Cover art for the Yin & Yang BookThe big day has arrived – today marks the official launch of Chinese Whisperings: the Yin and Yang Book. I am pretty excited about it since I have a story included. My story is titled “No Passengers Allowed.”

Yin and Yang is the brain child of Jodi Cleghorn and Paul Anderson of eMergent Publishing. It is an interesting experiment in collaborative writing, crossing the bounds between an anthology and a novel. Each story is complete in and unto itself, but they are all interwoven with other stories throughout the book, with authors integrating characters, situations, and time lines into something much more than a collection of short stories. As I said, it is almost a novel, with the Prolog and Epilog wrapping all into a unified whole.

I know many of my readers here are familiar with #FridayFlash and as such you will find many authors in this collection you will recognize. I am proud to be sharing the space between the covers with the likes of Jen Brubacher, Christopher Chartrand, Carrie Clevenger, and many more I am sure you know. Counting the editors who contribute via way of the prolog and epilog, there are 22 authors in all, evenly divided between men and women – thus the Yin and Yang of the title.

You can join us all over at the official Amazon chart rush page on Facebook, or follow the live tweets of the frustrated passengers (characters in the book) as they watch their air carrier, the fictional Pangaean Airlines, collapse around them. The hashtag for that event on Twitter is #pangaean if you’d like to follow the madness. My character, Sam Harris (if that really is his name), would not be the type to call attention to himself by live tweeting, so I won’t be participating in that (not to mention that my boss would probably be none too pleased). But it should be fun if you can sneak a peek now and then.

You can buy Yin and Yang from many fine outlets, but we actually make the most when books are purchased directly from eMergent’s bookstore. Plus, if you by directly from eMergent you get a free ebook download when you purchase the paperback. Other outlets include Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon Canada, and Book Depository. The links can be found below.

One word of caution — the next time you fly, don’t annoy the guy in the next seat. He just might be Sam Harris.

The All Important Links:

eMergent’s Bookstore http://chinesewhisperings.com/book-shop/paperbacks/
Book Depository http://www.bookdepository.co.uk/Chinese-Whisperings-Paul-Anderson/9780980744699
Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Chinese-Whisperings-Yin-Yang-Book/dp/0980744695/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1322511930&sr=1-1
Amazon US http://www.amazon.com/Chinese-Whisperings-Yin-Yang-Book/dp/0980744695/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1322511824&sr=1-2
Amazon Canada http://www.amazon.ca/Chinese-Whisperings-Yin-Yang-Book/dp/0980744695/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1322512063&sr=1-1



There was an interesting article and followup over on Seeking Alpha about the NookColor and Barnes & Nobel’s development strategy, or apparent lack thereof. The article, Nook Needs an App Store to Survive, is by Joel West. Since I’m not an investment community type, and they require registration to leave a comment (something I’m disinclined to do just to leave a comment) I thought I’d add my two cents to the conversation here.

Joel’s basic argument is that Barnes and Nobel delivered a very nice device, but a device filled with untapped potential. There is a fully function tablet hidden at the core of the NookColor, but B&N has hidden it away behind their own little shell. True, a user can root their Nook to unlock that potential, but Joel feels it should not be incumbent upon the user to do so. In short, Barnes and Nobel needs to launch an app store in order to keep the momentum started by the release of the NookColor growing. I completely agree.

He goes on to say, “I am much less enthusiastic about the nookColor than when I bought it, because without the basic apps that you would find in a 1995 Palm Pilot — like a synchronized address book, a calendar and a simple note-taking app — I still have to carry a laptop or smartphone to every place that I take my nook. (Or I can just carry the laptop and leave the nook at home).”

He has a point, but I’m still very enthusiastic. I suppose that is because I use it mainly as an ebook reader when away from the house rather than an all purpose device. The web browser works well (if you can find a hot spot) and the device tucks nicely into my jacket pocket. At home I often leave my laptop upstairs and check my email and do some web browsing downstairs, which is convenient as all get out. I absolutely love my non-rooted NookColor. I read more and have bought more books since getting it than I have in the past year.

Still, I must admit I do miss those apps.

One of his readers begged to differ, saying he saw no reason for Barnes & Noble to build an app store when there is already a fully functional Android store available but for the effort of rooting the device.

Here I disagree. The reason B&N needs an app store is because there are many uses like me who have no desire or inclination to root their Nook but who want some basic apps such as a calendar and notepad. If they don’t come out with an app store I will be very disappointed with them.

Related Post:

5 New Years Resolutions for Barnes and Noble


We had 71 stories this past week with 2 debuts. Please give Sam Pennington, and G.K. Terence a warm Friday Flash welcome. Be sure to drop by to say hi and leave ‘em a comment.

I’m really late with this report, so I won’t be adding any late comers. If your story is not on the list you can add it to the Collector and I’ll add it to next week’s list which will probably work out better for you anyway. I won’t even make any silly promises about not being late in the future as my nose is quite long enough already. I always have good intentions, but you know where that road leads…

We do have a lot of great news in the news section, so be sure to scroll down past the listings to read up on it. Yes, there will be a quiz. :o

The Stories

A Boy’s Best Friend by Emma Kerry @emma_kerry ~ Unspecified ~

A Man Called Truth: The 70′s Job by Ramsey Lyons @ramslyons ~ Horror ~

Anticipation of Happiness, a short story from the world of Claire Morgane by Johanna Harness @johannaharness ~ Fantasy ~

Archer by Chance @Chance4321 ~ Humor ~

Being Well Disposed by Nick Bryan @NickMB ~ Humor ~

Black Hole by Laura Eno @LauraEno ~ Humor ~

Boo by David Robinson @DW96 ~ Humor ~

BUNS OF STEEL by Absolutely*Kate @AbsolutelyKate ~ Adventure ~

Butterfly Woman by Mike Robertson @miker_lazlo ~ Magical Realism ~

Campfire Tales by Melissa L. Webb @melissalwebb ~ Horror ~

Cathedral by Rachel Carter @rachcarter ~ Slice of Life ~

Coffee and Cotton Candy by P.J. Kaiser @pj_kaiser ~ Literary ~

Cup of Via by Stephen Book @StephenBook ~ Crime ~

Family Matters by A.M. Harte @am_harte ~ Horror ~

Goliath Must Be Slain by Maria Kelly @mkelly317 ~ Slice of Life ~

High rollers by Steve Green @n/a ~ Unspecified ~

I’ll Fly Away by Tim VanSant @TimVanSant ~ Fantasy ~

In Dreams – Part 2 by Dawn Kirby @SecretsWriter ~ Paranormal ~

In The Eye Of The Beholder by Harry B. Sanderford & Zelda Martin @HBSanderford ~ Humor ~

Jack by Diandra Linnemann @LaCaffeinata ~ Unspecified ~

Just Beyond the Bend by Donald Conrad @NoddlaNocdar ~ Humor ~

Larry Goes To The Future by John McDonnell @McDonnellWrite ~ Humor ~

Letting Go by Lindsey Chapman @Elsieraven ~ Unspecified ~

Lucky Noodle by G. P. Ching @gpching ~ Romance ~

Maneater by Icy Sedgwick @icypop ~ Horror ~

Missed Message by Aaron Conaway @M_Gideon ~ Suspense ~

Mr. Goliath by John Wiswell @Wiswell ~ Humor ~

ORDINARY WONDERS AND BLEAK MIRACLES: Waiting For Zachary by Al Bruno III @albruno3 ~ Romance ~

Other People by Kari Fay @morganafiolett ~ Unspecified ~

Our Modern Crusoe by Thom Gabrukiewicz @tgabrukiewicz ~ Unspecified ~


Seeing The Shadow by Sam Pennington @SamTales ~ Slice of Life ~ Debut

Shadows by Susan May James @yamnasus ~ Unspecified ~

Silent Lies by Annie Evett @annieEvett ~ Slice of Life ~

Simple Geometry by Tony Noland @TonyNoland ~ Paranormal ~

Smokers by Orjan Westin @Cunobaros ~ Slice of Life ~

Snowbathing by Stephen Hewitt @ThoughtMonkeyZ ~ Magical Realism ~

So I Hear… by Monica Marier @lil_monmon ~ Slice of Life ~

Song of the Sea by Seleste deLaney @selestedelaney ~ Fantasy ~

Starlight by John Xero @xeroverse ~ Science Fiction ~

Stone Cold by Mark Kerstetter @markerstetter ~ Slice of Life ~

The “Bedtime” Story by Beverly @ TheBevelededge @Bevimus ~ Slice of Life ~

The ‘Oh I Wish I’d Been There’ Club by Alex Carrick @Alex_Carrick ~ Humor ~

The Artist’s Defence by Emma Newman @emapocalyptic ~ Suspense ~

The Beef Quilt by David Wilson-Burns @fictdoodles ~ Humor ~

The Blindside by Michael A Tate @Michael_A_Tate ~ Slice of Life ~

The Conversation by Rachel Blackbirdsong @RBlackbirdsong ~ Literary ~

The Devil’s Detail by Virginia Moffatt @VirginiaMoffatt ~ Unspecified ~

The Flower Eaters by Aidan Fritz @AidanFritz ~ Fantasy ~

The Friend I’ve Met by Michael J. Solender @mjsolender ~ Literary ~

The Letter by Danielle La Paglia @Dannigrrl5 ~ Horror ~

The Manager by John Xero @xeroverse ~ Cross Genre ~

The Mythical Creatures Employment Exchange. Chapter 10. by Justin Davies @flyingscribbler ~ Humor ~

The Ouija Board of Love by Eric J. Krause @ericjkrause ~ Unspecified ~

The Perch by J. M. Strother @jmstro ~ Slice of Life ~

The Return of the Fire by Magaly Guerrero @PaganCulture ~ Fantasy ~

The Sacrament by Lara Dunning @LaraDunning ~ Literary ~

The Sweetest Trolls #12 – The Knight Revealed by Mari Juniper @marirandomities ~ Fantasy ~

The Three PM Bus by Brinda Banerjee @brindabanjee73 ~ Slice of Life ~

The UCF Stories #35: The Key To It All by Sam Adamson @FutureNostalgic ~ Fantasy ~

Threshold by James Tallett @thefourpartland ~ Fantasy ~

To Victory by Laura Cummins @jacsmom ~ Slice of Life ~

Touched by G.K. Terence @GKTerence ~ Paranormal ~

Transformations by J.E. Ignatius McNeill @dreamrock ~ Fantasy ~

Trapped by Splintered Lands @SplinteredLands ~ Fantasy ~

Undead Dentistry by Jason Warden @shadowCastAudio ~ Horror ~

when i needed you by John Delgadillo @jcunknown ~ Slice of Life ~

WHITE by Linda Simoni-Wastila @drwasy ~ Literary ~

Why’d You Do It, Tommy? by Rol Hirst @rolhirst ~ Horror ~

Winds of Change by Angie C. @techtigger ~ Fantasy ~

Writing into the Darkness by G.K. Terence @GKTerence ~ Horror ~ Debut

In The News

A. M. Harte is proud to announce her debut ebook release, “Hungry For You”? It is billed as a haunting speculative fiction collection about love and zombies. A number of the stories included are revised or expanded versions some past FridayFlash pieces, but new surprises also await you. You can find more details and a links to the book at the Hungry For You page. Be sure to click through. Congrats, Anna.

Genevieve Ching is happy to announce she now has a deal with DarkSide Publishing. Yes it’s true, Genevieve has gone over to the dark side, and that’s a good thing. She will be joining their cooperative of authors and artists. Her book, “The Soulkeepers” will debut in 2011 under the DarkSide label. For more details about DarkSide Publishing, please visit their website.  Congratulations, Genevieve.

Karen Schindler informs me that both she and Laura Eno have stories in the 2010 edition of 52 Stitches. Karen’s story, Aftertaste, is on page 73 and Laura’s story, Dangerous Premonitions, is on page 44. You can read Karen’s full announcement here. Karen also informs us that the proceeds from the sale of the book are going to go to the trust fund that was set up for Jamie Eyberg’s children. Jamie and his wife died suddenly last year, so it is a most worthy cause.

Speaking of worthy causes, Trevor Belshaw and Jodi Cleghorn are producing a wonderful flash fiction collection, 100 Stories for Queensland, the proceeds of which will go to the Queensland Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal. But you already knew that. What you may not have know is that many Friday Flash participants have stories accepted for inclusion in the collection, which just goes to show what a great group of folks you are. At the risk of offending someone via omission, congratulations to Sam Adamson, Tomara Armstrong, Alan Baxter, Stephen Book, Christopher Chartrand, G.P. Ching, Kari Fay, Emma Kerry, Monica Marier, Gracie Motley, Emma Newman, and Julio Ricardo Varela. You have proven yourselves to be both talented and generous with your talents. You are all to be commended.

The wrap

Thanks to all our readers. We love you. And please, if you enjoy a story leave comments when you visit. Writers love feedback almost as much as chocolate. Maybe more! Then go tell your friends to read it too. Help these writers grow.

You can subscribe to the #fridayflash hashtag (external link) on Twitter every week for more great flash fiction.

We’re on Facebook (external link) too.


We had a slight uptick following all the holiday festivities with 59 stories this week, including one debut. Please welcome Brinda Banerjee to the FridayFlash community. Drop by, read, comment and visit a while.

If your story is not listed here, please visit the Collector and add the details. Then let me know it’s there and I’ll update the list. All the best in 2011. ~jon

The Stories

WRITE! WRITE, YOU WHORE. by Absolutely*Kate @AbsolutelyKate ~ Literary ~


Waking Beauty by Valerie Valdes @valerievaldes ~ Fantasy ~

Vanilla Frosting Sky by Jason Sullivan @JasonSullivan_ ~ Science Fiction ~

Uncertainty by Rebecca Emin @RebeccaEmin ~ Suspense ~

Time by Emma Kerry @emma_kerry ~ Unspecified ~

The Wallpaper Forest by Stephen Hewitt @ThoughtMonkeyZ ~ Magical Realism ~

The Nick of Time (and other abrasions): Maxwell’s Silver Hammer by Al Bruno III @albruno3 ~ Paranormal ~

The Mythical Creatures Employment Exchange. Chapter Six by Justin Davies @flyingscribbler ~ Humor ~

The Lazarus Experiment: Part I by Christopher Michael Bell @ChrisBell85 ~ Science Fiction ~

The Last Time by Deanna Schrayer @deannaschrayer ~ Literary ~

The eReader by Eric J. Krause @ericjkrause ~ Unspecified ~

The Envelope by Janet Aldrich (TEC4) @tec4_cleveland ~ Magical Realism ~

The Block Party by Brinda Banerjee @brindabanjee73 ~ Slice of Life ~ Debut

Tastes Like Chicken by Michael J. Solender @mjsolender ~ Humor ~

Sweet Chili Philly by Absolutely*Kate & Harry B. Sanderford @HBSanderford ~ Action ~

Sleeping Beauty of Palermo by Estrella Azul @EstrellaAzul ~ Magical Realism ~

Single White Male by J. M. Strother @jmstro ~ Suspense ~

Signs of the Apocalypse by Susan Helene Gottfried @WestofMars ~ Slice of Life ~

Secret Homecoming et al. by Susan May James @yamnasus ~ Unspecified ~

Sanctuary by James Tallett @thefourpartland ~ Unspecified ~

Runner-Up by Laura Eno @LauraEno ~ Humor ~

Ralph’s A Respectable Name by Kat Del Rio @katdelrio ~ Slice of Life ~

Pink Tutus And Blue Cheese by Melissa L. Webb @melissalwebb ~ Horror ~

Ode to the Muse by Jason Warden @ShadowCastAudio ~ Literary ~

Misdirection by Steve Green @n/a ~ Crime ~

Meat by J.E. Ignatius McNeill @dreamrock ~ Science Fiction ~

Love Song by Rol Hirst @rolhirst ~ Horror ~

Kail’s Sorrow by Lara Dunning @LaraDunning ~ Fantasy ~

Joe Milgrave and the Devil by Monica Marier @lil_monmon ~ Fantasy ~

It’s True What They Say by Linda Simoni-Wastila @drwasy ~ Literary ~

Ice Boat by Mike Robertson @miker_lazlo ~ Unspecified ~

Heroes Wanted (Part 8) by Stephen Book @StephenBook ~ Western ~

He Has to Wonder at 130 by John Wiswell @Wiswell ~ Science Fiction ~

Hackney’s Pub by Gary Harmon @Gary_Harmon ~ Humor ~

Future History Lesson by Maria Kelly @mkelly317 ~ Science Fiction ~

Fridge Door Archaelogy by Adam Byatt @revhappiness ~ Slice of Life ~

First Fight by Catherine Russell @ganymeder ~ Humor ~

Figs DO Grow On Trees, Right? by Aaron Conaway @M_Gideon ~ Magical Realism ~

Feed by Ramsey Lyons @ramslyons ~ Cross Genre ~

Feathers by Rachel Blackbirdsong @RBlackbirdsong ~ Science Fiction ~

Drained by Tim VanSant @TimVanSant ~ Experimental ~

Downstream by Tom Allman @yoohootom ~ Slice of Life ~

Do Aliens Facebook? by John McDonnell @McDonnellWrite ~ Humor ~

Detached by Rachel Carter @rachcarter ~ Slice of Life ~

Damaged Hearts by Thom Gabrukiewicz @tgabrukiewicz ~ Unspecified ~

Cheap Irish Whiskey by David Wilson-Burns @fictdoodles ~ Literary ~

Business as Usual by Katherine Nabity @katen ~ Thriller ~

B is for Benedict who Brushed all the Bears by Kari Fay @morganafiolett ~ Unspecified ~

August, 1968 from FRANKY BENITEZ by Julio Ricardo Varela @julito77 ~ Literary ~

Archeologists’ War by Aidan Fritz @AidanFritz ~ Fantasy ~

Antique by GP Ching @gpching ~ Unspecified ~

Anger: Over You by Seleste deLaney @selestedelaney ~ Paranormal ~

A Thirst Before Dying by Denise Covey @pichetsinparis ~ Adventure ~

A Stranger Among Men by Nomar Knight @Nomar_Knight ~ Science Fiction ~

A Precious Possession by Brainhaze @Brainhazewp ~ Slice of Life ~

A Girl’s Best Friend by Icy Sedgwick @icypop ~ Slice of Life ~

A fire in the palm of my hand by Tony Noland @TonyNoland ~ Slice of Life ~

A Depressed Person by Vincent Eaton @VincentEaton ~ Cross Genre ~

In the News

Trevor Belshaw has seen quite a bit of success of late. His ebook ‘Tracy’s Hot Mail’ was published by BigBadMedia just before Christmas. He also had two stories, ‘The Psychic’ and ‘A Fond Farewell’ published by Ether Books on their iphone app. Finally, his short story ‘Hail the New’ was included in Jodi Cleghorn’s wonderful ‘Deck The Halls’ Anthology. Wow, quite a list of achievments. Congratulations, Trevor.

And speaking of Deck the Halls…

Jodi Cleghorn has published Mixed Tapes, Volume One — Deck the Halls, the first in a envisioned series of short stories based on a seasonal theme. ‘Deck the Halls’ revolves around Christmas and includes stories from many Friday Flashers, including: Benjamin Solah, Chris Chartrand, Sam Adamson, Jen Brubacher, Annie Evett, Susan May James, Jonathan Crossland, Emma Kerry, Lily Mulholland, Jim Bronyaur, Icy Sedgwick, Dan Powell and the afore mentioned, Trevor Belshaw. You can download the free ebook here.

A Valentines collection of Mixed Tapes, (Nothing But) Flowers is in the works. It is based on the theme: tales of post apocalyptic love. Should be a good one. Many Friday Flash regulars are slated to appear, so stay tuned.

Laura Eno was interviewed on Writers Talk by John Hayes over at Robert Frost’s Banjo. She talks about her writing life and the hazards of keeping pets from the Underworld. It’s a nice interview. Drop by and say ‘hey.’

The wrap

Thanks to all our readers. We love you. And please, if you enjoy a story leave comments when you visit. Writers love feedback almost as much as chocolate. Maybe more! Then go tell your friends to read it too. Help these writers grow.

You can subscribe to the #fridayflash hashtag (external link) on Twitter every week for more great flash fiction.

We’re on Facebook (external link) too.


Party HatsI did not make any new year resolutions this year. I meant to, really, but somehow time just slipped away from me and I never got around to it. You know what? It’s a very liberating feeling.

Just because I failed to make resolutions for myself doesn’t mean I can’t make them for others, whether they want them or not. I’m very generous that way. No need to thank me, B&N, just meet these resolutions with… er, resolve.

My resolutions for you revolve around your new NOOKcolor, a terrific new ebook reader. I got one for Christmas and I love it. It is easily the best Christmas present I’ve received in years. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t use it, mostly as an ebook reader, though it makes for a nice web browser too. However, there are a few little things you can (and should) do that will make it even better.

I took my NOOKc to my book club meeting yesterday, along with my new Kindle 3G. Some people in the group still don’t own an ereader, but are considering one. I took both the Kindle and NOOK figuring once they saw them side-by-side they would obviously want the NOOK. Boy was I wrong. I hate to tell you this, but by the time the meeting broke up both Kim and Dianna said they’d probably go with the Kindle.

So here is a handy list of resolutions you should strive to implement before the end of 2011. You are very welcome.

1) Yes, of course, it’s a list of New Year’s resolutions so it’s bound to be there – lose weight. The first thing Kim and Dianna noticed when I handed them the NOOK and Kindle was that the NOOK was much heavier than the Kindle. It was downhill from there. You know what they say about first impressions. So please, find ways to shave off some weight without reducing screen size, even if it’s just an ounce or two.

2) Add 3G. One of my arguments when they objected to the weight was, sure it weighs more, but it does so much more than the Kindle. It’s really a tablet computer complete with a cool web browser. Alas, our restaurant of choice lacked free wi-fi. There were half a dozen networks within range, but every one of them was secure. How inconsiderate. Therefore I was unable to blow their socks off by surfing over to our book club website. Someone asked the inevitable question, “Does the Kindle have a web browser?” Unfortunately the answer is yes, so they considered it moot. It’s not moot. The Kindle web browser SUCKS. I tried demonstrating that to them, but poor performance trumps no performance in a table-side demo every time. Had the NOOK been 3G enabled I could have really made it shine. Yes I know, adding features does not help in the weight loss department. But you’re smart folks, figure it out.

Please note: I don’t mean the Kindle sucks, only it’s web browser.

3) Implement landscape reading for books. Landscape only works for magazines, the web, and children’s books – not regular books. What were you thinking, you knuckleheads?

4) Ship it with a little larger selection of free books. It does come with Little Women, Pride and Prejudice, and Dracula, all of which are fine choices. But throw in a half dozen other titles that might appeal to a broader audience. There are plenty of classics in the public domain so why not throw in a few more? Some collections would be nice – say of poetry, or short stories. A collection of poems by the fireside poets of the 19th century and the works of Edgar Allen Poe come to mind. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes would be a nice draw. And while you’re at it, add the cover art to the books themselves, not just as thumbnails on the library shelves. You have a fabulous color device here; for goodness sakes, showcase it.

5) I was very glad to see you have released an SDK (software developer’s kit for the none-geeks reading this). That puts you well ahead of the game in the “resolutions” department. Way to go. Now perhaps you, or some third party developer, can come out with a wireless stylus for use on the NOOK. Note taking, sudoko, and crossword puzzels would be so much more intuitive with a “pencil” interface. Perhaps someone will even come up with a nice sketching app to boot.

Well, there you have it, Barnes & Noble, five new year’s resolutions with my complements. Please release this new model of your wonderful NOOKcolor in time for Christmas, 2011. You’ll be glad you did.

Photo by Holly Occhipinti, via Flickr Creative Commons


and Kindle too.

The Nook and Kindle side by side.

The Nook and Kindle side by side.

My cup runneth over. Two days after my wife bought me a NOOKcolor (or is that a nookCOLOR?) for Christmas I won a Kindle via an online contest over at Publetariate. (Thanks again, April Hamilton). When I told Cyndi I won a Kindle there was a pregnant pause from the other room, then a rather terse, “Isn’t that one of those ereaders?” I knew the unasked question – Should I take the NOOKc back? (Nooksee? – really, something has to change here in the name department.) Before she could even form the words I let her know I still wanted a NOOKY for Christmas.

Why? she wanted to know.

Because, while they are both ereaders, they both fill two separate niches, and this way I would be able to compare them. She gave a very doubtful “un-huh” but like a trooper did not tamper with the gifts under the tree. So for Christmas this year I got both a NOOK-C and a Kindle.

Now that I’ve had them both for a few days I can tell you I like the Kindle – but I love the NOOK.

Both do an admirable job in the ebook reader department. More on that later.

The Kindle is substantially lighter than the NOOK. Sore, Kindle.

The NOOK has a backlit display, which is supposed to be hard on your eyes and can’t be read in bright sunlight. The Kindle has an eInk display, which can be read in bright sunlight (something I virtually never do) and looks kind of dull. Despite all the talk, that eInk background is not white and the Nook looks much more page-like. It’s not white either, but the backlighting makes the black letters stand out from the background much more like in a book. Plus, the NOOK has a very high resolution display that I think more than makes up for the eInk display in the eye fatigue department. Let’s call it a draw.

The NOOK color display makes for a fantastic web browsing experience. This really is a tablet, a palm sized alternative to the iPad. As good as an iPad? Probably not, unless you factor in the price. If you do, I think the NOOK actually wins in the web browsing arena. The NOOK’s small size ensures you can pack it along anywhere whereas the iPad’s size is kind of awkward for a mobile device. (The iPad still wins in the tablet computer department for the other stuff it does so well, but this is not a NOOK vs. iPad post.) And the Kindle as a web browser? Well let’s just say, Score NOOK!

Mad Utopia on the Nook

Mad Utopia on the Nook

The Kindle is encumbered with buttons buttons, everywhere buttons. It has a real keyboard vs the NOOKsee’s virtual keyboard. The virtual keyboard is a pain in the rear to use. It seems to be overly sensitive meannnnnnnnnnnnniing you might type words like that, or worse, passwords where you can’t even see what you’ve •••••••• but you know it’s three characters too long. The NOOKy needs a virtual keyboard upgrade, like pronto.

But the Kindle’s real keyboard is nothing to write home about. Yes, it has real keys, and you tend to get what you type. But it is a keyboard sans numbers, which means looking for the books Child 44 or 1984 can be a real challenge. You can do it. There is a Sym key (for symbols), but this brings up a little virtual keyboard on the Kindle which you select numbers and symbols from by moving the cursor around over them with the “5 way” controller and then hitting the big middle button on it. Think, typing with a joystick. No joy. Right now I’d have to call the keyboards a draw.

Then there is the whole touch screen thing. NOOK has it. Kindle doesn’t. Once you use a touch screen hand-held device you find you try touching other devices (like the Kindle) to try and make menu selections and turn the page. For touch screen – NOOK, score score score Score SCORE!

Come on, how hard can it be to change the page on the Kindle with the handy buttons right under your thumbs?

Uh, actually too easy. Call me fumble fingers, but I tend to hit those damned buttons inadvertently and suddenly find myself on the next page, or the last. Worse still, I sometimes hit the cluster of keys below the screen (ok, I shift around a lot while I’m reading, so my hands change position a lot) and God knows where that will take you. You can hit the menu key and suddenly be presented with a menu you don’t want, one of the arrow keys on the “5 way” and get thrown to the start of the next or previous chapters (trust me, I’ve done both), or the Home key and be thrown completely out of the book you are reading (been there, done that too). Everything I’ve ever read about reading and writing says you never want to throw your reader out of the story. Alas, with the Kindle that is all too easy to do. This does not happen to me on the NOOKy. It is much harder to accidentally swipe for a page change.

Why is this? Because the NOOK-C is not encumbered with all those stinking buttons. I can hold the NOOK much more naturally, as if holding a book, than I can the Kindle. Yes, I could get used to the Kindle with but a little practice. But I don’t have to practice holding a book – not since my mom convinced me using crayons while reading was a no-no. To me the NOOKcolor just feels much more natural, albeit, just a tad on the heavy side.

So who wins the NOOKc vs Kindle debate? That, my friend is going a to a matter of personal preference. Right now I’ll cast my lot with the NOOK. If they fix that virtual keyboard it would win hands down. Still, I’ll keep the Kindle too.


Seems many folks were either busy with Christmas preparations or were just plain snowed in this week. Still, we had 50 stories this week, with one debut. As always there is lots of variety and some outstanding talent on exhibit. And for some reason there seem to be a lot of Christmas stories this week. Go figure.

Please be sure to visit our debut participant, Jennifer Joseph, and leave her a comment and a Christmas cookie or two.

If your story is not in the listing please visit the Collector and add the details. Then shoot me. er, I mean, then shoot me an email and let me know it’s there and I’ll add it to the listing. Thanks for participating in #FridayFlash.

The Stories

Winter’s Bride by Icy Sedgwick @icypop ~ Fantasy ~

White Christmas by Virginia Moffatt @VirginiaMoffatt ~ Unspecified ~

Where the Trains Used to Run Part 2 by Lionel Braud @ltrain75 ~ Literary ~

What’s The Best Christmas Movie? by John Wiswell @Wiswell ~ Experimental ~

Try the Salsa, Y’all! by David Wilson-Burns @fictdoodles ~ Humor ~

Traveling to a Merry Christmas by E. D. Johnson @geektreasure ~ Slice of Life ~

The Waldgeist by Vandamir Windrider @Vandamir ~ Paranormal ~

The UCF Stories Christmas Special: The Cleaner by Sam Adamson @FutureNostalgic ~ Fantasy ~

The Path to Pastels by Jason Coggins @JaseCoggins ~ Fantasy ~

The Night Before Christmas by Rebecca Emin @RebeccaEmin ~ Humor ~

The Mythical Creatures Employment Exchange. #Five by Justin Davies @flyingscribbler ~ Cross Genre ~

The Golden Moment by Linda Simoni-Wastila @drwasy ~ Literary ~

The City That Never Spoke by David D Sharp @aweeadventure ~ Fantasy ~

The Bride of Oglingston Spitworthy by Catherine Russell @ganymeder ~ Humor ~

Swan’s Act by A. M. Harte @am_harte ~ Experimental ~

Southbound by Harry B. Sanderford @HBSanderford ~ Unspecified ~

Some Things Are Mine by Johanna Harness @johannaharness ~ Fantasy ~

Snow in Paris by Lara Dunning @LaraDunning ~ Fantasy ~

Snakeskin by Rachel Blackbirdsong @RBlackbirdsong ~ Literary ~

Singing Galway Bay by Kari Fay @morganafiolett ~ Slice of Life ~

Santa’s Secret War by Eric J. Krause @ericjkrause ~ Fantasy ~

Running in Circles by T.J. McIntyre @southernweirdo ~ Unspecified ~

Rabid Bunny by Jennifer Joseph @creativeconduit ~ Horror ~ Debut

Quiet Morning on the Square by Michael J. Solender @mjsolender ~ Humor ~

Pure Evil by David Wilson-Burns @fictdoodles ~ Horror ~

Phil Something by Tom Allman @yoohootom ~ Paranormal ~


Nail That Gift by Donald Conrad @NoddlaNocdar ~ Slice of Life ~

Merry Zmas by Steve Green @n/a ~ Horror ~

JiNGLE NELLE, JiNGLE NELLE by Absolutely*Kate @AbsolutelyKate ~ Crime ~

Jennie’s Christmas Miracle by Karen Schindler @karenfrommentor ~ Romance ~

Jarboe, Lord of Tater Town by Aaron Conaway @M_Gideon ~ Magical Realism ~

I’ll Be Home for Christmas by Maria Kelly @mkelly317 ~ Slice of Life ~

I Heard the Bells by Ramsey Lyons @ramslyons ~ Horror ~

Heroes Wanted (Part 6) by Stephen Book @StephenBook ~ Western ~

Here We Come A-Wassailing by J. M. Strother @jmstro ~ Slice of Life ~

Frostbite: A Mafia Family Christmas (pt.1) by Anne Tyler Lord @AnneTylerLord ~ Cross Genre ~

Clara’s Question by Stephen Hewitt @ThoughtMonkeyZ ~ Slice of Life ~

Christmas, 1976: The Bronx from Franky Benítez by Julio Ricardo Varela @julito77 ~ Literary ~

Christmas Past by Olivia Tejeda @SimplyOlivia ~ Slice of Life ~

Christmas is Over! by Deanna Schrayer @deannaschrayer ~ Cross Genre ~

Christmas Cabin by Aidan Fritz @AidanFritz ~ Horror ~

Big Toe Walkabout by Vincent Eaton @VincentEaton ~ Cross Genre ~

Be Careful What You Wish For by David Robinson @DW96 ~ Cross Genre ~

Anti Claus is Coming to Town by Tim VanSant @TimVanSant ~ Humor ~

All I Want For Christmas Is A Clean Rap Sheet by Al Bruno III @albruno3 ~ Humor ~

A Time To Reflect by Thom Gabrukiewicz @tgabrukiewicz ~ Unspecified ~

A Solstice Gift by Angie C. @techtigger ~ Fantasy ~

A Christmas Peril by Melissa L. Webb @melissalwebb ~ Paranormal ~

A Christmas Crime by David Barber @thetwoblokes ~ Crime ~

In the News

Emma Newman announced some exciting news. She has another book deal, with eMergent Publishing this time, for her short story anthology ‘From Dark Places.’ The original collection is going to be re-released as Volume One with a follow on Volume Two, both as ebooks. Then both will be combined for a nice print edition sometime next year. Congratulations, Emma, and congratulations to eMergent co-founders Jodi Cleghorn and Paul Anderson for signing a terrific talent. Champagne all around.

Dan Powell has a story, ‘The Last Year of Father Christmas‘ in the Metazen Christmas Charity E-Book 2010. Congratulations, Dan. It’s all for a good cause, so check it out.

Please take a moment to read this appeal from the occasional Friday Flasher and all around great person, April Hamilton, concerning the future of Publetariat. I’ve found the Publetariat very useful over the past couple of years and would hate to see it go under. Help if you can, or simply offer her some words of encouragement. I’m pulling for you, April.

If you have news for or about the Friday Flash community please let me know. I’m always happy to help spread the word. Tips work a lot better than me just stumbling upon them. Thanks. ~jon

The wrap

Thanks to all our readers. We love you. And please, if you enjoy a story leave comments when you visit. Writers love feedback almost as much as chocolate. Maybe more! Then go tell your friends to read it too. Help these writers grow.

You can subscribe to the #fridayflash hashtag (external link) on Twitter every week for more great flash fiction.

We’re on Facebook (external link) too.


5 Thing ThursdayThe five top lessons I learned in doing the Best Of Friday Flash – Volume One:

1: Word Processing Beyond The Basics

If you are like me there are style controls built into your word processor that you’ve never used and may not even realize were there. It turns out these style controls, for headings and paragraphs, are essential when laying out a manuscript if you want to avoid stress induced insanity. Some of the key styles I discovered are well worth setting up include:

  • Heading 1 – for story titles, or chapter titles if doing a novel instead of a collection of stories
  • Heading 2 – for authors
  • TOC Heading – for maintaining sanity and generating the TOC (see 2, below)
  • Body Text First Line – Used to make the lead paragraphs non-indented and with a little added space between it and the author’s name.
  • Body Text Indented – Used to indent interior paragraphs, rather than using vertical white space to set them off. It is important to minimize vertical white space where practical as over the course of a manuscript extra white space can significantly add to page count, and thus to list price.
  • Body Text Scene Break – At scene breaks you need a little extra vertical white space to cue the reader on the shift.
  • Body Text Minutia – In addition to indentation and vertical spacing, Styles also defind such properties as Font, Typeface, and Size. I set up Minutia to handle all the text on the copyright page so it did not take up too much space.
  • Body Text Bio – I used a slightly different style for the author’s bios to help set them off from the main text of the stories.

Both Microsoft Word and OpenOffice have Style settings. Until this project I never used them. Now I would not layout a manuscript without them. The advantage is once you have them set up, and you decide you’d really like all those authors to be in Comic Sans instead of Arial Narrow, you change it once in the Style and it applies to the entire manuscript. This saves you a ton of work. Get to know your Styles, they will become your best friends.

2: Table of Contents Tricks

There are two methods for laying out tables of content, one for ebooks and one for print books (see 3, below, for other ebook vs print variations). For ebooks your table of contents should not have page numbers. Readers of ebooks can adjust font size, which of course effects page layout. For most ebook formats page numbers are meaningless (PDF being the exception). Instead, the table of contents should be hot-linked to jump to the title within the text. That is one omission I made on the BOFF, I did not hot-link the TOC. I was simply too frustrated at that point to deal with it. I hope to update the BOFF ebook with a hot-linked TOC sometime in the future, and if you have already bought a copy I will replace it for free at that time.

Print books, on the other hand, need tables of contents with accurate page numbers. Fortunately most modern word processing packages will automatically generate tables of contents for you, based on the styles (see 1, above) you’ve set up. This works pretty well out of the box for most situations, but there is one major oversight. If you try to set up a multi-line TOC (i.e. a TOC based on Header One for Title and Header Two for author) you end up with an horrid academic paper type of TOC. To wit:

Her Migration ……………. 11
Shannon Esposito ……… 11
In Memory Alone ……….. 13
Al Bruno III ……………… 13

and so on.
I’m sorry, that looks like crap in a collection of short fiction.

What I wanted was:

Her Migration | Shannon Esposito …………… 11
In Memory Alone | Al Bruno III ……………… 13

Trying to do this out of the box with the TOC layout tools available in your word processor will drive you nuts. I spent days on this little problem. Finally someone on the OpenOffice forums offered a work around that does the job for print versions, though I would not like it much for PDF. His solution: create a tiny line of text at the top of each story with the title, a separator (I used a pipe | ) and author. Set it up as a special header type in your Styles (see 1, above), and make the text white. The faked out header will not be visible in the printed version and can be used to set up the TOC with the out of the box tools. This will work with PDF output too, but a reader could “discover” these fake headers when selecting text. It’s a rather kludgey solution, but it works.

By the way, the reason for the pipe instead of , by as a separator is it saved horizontal space, meaning some of the longer Title/Author combos did not wrap onto two lines for a more favorable aesthetic.

3: eBook Formating vs Print Book Formatting

I covered a good portion of this when discussing the table of contents, but there are two other main differences between digital and print worth noting – page breaks, and footers. Generally you don’t need page breaks in an ebook. As mentioned before, readers are likely to monkey with their font sizes, which may blow your nicely laid out page breaks out of the water. Avoid the frustration, both on your part in setting them up, and on the readers part when the turn the “page” only to find the last word of the last paragraph in that chapter. Instead, rely on your Styles (See 1, above) to give the reader a satisfying white space separation between between scenes and chapters. (Don’t quote me on that, I am not 100% sure ebook readers respect Style spacing, but I think they do. I’ll know more once I actually have an ebook reader.)

Footers are used to place and format page numbers. Thus you need them in print books and you need to eliminate them for ebooks. Yes, you will end up with two separate and distinct copies of your manuscript when done, one for print (and PDF), and one for digital.

4: Project Set Up At CreateSpace

I could do a 5 Things on CreateSpace alone, but in all fairness, they are very responsive to feedback. The main thing you need to do with CreateSpace is get familiar with their set up menus. I suggest you do this with a fake book you work end-to-end, with no intention to actually print it, and then delete the project once you’ve got it all figured out. The main problem is that CreateSpace uses multiple steps and it is all menu driven. Some of the menu choices are not obvious, some of them are downright frustrating. For example, when setting up CreateSpace insists on an “Author”. I am not the author of the BOFF, I am the editor. There is a sub-category for “Editor”, but it seems to be for listing the editor in addition to the author, like you might see on a textbook. In the post process survey I mentioned this little problem and was please to get a response from CreateSpace informing me that if this should crop up in the future all one need do is request they manually change you to Editor before you commit to print. As I said, they do seem to be quite responsive.

The other problem with CreateSpace is if you make a change to your cover or your content, or if they find a error in your uploaded manuscript which violates one of their set up rules you have to fix it and then wait up to 48 hours to have it reviewed again. It was not until layout was completed that I discovered the bar code box overprinted the bottom text of the back cover. I had to contact the cover artist and ask her if she would move the bottom text up some to eliminate the overlap. Then I had to upload the new cover. Then if they find another error you repeat the cycle. I did three or four cycles, which chews up considerable calendar time. So what kind of errors are we talking about here?

Your cover indicates your are J. M. Strother, and your copyright page indicates you are Jon M. Strother. The author must match between cover and copyright. My bad. 48 hours.

Your cover indicates you are J. M. Strother and your copyright page indicates you are Jon M. Strother. The author must match between cover and copyright. What? Oh no, my name is in the minutia twice. I only fixed one! My double bad. Another 48 hours.

We have found a reference to Amazon.com in your text body. If you list Amazon.com you must indicate at least two other markets your manuscript is available from. Say what? That one just seems insane to me, but who am I to argue. I deleted the reference to Amazon.com (sorry Christopher) and resubmitted. Another 48 hours.

You get the idea. In the post process survey I suggested they point out multiple errors the first time around so they could be fixed all in one cycle. They got back to me right away and said they would look into doing just that. I kind of like these CreateSpace folks.

5: Book Pricing

CreateSpace has a list-price estimator. It’s kind of hard to find, and not all that accurate. It guesstimated the BOFF would cost $8.99, about two bucks more than I would like, but a price I could live with. But when I got done and asked to finalize it the actual list price came out to $10.99. I was dismayed. As much as I love the BOFF I thought most folks would pass at that price.

I expressed my dismay online and Laura Eno suggested I try a different format size (6” x 9” instead of 5” x 8”), and to use Arial 10pt instead of Times New Roman 11pt. I made those changes, which significantly reduced the page count. This was accomplished in no time via (drum roll please) the Styles (see 1, above). Then the cover had to be resized and both cover and content uploaded again. Doing all this brought the BOFF in at $7.99, much better than eleven bucks. At this price we make 5 cents on each copy sold via Amazon, and $1.65 on each sold through our CreateSpace eStore. (By the way, adding just two more pages to the BOFF would knock that Amazon royalty down to 1 cent. Tightening up stories by controlling vertical white space is critical.)


So, the lessons learned here are: get to know your word processor’s Styles and Table Of Contents tools, preplan your manuscripts both for print and digital formats, and try to minimize your page count. I suggest you make a fake book and take it up to, but not including, the approval stage at CreateSpace so you can familiarize yourself with the menu structure. Then just delete the sample project and go for it. Also, ask for help when you need it. It will save you untold amounts of hair.

Let me know if any of these points need further clarification, or share your own tips in the comments below.

Telephone Wires In 1890

Telephone Wires In 1890

I’ve seen a lot of press of late claiming this is the year of the ebook reader, and by extension the year of the ebook. Publisher’s Weekly recently ran a handy listing of the current most popular models on their website. If you want to do a quick (albeit fairly shallow) comparison go check it out. They have fifteen varieties to choose from – everything from dedicated ebook readers, to smart phones, to tablets.

If fifteen flavors are not enough to make your head spin you can go to Mobile Read Wiki, where they track no fewer than 45 makes and models of ebook readers – and those are only devices that use eInk. No smart phones, iPads, or color Nooks included. They have a separate pages for LCD ereaders (the Nook Color included), web tablets (such as the iPad), and smart phones. Yet another page on the wiki lists the ebook formats available – 60 of them!

It seems the only thing lacking in the eBook device market is clarity. If ever there was an industry in need of industry wide standards it is the eBook industry, both on the hardware and publishing side of the equation.

Despite this mass confusion ebook sales are surging, some say at the cost of hardback sales. Next year the New York Times will begin listing ebook Best Sellers, a sure sign the market is maturing. I can only imagine how much stronger the market would be if there was some semblance of clarity, some degree of certainty the consumer could count on. As it stands now the ebook market is as fragmented and confusing as the telephone industry once was.

Who will come out on top?

I wish I had that crystal ball. I think the best bet has to go with brand name recognition combined with product placement. Of course the Kindle has the best name brand recognition, and Amazon will begin selling the device in retail outlets this fall – that all important product placement. But they are late to that game. The Barnes and Noble Nook has quickly gained name recognition and has been available in their brick-and-mortar stores for just about a year now. A few others hover around the periphery, such as the Sony, which is available at Target and Best Buy. Of course, you can’t forget the iPad, which is an ebook reader and much more.

The Kindle, the Nook, the Sony, and the iPad: these are my four top bets. Consumers are wary of brands they don’t know, and despite online shopping still like to lay hands on a physical product at least once before making a purchase decision, even if they ultimately buy it online. You can now do that with all four of these ebook readers. That’s why I give them the edge.

I will likely get an ebook reader this season. (That does not mean I won’t get a Pad computer at a later date, just don’t tell my wife.) I am currently leaning toward the Nook Color. Why? Well, beside it being sort of a mini-pad, which I find intriguing, I still go to bookstores to look at (and buy) books. Specifically, I go to my local Barnes and Noble because it is very convenient to home. The thought of browsing physical bookshelves and then popping out the ebook reader to check digital availability really appeals to me.

How about you? Are you thinking of getting an ebook reader this season? If so, which one appeals most to you, and why? Or is this all much ado about nothing?


We had 77 stories this week, with one debut. Please welcome Jude to the Friday Flash crew. Drop by and comment on her story, ‘It’s Time.’ Also, be sure to check out the news just below the list of stories. There is some very exciting news this week.

If your story is not included in the list please go to the Collector and add the details. I’ll the add it to the list — if I remember. To help me along on that count, it never hurts to give me a nudge via email or DM. The gray cells aren’t what they used to be.

The Stories

A Double Month of Dust in Whiskey Gulch by Tony Noland @TonyNoland ~ Western ~

A Greener Life by Brainhaze @BrainhazeWP ~ Slice of Life ~

A Justifiable Defense by Stephen Book @StephenBook ~ Science Fiction ~

A Listening Ear by Rebecca Emin @RebeccaEmin ~ Slice of Life ~

A New Hope by Chris Brett @cbrett60 ~ Unspecified ~

A New Horse by Lauren Cude @NA ~ Fantasy ~

a story of my early days by adam keeper @adamkeeper ~ Magical Realism ~

An Origami Crane by Adam Byatt @revhappiness ~ Slice of Life ~

Angered Gods by Maria Protopapadaki-Smith @mazzz_in_Leeds ~ Fantasy ~

Avalanche by Mandy K James @akjames61 ~ Unspecified ~

Belief by Anna Tan @natzers ~ Unspecified ~

Boomerang by Rachel Carter @rachcarter ~ Slice of Life ~

Bring it On by Mark Kerstetter @markerstetter ~ Unspecified ~

Bubbles by T.J. McIntyre @southernweirdo ~ Horror ~

Charmed by S. May @yamnasus ~ Slice of Life ~

City of Statues by David D Sharp @aweeadventure ~ Fantasy ~

Curiosity: a fairy tale in two parts by Valerie Valdes @valerievaldes ~ Fantasy ~

Darklings by Steve Green @N/A ~ Science Fiction ~

Deals With Dragons by Melissa L. Webb @melissalwebb ~ Fantasy ~

Dear Lover by Eric J. Krause @ericjkrause ~ Horror ~

Dirty Dish by Carrie Clevenger @carrieclevenger ~ Mystery ~

Disciplinary Action by G.P. Ching @gpching ~ Horror ~

Don’t Forget the Donuts by Monica Marier @lil_monmon ~ Humor ~

Dreamers by A. M. Harte @am_harte ~ Slice of Life ~

Economies by Melissa D. Johnston @melissa_djohnst ~ Slice of Life ~

Every Fiber by Peggy McFarland @peggywriter ~ Horror ~

Femme Fatale by Catherine Russell @ganymeder ~ Magical Realism ~

Fickle Fame by Icy Sedgwick @icypop ~ Slice of Life ~

Folded Space by Tiffany Herr @HerrVoice ~ Science Fiction ~

Gemini: Pt. 3- The Joining by A.S. Boudreau @ASBoudreau ~ Fantasy ~

Ghost Dancer by John Wiswell @Wiswell ~ Mystery ~

Haf of HERO8 – Episode 2 by Keith Dugger @KeithDugger ~ Unspecified ~

Hia Breoedd, Part #2 by James Tallett @thefourpartland ~ Fantasy ~

High Cheekbones, Nice Skin by David Garrett @carpedavid ~ Horror ~

Honeymoon Hotel by Cathy Webster (Olliffe) @Matthiasville ~ Horror ~

How I Lost My Head by David Garrett @carpedavid ~ Horror ~

Immaculate conception by Steve Green @N/A ~ Science Fiction ~

In D Minor by J. M. Strother @jmstro ~ Slice of Life ~

It’s Five O’Clock Nowhere by Rol Hirst @rolhirst ~ Horror ~

It’s Time by Jude @Judealude ~ Magical Realism ~ Debut

Kratan Goes Wild by Mari Juniper @marirandomities ~ Fantasy ~

Ladies And Gentlemen. . . Larry The Alien! by John McDonnell @McDonnellWrite ~ Humor ~

Lena’s Fledgeling by Aidan Fritz @AidanFritz ~ Science Fiction ~

Lunar Tic by Marc Nash @ExisleMoll ~ Literary ~

Mirrors Don’t Lie by Cathryn Louis @cathrynlouis ~ Experimental ~

Monday Lunch Special by Justin Davies @flyingscribbler ~ Humor ~

Mr. Borhan and Ms. Kendricks Travel by Katherine Nabity @katen ~ Unspecified ~

Older Than The Earth, Younger Than The Stars by Janet Aldrich @tec4_Cleveland ~ Romance ~

Opening: The End by Jason Warden @ShadowCastAudio ~ Unspecified ~

Over the Weather by Tim VanSant @TimVanSant ~ Unspecified ~

Pack of Rumors by Deanna Schrayer @deannaschrayer ~ Cross Genre ~

Passage by Rachel Blackbirdsong @RBlackbirdsong ~ Magical Realism ~

Patches by Tomara Armstrong @2maraA ~ Horror ~

Preview by Neil Shurley @thatneilguy ~ Magical Realism ~

Prickly Pears by Harry B. Sanderford @Harry B. Sanderford ~ Humor ~

Pride by Danielle La Paglia @Dannigrrl5 ~ Unspecified ~

Research by Diandra Linnemann @LaCaffeinata ~ Slice of Life ~

Rules for Surviving 8th Grade by Linda Simoni-Wastila @drwasy ~ Literary ~

Secret Resources by Benjamin Solah @benjaminsolah ~ Steampunk ~

Seeking Hamish by annie Evett @annieEvett ~ Science Fiction ~

Shadow Dogs by Crystal Boudreau @beingcrys ~ Horror ~

Six O’Clock News by Mike Robertson @miker_lazlo ~ Humor ~

Son Plaisir by Thom Gabrukiewicz @tgabrukiewicz ~ Unspecified ~

Sunlight and Lust by Kat Del Rio @katdelrio ~ Romance ~

The Accident by Nick Bryan @NickMB ~ Humor ~

The Closet by Shannon Esposito @soesposito ~ Horror ~

The First Night by Kari Fay @morganafiolett ~ Horror ~

The Follower by EllenO @- ~ Humor ~

THE LOCAL HEROES: The Big Leagues by Al Bruno III @albruno3 ~ Adventure ~

The Perfect Silence of the Night, Part 2 by Denise Covey @pichetsinparis ~ Fantasy ~

The UCF Stories #23: Rushalka by Sam Adamson @FutureNostalgic ~ Fantasy ~

Time by Daine Salmon @Sayer ~ Science Fiction ~

To Die For by Laura Eno @LauraEno ~ Humor ~

Too Hot by Johanna Harness @johannaharness ~ Fantasy ~

villa di Pratolino by Laura Rachel Fox @LostLibraryGirl ~ Science Fiction ~

Waning Gibbous Moon by S. May @yamnasus ~ Slice of Life ~

WHO SHOT SAM? by Anthony Venutolo @bukowskisbaseme ~ Literary ~

In The News

Combined Special Edition

Combined Special Edition

I’m very pleased to announce that today marks the launch of the latest Chinese Whisperings anthologies, edited by Jodi Cleghorn and Paul Anderson.  There are two anthologies, The Yin Book, and The Yang Book, broken out by female and male authors, respectively. Many of the authors are regular participants in Friday Flash, including the editors.  I have a story in The Yang Book called ‘No Passengers Allowed.’

All the stories revolve around an unnamed airport based on a central premise. While each story is stand-alone, characters flit in and out from story to story, tying it all together as a whole. Jodi and Paul did a wonderful job of editing and pulling it all together. Congratulations to you both, and to all my fellow authors.

Drop by the Facebook launch party to share your thoughts and congratulations then drop by the the Chinese Whisperings Bookstore to get yourself a copy hot off the virtual presses. Paperback versions will come out later this year.

Laura Eno will be hosting a virtual release party on her blog, A Shift In Dimensions, on Wednesday, Oct 13th for her newest book, ‘Don’t Fall Asleep.’ It is Book 1 in her new Dream Assassin series. Be sure to drop in on the 13th to wish Laura well and partake in the festivities. Congratulations, Larua.

Jason Warden continues his promotion of Friday Flash over at ShadowCast Audio with his Death Match series of polls for best horror story of the week. Check in each week to read the nominated stories,  then vote for your favorite. Winners receive kudos and a nice banner they can display on their blog. The first week resulted in a tie between Carrie Clevenger and Clive Martyn, so they both received the banner. Congrats to you both — great stories. Thanks for helping to promote Friday Flash, Jason. It is much appreciated.

The wrap

Thanks to all our readers. We love you. And please, if you enjoy a story leave comments when you visit. Writers love feedback almost as much as chocolate. Maybe more! Then go tell your friends to read it too. Help these writers grow.

You can subscribe to the #fridayflash hashtag (external link) on Twitter every week for more great flash fiction.

We’re on Facebook (external link) too.

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