Yay, my third publishing credit of 2022! And this one is a bit longer – flash fiction, instead of micro fiction. If you’ve read my writing posts in the past, you know that most of what I write is inspired by events in my own life. This one is different in that (channeling my inner Joyce Carol Oates) it came from someone else’s life – Caitlin Nelson, a Sacred Heart college student who died in a pancake eating competition she was participating in to support a charity against child abuse. I read about her somewhere around the same time I watched the documentary about the woman who sued McDonalds for the coffee being too hot and read Jon Ronson’s So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed. With all these stories of public misperception swirling around in my head and thinking about what the people behind these stories must have felt to see themselves (or their loved ones) so ridiculed and misunderstood, this piece of flash fiction was born.
I submitted this story to a special call for stories by Michigan State University for the theme, Recovery to complement the Broad Art Museum’s 2022 lead exhibition of the same name. My story is appearing in three formats:
- Online. Be sure to enjoy some of the other works after you read mine.
- In the Michigan State University Short Édition machines, which print out stories on receipt-like paper. If you’re flying through the Capital Region Airport in Lansing, use the machine – you just might get my story.
- In a special print edition, which I should be receiving a copy of shortly.
I hope you enjoy it!