May 11, 2010 – 12:58 pm | No Comment

Crompton was about to be assaulted with questions like the one that had undone his predecessor. Someone had asked why there weren’t enough helicopters to provide air cover for the boys in Helmand. He hadn’t …

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Questions by Alexander Starritt
May 11, 2010 – 12:58 pm | No Comment

Crompton was about to be assaulted with questions like the one that had undone his predecessor. Someone had asked why there weren’t enough helicopters to provide air cover for the boys in Helmand. He hadn’t …

20 MINUTE STORY – TOAST
April 8, 2010 – 3:45 pm | No Comment
20 MINUTE STORY – TOAST

By Cynthia Allen
There is surely no more poignant sight than that of a dead woman’s clothes, hanging disconsolately, waiting for their inevitable eviction.

STRANGER CHRISTMAS
April 8, 2010 – 1:48 pm | No Comment
STRANGER CHRISTMAS

By Sophie Klimt

Every year around Christmas Uncle Ike would show upon our doorstep, wheezingly drunk, with his sleeping bag on his shoulder. In the morning we would wander downstairs to the frying smell …

PRISM – BILLY COWIE
March 24, 2010 – 7:23 am | No Comment
PRISM – BILLY COWIE

She lowers the dolly carefully into the tin bath. The water is tepid and a lot had been spilled between the two of them getting the tub outside, especially on the final heave onto the …

A Bosnian Winter Night by Jozefina Cutura
January 20, 2010 – 12:57 pm | No Comment
A Bosnian Winter Night by Jozefina Cutura

Uncle Spaso’s dog Sila waded through the snow ahead of us. She would disappear for a while, only to emerge again right in front of us, happily wagging her tail. Uncle Spaso said the dog …

The Dive by Anthea Morrison
December 18, 2009 – 8:48 am | No Comment
The Dive by Anthea Morrison

by Anthea Morrison

I’m hoping for a glimpse of the delights we have been promised, but the surface of the sea is opaque and gives nothing away. The sun beats down just like it’s supposed to …

Free Swim by Evie Wyld
November 25, 2009 – 7:25 am | No Comment
Free Swim by Evie Wyld

A companion piece to ‘Fast in Water’ by Josh Raymond

After mum’s first seizure she thought it was blasphemous to say ‘For the love of God,’ and so instead she said ‘For the love of …

Fast in Water by Josh Raymond
November 24, 2009 – 7:30 am | One Comment
Fast in Water by Josh Raymond

A companion piece to Free Swim by Evie Wyld

I am going to bash Marcus Jennings after school. I will go up to him in the corridor with my hands out wide like an aeroplane, …

The Dreams of Bethany Mellmoth by William Boyd
November 3, 2009 – 4:16 pm | No Comment
The Dreams of Bethany Mellmoth by William Boyd

by William Boyd
Bethany Mellmoth steps forward and takes a bow. “Big round of applause for my beautiful assistant, Bethany!”  Hunter Doig cries. A few people clap dutifully but they are more interested in Hunter in …

The Invasion of the Pseuds by Spencer Brown
October 30, 2009 – 10:23 am | No Comment
The Invasion of the Pseuds by Spencer Brown

by Spencer Brown
They came from the skies, in a ship that was clearly expensive. It soared silently through the clouds, coming to rest above Shropley.
The villagers assembled on the green; this was the most exciting thing …

PHOTO STORIES – Wall Don’t Run by Tod Wodicka
October 25, 2009 – 9:49 am | No Comment
PHOTO STORIES – Wall Don’t Run by Tod Wodicka

Part of the Photo Stories series co-edited by Clare Wigfall. Authors work from a photograph to produce a story of about 1000 words.

‘Have you seen it?’ I asked.
‘Why exactly are you calling, …

Wild Man Fenn by David Vann
October 24, 2009 – 10:20 am | No Comment
Wild Man Fenn by David Vann

by David Vann
The late night lonesome stare at the fish tank, the only well-lit place in the world.  The fish were sleeping.  One on top of the other, like firewood or humans, the orange-and-black clown …

The Princess by Rowena Macdonald
October 4, 2009 – 10:15 am | No Comment
The Princess by Rowena Macdonald

by Idil Sukan
Jet, jet silver, silverblue, sapphire, amber sapphire, ampalosapphire, shadow silver, shadow pearl, ambergold: the subtle rainbow of fur colours from black to brown to grey to beige to white. The words return to …

POETRY – Identical Fugitive Octopus by Annie Freud
October 1, 2009 – 6:57 am | No Comment

Identical Fugitive Octopus
He drove to the edge of the city and parked the Subaru
in a long street he remembered from previous visits.
Nothing had changed. The small shop that sold
lace collars and haberdashery was still there
and …

The Bones of St. Ignatius by Kitty Fitzgerald
August 4, 2009 – 9:48 am | No Comment
The Bones of St. Ignatius by Kitty Fitzgerald

by Kitty Fitzgerald
Father Kerrigan would have bet the bones of St Ignatius that he would only once in his life hear a confession like the one Alice Noonan had made to him several years before. …

The Lightness in My Hand by Jane Rusbridge
July 6, 2009 – 8:36 am | No Comment
The Lightness in My Hand by Jane Rusbridge

by William Boyd
My appetite has dulled. She’s drinking G and T, and the smell, the ice and lemon jostling for space, the way the gin slides like oil up through the tonic, all have me …

Love Under the Moonlight by Sunita Soliar
June 4, 2009 – 9:44 am | No Comment
Love Under the Moonlight by Sunita Soliar

by Sunita Soliar
‘I suppose I was entirely ridiculous!’ she laughed. He had always liked her laugh when she was young. It had been carefree and easy and it saddened him to hear this contrived cheer.
‘Your …

The Pawnbroker by Michael Fontana
June 4, 2009 – 9:42 am | No Comment
The Pawnbroker by Michael Fontana

by Michael Fontana

I ran a pawnshop next to the bone-yard, just past the railroad tracks.  It sounded like a blues lyric but wasn’t.  You live in a town in the Ozarks long enough and you …

The Peacock Case by Davey Spens
May 4, 2009 – 10:26 am | No Comment
The Peacock Case by Davey Spens

by Davey Spens
The carriage was packed like a tin of sardines. At each station, a dozen more bodies crammed in, so by the time the train reached Charing Cross, there wasn’t room to sneeze. The …

A Short Story about a Trade Union Dispute by Leander Deeny
May 4, 2009 – 9:38 am | No Comment
A Short Story about a Trade Union Dispute by Leander Deeny

The National Union of English, Irish, and Guernsey Horses ( N. U. E. I. G. H.) had declared a strike. There was to be no more horseracing until their demands were met. They had issued …