The Cocoon, another contest winner, is now available to read in full at Criminal Element, and has received its very own cover design by Tobie Ancipink.
In other news, People-like Trees in the Night, a dark magic-realism short story set in and near Jerusalem during the period of the British Mandate, is still scheduled to appear in the next print issue of Spark: A Creative Anthology, but in the meantime can also be read on the magazine's website.
This story is dear to my heart, as it's set in the place where I grew up. The German Colony is now a little neighborhood bustling with restaurants, cafes and small businesses, and I know it well; whereas the forest where Yaakov, the story's protagonist, lives is based on a forest I used to hike in as a child. As you can gather from the excerpt below, Yaakov eats the turtles he finds. I took two home to raise as pets, and released back into the forest years later.
Yaakov wondered if there had been signs. In the mornings, when he went to look for turtles, he'd watch the mist roll over the tops of the trees, cottoning the sky, and he'd go over the past months in his head. Was her decision the result of a sudden bad mood, or was it the culmination of weeks, months of her growing weary, sick of him and her life in their house?
He would snap out only to put the small turtles back in the bushes. He'd try to recall every look on Elinor's face, every sigh, every turning-away at night. He would suddenly find himself back in the house, chopping off a big turtle's head, and he'd realize that once again he had forgotten to look down the hole – his old home – his mother's grave.
Finally, The End of the Trail is available for pre-order on Smashwords, and will be published there and through some major ebook retailers on July 15. More updates on that a bit later.
As always, I would love to hear from you and learn what you thought of my recent stories. Feel free to hit me up by email or on Twitter and let me know what you liked, or didn't like, about them.