Thursday, December 15, 2011

Connotations Press Publishes "Payback" and "We Sustain"

Many thanks to Meg Tuite at Connotations Press for publishing these two pieces. Well done to my friends, Gill Hoffs and Jack Swenson also published here!

by MaryAnne Kolton
            She’d tried hard not to scream when he’d put his cigar out on the exact spot on her upper left arm where her childhood smallpox vaccine scar had faded to a pale, carrot-slice shaped mark.  But when she heard somebody shrieking like the victim in a slasher film, she figured it must be her.  She knew not to fight him.
He’d said she was like a daughter to him.  She’d known better.  Where his money was concerned, she was just another flunky.  She’d skimmed miniscule amounts over the years, calling it her retirement fund, thinking he’d never notice.  Almost twenty years of delivering cash to be laundered.  Easier when she was still young, harrowing the last ten years.  All those flights back and forth.  Monaco, the Caymans, Bermuda and more recently Zug, population twenty-six thousand, in the Swiss Alps.  Zug, for Christ’s sake.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Andrew Stancek Challenges MaryAnne to an Interview!

Andrew Stancek grew up in Bratislava, then Czechoslovakia, now Slovakia. As a teenager he saw tanks rolling through the streets of his hometown. That encounter, that betrayal led to many stories much later. Those then led to others and a vocation was born.
He now writes, translates and dreams in southwestern Ontario. Recent work has appeared in Bartleby SnopesApollo’s Lyre52/250 A Year of Flash and Istanbul Literary ReviewHis novel and interconnected story collection are both nearing completion.

AS  First question.  In Lorrie Moore's story Real Estate; Noel breaks into people's homes and asks them at gunpoint to sing him one song, any song, by heart.  What would your song be?  And can you tell us why that song is so memorable and meaningful to you?

Friday, December 2, 2011

Anya's Frustrating Friday Morning at the Reeza Cheney Surgery Center

Thank you Jim and Katie at The Legendary!

Anya's Frustrating Friday Morning at the Reeza Cheney Surgery Center
by MaryAnne Kolton

She’s cold.  Shivering cold. 
“Excuse me,” she says.
There are at least ten women inside a big circular work area directly across from her cubicle.  No one responds.
“Excuse me please,” Anya repeats, louder this time. 
There’s a lot of noise out there.  Laughing, jangling bits of singing, more laughing.  She can’t get off the gurney, wired as she is to a pole with two bags of something dripping through tubes into the vein on the back of her left hand.
“Hello!”  She hollers.  “Can anybody over there hear me?”


Thanks again to the ever-entertaining editices Liz & Laura at The Toucan

The Love Tap
by MaryAnne Kolton

As she took the marble-sized ball of green Play-Doh from the plastic sandwich bag and rolled it into a soft cone shape, she muttered, “What kind of crazy woman puts Play-Doh in her ears every night.”

Lena reached over her head with her right hand, pulled the top of her left ear out, thereby increasing the possibility of a good seal.  She positioned the cone into her ear canal and pressed down hard with her index finger.  A woman whose husband  makes more noise than a one man band, all night, every night, that’s who, Lena thought, as she pushed another green cone into her right ear.
She’d met Davis online.  After three months of increasingly affectionate correspondence, they had arranged to meet.  Davis, a writer, had been living in the Arizona desert for several years and had grown to hate leathered skin, Armani slip dresses and turquoise.  He was planning to visit his daughter in Texas and then head east to look for a spot with an ocean breeze in which to write.  They would meet in between the daughter and the ocean.

Davis rang the bell at her front door on a Friday afternoon, intending to stay three days.  Lena opened the door and they fell in love.  Two weeks after he appeared, he returned to the southwest to collect his belongings, and was back in Ohio in ten days.  At fifty-something, they did not feel the need to wait any prerequisite time to satisfy some convention or another.  They married four days after his homecoming.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


Many thanks to Liz & Laura, Editrices Extraordinaire, at The Toucan

Sex With Strangers, MaryAnne Kolton

she had sex with strangers
because of her madness
because of their sadness
because of the pain it caused her

she had sex with strangers
who slapped her a little and hurt her a lot
who showed her a good time and with some
who had nothing worth knowing to say

Friday, November 25, 2011

the SLUT is here!

SLUT ... Pure Slush's first print anthology is HERE!
Yes, you can order your very own SLUT and have it purring well in time for Christmas.  What a thrill to find a SLUT under the tree come Christmas morning!
Includes my story "Duplicity"  - slutty in a very sophisticated, moralistic way. . . of course.
Duplicity by MaryAnne Kolton
   He held the wine glass stem with thumb and forefinger, lifted slightly, as if eyeing the clarity and color.  He was, in fact, looking through the wine at his enchanting, much younger wife seated opposite him in the restaurant.  He enjoyed seeing her like this.  Blurred, distorted, unfamiliar.  Non-specific.  The only way he would permit himself to view her at this point. 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Mar's Pumpkin Cheesecake

Mar’s Pumpkin Cheesecake

*Cheesecake should be cooled completely on rack, wrapped with plastic wrap and refrigerated for at least five hours, so plan accordingly.  Best baked day before.
*Eggs and cream cheese should be at room temp


1½ rough ground gingersnap cookies
1½ rough ground, toasted chopped pecans or hazelnuts
¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted. Add more melted butter if dry.


4 eight oz. pkgs. Philadelphia brand cream cheese, room temp.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

a more or less uneventful flight

Published today at Orion headless

I have just complained  to a clerk at the airport newsstand that if Rolling Stone gets any smaller it will be the size of a mass-market paperback.  She gives me a wide-eyed, blank look like she hasn’t a clue what I’m talking about.  A simple “I’m sorry.” would have been nice.  For many years now, on the way to my boarding gate at the airport, I stop and buy the latest edition of W and Rolling Stone, two magazines I read only on airplanes.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Lost Children Charity Anthology including We Sustain by MaryAnne Kolton

Lost Children Charity Anthology is the brainchild of Fiona (McDroll) Johnston, Thomas Pluck and Ron Earl Phillips.
It came about after a challenge was put out by Fiona on Friday Flash Fiction.  She offered to donate £5 for every entry towards   Scotland's Children 1st

Thomas then threw his hat into the ring and matched the donation, with his money going to PROTECT in the USA.  All in all there were over 45 stories.

Then came the idea of using 30 of the best stories and putting them into this anthology.  The great thing about this is that the money earned from the ebook goes to the above charities.

Many thanks to Fiona, Thomas, Ron and all the contributors.  Also, special thanks to Danielle Tunstall for donating the cover photo, and Thomas' better half, Sarah, for designing the book cover.

Remember, you're donating to 2 great charities and getting to read some incredible stories that will stay with you long after
you read them

 We Sustain
by MaryAnne Kolton

Tangled, dark hair, long linen skirt, white shirt and oversized sunglasses, she stood out in the crush of starving people.  Another international celebrity bringing an entourage of paparazzi, into the blistering desert sun.  Hoping to get the rest of the world to pay attention, however scant, to the scenes of death in Somalia.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Five Questions: An interview with Leah Hager Cohen

MAK   Leah, thanks so much for giving me the opportunity to talk to you about your work and your new book, The Grief of Others.  Normally, I tend to binge read.  Finish one book and immediately start another.  However, after reading this one and learning to love these people, I had to stop for a few days and reflect on the depth and beauty I found here.  This is most definitely a story of soul scourging sorrow and its effects on every character.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Give Up?

Many thanks to Dan at Larks Fiction Journal for publishing the flash fiction piece Give Up?

Give Up?
by MaryAnne Kolton

When he burst through the door he yelled, “Police!  Police with a warrant!  Everybody down on the floor!”
His son looked up, rolled his eyes and returned to his study of Middle Eastern social customs. 
His daughter, Jenna, said, “Mom, Dad’s home.”
From the kitchen, Joanie said, “Okay, dinner’s on the table.”

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Legendary posted this story in the September issue of its Fiction Section.  Many thanks to the editors!


by MaryAnne Kolton

           Edwin spotted them the moment he got off the train.  They were all lined up on the platform like show dogs vying for Best of Breed.   
Mama, in an electric blue, polyester pantsuit, her swollen feet in too tight shoes danced  nervous baby steps of anticipation.  Her white knuckled hands twisted themselves into knots.  Sweat rolled down her face from her dyed black hair held back in a ponytail by a glittering red scrunchy.
Marlin, shorter and heavier than he remembered him.  His oldest brother was and always would be a demented bully.  His belly hung over the belt of his work pants and that untrimmed beard wasn’t doing him any favors.  Did he really just spit a big stream of chew on the platform?  Almost hit the bejeweled flip-flops of the heavyset blonde with the split lip and thighs like smoked Virginia Hams encased in jean shorts.  Had to be Marlin’s wife.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Neon published at The Toucan

NEON, one of my very first efforts, since the brilliant and talented James Lloyd Davis encouraged me to begin writing again, appears in both the online and print edition of the The Toucan's lucky #13 edition.  Liz and Laura, two very wonderful, wacky women are so much fun to work with!
                            by MaryAnne Kolton

as she goes about she has no idea of the violet-blue neon sign
flashing on her forehead – needy – off – needy –off
she believes men are attracted to her for herself
she does not understand that the sign
translated into man-speak
flashes – vulnerable – off –vulnerable – off
many mistakes are made
and she is puzzled by the fact that all these associations
end badly