The ten stories in this anthology shine each at its own speed of light—dimmer, hidden deep in the darkness, or brighter, burning faster.
When a young boy collects secrets like another boy would collect rocks or stamps, darkness envelops the man he becomes. When a young mother accepts a ride from a stranger, the truth about her situation is revealed to her. A penumbra outlines the dark core of one mother's loss as another mother's gain.
Through stories of divorce, memory loss, struggles with mental health, and estrangement, loss reveals what we are capable of doing to cope, to recover, to heal, and what we can become as a result.
Rita Baker has lived in Canada since leaving England with her husband to follow their two sons. Reading has been her passion from an early age, Somerset Maugham, H. G. Wells, and, of course, Shakespeare that was drummed into her at school, whose works she also happened to love. Baker writes, “While being a wife and mother is most fulfilling, writing has been my vocation since the age of six when I used to sit before the fire and dream of princes and princesses as depicted in the fairy-tale books that were my passion, and as I grew, so my stories grew with me until, at last, I was able to fulfill my heart’s desire to write. Happily, my life has been full of all the things necessary for a writer to draw from, love, joy, heartrending moments of immeasurable pain and heartache, loss, and happily, fulfillment. Everything that living is about, the living that is so necessary to fulfill a writer’s heart and mind."
Elizabeth Gauffreau writes fiction and poetry with a strong connection to family and place. She holds a B.A. in English from Old Dominion University and an M.A. in English/Fiction Writing from the University of New Hampshire. Her fiction and poetry have been published in literary magazines and several themed anthologies. Her debut novel, Telling Sonny, was published in 2018. Liz lives in Nottingham, New Hampshire with her husband.
John Casey is a Pushcart Prize-nominated poet and novelist from New Hampshire. A Veteran combat and test pilot, Casey also served as a Diplomat and International Affairs Strategist at U.S. embassies in Germany and Ethiopia, the Pentagon, and elsewhere. He is inspired by the incredible spectrum of people, places and cultures he has experienced in life.
Carol LaHines is an award-winning author whose fiction has appeared in Fence, Hayden’s Ferry Review, Denver Quarterly, Cimarron Review, The Literary Review, The Laurel Review, Sycamore Review, Permafrost, redivider, Literal Latte and elsewhere. She is the recipient of the Lamar York Prize for Fiction. Her short stories and novellas have also been finalists for the Mary McCarthy Prize in Short Fiction from Sarabande Books, the David Nathan Meyerson fiction prize, the New Letters short story award, and the Disquiet Literary Prize, among others.
Keith Madsen is a retired minister who lives in East Wenatchee, Washington with his wife Cathy. He serves with AmeriCorps, teaching English to immigrants and helping low-income families with financial asset-building. He also teaches children and youth chess. He roots for the Seattle Mariners and enjoys the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest. He has published short stories in Mobius: The Journal of Social Change, Talking River, Short Story America,and Adelaide.
Jim Metzner is a sound recordist and radio producer, best known as the host of the Pulse of the Planet radio series and podcast. He’s currently working on a memoire, “Adventures of a Lifelong Listener,” which weaves together sounds and stories to explore the mystery of listening.
Donna Koros-Stramella is a novelist whose short pieces have appeared in anthologies, literary magazines, and national online and print publications. She is a previous award-winning journalist and scriptwriter who spent decades as a communication strategist and senior writer in the corporate and government domains. A Maryland resident, she received her MFA from the University of Tampa. Her first novel, Coffee Killed My Mother, was published by Adelaide Books in 2020, and she is nearing completion on her second book, Among the Bones.
Joyce Yarrow is a New York City transplant now living in Seattle. Joyce began her writing life scribbling poems on the subway and observing human behavior from every walk of life. The author of five novels, she is a Pushcart Prize nominee with short stories and essays that have appeared in Inkwell Journal, Whistling Shade, Descant, Arabesques, Weber: The Contemporary West, and the Los Angeles Review of Books.
Amy E. Wallen is the author of the best-selling novel, MoonPies & Movie Stars (Penguin 2007), and the memoir, When We Were Ghouls: A Memoir of Ghost Stories (University of Nebraska 2018). Her sardonic look at writing and its demands, and her mad love of pie come together in her third book, How to Write a Novel in 20 Pies: Sweet & Savory Secrets from the Writing Life (Andrews McMeel October 2022). As writer-in-residence at Ocean Discovery Institute, Amy teaches personal storytelling to young people traditionally excluded from science due to race, income status, and educational opportunity. She also provides book editing services for persevering writers.