Last year when we opened up application submissions for the Kathy Fish Fellowship at SmokeLong Quarterly, we asked writers to send a brief essay about why they like flash fiction and what they hope to get out of the fellowship if they win. We got a lot of really great responses to this question, and many many metaphors for what flash is like. After reading hundreds of these essays, though, my brain started to fire in different ways—namely in that ‘twelve-year-old-boy-sense-of-humor’ kind of way.
We’ve done away with that question for this year’s round of applicants, replaced by a few other more targeted questions. But in homage to all the great responses we got last year, I present to you excerpts from a few essays with “flash fiction” replaced with “sex”:
- Sex provides pressure, a quick release of energy.
- I thrive in these tight spaces.
- Sex appeals to me because I can do so in one sitting, on a device like a laptop or smartphone, and because I often find that it makes me think about the nature of storytelling.
- I love that sex is palpable, always in bite sized pieces and how it never leaves me with a sense of wanting more or less.
- I like sex that is quick, visceral and unapologetic.
- My strongest sexual encounters have been the ones where I didn’t sit down with a plan and a goal.
- Sex is a bursting blossom from a poetic bud.
- The kick in the teeth lures me as much as the wonder I experience when I have sex.
- With sex, a single word can make or break the emotional tone overall.
- I’ve had an appetite for sex since I was fourteen.
- In the same way the straw wrapper winds up an accordion on the diner’s table or my wife touches each knob on the stove exactly once before leaving, I have sex.
- One of the best parts of sex is knowing I can enter someone’s reading space, tell them a humorous anecdote or swiftly punch them in the gut, and then leave them comforted or haunted long after I’ve left.
There you go! By the way, application submissions for the 2017 Kathy Fish Fellowship open on July 15, 2016. For more information on the prize and guidelines, check out this page.
*Photo by Juhan Sonin and used via Flickr Creative Commons.