“Catching Out”: 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize-winning story

At long last my short story, Catching Out, which won the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize, has been published. You can read it in the 2018 edition of the The Thomas Wolfe Review or, more immediately, you can read it in full here:

CATCHING OUT

Screen Shot 2018-01-19 at 3.50.15 PMGranted, it wasn’t everyone who showed up to the gym in flannel and work boots, but Nevada Bloom could just as well have been carrying a sign to say she didn’t belong. Not there, and not anywhere, really. The night before she’d shaved the hair on the left side of her head clear down to the scalp. The prickle of stubble that snagged the threads of her stocking cap would grow back blond, a poor match for the feathery black strands still covering the right side of her head. But she was okay with the dichotomy.

Nevada shoved her hooded sweatshirt into a locker and quick-changed into ratty track shoes, mainly because work boots made too much noise on the treadmill. The soccer moms in their pink tops and grey knee pants stared at her as it was. She also kicked off her black jeans so she was just skinny, hairy legs in green running shorts. Denim chafed after a few minutes of jogging. It was a problem she’d have to address another day, though the point was not to have to jog for very long. Not if she did it right the first time. Continue reading

Short story award!

I’m so delighted to share that my short story, “Catching Out,” won the Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize. The final judge was Ron Rash — I actually entered the contest (and agonized over my story) in hopes that it would make it far enough along in the contest to be read by him. For that reason, this award means so much to me.

I’m also excited to share this story. It’s about a college registrar who fantasizes about riding the rails and was inspired, in part, by a woman I saw at the gym. It will be published in The Thomas Wolfe Review in late autumn.

Read the press release from the North Carolina Writers’ Network here.

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Photo by Michael Ranta from Vice