Two stories in Eleven Eleven

I’ve got two stories in the recent issue of Eleven Eleven: “Feeding the Skeleton Cats” and “Tornado Season.”

I wrote “Tornado Season” during, well, tornado season, after obsessively checking the TorCon and worrying over the arrival of my storm shelter, after crouching in my hallway with a mattress pad over my head while tornado sirens sounded, after setting up five weather alerts on my phone. I’m terrified of storms. To try to take some of the power out of that fear, I wrote a story, an exercise in free writing, about a couple in a weather-ravaged post-apocalypse trying to escape the weather and their memory.

I wrote “Feeding the Skeleton Cats” as a third in a skeletons series (“Skeletons” and “The Mammoth” are the other two stories). Every time I thought I was done writing about walking, living skeletons as metaphor, I come back to them. I’m not scared of skeletons, but I am scared of failing as a writer, and the main character in this story is a failed writer whose house is infested with the skeleton cats of the title.

Read them both here: http://elevenelevenjournal.com/2015/11/04/bonnie-stufflebeam/

Short Story Publication: “No Eyes” in Psychopomp

My story “No Eyes” is up on Psychopomp today! This one’s about a woman who is interrupted one evening by a skeleton at her door searching for a woman from a faded photograph. She does what any logical person would do: asks the skeleton in for tea. It was inspired by words in a Cat Power song.

Read it for free online here: http://psychopompmag.com/2015/07/01/issue-8/

This story is also going to be one of the tracks in my collaborative words-music album, in the process of funding on Kickstarter through the month of July. Donate here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/stufflebeam/strange-monsters-a-music-and-words-collaboration

“The Mammoth” — Ideomancer (December 2013)

My story “The Mammoth” appeared on Ideomancer in December of 2013.

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First line: “The mammoth skeleton stands in the distance, barely visible below the drooping limbs of monstrous evergreens.”

Inspiration: Set in a world populated with the skeletons of extinct animals, “The Mammoth” is about a father and daughter who take a camping trip together, and the secrets that are revealed during that trip. This is the second story set in this world, which was inspired by a dream I had. These skeleton stories have been some of my favorite to write, mainly because they allow me to visit the Oregon wilderness once again.

Read for free: http://www.ideomancer.com/?p=2634