for Paul, Tiddlemouse for Richard, and so on. [...]

Sandra Alland | Toronto

These are the things that have changed about Toronto since I left it. There are about 239 new identical 25-floor condos, where young urban dwellers buy overpriced apartments called ‘cubes,’ which [...]

Rachel Hall | After All

In her last days, when they no longer try to lure her from her narrow bed, she hears singing, lullabies like those her mother sang to her in Ladino or Hebrew, the melodies soft and bright. “Don’t [...]

Yma Johnson | La Gringa Negra

I hurry down the sloping street towards dealers who stand like raptors, eyes glowing in the half light of nightfall. The wall behind them is covered in gang graffiti; gold crowns edged in black, [...]

Erica Peplin | Perfect Couple

I had an aunt and uncle whose lives were perfect. They sent the most beautiful Christmas cards every year. They came in thick envelopes with stamps from foreign countries. It made sense because [...]

Chelsea Bieker | Any Wonder

After I moved to Oregon, away from California for the first time, Granny came up for a visit. This was a few years ago and I was still living under the swell of hope a move can bring. We took a [...]

Lauren Barbato | Salute [May 2014]

The girls had heard from the boys that the boys were looking for the girls. Outside English, History, Spanish class. Inside the gyms, stables, dormitories. For one week only, they were in demand. [...]

Yoss | Super Extra Grande (excerpt)

In a distant future in which humankind has colonized the universe, Dr. Jan Sangan, a veterinarian specializing in extremely large alien organisms, goes spelunking in the bowels of a creature [...]

Justine Champine | The Moon Man

Jane lives with her mother and a stranger in a white house by the sea. Red roses with blossoms the size of a baby’s head grow wild over the windows, and there is a tiny freshwater pool out back [...]

Brenna York | A Feeling For People

  A recently-divorced 70-something took 20 minutes of my 23rd year. First, he called me an idiot savant with regards to my schoolwork. Then his eyes met my ears: “If the villains are [...]

Derek Mascarenhas | Coconut Dreams

  Four days in Goa nearly killed me. It started the morning my bus arrived in Mapusa and I didn’t see my uncle Quinton waiting for me. A swarm of rickshaw drivers had crowded the bus [...]

Julia Sternberg | The Gift

She wanted to see the sea lions fed, but when they arrived it was just past noon and the trainers were leaving the ring with empty buckets. The air smelled of fish and of salt from the pretzel [...]

Rebecca Payne | St. Francis

This is the way he walks: north on Grace to College, east on College to Manning, south on Manning to Dundas, then west on Dundas back to Grace. It’s just a square. This is the way he walks every [...]

Sarah Burgoyne | Nobody Coming

At the top of her journey, Johanna cracked a lager. She was thirteen and thinking of the beautiful sea. The smothering western sea. The concrete stoop leading down to it from her old house, in [...]

Amy Feltman | Turnip

It wasn’t assault, exactly. Or maybe it was. Either way it happened quickly. It stopped. Tree-scales scraped barkily against the cotton of her tee-shirt. The boy was walking away. Willa’s earbuds [...]

Amanda Boyle | Waste

One drink in and she was laughing. It felt like she hadn’t laughed in a long time, but she was always laughing one drink in, and she drank more than half the week. That night she was with a [...]

Emily Jungmin Yoon | Anamnesis

My mother was a haenyo: she dove into cold waters for seaweed, abalone, sea urchin, and other things. My fifth year of elementary school holds my first memory of contemplating her potential [...]

Genevieve Hudson | Skatepark

The summer after my first year at the new school was homage to the skateboard. Girls walked right up to the edge of the wooden ramps to watch us. Naomi came for me, but whenever I looked up after [...]

Andrew F. Sullivan | Asbestos Gardens

“The world don’t want you to do that.” Cheese Watkins’ daddy says this through two inches of Plexiglas, holding a sawed-off up to the small gap where the money is supposed to change hands. Cheese [...]

Allison Grimaldi Donahue| Alone Time

Ines was worried if she got a flat tire now or if she ran out of gas she would never make it from Sicily, useless island, to Argentina, the new world. The road was longer and steeper than she [...]

Alexander Carey|The Line (Novel Excerpt)

“O, Lord, help me to be pure, but not yet.” –Augustine of Hippo   I cut through the field behind Joey and Shannon’s house. Ice lined the creek, splintering off, heading downstream to melt. [...]

Noy Holland | Not So The Donkeys

The donkeys are eating the barn. They’re bored, poor things. They are eating out the shape of a donkey, of a dull, sulking herd of donkeys, until at last, come spring, when the thaw comes again [...]

Trevor Shikaze | The Buffet

Peter took a plate from a stack of fresh plates that a waiter had just set out. The plate was warm. The breads at the front of the buffet table looked good, so Peter took a wedge of focaccia and [...]

Kenan Orhan | All the Baklanov Men

Dad yelled at the same boxy TV he’d been yelling at since 1976. Traktor Chelyabinsk didn’t score in the first two periods. Kuzyetznov hadn’t played well. I had moved on from beers to local vodka [...]

A. Igoni Barrett | Blackass

Furo Wariboko awoke this morning to find that dreams can lose their way and turn up on the wrong side of sleep. He was lying nude in bed, and when he raised his head a fraction he could see his [...]

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