It’s time for a #WhatToReadWednesday post! I figured since Remember Us was published at the beginning of this month and it being one of my favourite short stories of those I’ve written, I’ll recommend a few short reads to you.
I didn’t include any Christmas stories, there are quite a few so I could’ve done a list out of that alone. And sure we could claim Christmas in July, but…
Here we go. I didn’t mean to include quite this many, but once I started looking at short stories more and more made it onto the list 😊 They’re not in any particular order.
Tuluscan Six and the Time Circle by Anne Brooke
This is a bit crazy, but Anne Brooke knows how to pen a short story. It’s time circles and time travel and stuff too complicated to comprehend, but I enjoyed it a lot.
Whilst finishing up a good day’s work in the Earth Interplanetary Administration Office, Karlan Staithley is disturbed by the appearance of a strange alien called Tuluscan Six. Tuluscan tells him that in one year’s time, Earth will make contact with his people, the Lamarians, and unwittingly destroy them due to an anomaly in the planetary time lines.
He himself has come back to warn Karlan, partly to save his people and partly as in the real time line Karlan and Tuluscan will become lovers. The two men join forces to try to save their futures, but can they in fact change time? And, if they do, how can their mutual passion ever survive?
Villains by Andrea Speed
Short story in comic book style. I thought it was great 😀
I know that everyone believes that I’m the monster, and that He keeps me on a leash. I don’t mind; it’s funny how everyone is deceived by our act and while they look at me with fear and loathing, His secret is safe. No one is going to know that behind his innocent look and smile there is a soulless and sadistic man. I love Him the way He is and even if He isn’t capable of love, I know that I’m the most valuable person in his life. He trusts me, He cares about me and He wants to be with me. And it’s enough.
Sometimes, I wonder— am I monster too?
Dirty Pirate (Dirty Shorts) by Kyle Adams
There are many Dirty stories, they’re all short, they’re all funny, and they’re all free (I think).
This cute and quirky story requires suspension of all belief. It’s a silly little story written based off these prompts:
Story elements: Haunted shower curtain, a pink stuffed parrot, a magic wand, bucket of chicken, a burnt Pop-Tart, and Batman.
Main characters: One loves chicken, it is all he talks about. Other character wears an eyepatch because he thinks he’s a pirate.
Payback (Channeling Morpheus/Sweet Oblivion #1) by Jordan Castillo Price
Well, we have to have a little JCP on the list, that’s the rule.
The hunt is on.
Pretty young men and women like Michael’s best friend, Scary Mary, are disappearing from underground goth clubs all over Detroit. For over two years, Michael has been scouring the midwest for buried newspaper articles and obscure medical reports, and now he’s finally pinpointed the source of the problem. Too bad he can’t exactly go to the cops and tell them his friend was murdered by vampires. Since it’s his duty to start wiping out the scourge, he’s posing as bait—and he’s got a bag of sharpened hickory stakes to do the job.
Everything should go smoothly, given the amount of preparation that Michael has put into the hunt. He’s got a practiced repertoire of come-hither eyeliner looks and a full blister-pack of the date rape drug Rohypnol. But he didn’t count on Wild Bill showing up.
Wild Bill is a vision in spiked hair and scuffed black leather—exactly the type of guy Michael would have fallen for…if he’d ever had the chance. Unfortunately, with a vampire in his sights, Michael has no time for an actual date. Despite his best efforts, it seems there’s nothing Michael can do to shake Bill loose. Looks like they’re in for a wild, wild ride.
Let’s Hear It for the Boy by T.A. Webb
I cried. Then I forced my sister to read it, and she shrugged with a well-it-was-pretty-predictable-wasn’t-it. Damn her.
Auntie Social is the biggest, baddest drag queen in Atlanta—she knows what she wants and she gets it. She’s tough, merciless, and top dog. That’s what Paul Stewart, reporter for the Journal, had heard, and all he expects when he’s assigned to interview the legend.. But nobody really knows the person behind the make-up.
What if…what if the person behind the sarcasm and music was more than just a man in a dress? What happened in his life that, thirty years later, made him a successful CEO, a philanthropist, and a legend in the gay community? Thirty years and almost a million dollars raised for people living with HIV/AIDs, yet still no one knows the real story.
Until one night, one man breaks through the shell, and Matthew Trammell—Auntie Social—opens the door he closed many years ago and lets his secrets spill out.
Pain is like rain, it covers your skin and soaks in bone-deep, but it eventually recedes and allows fresh things to grow.
Your Cover’s Blown by Shinju Yuri
Some awww steampunk LOL
Walter had never fallen in love before but he’d always thought it would be like the feeling when you slotted something into place and knew, even before you turned on the steam and watched the gears begin to move, that everything was where it was supposed to be. Even before the gears began to move smoothly, faster and faster, until everything was a steady contented hum. He’d heard that it was something like a chemical reaction, though. If it was, that was all right, because he was used to them. The trick was to make big, gloriously horrible balls-ups of the thing and remember to duck if it blew. And do it over and over again until you got it right.
The Name on My Wrist by J.M. Snyder
This is one of my favourite short stories in all categories. It’s just a few pages, but it hits you. Heartbreaking.
James, middle-aged, is given to one-night flings with younger men in whom he searches for someone he lost long ago. A random comment by his latest catch draws his mind back to the past, to a boy he once loved so fiercely, a boy drafted and sent to fight in Vietnam.
A boy lost in the war. A boy James has never forgotten.
Glitter by Ayla Starr
Super short, but oh so lovely.
I kept tripping over my feet, tripping over my words, and eventually gave up talking all together. You continued to smile anyway.
Monster Till Midnight by E.J. Russell
I chose not to include any Christmas stories, but a little Halloween is fine, right? Here we have monsters and time travel. Awesome!
What if you staged the best haunted house in the history of the holiday, but nobody came?
Brady is prepared with mounds of treats, stellar special effects, and an extraordinary welcome for the throngs of trick-or-treaters he expects in his first year at his new place—a gloriously gothic house with the reputation for really being haunted! But the trick’s on Brady: Halloween is almost over and not one person has knocked on his door.
Once a top Interdimensional Law Enforcement agent, Rej was busted down to Creature Control after a run-in with his arch-nemesis. When he tracks a non-sentient construct across the dimensional barrier, he’s sure he’s about to confront Gorvenath again. But the person who bursts onto the porch in a swirl of tuxedo coattails is a monster of a very different sort—but is he Gorvenath’s accomplice or his victim?
Monster Till Midnight is an 11,000-word gay romance featuring a hopeful samhainophile, a suspicious LEO, gratuitous candy corn, and a relationship that threatens to be really, really, really long distance.
Wrong Order by Morgan Noel
Another story fit for Halloween. Heed the warnings on this one!
Josh wants wealth and good fortune, without all the trouble of hard work. When he summons a demon as a quick and easy way, he gets more than he anticipated he would. The tentacled demon is not the hot vixen the book of rituals promised him, and the deal he asks for is more intimate and mindblowing than Josh could have conjured up in his wildest nightmares.
Just Like in the Movies by Clare London
This one is just a few pages, but it made me laugh.
All Bailey wants is to be a good negotiator, and to impress his boss and teacher, the legendary Drew Fletcher. He admires Fletcher for his skills in the field, but that doesn’t stop him admiring the man for other, more romantic reasons as well. In a tense hostage situation, it’s pretty unlikely Bailey’s usual, rash behaviour will cover him in glory, but in his dreams, it’s all going to happen just like in the movies.
When he finally acts to protect his boss, it doesn’t go the way he hopes — or does it? Will Bailey get to play the hero and get the guy of his dreams?
All I See by Nell Iris
This is a cute story about being in a relationship where the other half isn’t out. *whispers* Grab it now while it’s free because a little bird told me it might not remain so for long.
Theo and Kieran have been together for five years. They’re very happy … behind closed doors. Theo accepted from the start that Kieran isn’t out to his conservative parents and has a lot to lose if they find out about his sexuality.
But a moment of sadness at a wedding changes things. Theo is faced with a decision: live the rest of his life in secret … or break it off.
Or is there a third alternative?
Prisoner 374215 (The ESTO Universe) by Angel Martinez
Dystopian prison story, awesome!
The cracks had opened wide one day, let the monsters out, and swallowed every bright thing.
While the cell is sparse and cold, at least this one has a bed. The figure resting there is too thin; too still, the prominent bones the result of long starvation, the stillness the product of too much anguish and abuse. He watches, though. An anxious, intelligent mind still occupies this frail and failing body, one that watches and wonders about the new guard occupying his cell each night.
Playing Chicken: A short St Dwynwen’s Day story (Contemporary Celtic Myths) by A.L. Lester
A sweet little story about a man who finds a bruised man in his barn and invites him inside. There are also chickens 😀
Marc returns home from London to his isolated Welsh cottage for good, having found his ex boyfriend shagging someone else in their bed. Who’s the thin, freezing cold man with the bruised face he finds in his barn? Will the tenuous connection between them grow, or fade away?
A 9,000 word short story in the Reworked Celtic Myths series, to mark the Welsh St Valentine’s Day, St Dwynwen’s Day, the 25th of January. With chickens. A contemporary gay romance.
Offense and Satisfaction by Vanessa Mulberry
A historical shorty, well worth the few minutes it takes to read it!
England, 1772. Hugh Galpin has loved Owen Mowbray too long to want to hurt him. Now he finds himself on his way to a duel that might see one or both of them dead, he is torn between the word of a family he barely knows and a man he has trusted all his life. But after years spent living alone, he is not ready to give up his newly found cousins no matter what they have done.
Offense and Satisfaction is a 3,800-word Historical Gay (MM) Romance with a HFN ending.
The Immaculate Marlow King by Amanda Meuwissen
Marlow King has a problem… Intense libido and being a virgin. I never would’ve read this story had I read the blurb, but luckily I didn’t LOL. Give it a go if you like mages.
Marlow King is a rare and powerful Storm Mage and an officer of the law, but he has a secret: he has an unfairly intense libido. And he’s a virgin.
After an embarrassing reaction during a sparring match with his rival and fellow Mage Officer, Rembrandt “Remy” Parker, Marlow stumbles upon a thief escaping the scene of her crime. Desperate to escape, she looks in Marlow’s mind to use his deepest secret against him — and curses him to lose his magic until he loses his virginity.
Enter Remy, who is definitely a very bad (very good) idea to fix things.
Sympathy for the Devil by RoughDraftHero
*clears throat* Yeah, sooo… We have an alien in a glass box, and one day he wakes up. Comes with trigger warnings.
Milton is a low-level employee for the government. All night, he watches over the most prized-possession of the secret laboratory he works in, hoping one day he would be able to see its eyes. However, he finds out something shocking about the subject he’s been monitoring, and starts to feel a small flicker of guilt.
That was probably his first mistake.