I took a fiction class as an elective during the final year of my undergraduate studies in engineering, so it was a completely different environment for me, and I loved it. At the time I was writing quite a bit on my own. Other aspects of my life held my attention in the years that followed, so I didn’t write much after graduating. Mostly I just lacked confidence to pursue such a course. Around 2013 I began writing again, and in 2016 I gave myself the gift of greater commitment to the task, and to the craft. I’ve since written about twelve stories since then. The process of submitting them for publication to literary magazines has been eye-opening, and I’ve had a few tidbits of success that have been really encouraging.

Near Misses

My story Camping” received Honorable Mention in the New Letters Magazine 2016 Fiction Contest, and “A Good Man” was a finalist in the 2017 Fiction Contest at Salamander Magazine.


“Our People” was published in 2016 by the Route 7 Review.

“On a Night in Shelby County” was published in 2017 by Solstice, and is on-line here.

“Candelaria” was published in 2019 by the New Limestone Review, and is on-line here.

“Stella’s Radio” was published in 2019 by Delay Fiction, and is on-line here.

“Restitution” was published in 2019 by the Tahoma Literary Review. An audio version is on-line here. (Track 8, I believe.)

“Power” was published in 2020 by the Ginosko Literary Journal, and is on-line here. There is also an audio recording available here that I made.

Older Works

These are some older pieces that are more speculative in nature than the ones above.

“Far Away” (December 26, 2014 | approx. 8,400 words)

“The last ember of my mother danced out of existence when I was eight, and migrated like a massless, phantom firefly across the breach between us, flitting like an idea through the void to reappear inside of me.  She fell into me in that instant like a fresh, warm batch of gravity whose point of origin was my own, like a strange and empty consequence I couldn’t shake, whose cause was everywhere I looked.  I had watched throughout the previous months like a girl at a museum peering through a pane of soundproof glass, helpless, imagining the spell would somehow break.”  (Read more –>)

“Ecstatic Theater” (December 26, 2014 | approx. 7,000 words)

“There is a theater downtown, an ancient brick building nestled in a grove of glass towers, and outside there is a line of souls seeking entrance.  The wall of forward-facing persons is strung out down the avenue, increasingly anxious with distance from the front, all awaiting their turn to buy their ticket— hopefully— for tonight’s show.  It is clear to me that there are more persons than tickets.  It is clear that some of us will be denied, our hunger left unsatiated, perhaps intensified into a crippling agony…”  (Read more –>)

“Convergence” (Dec. 31, 2013 | approx. 12,000 words)

“Even though you know the track of a whale is a smooth, undulating, uninterrupted course, you can only actually partake of discontinuous sightings- brief moments in which your thoughts saturate into white be-nothings as if they’ve been over-exposed, while you behold in grinning delight the spectacle of a humpback breeching the surface of the sea.  You infer from these bouts of revelation…”  (Read More –>)

“Stone Bearer” (Some Time in 1999 | approx. 4,000 words)

“The man came-to without the slightest twitch, like stillness filling an old glass jar in a forgotten corner of the barn, being careful not to spill.  The familiar sounds of night washed up from of the fields and across the porch on which he sat, alone, in his favorite wooden chair.  He held his eyes closed for a moment, his hands motionless on the familiar armrests, as he listened to the faint wheeze of his breathing mix in with the cool hum of hidden insects.  He sensed the full and throbbing presence of night which had arrived in his brief hiatus, and he knew without inspection it had descended with the sun’s brilliant sinking like a peaceful dew, drifting in to seep first around the stalks of growing plants before cloaking the land in something more viscous and sticky than daylight.”  (Read More –>)


  1. I am excited that i have a bit of space during these holiday days to absorb and indulge in your expansion. “Convergence” is open and waiting for my attention! (I can so clearly seeing you taking a double scoop out of the river of ‘ideas’ when making your way to the Michael incarnation:) Joy to you in the venture! Marga

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Okay, I’m going to sound like fan girl 🙂 But wow, what a story. Took me a while and I am tempted to cut and paste here all the amazing moments worded so wonderfully, but I will refrain…even the simplest of moments are full of brilliant metaphors and analogies – your precision with language is deeply affecting on such an interior truth level – unarticulated moments we all share as humans are here in your playing out through Shasta. Love this beyond my ability to convey, the deep, metaphysical plot, the characters, the longing, the real and supernatural existing so organically side by side, as they really do! Wonderful! I am slowly savoring my first fiction read in years, The Illusion of Separateness, which is similar to me in the interior and metaphysical truth-telling of the human experience, yet a through a sparse wording compared to your explicit complexity. What a gift – this story!

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Illusion of Separateness doesn’t sound like fiction. 🙂 I looked it up and it looks like one I should put on the list. I tend to read fiction in starts and fits- after a drought, I’ll read two or three novels back to back.

      I really appreciate your reading and commenting. I will join you in expressing an inability to fully convey my sentiments. This has to be the best possible outcome for one who is engaged in any creative endeavor- to express it, and then to experience it being received and experienced by another.

      I offer my heartfelt thanks, indeed.


      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve started the first few pages of Convergence, and I must say, I’m intrigued and quite mesmerized. I’m not able to comment much more of it at this point…since I’m only on page 10…

    Thank you for the window into your mind.

    I’m supposed to be cleaning my art studio, so I have to get back to it.

    I hope to read more of your story later tonight.


    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: New Piece of Fiction | Embracing Forever

  5. ~meredith says

    Good on you for posting a section from your novel! I read so slowly, lately, this is bookmarked as ‘weekend read,’ but it’s… well, INTRIGUING, as Casey wrote..

    (I am so redundant when trying to comment after reading better comments. words…)

    p.s. I tricked my way through writing a ‘first book.’ I called it “Yoga for a Year,” publishing each section one piece at a time… and felt accomplished. 🙂 Writers always find a way to write, and the efforts always matter.

    Greetings, and congratulations!


    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the inspiration and encouragement, Meredith, and for the camaraderie that somehow completes, or consummates, the creative act. Posting snippets here is one of those tricks… aiding in generation and sustenance of creative inertia through the feeling something is happening. Ha!

      “Writers always find a way to write, and the efforts always matter.” So true.


      Liked by 1 person

      • ~meredith says

        It’s wonderful, you’re right! Writing, or composing (anything) is such a solitary process, and it’s just good food for the soul to have a platform like this for gathering around words, photos, and the like. I know I’m a better writer for having the interaction… and inspiration.

        Have a good day!


        Liked by 1 person

            • Ha! I was thinking about your writing about Stewart and Minerva and those characters. But you know, I know how hard it can be to keep a specific creative act in gear over time, so you know… no pressure from your fans or anything. I saw you posted something in the last day or so along these lines I need to read!


              Liked by 1 person

  6. Michael,
    I really enjoyed the chapter from Bethlehem’s Goggles. (I years ago tutored a young Ethiopian woman named Bethlehem. Makes me smile to remember her.) The lost and desperate nights on the beach were so touching and familiar, and the remembering of the dream experiences with Bethlehem’s working through the narrator seemed a fuzzy memory – as if I had shared such a similar something at some point of a life – the fogging piecing together after the fact of some other dimensional surgery on the soul – which is most unlike medical surgery in this plane and very might well involve the reading of a book, a candle lighting, a cradling, a soul entering you from within – such dissolving boundaries your words have the power to help us remember! thank you for the sharing! Great, concentrated efforting you make seem easy!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you mucho grande for your reading and sharing your thoughts, Marga. Your thoughts leave me no choice but to be encouraged.

      You’re description of the surgery of the soul is great. My experience is sometimes that the “heat of the moment” makes it hard to even glimpse the depth of any individual experience, as if I’ve read the jacket of War and Peace and think I’ve touched the heart of the experience. Then there are these snatches of time, indeterminate moments, maybe days later or maybe years later, when the full reality and depth of a moment of transformation becomes visible. Other times it seems we’re acutely aware of these surgeries, and they are quiet and beautiful, strong inner knowings, or they are the dismantling of perceptions and the world around us takes on the pallor of a circus gone off the rails.

      I hadn’t thought of Bethlehem as a woman’s name, but it seems a beautiful one in hindsight. Glad to have sparked memories on a couple of planes!


      Liked by 1 person

  7. I had to read Convergence in one sitting. I’ll be back to check out Bethlehem’s Goggles too. What a beautiful read; thank you! Many parts of it hit close to home and I had to stop to cry and take notes too. The only reason I share those tidbits is because an author friend of mine says that those are high compliments and he loves it when people are so moved by his work. I hope you take them as such since I’m at a lack of words for anything else.
    Much love,

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Sarah, for taking the time to read this and share your reactions. They are indeed much appreciated. While it is on the one hand a joy to realize one’s work is received and felt, there is a way in which knowing you have touched another person creates a kind of circle. It’s more than a pat on the back. Writing is a little mysterious– you don’t always know where ideas and symbols come from, and when they are received with a reaction like you have shared here, you are blessed with the opportunity to witness that what has flowed through is real, important, and meaningful. In a way, it gives depth to the whole experience, and reinforces the validity of the process.

      Thank you–

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Pingback: A Few Stories By the Fire | Embracing Forever

  9. Hello,

    I have randomly but not so randomly found myself reading Far Away this evening. Thank you for sharing. I was really moved and opened by this story. Touched my heart. I have a few people in my life that feel angelic presence when they find a coin…I personally recieve communication from ‘far away’ in other ways, but loved how you captured this beautiful moment/exchange.

    Inspiring. Beautifully crafted story from the heart.


    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Shailie,

      Thank you, first off, for taking the time to read that story, and for your feedback as well. I really appreciate both. That’s interesting what you say about people in your life feeling angelic presence from found coins. My own mother tells a story about a stranger that gave her a coin when she was a girl, and how it made all the difference. However that communication comes, it is always breathtaking…


      Liked by 2 people

  10. Stopped by to read some today Michael and chose ‘Far Away’. A solemn and heartwarming silence is what I sat with for a while after I finished reading with tears running down my eyes. You have a very beautiful gift of being able to touch the heart with the expressions you choose in your writing. Very creative and more than that beautiful, enchanting, touching and heart healing. I sat longer with some parts of the story, sidestepping into my own reverie that was heavy with ‘life after life’ kind of thoughts. On a lighter note, I smiled as the mind wondered what it would take to be neighbors with ‘Mr.Bufflesquint’ on Farlo. Thanks for a lovely story, the heart needed this today I feel.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi PR, so glad this one touched you, and I am grateful you have taken the time to share your reactions here with me. I hope your heart found some nourishment, for the gift of your response has nourished mine. I am touched by your kind words.

      Much Love

      Liked by 2 people

  11. Dear Michael,

    I share in marga t’s sentiments on the powerful effects of each of these delightful pieces, which I read over the course of a few months. “Ecstatic Theater” was especially grounding for me this Spring in that my takeaway was “to love and support myself”. The anger, disappointment, and separation illustrated there translated to 2-way projections or reflections. For me, message was to love and support one’s Self and to recognize triggers that indicate when we are falling into a rut, (a big hairy routine buried in our legacy OS) and to insert a jumping routine to stay out of the buggy code, so to speak. To ask oneself, “What is the most loving thing to think and do in this situation? and to remember to practice being gentle and patient with ourselves.

    “May all beings everywhere be happy and free, and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life contribute in some way to that happiness and to that freedom.” Your words are gifts, effecting this sort of joy and freedom. Thank you.

    Love and Light,

    Liked by 2 people

    • Lanessa,

      Thank you so much for your comments here… I love the software analogies here and am thinking of you whistling while you work, leveraging every last bit of experience into the path home. I and am reminded how everything we do has the possibility of contributing to our walking along that route to freedom…

      The story you picked definitely had the sensation to it that you describe while I was thinking of writing it– the idea of acknowledging that our experiences are these two-way projections, and how easy it is to miss this in the moment. I was also trying to touch upon the fact that there’s no in or out when it comes to the experience of love in our lives. Even when we think we’re outside of it, we’re in the middle of it…!

      Hope the summer is treating you and the boys well!
      Much Love

      Liked by 1 person

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