The final story of what became my February Flash Fiction trilogy is "Silence," which originally appeared in 10Flash Quarterly, edited by K.C. Ball, who bought my first story, "Dead Wife Waiting," as well as the two sequels. "Silence" was the last piece she bought from me, which, if I recall correctly ran in the final issue of 10Flash back in late 2012. It's a story about magic and the cost of protecting those you care about. Like the previous two stories in this little trilogy, it's perfect for a quick read on a break. Silence By Dale Ivan Smith I sat on the bus bench and watched Dori Little sing and play guitar, green eyes half closed, wind ruffling her short orange hair. Her voice soared along Fifth Avenue, honey and steel, making passersby stop and listen with wide eyes, as she sang about love lost, about regrets, and about redemption. My old bones ached a little less as she strummed her guitar, the chords an angel’s promise. I used to be a wizard but my magic wasn’t worth a damn compared to Dori and her music. I still hung on to a couple of spells, but it wasn’t like the books or the games where you could keep using the same magic over and over again. You could only use a spell once. Not like Dori’s songs. The open guitar case brimmed with coins and money and it wasn’t even noon yet. It was shaping up to be a…

A flash fiction tribute to the Wizard of Oz

Flying monkeys are a favorite of mine, ever since I saw them in the Wizard of Oz. I even own a flying monkey fez (shown at left), perfect for when I need to draft like crazy. So, of course, I had to write an homage to Oz featuring flying monkeys as the heroes. The story took me quite a while to write: telling a complete story in a thousand words can be a challenge. It ran in Every Day Fiction in March, 2014. Right after it appeared I was bowled over when talented author, audio reader and actor Tina Connolly emailed me that she wanted to buy the story for her Toasted Cake podcast. Tina is a fabulous reader and really did the story justice. Her podcast won the Parsec award for best speculative fiction podcast of 2012. Give it a listen—it runs about 7 minutes, the whole podcast is only 10 minutes long. Tina really did the story justice. The story is definitely darker than "Coffee Shop Crisis," but if you don't mind that, I think you'll enjoy a flying monkey's take on what it might take to escape from imprisonment. There’s also a link there to Every Day Fiction where the print version originally appeared. Somewhat by accident this month's blog posts have turned  into my own February Flash Fiction theme, with "Coffee Shop Crisis" last week. Next week I'll post my urban fantasy story, "Silence." Thanks for reading!

“Nullified” is now available

"Nullified," a linking story set between Renegade, the Empowered series prequel novella, and Empowered: Agent, is now available at this site. Sign up for my mailing list and you'll receive a copy. If you are already on my mailing list, you'll receive one shortly! Also now available is the new version of Renegade, featuring a fantastic new cover by my designer, Clarissa Yeo of Yocla Designs. She did an amazing job of depicting Mat at 16.