The Fragile Things, I Keep

“What you burnt, broke, and tore is still in my hands. I am the keeper of fragile things and I have kept of you what is indissoluble.” — Anaïs Nin

This month marks my third anniversary as Publisher of Flash Fiction Online. Three years ago, if you’d told me that in September 2016, I’d be publishing my 36th issue of FFO with two anthologies under my belt and a collection of stories headed to, I would’ve laughed.

But here we are.

Flash Fiction Online is bigger, better, more popular and better funded than ever, and it’s all thanks to you.

I need to thank the real heroes — the staff of FFO. These women and men spend countless hours reading, editing and selecting the very best for each issue. They do it all because they love this magazine. Every single one is a volunteer. Perhaps someday our Patreon will make enough to pay my editors a salary. Until then Suzanne, Damon, Sabrina and Chris take on the enormous responsibility of curating FFO because they believe in what we do here. And we haven’t even gotten to all the slush readers. Let’s just say bravery is a pre-requisite for the job.

On to the stories for this month. No one grasps the intricacies of passionate quite like Anaïs Nin. She wrote, “What you burnt, broke, and tore is still in my hands. I am the keeper of fragile things, and I have kept of you what is indissoluble.” This month we explore that tenuous connection between people who love each other — though sometimes love hurts more than we care to admit.

Joy Kennedy-O’Neill brings us “Jericho,” a dystopian science fiction story. Student loans are passed from generation to generation until the burden becomes almost more than a brave couple can bear.

Nicola Belte’s “Muse” is as delicate and beautifully crafted as the Victorian paintings of young women it describes. To what lengths will we go to capture the most exquisite moment of life? A horror story for the ages.

There is no better exploration of the weak mother-daughter bond than Maria Haskins’ “Scent.” Pain and suffering combine with magic in this dark fantasy.

For our final story, we bring you one of our favorite FFO alumni, Pulitzer nominee John Guzlowski. Originally published in The James Franco Review, “My Mother’s Death — A Sonnet” is a powerful piece that will leave you wondering what love looks like. We did.

But that’s not all!

A fellow FFO alumnus, Tom Crosshill, is back with an interview about his new book, THE CAT KING OF HAVANNA!

And don’t miss Jason S. Ridler’s latest column, “FXXK WRITING: THE GUTTERS.”


Now, off to it. Reading awaits!

All my best,