September 17, 2018

The Poetry of Wayne King

The Poetry of Wayne King

Editor’s Note: The featured image is Wind in the Maple by Wayne King. Wind in the Washline   Peace Comes on a Breeze Spirits Rise, Hope is Reborn The Washline Dances     The Prevaricating Day   Summer in the North Country A warm breeze, briefly noted. Through pine and hardwood, Crossing fields of corn and Unmown grass portending hay Cutting, courting, cunning Teasing, testing, trimming As if intending to remain, Yet only taunting.   June days, behind us now, Beckoned us out, out Out to shake off winter Stubbornly liberating spring A month of April showers, Ours for but a pair of days, Dried to hard baked soil by May Constraining wildflowers Still pushing, prodding, poking through Heralding summer’s silken start.   Now, even as a warm wind blows from the West, Turning winged wind…

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September 14, 2018

I Understand the Game by Howard Williams

I Understand the Game by Howard Williams

I UNDERSTAND THE GAME by Howard Williams   My boyfriend deals drugs. And the entire life that we’ve built together has come at the cost of it. But after two years my perspective of the world outside our apartment is viciously sobering. We live in a spacious studio with exposed brick walls in downtown Washington, D.C. not too far from Georgetown University. When we first moved in I didn’t know how I’d fill the spaces, but I managed to transform the room into a home. On one of the walls I painted a huge graffiti mural of various black figures from Malcolm X and Martin Luther King to Audre Lorde and James Baldwin all compiled in the continent of Africa. The rest of the walls have paintings hung on them created by some friends of…

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September 12, 2018

How I Lost Control And Found Tranquility by Richard David Bach

How I Lost Control And Found Tranquility by Richard David Bach

Editor’s Note: Richard Bach dedicates this short story to all the authors who fear that their characters are taking over and dictating their narrative. This is the story of one such author fighting to regain control. HOW I LOST CONTROL AND FOUND TRANQUILITY   I opened the window to let out the lingering fragrance of cannabis and the lingering perfume of the young woman who turned and blew me a kiss as she walked down my driveway to the Uber waiting at the street. It had been a recreational evening and I hated to see her go, but I resolved to get back to work. Nights are best for me. I’m at my most imaginative, most creative, most productive, after dark. But I hadn’t possessed any of those talents of late, and I hoped that…

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September 7, 2018

Friday Night is Gumshoe Night Again: “Saratoga Noir”

Friday Night is Gumshoe Night Again: “Saratoga Noir”

Ruby Fink, our Audio Arts Barista, and I were talking recently about great detective podcasts and we both agreed that “Saratoga Noir” was one of the best ever. And since it’s Friday night, our traditional audio arts/podcast evening, we’re rolling that tape again. Here’s the first episode of ZBS’s “Saratoga Noir,” featuring one of the world’s greatest, most humorously cynical and yet endearing gumshoes, Danny Boyee. Please click on the arrow below to listen to Episode 1 of “Saratoga Noir.” If you want to listen to the entire story, they’re all here at the Café: https://www.fictionalcafe.com/saratoga-noir-2018s-first-audiobook/ https://www.fictionalcafe.com/saratoga-noir-podcast-episode-2/ https://www.fictionalcafe.com/saratoga-noir-five-new-episodes-tonight/ https://www.fictionalcafe.com/5-audiobook-episodes-saratoga-noir/ https://www.fictionalcafe.com/saratoga-noir-episodes-8-14/ https://www.fictionalcafe.com/saratoga-noir-thrilling-conclusion/ Enjoy, with another big thank-you to our friends at the ZBS Foundation! Please visit their site. It’s a treasure trove of audio delights.

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September 3, 2018

“Deluge,” A New Novel by James D. Best

“Deluge,” A New Novel by James D. Best

Jim Best lives in Kansas, where lately raging rain has caused rivers to rise and towns to be flooded in epic proportions. So perhaps his latest novel, Deluge, is prescient. Taking a break from his phenomenally successful Steve Dancy westerns, Deluge is set in the present, but its antecedents are in 1862, when a sixty-five-day downpour pummeled the western United States. California suffered the brunt of the storm. Almost a third of the state was under water, roads were impassible, telegraph lines down, rivers overflowed, hundreds of people died, and hundreds of thousands of animals drowned. Sacramento remained under water for six months, forcing the state government to move to San Francisco. Geological evidence shows that a flood of this magnitude hits the western United States every one to two hundred years. Well, it’s been a…

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