157 Extracted Words – The Tease

September 2021



I write short fiction, flash fiction, essays and novels. This month’s Tease is from a work in progress.

No one remembered the last sunny day, the last blue sky day. It could have been two years previous, maybe more, since they had experienced a real blue sky day.

And not just a day with the sun coming up, giving of it’s heat, in fact, that was the problem. The sun’s heat, scorching the earth into a dusty, smoky, often tropical, gray globe. It started with burning tundra and boreal forests across the northern hemisphere. The fires started earlier and ended later, year after year. The skies would grow dark for weeks at a time, and then for months and finally, entire seasons. And then came 2039, the first entire calendar year without a single blue sky day.

And now, ten years later, no one could remember the last sunny day. Crops failed, water was rationed and migraines became more common than the common cold. And still, no one could remember the last sunny day.


151 Extracted Words – The Tease – November 2019

 November 2019

I write flash fiction, non-fiction, essays and novels. This month’s Tease is from a novel in progress.

They finished their breakfast, cleared the table and filled the sink, before heading for the Jeep. Jessie drove with Molly at her side, up front, and Tumbleweed in the back, prepared to tuck with oncoming traffic. There was little and, as they wound down the road toward Deadman, it became obvious why. The whole canyon was filled with a dirty, cornflower haze. Visibility deteriorated with every drop in elevation. The rain from the previous night’s storm had done less to extinguish the wildfires than its wind and lightning had done to stoke them. Overhead, the sound of helicopters and PBY’s droned up and down the valley like worker bees. The acrid stench was potent, stinging Jessie’s nostrils. She removed her sunglasses and pulled her bandana down to wipe across her eyes.

“It’s got to be pretty close,” Molly guessed. “I wonder if any evacuations have been issued. I better call in.”


Author’s Note: Now and again The Tease has featured slices from my upcoming novel. This work is nearing completion and, in order not to spoil any of its outcomes, this will be the last monthly installment to draw upon that source. Fear not, The Tease will go on, and the novel (in its full form) will be available soon enough. 



65 Extracted Words – The Tease – October 2019

 October 2019

I write flash fiction, non-fiction, essays and novels. This month’s Tease is from a short fiction piece in progress.


The wet trail smells like childhood and the sky is painted dark like death. Between the two, hanging from the horizon, burn the changing leaves of Autumn, and his life. Slog, trudge – pause to glimpse the beautiful, the mysterious – then slog, trudge and carry on once more. The trail seemed to be all that mattered, all that existed, aside from his thoughts … and the fire.