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Word Riot Good writing. No remorse. Thu, 12 Oct 2017 04:36:38 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Monsters in Times Square by Sarah Beaudette Sun, 30 Jul 2017 13:14:17 +0000      When New Mickey showed up in front of the Visitors Center on 7th, he wouldn’t give our little welcoming committee the time of day. Just stood there under the Jumbotron, his glossy mask a highway of pink and orange light.      The first thing I noticed was his getup. Most Times Square characters are Party City amateurs, Halloween trick-or-treat motherfuckers like your Spidermans and your Batmans with bagged out knees and nicotine stains. Then there’s the professionals, like your boy Pluto. I saved all the money from my Batman days and sent away for a good Pluto from Peru: carved foam, ]]> 0 Summer 2017 Fiction Issue Sat, 29 Jul 2017 16:14:41 +0000 The Ladies Walking Club by Caitlin Corrigan A Snapping Turtle Having a Bad Experience Ordering Business Cards by Jordan Moffat How Your New Neighbors Arrive by Jeffrey Gibbs Ashes on Cape Cod by Miranda Forman Gluckschmerz by Michael Loveday Night Terrors by Abby Burns The Island, Language, and # Taboo by Saul Lemerond A Family Dinner by Justin Follin Smith The Double Doors by Chanacee Ruth-Killgore Monoculus by Susan McCreery Nothing But Dust by Deng Xiang As Wide, as Deep: a Heart and a Hole by Duncan Barlow Monsters in Times Square by Sarah Beaudette Prescient by Melissa Ostrom Volunteer ]]> 0 The Double Doors by Chanacee Ruth-Killgore Sat, 29 Jul 2017 16:11:42 +0000      “Pardon?” I asked, tapping my ear, though I’d heard her the first time.

     “You don’t have enough points, sir,” she repeated.

     “I see.” I had known it was coming and now as the middle-aged nurse rolled me toward the dreaded Double Doors, I felt the apprehension I’d seen on so many other faces as the end was pulled into plain sight before them.

     “When I checked last night…”

     “That was before you needed help getting to the bathroom this morning, sir.” Her tone was matter-of-fact.

     “It didn’t used to be like this.”

     “No, sir,” she replied, as we continued toward ]]> 1 Monoculus By Susan McCreery Sat, 29 Jul 2017 16:10:34 +0000 He held his new glass eye up to the light. I like it, he said. It has boldness. Depth. He fitted the eye and set its gaze on her, penetrating, unwavering. She said, Don’t look at me like that. I can’t help it, he said. It’s the eye. It has boldness, depth. I can’t change its expression. Then buy another one, she said. I can’t stand being looked at like that all day. It was the last one in the shipment, he said. I’d have to wait three months for another selection. They’re not easy to obtain. I can wait ]]> 0 Nothing But Sawdust by Deng Xiang Sat, 29 Jul 2017 16:09:01 +0000 The boy was carved out of wood. He had wooden arms, legs, and joints that kept him together.      He could walk just fine, just like the other students, but a little more stiffly. He could also motion with his hands and even talk using his wooden voice box and tongue.      However, there was one thing that he had not been carved with: personality.      He would walk around the school compound, slow and emotionless, like a walking dead. He would watch as all the people he passed acted in different ways from each other; their behaviour, their speech — they were ]]> 0 How Your New Neighbors Arrive by Jeffrey Gibbs Sat, 29 Jul 2017 16:05:57 +0000 The old neighbors had been hiding in the basement since last month after the unmarked white Tauruses started roaming the streets with their surveillance devices. Family by family, night after night, we watched people arrive at three in the morning, the hour the door was unlocked. The women led the children by the hand down the stairs into the subterranean darkness where they hoped they’d be safe and secret. The men carried weapons just in case—hand guns, kitchen knives, broken broom handles. We’d wondered if we should go, too. Each night at three, we had asked ourselves this from under ]]> 0 As Wide, as Deep: a heart and a hole by Duncan Barlow Sat, 29 Jul 2017 16:04:37 +0000 With the yellow crescent moon slung in a strange way, they began digging a hole for the missing cat. Wider, she said, the cat is bigger. Though it absurd to dig a hole so large, he agreed. A gentleman’s word is bond and a bond is a homely man’s only hand to play. I’m sorry I was gone when she left, he said. She was my girl, she said. And you are mine, he said. Dig deep as my heart is wide, she said. He agreed. The further they went, the harder it was to displace the earth, until she ]]> 1 Volunteer by Eileen Rush Sat, 29 Jul 2017 16:02:38 +0000 After three weeks she’d worked her way up to gutting quail. The birds came in packs of twelve, frozen. The girl (not young) would leave the bag in the sink to thaw while she cleaned the owl mews. When she was finished, covered in the white mute she’d scrubbed from the walls, bits of bone stuck to her jeans, she’d take a stiff quail from the bag and decisively cleave it in half.      Once she made a cut and five glistening orbs fell out, translucent circles within circles, like a marble, a cat’s eye.      “Eggs,” said the man who owned ]]> 0 Gluckschmerz by Michael Loveday Sat, 29 Jul 2017 16:00:26 +0000 Gabriel clasped my hand, smiled all over me, and confessed the news of his success. A flicker must have passed over the screen of my face; he looked doubtful, as if concerned he’d misspoken.      I considered my mode of response. For a moment through the bay window behind him I glimpsed the spires and historic structures of the city. They spread out along the skyline, their limestone gilded by the late sun and speaking of a magnificence that I cherished. This was truly a starburst moment, a marvellous accomplishment. This was the final realization of a long application of prodigious ]]> 0 Ashes on Cape Cod by Miranda Forman Sat, 29 Jul 2017 15:58:17 +0000      I asked Jenny to be my girlfriend at lunch on the third day of seventh grade, after math class when Sam Butler told me I was a frog face with a syphilitic dick who would never be loved by anyone except my frog-faced dog. I didn’t look Jenny in the eye—I looked down at my untied sneakers—and I said, “Jenny, will you be my girlfriend?” She clapped her hands and let out a little squeal and said, “Yes, Max,” in her perfect breathy voice. If we ever kissed, I imagined that it would be epic enough to crack open the ]]> 0 Prescient by Melissa Ostrom Sat, 29 Jul 2017 15:55:32 +0000      The creature could not surprise her.      Before it appeared, she had worked, digging out sticky weed and scattering viola and columbine seeds, her breath held for long spells, suspending her lungs like tethered, too-full balloons. Her terror of the unrealized enemy, a fear inherited from her Portuguese grandmother, prepared her for the invasion. And the reptile, close to the front door on the dappled ground between the red and white Meidiland roses, coiled like a two-foot length of chorizo, vindicated her suspicion. Of course there would be a snake. There had always been a snake. Her genes had secured this ]]> 0 The Ladies Walking Club by Caitlin Corrigan Sat, 29 Jul 2017 06:56:56 +0000 Imagine a cube.

Imagine a woman inside, and bed sheets. Picture the photographs framed in silver and black on the walls. The sun rises, sets. The woman’s motions are like the hands of a clock: regular, but subtle, grounded to a still center point.

Imagine one morning the woman removes a part of the cube, let’s call it a window shade. Now see the greening there, the small buds wet and heavy with rain. It is early morning, but light outside. The grass below the woman’s feet is plush and ripe. She trails in pieces of dead leaf ]]> 0 The Island, Language, and # Taboo by Saul Lemerond Sat, 29 Jul 2017 06:51:51 +0000 About the author:

Originally from Green Bay, Wisconsin, Saul Lemerond is a third year PhD student at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette where he is the assistant to the Director of Creative Writing. His book Kayfabe and Other Stories was published by One Wet Shoe Press in 2013. His poetry, non-fiction, and short stories have also been published in Gigantic Sequins, Dunesteef, Drabblecast, Notes Magazine, and elsewhere. He was a finalist for the Conium Review Innovative Short Fiction Contest and the Gigantic Sequins Flash Fiction Contest.

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Night Terrors by Abby Burns Sat, 29 Jul 2017 06:48:31 +0000 When she’s asleep, Lauren is afraid of everything. Escalators. Spiders. Witches who cast spells on your body to make you run slowly, scream at a whisper, and throw a punch like a high-five. Apples. Worms inside of apples. The dark. Baby bunnies and adult bunnies and bunnies the size of buildings. Fire. Tornadoes. Earthquakes. Tsunamis. Disaster, in general. Putting on shoes after one of your feet has been amputated. Delivering someone’s mail to the fifth floor of a building after you’ve put on shoes after one of your feet has been amputated. Pillows. People. Men. Mostly men. Lauren wakes up ]]> 0 A Snapping Turtle Having a Bad Experience Ordering Business Cards by Jordan Moffatt Sat, 29 Jul 2017 06:44:41 +0000 The snapping turtle wasn’t looking forward to ordering new business cards. He had a bad experience last time he ordered business cards. Last time he specifically ordered waterproof business cards.      “And do these look waterproof to you?” the snapping turtle said to his girlfriend as he easily tore a business card in half with his snapper. “Cause they don’t look waterproof to me!”      The printing shop replaced the non-waterproof batch with a waterproof batch and said that the next batch he ordered would be on the house. They delivered the replacement batch in person, as a gesture.      “Here are your ]]> 0 Family Dinner by Justin Follin Smith Sat, 29 Jul 2017 06:03:12 +0000 It starts with a marriage. Not your parents, of course. You weren’t born when that happened. This is the second marriage. The one your parents have after they divorce. This is your father’s marriage. You don’t know if he loves her because he doesn’t do love. One time after your parents got divorced you asked him if he still loved your mom. He said it was complicated. This is your almost-stepmother. You refrain from calling her your actual stepmother as long as you possibly can because you don’t want it to be true. She’s tall, medium build, with gray hair ]]> 0 October 2016 Issue — Hitting Pause Sat, 22 Oct 2016 16:41:59 +0000 0 Bucket List by Kate Sparks Sat, 22 Oct 2016 16:17:52 +0000 0 Remain Alert and Have a Safe Day by Kate Sheeran Swed Sat, 22 Oct 2016 16:14:32 +0000 0 Chinese People by Michael K. Meyers Sat, 22 Oct 2016 16:09:47 +0000 0 Pink Sock by Amy Landau Sat, 22 Oct 2016 16:05:46 +0000 0 Casting Off by Ann Hillesland Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:59:18 +0000 2 Just to Spite the Recession by Kawika Guillermo Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:55:46 +0000 0 At the town baseball fields by Julie Doar Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:52:03 +0000 1 Apocalypse 1983 by Ann Lightcap Bruno Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:46:35 +0000 0 All That by Julie Benesh Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:43:55 +0000 1 The Plateau by Nicholas Roth Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:39:17 +0000 0 An Interview With Lucy K Shaw by Andrew Duncan Worthington Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:23:14 +0000 0 Harbors by Donald Quist Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:16:03 +0000 0 Chronicle of an Unsung Song Written by Melina Papadopoulos Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:10:12 +0000 0 Sixth Avenue Hos by Marie Manilla Sat, 22 Oct 2016 15:04:46 +0000 0 Northern Ignorance and Southern Evidence by Dave Harris Sat, 22 Oct 2016 14:46:03 +0000 1 The Favorite by Kelly Flynn Sat, 22 Oct 2016 14:42:48 +0000 0 The Isle of Devils by Cassandra A. Clarke Sat, 22 Oct 2016 14:35:50 +0000 0 My First Mugging by m. h. burkett Sat, 22 Oct 2016 14:25:01 +0000 0 I Would Go, but Then I’d Have To Put a Bra On by Nicole Shanté White Sat, 22 Oct 2016 13:01:41 +0000 2 Two Poems by Sam Herschel Wein Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:58:49 +0000 1 I Have Two Mothers by Mae Remme Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:54:06 +0000 0 Sunday Night by Sandra Marchetti Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:50:51 +0000 0 Two Poems by Krysten Hill Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:47:50 +0000 0 Two Poems by Benjamin Hertwig Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:42:38 +0000 0 Along the 15 near Baker by Gustavo Hernandez Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:34:34 +0000 0 Two Poems by D. Gilson Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:30:14 +0000 0 Two Poems by Amee Nassrene Broumand Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:26:06 +0000 1 Small Change by Sandra Hunter Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:18:42 +0000 Both Members of the Club (Texas Review Press/winner of the Clay Reynolds Novella Prize), The Number of Missing (Spuyten Duyvil), Belmondo Style (St. Martin’s Press/winner of The Publishing Triangle’s Ferro-Grumley Award) and Headlock (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill). He teaches writing at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City and co-edits J Journal: New Writing on Justice. For more, please visit ]]> 8 Anemone by Zaina Alsous Sat, 22 Oct 2016 12:13:23 +0000 0 Notes From Elsewhere: Popular Books by State, Panels Merger, Literary Podcasts + More Thu, 25 Aug 2016 21:32:58 +0000 Greetings, Rioters! We’re winding down summer, so soak up the A/C where you can, and let’s dive into some interesting literary links.

Speaking of the the approaching autumn, Wendy C. Ortiz has a new book coming out on Halloween: the appropriately named Bruja (published by Civil Coping Mechanisms), and I’m excited to read it. I’d show you the cover, done by an artist also named Wendy Ortiz, but I’m having trouble with the uploader at the moment. Click on through for the artwork/description.

The comics site Panels is officially folding into Book Riot‘s site, rather than being a standalone sister-site, starting September 6th. So let’s take a look at ]]> 0 August 2016 Issue Tue, 23 Aug 2016 04:23:28 +0000 REVIEWS Literary Today through the Lens of Freeman’s Arrival by K. D. Rose Problems by Jade Sharma

EXPERIMENTAL The Last Will and Testament of Allen Kenneth Hall by Adam Bjelland Loyalty by Peter Grandbois Was It Gum Or by Justin Longacre Palimpsest Lovemaking and More by Craig McDaniel Tilt by Ashley Moore Interstellar by Carly Schweppe A Recipe for Disaster by Graham Reiboe

POETRY Cloaking by Deonte Osayande Two Poems by Trenton Pollard While Sculpting the Head of a Clown by Thomas Renjilian Two Poems by Scherezade Siobhan Two Poems by Monet P. Thomas

CREATIVE NONFICTION Dust by Lucie Bonvalet ]]> 0 A Recipe for Disaster by Graham Reiboe Tue, 23 Aug 2016 04:16:57 +0000 0 Interstellar by Carly Schweppe Tue, 23 Aug 2016 04:11:29 +0000 0