My last post was on Maya Angelou, the renaissance woman. I would like to be a renaissance woman. I have a lot of interests, and I wouldn’t mind leaving my footprint in the worlds of writing (as a novelist, memoirist, poet, playwright, screenwriter, publisher, blogger, and essayist), art (as a painter, journalistic photographer, and illustrator), food (as a cookbook writer), and humanitarianism (as an activist and fund-raiser). Oh, and fashion, just because people think I dress cool. In the end, I would like my interests and simultaneous careers to take me around the globe, in fields ranging from archaeology to astronomy (the prefect aspiration for a writer, right?).
I have an amazingly solid plan for writing my next bazillion books (actually forty-nine), which puts me at twenty novels, nine middle grades, two companions, three cookbooks, one memoir, one book of poetry, one book of short stories and plays, six non-fiction exposes, and three compilations (of other people’s works), all before 2040. If I end up in a movie or a band along the way, the better.
So now that I have had an obscure short-short documentary made about me as a small-time, cafe-showing painter, one novel published and two more due out later this year, I am about to have a short story published. (That’s right; yay!) I have had poetry published before (in Parnassus literary magazine) and an essay (in the now defunct Urban Hiker). But not since junior high have I aspired to short story extraordinaire… until now. I suppose it might be all those Sunday nights up at Francesca’s Lit Jam, but all of a sudden I am seeing shorts as a place for my ideas and efforts. Given, I’m not about to slow down on novels, but sometimes what I’m envisioning suddenly could become a poem, short story, or even–dare I say it–flash fiction.
So, (queu “I’m a Survivor” or “Firework,”) here’s to gigantic dreams, large lives, and impossible personalities.
And check out “5.8” HERE. (Scrutiny’s website is no longer available.) After all, that’s what this post is all about. Here’s a teaser:
by Devon Trevarrow Flaherty
The summer stretched behind them, a long, exhausting heat and white light that shriveled the grass and the herbs and the watermelon vines. Nothing was stirring the leaves on the copious trees, and the red flag with the turquoise flower she made to welcome the summer hung limp. An intense gold light flooded in the picture window, highlighting the chinks in the wood floor, the spider webs under the edges of the cranberry couches—reappearing faster than she could daily suck them up the nozzle of the vacuum, spider and all.
Gwen reclined on the couch so that the blinding pages of Arthur reflected the sunlight, her shoulders slumped into the throw pillows heaped together at one end. Her pale eyes narrowed at the page, her top teeth biting at her sun burnt lower lip. It took several sentences of speeding text before she registered the low rumble, but then it ripped her from Camelot. She leaned up, alert and confused, with the book limp in her drooping, left hand.