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Unbelievable Things

“He’s talking about marriage,” I said to L. “Is he?” she said. “He’ll snap out of it,” I said. L. laughed. She was so pretty. Men looked at her everywhere we went. “Why do you say that?” she said. “They always do,” I said because I wanted to be funny. It is hard to believe … Continue reading

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Being Followed

“Why’s he following us?” I asked. My boyfriend and I were often followed by dogs. In one Bulgarian village on The Black Sea, a scraggly dog followed us all day. It waited two hours outside a restaurant for us, and he sat on the sidewalk and watched our bus leave at the end of the … Continue reading

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Magic Numbers and Other Endings

Are you superstitious? My mother wasn’t. At 45 she graduated from college with honors. She told me about a job interview she had at Time Magazine. With a real income she was going to get rid of the junky, rattling car and move out of the apartment complex where drug deals happened under her balcony. … Continue reading

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Plans and Passwords

I thought we’d get married, but my mother broke up with his father and I never saw him again. You can’t control everything no matter how many plans you make. But here is my plan today. I’ll make art for the art festival in April, and if you buy a picture cut from my novel, … Continue reading

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Spinning

He ran over to me, wrapped his arms around my waist, lifted me up, and spun me around. Because I was taller than most of the boys, this was a new experience. And it was fun. It was our high school graduation, and he was just a friend–a guy I sat next to in a … Continue reading

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Rejection Comes Easy

“Are you all right?” he asked. We were on a blind date. “You’ll be perfect together,” me friend had said. “He’s tall.” “Yes,” I said. “I’m all right.” “Are you cold?” “I’m fine.” “Are you sure?” “Yes.” “And you’re all right?” “I’m fine. Really.” “Do you need another blanket?” “No. I don’t need another blanket. … Continue reading

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No Style Guru Here

I read these book reviews that use words like precision, observant, and relevant. Or words like sharp, clear, and brilliant. Looking at my own novel, I think messy, lopsided, and random. Well, I started out that way, and there probably isn’t much chance that is going to change now. How much do you think the … Continue reading

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Stepping Off the Roof

The first step off the roof was terrifying. “Go on,” the soldier said. “Step off.” We were four floors up. My senses were not swayed by a helmet and safety ropes. The body knew the ground was too far away, but my ego didn’t want to look afraid. After rappelling down the building, I couldn’t … Continue reading