Cover Reveal: Little Paranoias

I’m happy and proud to share the final cover for my upcoming collection, Little Paranoias: Stories!

Little Paranoias. Art by Doug Puller
Art by Doug Puller.

The cover was illustrated by Doug Puller, who drew the covers for my past four releases. Once again, he’s done an amazing job. Look closely, and you’ll spot lines from the stories within!

Little Paranoias is my third short story collection. It will feature 20 short stories, flash fiction pieces, and poems.

The collection will be out October 22, 2019 — just in time for Halloween.

Thanks for reading!

New Flash Piece: “Petal, Page, Piel” [reblog]

I have a new piece on Spreading the Writer’s Word for the May edition of the flash picture prompt challenge! Check out “Petal, Page, Piel,” a dark tale about keeping the memory of loved ones in books. Thanks for reading!

Spreading the Writer's Word

The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!

Petal, Page, Piel
by Sonora Taylor

Petal, page, piel. Petal, page, piel. Hanna sang the words to herself as she glued the pages of her book together. This book would be her finest yet, one filled with her fondest memories of Seth.

Petal, page piel. Petal, page, piel. A vase of wilted roses sat near her materials. Each flower was a gift from Seth, each page a transcript of the loving words he’d said to her. A book of love notes that would hold his words forever, even though he stopped saying them to her long ago.

Hanna sighed a little as she capped her pen, then turned the page. The book crackled like creaking bones beneath skin. Hanna remembered how books of old were made from skin, both animal and human.

Skin. Such a blunt word, one that pierced the tongue like…

View original post 261 more words

New Flash Piece: “Salty Air” [reblog]

I have a new flash piece up on Spreading the Writer’s Word as part of the monthly picture prompt challenge. Check out my seaside horror tale, “Salty Air.” Thanks for reading!

Spreading the Writer's Word

The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!

Salty Air
by Sonora Taylor

Maggie didn’t know why there was a covered well in the marsh. It had fascinated her since she and her mother had moved in with her grandfather earlier that summer.
“That well holds secrets we’ll probably never know,” he said when Maggie drew him to it on an afternoon walk. “Maybe it holds the sea. Take a deep breath – can you smell the salty air?” He sniffed and puffed out his chest for effect.
Maggie copied him, but rather than sigh, she crinkled her nose and tried not to cough. All she could smell was dead fish.
A small rattle sounded near them. Maggie looked and saw the well’s lid tremble. Her eyes widened, and she turned to tell her grandfather. But he’d already continued down the beach. Maggie hurried to catch up with him.
***
Maggie’s mother…

View original post 848 more words

New Flash Piece: “Crust”

Today is Pi Day! In honor of the tastiest, most mathematical day, I wrote a flash piece. It’s about dessert pie, perfection, and baking. I hope you enjoy a little fusion of creepiness into your morning. Happy 3.14, everyone!

**

Crust

The crust was her least favorite part to make. Millie sighed as she ran her rolling pin over the stiff disk of dough. It needed to be cold for the butter to make it flaky, But it needed to be warmer in order to be rolled out. But not rolled out too thin, or else the crust would tear. And not too thick, or else it wouldn’t be a crust at all.

Millie hated making her own crust, but it was the way her mother liked it. Homemade, nothing from a can or freezer. “You can’t make everything easily,” her mother would say as she spit a piece of pie into her napkin, Millie’s latest effort publicly shown as a failure. “You’re spoiled, and that spoils your food.”

Millie would swallow back her tears — “Tears just show how much you think you deserve sympathy,” her mother would say, “and sympathy is earned” — and try again another week. She’d try and try, stirring the blueberries into a perfect compote, baking the apples in sugar until they became thick and soft, baking the pumpkin puree until it formed into a perfect, stable custard that didn’t fall or seep, just wiggle a little. Millie was excellent at filling. It was just the damn crust.

She thrust the rolling pin too hard as she rolled, and tore the crust. “Dammit!” she yelled as she pressed the dough back together. She felt it warm beneath her fingers, felt the butter melt inside the flour before it had a chance to do so in the oven. It’d be less flaky now. It wouldn’t be perfect. Millie threw the crust away, then turned to face her mother at the table.

“I won’t make it if it isn’t perfect!” she said as she blinked back tears. “I’ll start over. Is that good enough for you?”

Her mother didn’t reply. Her mother hadn’t said a word for weeks, not since she’d died at the table while finishing her dinner. Millie found her after placing another pie in the oven, sitting still, her mouth hanging open and her eyes vacant yet narrow.

She still sat there, her body crumbling like an oat topping, her skin wrinkled like an apple perfect for filling. Her eyes were dark and rotted, but Millie could still see the judgment within them. Eternally in disapproval, even though she couldn’t voice it.

Millie could hear it in her head, though — and until she didn’t hear it, she would try and try again to make the perfect pie. “I’ll make it better,” she said as she turned to the fridge to get some butter. “I’ll make it perfect.”

New Flash Fiction: “Where We Used to Play” [reblog]

I have a new flash piece up on Spreading the Writer’s Word for the Ladies of Horror Flash Picture Prompt Challenge. Check out “Where We Used to Play” at the link below! Thanks for reading.

Spreading the Writer's Word

The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!

Where We Used to Play
by Sonora Taylor

Do you remember where we used to play? I do. I think about it every day, that abandoned building that we never quite knew what to call. I said it was a hospital. You said it was a fort. We both agreed it was the perfect place to play.
I still see its walls, smell the earth and mold that I imagined was the smell of bones. I see the gaps that once were windows, light spilling in and turning to shadows the minute it entered the room. I remember seeing you in the light, surrounded by dust that danced in the air as you sketched in your notebook. I looked over your shoulder and saw a creepy, crazy scene of a spaceship, two aliens, and a girl who was all tied up. The aliens had…

View original post 454 more words

Two Stories in the Latest Issue of “The Sirens Call”

I’m happy and proud to announce that I have two new stories included in the latest issue of The Sirens Call! Issue 42: The Bitter End features short stories, flash fiction, poetry, and artwork around the one fate we’ll all meet eventually: death.

I have two short stories included: “Death is a Hunter” and “Dead End.” “Dead End” is an extra special treat, as it’s the first chapter of my upcoming novel, Without Condition. The novel will be out on February 12, 2019.

In the meantime, you can read “Dead End,” along with over 100 other creepy works, for free in the latest issue of The Sirens Call. Let me know what you think of the stories!

Happy New Year, everyone.