Writing short stories is an art form in and of itself, and the craft of writing flash fiction is not something as easy to pull off as it seems. In Flashy Fiction and Other Insane Tales 2, co-authors Jen Wylie and Sean Hayden clearly had a lot of fun. The book’s fifteen stories range from the humorous to the terrifying, all within neat and easy-to-digest short form.
The first six stories are based on common themes, a play on the he-said, she-said format. They explore three themes: fireflies, teddy bears, and zombies, all neatly wrapped up in quasi-horror-story form. I found the interplay here quite delightful, illustrating the concept that common themes do not have to lend themselves to similar stories in the least. These first six are among my favorites of the book’s fifteen tales for that very reason.
Pick up a copy of the book. Each story has a strong and unique narrative voice, and many of the stories read as if they’re written straight from the heart, which is either pleasing or quite disturbing, considering these are horror tales. With topics ranging from killer toys to pumpkin carving, from vampires to fairies to test subjects, there’s certainly something to satisfy your light horror-based needs, all done without the graphic gore and violence rampant in so many horror stories these days.
I recommend the book for those moments when you have that craving for feeling both a little thrilled and a little unsettled.