Happy Halloween!

Try as it might, 2020 cannot keep good things from happening, including Halloween. It’s the one holiday where you can’t keep the spirits down, much like Rush Week at [insert your alma mater], amirite?

This year I entered and won a Halloween short story contest! The prize was $100, and not to brag, but that will keep me in ramen and tap water for quite some time. You can read it here: https://www.everywritersresource.com/winner-bedtime-by-dansans/

And now, in the spirit of Halloween, I have a treat for you: Exclusive access to the unpublished works of an award-winning author! Below are the other six spooky stories I submitted to the contest, available only to the readers of my blog. Looks like we’re all winners tonight. Congratulations, and Happy Halloween!


The icy well water clung to her like an anchor but she wouldn’t give up, painstakingly searching the stones for a firm grip before pulling herself up a little more. When her fingers finally curled over the top I stomped on them hard. I love the splash she makes.


I never wanted a cat. I always thought that if I fell and broke my neck a dog would run for help, while a cat would wait for me to die and feast on my remains. Turns out I was wrong. Mittens didn’t wait for me to die.


It was beef stew night. My husband took one bite and started gagging. He collapsed on the floor, face turning red, twitching and gasping for air. I waved the peanut oil over him and said, “NOW who can’t take a joke?” Trust me, your honor, it was hilarious.


I study Tyler’s drawing. “What’s this?” I ask, pointing to a brown smear.

“Baby birds,” he replies, smiling.

I pause. “What happened?”

“They got smooshed.”

“Tyler…is this our backyard?”

He nods.

“Enough drawing,” I whisper. “Who wants ice cream?”

He squeals with delight, shooting chills up my spine.


This fly is driving me crazy. Circling my head, filling my ears with his annoying buzz. Somebody please shoo him away before they close the coffin.


Now he’s sitting on my eyeball and the flames from the incinerator are creeping in. Looks like we’re going to hell together.


Sometimes a person needs a push to find his fortune, Dad said when he kicked me out. Today, as I stand overlooking the majestic valley, I finally get it. The insurance money that is. My wife’s broken body lying on the rocks below is a beautiful sight.

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