As I can be prone to bouts of anxiety, I can't believe I am going to say this, but: I do some of my best work on an aggressive deadline. There is an annual contest that provides a prompt (genre, object and location) and a deadline of 48 hours to knock out a 1,000 word story. I fret at every one of those two thousand, eight hundred and eighty minutes and yet, when it's done, I have something in my hands that didn't exist two days prior. That bit of rhythm and flow has worked for a little over a decade and I still can't understand why. When the clock is ticking, something beautiful happens. I take influences from my personal life and distill it on the page. On time, on deadline, every time.

 

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"Straw Men" was written in 2009 as part of the annual NYC Midnight Flash Fiction Challenge and I couldn't help but be impacted by the prevailing economy:

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Courtesy of Karen Fayeth