Bartholomew Bruno has never been quite right. To this day, evil thoughts spread through his mind like dandelions on a lawn. “I look at life in dark colors. Earth browns, dust gray, shadow black, blood reds,” he has muttered to himself on more than one occasion. Lately, Bartholomew’s life has turned the darkest it has(…)

BULLIED by Kevin Litwin

October 6 Dear Diary: The vicious taunts from the kids at school have become too much, so I’m thinking about killing myself. When it will happen is my only question, but soon. I’ve always heard that kids can be mean, and high school kids are the meanest. I’m now in my junior year and the(…)

A PLACE I WENT by Kevin Litwin

Alone I sat at dusk that one December day, staring at dull gray walls inside a dilapidated library that was closed to everyone except me. My eyes scanned the secluded corner of the library where I sat uneasy, noticing a nearby black granite bookcase stacked with tattered classic novels. Suddenly, an eerie mist materialized from(…)

MURDER DAY by Kevin Litwin

Diana Iafrate felt emotions of both excitement and dread as she stared at her TV, waiting for the President to begin his address to the nation. “This is actually going to happen,” she whispered in anticipation of perhaps the most controversial speech in American history, on an issue that had been heatedly debated from coast(…)

EMPTY NET by Kevin Litwin

I would be hard pressed to think of anyone who lived a more stimulating life than my good friend, Michael Chow. “Ever hear that country song by Rodney Crowell called Earthbound?” Mike asked me at a Chicago Blackhawks hockey game we attended. “Yes, real good mandolin and guitar playing, right?” “Good lyrics, too,” Mike said.(…)

TIRED by Kevin Litwin

College student Nick Bruton celebrated a milestone birthday two days ago. He turned 21. “Happy birthday, buddy,” said long-time friend Tom Stout. “Nick, I bought you a six-pack, but now we don’t have to buy beer for you anymore,” said David Sly, another long-time friend. “Gimme one of those beers and let’s drink to you(…)

WOE IS WE by Kevin Litwin

I sat despondent at a remote bar in the middle of nowhere, a full drink in front of me. The unyielding weight of the world pressed hard upon my slumped shoulders. Suddenly, an unkempt loudmouth-of-a-man named Bacchus climbed onto an empty barstool beside me, settled in, rudely snatched my drink, and gulped it down. “W-What(…)

DAD SAD by Kevin Litwin

This week I’ve been as miserable as a dog in the rain, thinking about my deceased father. My dad passed away May 7 one year ago today, plus his birthday was May 4, so I’ve been sad much of this week. But I don’t want to bring anyone down, so I’m not going to write(…)

Kill Your Darlings

Stephen King says he writes 10 pages every day without fail, even on holidays. That tidbit is from his book On Writing, which provides insightful advice on the craft. I was thumbing through it this week and came upon a chapter where King discusses pace. I’ve always thought that fast-paced writing results in enjoyable reading,(…)

What the Faulkner?

Just exactly like father if father had known as much about it the night before I went out there as he did the day after I came back thinking mad impotent old man who realized at last that there must be some limit even to the capabilities of a demon for doing harm, who must(…)