flash fiction


"Your thoughts are all that remain…"

Gracie Cardel

Born and raised in Santiago, Chile, Gracie started writing "when I was probably 8 years old. I used to write everything as a poem, nothing fancy. I remember liking the sound of the words when they rhymed." According to Gracie, "Writing has always been, for me, my...easiest way of expression; my emotions and thoughts only make sense when I see them on a piece of paper."  As a child, Gracie thought about studying literature, but decided she wanted to pursue something more challenging for her. She notes:  "It’s funny how sometimes while we pursue some dreams, there are other dreams pursuing us."


(296 Words Without Title)

Look around. Do you see it? Look again--it is there. It is in the air; can you feel it? You don’t need to worry. You are here to stay.

I must say I don’t think you ever looked as confused as you look today. But this I can assure you: There are no more secrets, no more encryptions, and no more riddles.

There are many who live their lives behind others, following their steps every second, every minute, every day. There are some who intend to do better, but they’re blinded by their passion, and they forget to share. Then there are those few who never follow, never quit, and always remain themselves. For they believe in being different, being proud, and being free, no matter what anybody else might say.

I think you know to which group you belong; otherwise you would not be here today.

Your thoughts are all that remain, and by themselves they might no longer make sense. Everything you have learned will be reborn; everything you finally understood will soon belong to someone else, and all who you have come to be will again see the light of day. No memories to hold you back; they are fleeting and cease to exist. Your knowledge will continue on, growing from one life to the next. Is this the way you thought it would be?

Can you see it now? Can you see the void you have left behind? It is not your body; it is not your voice. It is for all to observe, but for few to understand. Legacy is more than that which people can touch; legacy is how you defined your own existence, legacy is the words you used to say: “Think Different”; become unique. You certainly did.


Kellan Rhude Reads - 1955-2011


"… she didn’t have much of a reason to speak to anyone."

Gabriel Gonzalez

Born into a family of five, the fraternal twin of his brother Roland, Gabriel has lived in Southern California all his life. Athletic, Gabriel played baseball in high school, but disliked what he views as “the competitive nature of the sport.” After high school graduation, Gabriel worked full-time for a few years, but felt that only school would help him to achieve his full potential. Currently, he works part-time and is a full-time college student who looks forward to his future.


(258 Words Without Title)

As the day begins to turn dark, an old woman sits outside on her porch, rocking back and forth in her chair. She sits in silence as she knits together a blanket and watches the sun slowly depart past the horizon. Although the woman is in a coma to the world, her mind is traveling at the speed of light. Her head is filled with disappointment from what she feels is like a life that is past. Her regrets and mistakes are now memories made, but still she sits and wonders why.

“Why would God be so cruel to take my first son without letting him see his first day?” she asks herself. The woman’s life has been a downward spiral since that terrible day she lost her son. The event had such an enormous impact on her life that she began to block out her husband, and as a result, he cheated on their marriage. After her husband left, she didn’t have much of a reason to speak to anyone. For years the old lady would walk around her town and ignore everyone around her. This woman’s life has been a series of unfortunate events. She knows there is no going back and that the only thing she can do now is to reflect. However, she has realized this so late in her life that there isn’t much life left for her to live. So now the woman sits and knits all day while watching the sky, waiting for the day she gets to see her son.


Kellan Rhude Reads - Waiting


"...you can practically see through me while looking at my curves."

Michael Jimenez


A Southern California native, Michael Jimenez divides his time between the Coachella Valley and Los Angeles.  Michael is a published writer with two pieces of work in the spring 2012 issue of West.  An Honors Program student, Michael has been developing a unique technique for writing within the context of traditionally structured English composition classes.  He hopes to present this process at the HTCC Student Research Conference at UC Irvine.  Michael attributes his success as a writer to his lifelong love of reading.  A husband and a father, Michael says his family is the most important facet of his busy life.  Michael's schooling comes at the perfect time because he can do homework next to his six-year-old son in hopes that his son will absorb some techniques and discipline at a young age.  Michael plans to continue to challenge himself scholastically through the most rigorous courses available.  He hopes to attend UCLA in pursuit of both an undergraduate degree as well as admittance to the UCLA School of Law. 

Other Works:

Bottoms Up

(294 Words Without Title)

Why send her a shot of bourbon? Off I go holding an ounce of booze. He flashes a smile, response; a smirk. Back and forth they exchange faces until he comes over. Two of our threesome are uncomfortable; I’m not one of them. I’ve been here before. I’m comfortable being the third wheel. Lips pucker, meet my curves, ’bye bourbon.

Good stuff.

“Whatever, so I’m talking to my colleague, and I’m saying, ‘Ad Misericordiam just won’t work.’ So let’s cut to the chase. I’m important around here. I probably looked past you before, but we‘re here now, so how about we cut the crap and just leave together?”

Emotionless, you can practically see through me while looking at my curves. Of the three of us, the girl doesn’t care to hide her emotion. The living billboard continues to vomit self-praise while fiddling with the keys to his Porsche. Someone should tell him his car doesn’t qualify as a status symbol in Los Angeles.

A few subtle hand gestures, more bourbon, and her lips are on my curves again. She’s getting bored. She didn’t plan for much action tonight, but this just wouldn’t do. There was only one way to shut this guy up. She adjusts her shirt, making sure to squeeze all the things that matter. For a split second the commercial stutters.  He had succeeded! She had to go home with him. Wait! She was putting me into her pants!!!! How was I getting involved with this?

When I could see again, the advertisement had run out of catch phrases. I looked at two-thirds of my threesome. As we stepped inside, she took me into her hands. “Pour me a shot!” she tells the man. “Let’s do this.”

The shot glass strikes again!


Kellan Rhude Reads - Bottoms Up

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