Category Archives: Short Stories

We’re still making decisions — and announcing our SPRING 2023 Cover!

We haven’t made our final selections for the Spring 2023 issue of 34 Orchard yet–we’re finishing those up in the next few weeks. HOWEVER, I’M THRILLED TO SHOWCASE OUR COVER, featuring Optic Nerve by Page Sullivan. We’re only three months away from release!

I wanted to take a moment, also, to thank all of our supporters–writers who send in work, those who donate, our reading volunteers, those who have jumped in to save my ass whenever I’ve needed it, and our incredibly loyal readers. When I founded this publication back in 2019, I was going to be happy if I just had a little magazine that ten of my friends read. Never would I have dreamt that so many people would read and enjoy it. It has completely blown past all of my expectations, and we plan to continue to deliver quality experiences for many issues to come.

34 ORCHARD ISSUE 7 SAMPLE COVER

Join me for Edgar Allan Poe’s Birthday Bash Online next Thursday, January 19!

So thrilled to announce it’s almost time to grab your amontillado and join me and a host of other Poe-enamored writers as we read “The Raven” and “The Bells” in celebration of Poe’s birthday Thursday, January 19, at 7 pm on Zoom!

2023 Edgar Allan Poe Birthday Bash Art

The event is free. If you’d like the Zoom link, PM me, email me, text me or however you get in touch with me, and I’ll get it right to you. You can also reach out to me through my contact page.

Co-sponsored by the Untitled Open Mic at Lowell Poetry Wheel and hosted by writer Meg Smith, we’ll each be reading Read the rest of this entry

New story and essay, novel excerpt AVAILABLE NOW in FREE SIRENS CALL EZINE ISSUE 60!

SIRENS CALL ISSUE 60 COVER

BIG NEWS!! I’m ecstatic to announce that Sirens Call eZine Issue #60—FREE to download—not only contains my story, “What the Ocean Knows,” but, because they honored me with being featured author, also contains an essay, “Whispers Beneath the Lines: Dark Fiction’s Power to Heal” and a longer excerpt from my novel, Bad Apple! This giant issue also features Read the rest of this entry

Welcome, 2023! 34 ORCHARD’s submissions window is open through January 15!

34 Orchard is now considering work for our Spring 2023 issue! We will only be open from January 1 – 15, 2023, so if you’re planning on submitting, please keep in mind that anything after January 15, 2023, will be deleted unread (and yes, we adjust for all worldwide time zones. So that’s after January 15 at 11:59pm wherever you are).

Please refer to our guidelines for information on how to submit. Check that out here at https://34orchard.com/guidelines/, and we look forward to reading your work!

PERFECT STOCKING STUFFER! “Sea Legs” available in Lovecraftian Microfiction Vol. 8!

Tree Nestle 1

How CUTE is this tiny book on a Christmas tree?

I’m thrilled to announce that my piece, “Sea Legs,” is now available in Lovecraftian Microfiction Volume 8!

“Sea Legs” is one of thirteen winners in the 2022 H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival and CthulhuCon Microfiction Contest, and the collection makes the perfect stocking stuffer (tiny trim size is so cute too!!). It’s also two books in one, with Tales from the Tainted Inkwell—stories from the past that are out of print, including by cosmic favorites Cody Goodfellow and Peter Rawlik—on its flipside.

In “Sea Legs”: On a North Sea island, villagers are grateful for what the sea goddess gives—until what She tries to take in return may force one of them to go to unusual extremes. I was trying my hand at a cosmic/folk horror blend, something about which I learned at this year’s Necronomicon in Providence, RI in August.

Fill a stocking, put it under the tree, or treat yourself. You can get it here:

https://arkhambazaar.com/books/lovecraftian-microfiction-2022-tales-from-the-tainted-inkwell-collection/

Yay! My short story “Let the Rain Settle It” accepted for HUSH, DON’T WAKE THE MONSTER—Stephen King homage anthology!

So excited to announce that my short story, “Let the Rain Settle It” has been accepted for publication in Hush, Don’t Wake the Monster—A Women in Horror Anthology containing stories inspired by Stephen King but with a female spin!

Hush, Don't Wake the Monster Cover

“Let the Rain Settle It” is an homage to Stephen King’s “Rainy Season,” which I read in the early 1990s and has haunted me ever since. Here’s the introduction I penned for my submission:

Why I chose Stephen King’s “Rainy Season”

 It’s been said the experience of a story is different for each reader, because it depends on what that person brings to the table. I didn’t read Stephen King’s “Rainy Season” until it was reprinted in his 1993 Nightmares & Dreamscapes collection, but of all the pieces I’d read of his, this is the one that stuck. As a starry-eyed twenty-two year old who was, at the time, blissfully unaware she was engaged in a toxic relationship, I connected most with the subtle clues King presents about the broken young couple heading toward not just physical demise, but eventual emotional disaster if they did survive. While John and Elise aren’t the focus of King’s narrative—the spotlight, as always, shines on unsettling Mainers—they’re clearly in a place where the ordinary drudge of life and its reactionary transgressions have squelched the blush of love and romance. The blinders are off, they see each other for who they really are, and it’s not pretty.

While it’s been accused of being too similar to Jackson’s “The Lottery,” and a “time passer,” “Rainy Season” isn’t just another folk horror tale or creature feature. It’s a warning that the killer toads of life are always at your romantic door, and sometimes, it’s just better to let them in.

I’m so excited and honored my story was chosen for this unique project, and I can’t wait to read everyone else’s stories! Watch this space for pre-order and ToC announcement—Hush will be released March 2, 2023!

It’s here! My story “Wish Bones” in DEAD STARS AND STONE ARCHES

Wish Bones Kristi

TODAY IS RELEASE DAY! My western cosmic horror story—first shot at that, too!—“Wish Bones,” is now available in Timber Ghost Press’ Dead Stars and Stone Arches: A Collection of Utah Horror.

In 1873 Utah, Quicken offers to shepherd a woman condemned to hang for the massacre of a Mormon traveling party—but what’s waiting for them in the canyon is more terrifying than any crime she could have possibly committed.

Pick up your copy for Kindle or Print here!

Dead Stars and Stone Arches Cover

“Beware Burning Snow” is now available for free in THE SIRENS CALL eZine!

SIRENS CALL EZINE Issue 58 Cover

I’m thrilled to announce that my short story –“Beware Burning Snow” — is now available to read for FREE over at The Sirens Call eZine Issue #58!

In “Beware Burning Snow”: In 1980, ash people warned ten-year-old Sissy of the imminent eruption of Mount St. Helens. But there’s a natural order to things, and now they’re back. Sissy’s not only driven to keep one eye on the mountain—she’s compelled to keep them from haunting her teenaged daughter, too.

This issue is huge and features stories Read the rest of this entry

34 ORCHARD taking submissions now through July 15!

34 ORCHARD ISSUE 6 COVER

34 Orchard’s Autumn 2022 submissions window is now open! We will only be open from July 1 – 15, 2022, so if you’re planning on submitting, please keep in mind that anything after July 15, 2022, will be deleted unread (and yes, we adjust for all worldwide time zones. So that’s after July 15 at 11:59pm wherever you are).

Please refer to our guidelines for information on how to submit. Check that out here at https://34orchard.com/guidelines/, and we look forward to reading your work!

Looking for an audio scare? My short “February Thaw” is on the DON’T FALL ASLEEP podcast!

Feb Thaw on Don't Fall Asleep Podcast - Description Screenshot

I’m thrilled to announce that my short story, “February Thaw”—which was published earlier this year in Dark Moon Books’ Horror Library Volume 7—is now available on Blood Bound Books’ Don’t Fall Asleep podcast!

There are several ways to listen, so Read the rest of this entry

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