short fiction

“Eat Cosmic Jello”Heartlines Spec (Issue 1, Feb. 2023)
“So what if she was indeterminate alien goo inside? That would only matter if she got cut open.”

“Raising Water Girl”Bourbon Penn (Issue 28, Nov. 2022)

“Bristle”Bourbon Penn (Issue 22, Nov. 2020)
“Their toothbrushes were fighting again.”

“Two-Part Harmony”Slice Girls (Feb. 2021)
“He is behind her. And he is whistling. She does not turn to look at him. None of them ever do.”

“Charlene Versus the Church of the Land Whale”The Angry Noodle (June 2020)
“I just can’t believe in the Walking Whale, who so loved us watery mammals that he cut off his own son’s legs and cast him into the waters.”

“Only the MessengerBeneath Ceaseless Skies (Issue 299; March 2020)
“The airlock cycles, and in floats… something. It looks like a mammal, one of those fluffy little pets from Earth that are all the rage? A kitty? Except. It’s been a while since I was near Earth, but I’m pretty sure kitties don’t have eight legs.”

“The Thing With the Helmets”Clarkesworld (Issue 150; March 2019)
“Here are the bullet points: we have fifteen Helmets coated in evil magic glitter. Wearing them makes you strong, more or less invulnerable, and gives you superpowers. But only for a little while before it takes over and you die in spectacular and unexpected ways. Does that pretty much cover it?”

• The Book of the Emissaries: An Animism Short Fiction Anthology (Jan. 2016)
I edited this collection, and I couldn’t resist putting a little story of my own in it: “The Changing Face of Mars.”

• “Dad’s Christmas Presence”Every Day Fiction (Dec. 29, 2015)
“It’s a story as old as time: a father’s desire to create a special Christmas memory leads to a tragic chimney accident.”

“Frænka Askja’s Silly Old Story”Ghost in the Cogs (Oct. 2015)

• “No Alphabet Can Spell It”Buzzy Magazine (May 15, 2015)

“Diary of a Pod Person”Asimov’s Science Fiction (Oct. 2014)
“If you’ve never looked at your own dead body on a slab, nothing I say about it can fully convey the feeling. I looked at the body for a long time without moving, without thinking, without feeling.”

“A Matter of Scale”That Ain’t Right: Historical Accounts of the Miskatonic Valley (Sep. 2014)
“Father ran to it like a long-lost lover, hugging and nuzzling it like a kitten. ‘What eldritch secrets have you brought with you?'”

• “The Taking Tree”Daily Science Fiction (May 13, 2013)
“It all came back to her: the roaring of the chainsaw, sap bleeding from her wounds, the torment when the boy dismembered her, taking her limbs for a house and her trunk for a boat.”

• “Melt With You”Clarkesworld (Issue 79; April 2013)
“Even after being reincarnated as a plastic lawn flamingo, Irma still insisted that the scruffy panhandler on the I-95 offramp near our house had been Jesus.”

“Final Testament of a Weapons Engineer”After Death… (April 2013)
“I died. Surprised me a bit, but it didn’t bother me none.”

“A Fairy Tale”The Colored Lens (Issue #6; Winter 2013)
“Ragged holes had been punched in the jar’s plastic lid, the label peeled off leaving only smudgy streaks of glue obscuring its contents: three agitated fireflies, their green butts blinking on and off like living Christmas lights; a few leaves and a bumpy twig; and, sitting on the twig with her elbows on her knees, a tiny winged person.”

• “The Red Sno-Cones Are Not for Sale”Every Day Fiction (Dec. 9, 2012)
“Another finger was feeling brittle, threatening to let go like a loose tooth. It was his middle finger, this time. He thought he’d miss it most of all.”

• “Like Braces for Broken Teeth”Every Day Fiction (Nov. 20, 2012)
“Guardrails were braces for roads. They kept all the teeth—cars, trucks, bicycles—in harmony, so they could work together to bite down on the food of… It was an imperfect metaphor.”

• “10 Things to Do in Los Angeles After You Die”Every Day Fiction (Oct. 30, 2012)
“Breaking out of your grave will be the hardest part. Remember not to panic; you’re already dead.”

“Ray, Disintegrating”Mad Scientist Journal (Vol. CXCV; Summer 2012)
“Ray had murder in his heart.”

“Down in the Woods Today”Attic Toys (March 2012)
“You scoop me sweetly up into your arms, not even tugging me by a paw, and pluck a leaf from the fur of my face. For an instant I’m not sure I can do it…
“And then I bite.”

• “The Curse of the Were-Penis”FLURB (Issue #12; Fall/Winter, 2011)

“Apology for Fish-Dude”Ideomancer (Vol. 10 Issue 1; March 2, 2011)
“So I was standing on a boulder, far out into Lake Michigan, soaked but feeling triumphant, almost legendary, hugging the fish to my chest. And then the stupid thing had to go and talk to me.”

• “Last of the Monsters”Strange Horizons (Oct. 11, 2010)
“I laughed when the gods died out. One by one, they crawled off like dogs to die alone, and I danced on their unmarked graves.”

• “My Only Sunshine”FLURB (Issue #8; Fall/Winter 2009)

“Waking Up”Tertulia Magazine (July 13, 2009)

“And Stay Out”The MacGuffin (Vol. XXIV No. 2; Winter 2008)