Meet the 2019 FLASH SUITE Contest Finalists

November 20th, 2018

with an intimate photo in her, his, or their favorite chair

— a trademark.



M.T. Ingoldby works as a copywriter in the UK. His stories have appeared in The Pennsylvania Literary Journal, The Next Review, the Lowestoft Chronicle (x2), Existeré, Octavius, Crimson Streets, Story & Grit, and one or two anthologies, working his way up to a novel. He is an active member of the Waterloo Theatre Group, and a keen runner. He currently lives in London.


Despite being born to two parents who are writers, Chantelle Tibbs’ writing journey didn’t begin until her late twenties. She started life off as an actress and a musician. Finding some of the roles for women of color limiting, she began writing stories, scripts and songs from her own unique experience and perspective. In 2016 she co-wrote the script “Shrine of Scars” which was published about in February 2016 and January 2017 in the Modesto Bee. Whether singing, acting, writing or cleaning the bathroom on the set of an independent film she is passionate about, Chantelle strives to break patterns, untying the shoelaces of monotony and routine while helping to open the door for people to experience so much more out of life. She is an Aries, she enjoys post-apocalyptic movies, forensic science shows and her golden, five year old son, Kai.




Katharine McGiffert has been a university teacher of children’s literature, a zookeeper, and an ESL instructor and is now a book buyer for a children’s bookstore in San Francisco. She also has been crazy and sane, sick and healthy, and a writer and a non-writer. She has 29 pets, most of them small.









Tracy Davidson lives in Warwickshire, England, and writes poetry and flash fiction. Her work has appeared in various publications and anthologies, including: Poet’s Market, Mslexia, Atlas Poetica, Writers Digest, Modern Haiku, The Binnacle, A Hundred Gourds, Shooter, Journey to Crone, The Great Gatsby Anthology, WAR and In Protest: 150 Poems for Human Rights.










Dina Toyoda came to the United States many years ago. She started to write just recently.  Dina and her husband, Takahumi, live in California, where they patiently wait for their kids to come home from college.











John Steckley taught at Humber College in Toronto for 30 years before he retired in 2015.  He has published 21 books of non-fiction, including textbooks in sociology, anthropology and Indigenous Studies, several biographies and seven works concerning the Wendat and Wyandot people. His house is a menagerie, with eight parrots, two dogs and a cat.  He is married to a woman who is a brilliant artist, and shares his passion for animals. He currently works part time at the Tribal Linguist of the Wyandotte of Oklahoma.  He started writing short stories when he retired, and wishes he had started doing that years earlier.




Levi Andrew Noe was born and raised in Denver, CO. He is a writer, wanderer, yogi, entrepreneur, and amateur oneironaut. His flash fiction collection Rain Check was published in August 2016 from Truth Serum Press. His flash fiction, short stories, creative non-fiction and works of poetry can be found in Connotation Press, Boston Literary Magazine, Bartleby Snopes and Literary Orphans, among many others. Levi is the editor in chief and founder of the podcast Rocky Mountain Revival Audio Art Journal.

Twitter: @LeviAndrewNoe, @RockyMtnRevival



W.F. Lantry’s poetry collections are The Terraced Mountain (Little Red Tree 2015), The Structure of Desire (Little Red Tree 2012) winner of a 2013 Nautilus Award in Poetry, The Language of Birds (2011) and a forthcoming collection, The Book of Maps. He received his PhD in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Houston. Honors include the National Hackney Literary Award in Poetry, CutBank Patricia Goedicke Prize, Crucible Editors’ Poetry Prize, Lindberg Foundation International Poetry for Peace Prize (Israel), Comment Magazine Poetry Award (Canada), Paris/Atlantic Young Writers Award (France), Old Red Kimono Paris Lake Poetry Prize and Potomac Review Prize. His work has appeared widely online and in print in journals such as Asian Cha, Gulf Coast and Valparaiso Fiction Review. He is the editor of Peacock Journal.




Fan voting begins January 8th-20th.

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Letters to Maria Coryaté: Part XXI. [postmark: June 2nd, 2016]

November 15th, 2018

Hi, Patrick.

I’m writing to tell you that I’m now engaged to be married.  I appreciate you writing me though.  It’s nice to know someone cares about me.  Especially someone hurt like us.

Jacob is a biologist, and I’ve been living with him since August.  He’s nice and quiet and sweet and he loves me.  And I love him and I want to marry him.  And he does make me laugh, a lot.  And has many potted plants.  You developed my capacity to care again, but he was here when I needed him.  I love him for that.

I don’t know how to ask you this, so I’ll just say it, will you come to me?  I saved your letters.  I saved your letters, and I want to see you before I’m married.  Will you?  Will you?

Jacob is strong for me, and I need that.  I just can’t  I need to see you, will you?  Will you please?


Maria (still) Coryaté

P.S. hehe, if you never learn arabic like you said you wanted to, my final words in this letter will forever remain a mystery: aqref jamaalati




more Letters to Maria Coryaté


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Finalists now announced for 2019 FLASH SUITE Contest

November 11th, 2018


Go Straight to the Contest


The sixth annual FLASH SUITE Contest will be truly jaw-dropping.  We have works of resilience and survival; of murder and death; tricksters and witches; from hard-nosed realism to wonderous abstraction; and poetry does not fail.  And so much evil, so much delightful e-vile.


Go Straight to the Contest


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Letters to Maria Coryaté: Part XX. [email: 12:17am, December 26th, 2015]

November 11th, 2018


One Last Try

Patrick Dominguez

to Maria Coryaté



Stuffs good.  Hanging out, X-mas Eve— thinking of you, apparently.  I typed up this poem, and this’ll be my last try.  I’m getting over you, without hearing from you, but, babe, short and sweet and with closure— that’s how nice people do it.  From here on, I’m trying to move on.  But I gotta give you this last try.

Stuff’s good.  Substitute teaching next semester; grad classes; lots a’ skateboarding— damn, I look and feel good.  You wanna meet me in Brazil this summer, see the Olympics?  Necesito una transistadora de Portuguesa.  That Would be super hot.  Think about it…

I find it pretty damn comical when people use words like fragrance and musk, but scent is a powerful turn on, especially for women.  I guess this is general knowledge, but pheromones express one’s genetic structure.  When women are attracted to how someone smells, they’re unconsciously recognizing genes that are way different.  You just smell way better to me than any other woman I’ve met.

I guess that’s the real reason I still think about you, two-and-a-half years after leaving the Institut.  Take this with a grain of sand, but I’ve recently realized that pheromones are what make truest love possible.  I’m not saying there is true love, but there is obviously less true love, so then more true love, and hence truest love, and that’s a scent.

I still hear voices in my head, a fair amount: never malignant, often judgmental, always people I’m acquainted with, no one imaginary.  Fine by me, I’m never lonely.  I hear your voice, sometimes— I call it the Maria voice.  Not much, though, anymore.  Which is saddening.  I guess I’m saying my side hasn’t been as one-sided as your side.

Sure wish I was with you, Maria.  I assume girls like you come around once in a lifetime, so I’ll be old and fat before I meet someone I like as much as you, but I’m content with that.  Cause now I won’t be content without that.

Is what you want a simple life, a quiet suburban head-shrink?  I guess I couldn’t give you that.  I’m supposed to avoid stress, too—  which is why I take the bus, now, instead of driving through traffic— but I need surprise, and drama, and chaos, I need vibrant, life-filled big cities.  And if you want sophistication and vividness and gorgeous complication, world-travels and challenges and moments of supra-comfort, you should be with me, cause that’s my life and I want you in it.  But there’s calm and quite, too, but I have to look for it, make that happen in the moment, cause it’s not just waiting for me out there in the street.  In the mornings I sit and listen to the birds; in the evenings I sit and listen to someone I care about.

Don’t be a dork with your life, babe.  Figure out what you want, and have that.  Don’t make your life decisions based on what is most convenient, most comfortable, easiest.  Don’t be like that. 

Are you just settling?  Settling for the next smart and also nice person to come along?  Don’t settle, live a life with me that’s beautiful and complicated– as beautiful and complicated as we are.  I don’t settle.  I know what I want, and I try for it, no matter how it hurts.  Figure out what you want, and have that.  Let’s be sexy as dirt, together, babe, meet me in Brazil.  Think about it all Spring. 

Did you save ‘um babe..  I think you did.  You really should reread ‘um, before you decide.

Maria, you’re a banana split, you’re a golden antique Persian rug, you’re a brand new Super-Soaker 250 water gun, you’re a squeaky, yellow rubber duck.  And you’re as damaged as I am, which I’m not even gonna look for again.

Save my letters, babe, show ‘um to your grandkids, whomever’s they are.  My grandmother kept both sets of hers in a green shoebox tied-up with string in her closet.

Does he at least make you laugh, like we used to laugh?  Maria-babe, I have never been as serious as I am right now.  If you’re ever dissatisfied, if you’re ever ready for an epic-love… write me a letter, someday.   I will cross the world for you. 

        Love Patrick.



Damnit, Jesus


Damnit, Jesus,

I’ve been trying to convince myself    

I’m over that girl, but here it is,

Christmas Eve, and I can’t stop

thinking of her.


What would you do, Hesus,

turn water into wine till she’s off your mind?

walk up oceans and rivers to her town? maybe

shoot lightning out your fingertips at her boyfriend

she’s in love with by now?  That wouldn’t help, Jesus.


Maybe you would rent a circus and

perform it on her front lawn, strap yourself in

to the aerial wire and swing on the high trapeze till

she notices you?  I might, but I’d probably

have to swing a long-ass time on that damn trapeze.


Damnit, Jesus,

maybe I’ll just write her from far away,

because she’s unforgettable,

give her space and time, hope she doesn’t give

her life away before she falls in love with me, instead.




more Letters to Maria Coryaté

be sure to surf through this Wed. for the grand conclusion

— Will Maria write back?

— Will Patrick lose hope?


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Letters to Maria Coryaté: Part XIX. [email: 4:25pm, August 12th, 2015]

November 7th, 2018


Dang, Maria

Patrick Dominguez

to Maria Coryaté

Maria, you’re a really lousy pen-pal.  I haven’t heard from you for, like, six months, damn it.  You just gonna take from me?  Take and take, is that how this is gonna work, not shutting me down?— me giving you my heart on a stick, and you just taking?  Whatever— you’re worth it, babe.  I know why, and you do, too: because of when and where we met.

I quote the poetess,


Go from me. 

But I feel that I shall stand henceforward in thy shadow. 

Nevermore alone upon the threshold of my door of individual life,

I shall stand naked in the sunshine as before, without the touch

of that which I forbore, thy lips upon my brow.

What I do and what I dream include thee.

call me,




Best Simpsons Reference Ever


When I was twenty-five,

I met a very good Muse,

a very good Muse

I met though, my insanity.

Now I am much more healthy,

but still blabberingly crazy,

over that very good Muse.




more Letters to Maria Coryaté


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Letters to Maria Coryaté: Part XVIII. [postmark: July 10th, 2015]

November 4th, 2018


Hi, Maria;

So, um… you, like— uh— haven’t shut me down, Maria-babe— I told you I don’t understand being ignored.  So, I know how easily overwhelmed you become, so I ask myself if you avoid me out of overwhelm of affection, or, out of overwhelm of… something less good for me than that.

So, yo, like— when you’re dating while in intensive therapy sometimes, you gotta ditch on those relationships when the therapy is over.  So, like, I’m not trying to tell you what to do, but, you will always associate the pain of intensive therapy with that relationships, and anyone you were with.  So I don’t know…

Anyrate, I haven’t proven anything impressive about yourself for quite some time, so the rest of this letter will be devoted entirely to me proving how much I love your hair.  Perhaps I have yet to convince you of how much I love your hair.

So, I’ve seen some photos of you on facebook looking Amazing with lots of make-up and stuff, and skin-tight pants, and really sexy, glossy, good-hair.  But I didn’t spend that much time looking at them, maybe three times.  I like you with wavy hair.  Wavy, kinky, tangly, poofy– I like it. 

Don’t get me wrong, you look beautiful with straight hair— like a model, astonishing, pristine… gorgeous– you pro’lly get tired of hearing That word from everyone you meet— but still just sorta… like a model.  You have this astoundingly unique beauty over that.  Those are the girls I try for, those unique beauties, more beautiful than models. 

When I knew you, you put on make-up like, once.  And your Hair was just… luscious, flowing, outta control, bodacious, ludicrously lovely– that you is beautiful to extremes scrawny-model-looking-you couldn’t pray for (that’s a major compliment, if you’re wondering).

Don’t ever straighten it, again.  Without your rabidly curly hair in it, Earth is the lesser.





Nuff Whatevah Girls (a song)


I am so done with whatevah girls,

I want one clearly-you woman.

Whatevah am so done with I, girls,

I clearly want you, woman.

Done so, I am girls’ whatevah.

Woman, I want You– clearly.

Iiiiiiieee, with a whatevah am so girl-done.

Woman, you want me? dimly?



more Letters to Maria Coryaté


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Submissions Now Closed for 2019 FLASH SUITE Contest

November 3rd, 2018

Well, the Submission period for our

2019 FLASH SUITE Contest

is now closed.


eatstuf and I are reading carefully through all them, and the competition is fierce, indeed.  We will announce the finalists on site in the next two weeks.


Be sure to surf through for the grand finale of Letters to Maria Coryate, every Sunday and Wednesday until November 21st.  Will Maria ever write back?– or will Patrick lose hope?



— Paul-Newell Reaves,

owner, co-editor,



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October Nights Lyrics 2018 reading

October 29th, 2018

This 2018 reading of October Nights Lyrics

is dedicated to D. Glover. (1984-2017)

He goes where eagles dare.



October Nights Lyrics


No, it’s never too much darker

than this dusky side of late October.

The Moon hums sillily on the sides

of slumbering edifices, declaring willingly

the nature of her vamp metaphysics.

The first fog ghosts steal through gorges and under

bridges as our fingers move through

their freshly shampooed hair.

There’s a mischief on this air. 

Callow ghouls

stride and stagger

along the crowded

pedestrian streets;

flippant fairies

vivisect the sidewalks;

vampires with plastic

teeth transact

with their bank accounts

crossing their fingers,

sticking out their tongues.

They curse their invisible gods.

Behind Cheshire Cat

eyes and eyebrows painted to

outrageous angles,

underdeveloped faces hide crack

infested minds.  Lingering

on pouty tragi-comedy lips,

that condemnablest fear— of unknown.


I said no,

no, it’s never too much darker

than this dusky side of late October.

Only they truly tremulous dare supplicate

at Alters of Chance and Change, dare

lift a prayer to preserve those shallow memories,

re-live them once more, ever one

time more, and so, ascend

to inalterable Eden.  While we,

the wiser, wisend damned

left behind this Day of the Dead Eve

cursed with myth-making arts of memory, will

stumble on and stumble on and stumble on.

While we turn keys and juggle dice, they

dance to an unconquerable, sugar-coated rhythm!—

let them play, I say, at immortality.

I envy them not.

For we know first tossed spades

closing a close friend’s death, know,

unaccroachably our failures; know of

diving from cliffs into different seas, and

rocketing through and beyond the atmosphere

toward endless numbers of empty infinities. 


I said no,

no, it’s never too much darker

than this dusky side of late October.

Dressed as their most disconsolable desires,

ever greedy as first suckled,

candy-gobblers pain unto

the French word for bread.

We know, soberly, that distinction,

possess the instinct to retain,

and aspire to know totally;

our pen ink’s read; our desires

known, if only as unattainable.

Gloaming arises, morning mounts,




Questions often answered then seemed notionless—

lightning remained motionless—

the tide thundered, oceanless:

acorns yet crushed

— underlined twice.

And repeats,

acorns which

have yet

to be crushed

— underlined twice.

Yet how I enjoy their crushing.

Each age of excess

soon descends.

They will soon enjoy

inaccurately remembering.


candles sputter out.

One less roll down

the hill.

                    Another year,

                              another night…



more Readings


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Last few days for submissions to 2019 FLASH SUITE Contest

October 28th, 2018


Submission for our 2019 FLASH SUITE Contest

closes this Thursday.


We are, however, lenient as to time-zone differences,

so make it in by, oh, let’s say

7:49a.m. Eastern Standard Time on Friday the 2nd.


Get off your butts and submit, before I kick your butt and make you submit.


— eatstuf,

co-editor, moderator, Wild-Wild-West gunslinger,



check out our new MASTHEAD

FLASH SUITE Contest Guidelines



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Letters to Maria Coryaté: Part XVII. [Postcard, Memphis: June 29th, 2015]

October 24th, 2018



Suns and Moons

I’ll start as your sun,

and you start as my moon.

I’ll burn so brightly

that you burn like a sun.

Then, when I fade to cinder,

you’ll reflect off me.



Hope you like this one, ‘cause it may be the most romantic poem I’ll ever write.




more Letters to Maria Coryaté


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