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James Van Pelt fell in love with Zenna Henderson, Ray Bradbury, Ursula le Guin, Robert Heinlein, Anne McCaffrey and a host of others when he started reading. In elementary school, he told his mom he wanted to grow up to be a Ray Bradbury, like Bradbury was a job instead of a person. His work has appeared in Asimov's, Analog, Clarkesworld and many other venues. Stories have been reprinted in Year's Best anthologies and gathered in five of his collections. He has been a finalist for the Nebula, the Sturgeon Award, and the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer. He recently retired from teaching high school English (37 years), to write full time.
Published May 11, 2019 · 6,935 words (26 minutes) · 1 like · 53 views
Poul, Leesa and their daughter Savannah vacation at the lake every year, but the waters there are deep, cold and hold memories as toothy, dark and silent as the pike who glide just out of sight. The story received an honorable mention in The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror. Contains adult content.
Published May 3, 2019 · 4,616 words (17 minutes) · 45 views
The creatures in Demi's backyard love her, and she loves her mom. Life should be good with the love that surrounds her, but Demi has challenges too: Mom is sick, the neighborhood is rough, and what's a good daughter to do?
Published Apr 27, 2019 · 5,075 words (19 minutes) · 1 like · 69 views
John Minor suffered a brain injury that left him with physical disabilities and a really wicked scar. He didn't die, though, and now he sees the world uniquely. He can't function the way he did before the accident, but maybe he can still make a difference.
Published Apr 21, 2019 · 4,675 words (17 minutes) · 47 views
Some bars try to create an atmosphere to transport their patrons to other worlds. After a few drinks, they might even succeed. Poor, lonely Eddie, adrift in a Denver singles bar, experiences two worlds that look like they shouldn't have anything to do with each other, until they suddenly do.
Published Apr 12, 2019 · 4,814 words (18 minutes) · 50 views
People often say that teaching is a noble profession, and it is. It also has a huge dropout rate as teachers walk away from their jobs. Whatever positive pressures that keep teachers working and the negative ones that push them out, the future is unlikely to change. Chaucer once said of a character in his stories, "Gladly would he learn and gladly teach." Maybe that's the quality that keeps teachers going, that sense of gladness in the giving and taking.
Published Apr 5, 2019 · 3,375 words (13 minutes) · 1 like · 64 views
They say that you can't know the mysteries of the heart, but that's only because you don't have enough data. If you had enough information, surely you could tell what someone else felt about you. If only you had access to all the information.
Published Mar 30, 2019 · 820 words (3 minutes) · 1 like · 77 views
Imagine the joy of an inventor who has learned to travel in time. But what if he can only go where his subconscious directs the machine? What will he learn about himself as he careens from time to time?
Published Mar 22, 2019 · 8,867 words (33 minutes) · 77 views
Epic athletic achievements are the stuff of legend, starting with Pheidippides running from the Battle of Marathon to announce the Greek victory over the Persians. Since then, athletes have pushed harder and harder to break records and stand on top the awards podium. In the future, with technology's help, the records will become breathtaking, but the contest will still be within, and the athletes will still compete for themselves.
Published Mar 15, 2019 · 4,473 words (17 minutes) · 1 like · 84 views
Baseball is a game of unlikely stories, of fortunes turned on a wild pitch or a bad hop or a miracle play. A lot has changed in the game from the early 1900s, but in 2051, its nature is still the same. As said in the movie, Bull Durham: "This is a very simple game. You throw the ball, you catch the ball, you hit the ball. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, sometimes it rains."