Sharing stories and poems is something I enjoy and something I do almost every day via my Twitter feed and my personal blog. Sharing is the reason I’ve been a fan and a reader of Editors Eye since I joined Fictionaut two years ago so I was pleased to be asked to contribute to the column. The challenge is to find the hidden gems within the Fictionaut writing community and bring them into the light where they will hopefully sparkle in the eyes of readers who missed them the first time.
Susan Sontag said, “A writer is someone who pays attention to the world — a writer is a professional observer.” The stories I’ve chosen prove Susan’s point. Detail is what pulls a reader into a story, it’s what makes you feel like you are there, what makes you feel. The arrangement of those details is what makes up the writer’s unique voice, as you’ll see in each of these selections. I know you will enjoy them as much as I did.
“What You Choose to Take” by Kelli Trapnell
This piece is so subtly crafted that even while you’re being lulled into the tranquil domestic setting, you feel an undercurrent of foreboding that belies the tranquility. Kelli writes with a poet’s eye for detail: “You like how the sweet, summer smell of drying grass blends with the tang of the lemon dishwashing soap you use.” The reader feels an intimacy in this short piece right up to the heartbreaking end. This is one of the best flash pieces I’ve read anywhere.
Very short poetry is my favorite kind. It takes skill to put a lot into so little and Rene does it well. This little piece is as light as air but it packs a punch with one strategically placed word. It’s just gorgeous.
There’s beautiful imagery in this piece enhanced by a mood of melancholy. You get a hint that love is slipping away but the writer is trying hard to nourish the small flame that’s left.
The next three pieces are all weirdly wonderful – I’m not sure whether to call them SciFI, Magical Realism, or Fairy Tales but they all defy being categorized and I don’t like labels anyway.
“Bargaining” by Tonya R. Moore
This one totally creeped me out. The descriptive narration in this piece is so good I found myself scratching and thinking about Morgellons Disease and wondering how in hell this woman got into this predicament. This is really good story-telling and if it were a book you could get lost in it.
“Insomnia in Excelsis” by Peter Cherches
This wildly wonderful piece is an insomniac’s fever dream – you’re never sure exactly where you are or what you are, you only know you’re in what seems to be a mash-up of Alice in Wonderland and an old Vincent Price movie. This is crazy-good and I’m envious my imagination isn’t anywhere near this caliber.
A tale of a man literally becoming his work, this very unique piece fascinates me. I’ve read it several times and I keep thinking about it. This is what obsession is. This is what becoming completely and blindly infatuated is. Another wildly wonderful piece, I am completely smitten.
Charlotte Hamrick reads and writes in New Orleans. Besides her city, she loves her dogs, books, poetry, The Blues, photography and spending way too much time on the internet when she should be doing laundry. She hates laundry. Her work has been published in numerous online and print journals, most recently including Literary Orphans, Camroc Press Review, and Moving Poems. She is a Pushcart nominee and a finalist for the 15th Glass Woman Prize. She blogs at Zouxzoux.wordpress.com.
Jun 9th, 2015 at 9:04 pm
Lovely choices and commentary, Charlotte.
Jun 11th, 2015 at 9:57 am
Thanks, Gary! It was a pleasure.
Jun 12th, 2015 at 3:39 pm
Wonderful selections, Charlotte! Popping in here in my once-in-a-blue-moon mode, and I love seeing the things you’ve found hidden in the pages. I like your note about the details these writers include. These are all close observers, you can tell. Obsessions, insomnia, a treasure hunt, short short poetry — all so good!
Jun 13th, 2015 at 12:36 pm
Thanks, Michelle! I remember how thrilled I was when you chose one of my poems for your EE.
Jun 15th, 2015 at 6:19 pm
Thank you, Charlotte for including my poetry in Editor’s Eye.
What an honor!
Jun 16th, 2015 at 10:56 pm
It was my pleasure to read your work, Rene.