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The Famous Man by Jo Mazelis

I wrote this story sometime between 1988 and 1990 when I was living in London and working for a number of magazines including City Limits. The subject therefore is very much influenced by the particular atmosphere of London in the late eighties. I sent the story to one competition and one magazine but was unsuccessful both times causing me to shelve it until now.

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‘Phil Says’ by John Freeman

I don’t know if you know, Phil says, they’re mixed,

the wards, and if you’re over sixty you’re in

with the geriatrics. It’s not attractive.

They find you a bed wherever they can.

The widow who lives in the cul-de-sac

in the village under the power lines

he says, was in the maternity unit.

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On Writing ‘For You Are Julia’

C. G. Menon I’d been living in Cambridge a few months before I took my first trip out to the fens. Living in the suburbs of the city itself had been a study in watching movement, in watching change. By contrast, the fens were a study in timelessness. There’s something terribly contemplative about a flat…

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Location, Authenticity, Purpose

Catherine McNamara On Writing ‘The Ukrainian Girl’ ‘The Ukrainian Girl’ was written as the third or fourth story in a series that has now become a collection. In this collection my aims have included the investigation of cultural displacement and adaptation, but my main and endless interest is the telling of stories. For me the…

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The Capital of Life

Giles Rees Ted Hughes said, ‘As an imaginative writer, my only capital is my own life.’ Though I hesitate (correctly) to mention myself next to a writer of Hughes’ stature, I know what he meant, I think. The narrator of my new story ‘Priest’ is a British guy living and working in Moscow (as I…

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Notes on Spitting Distance

Siân Melangell Dafydd  Spitting Distance started in Serbia. Far from my milltir sgwâr (square mile), before I knew that I was writing it or gathering details for anything specific, I was at a literary festival called Kikinda Short (July 2011). Let me tell you a bit about this place first. Kikinda: beautiful name to say…

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On flags

Katherine Stansfield Tonight, for the first time in many years, I’m missing the semi-finals of the Eurovision Song Contest. I will also miss the final itself when it’s broadcast in a few days’ time. The annual musical gathering of nations is a highlight of my year (in all seriousness – I love it), and whilst…

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Notes on ‘Herr Munch Goes To The Zoo’

Diana Powell I was supposed to be writing about a shooting. A man and woman, alone in a room; a gun. The gun is fired. ‘So much blood…’ The man was Edvard Munch, painter of ‘The Scream’, one of the world’s most iconic images; the woman, Tulla Larsen, his former lover. And the blood came…

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A Spring Evening with The Lonely Crowd

Do join us this Friday, May 20th for readings from Kate Hamer, Robert Minhinnick, Samantha Wynne-Rhydderch, Leila Segal, Bethany W. Pope, Zelda Chappel, Susie Wild, James Aust & Marie Gethins. Venue: Little Man Coffee Co., Cardiff. Time: 730pm. Free admission. Hosted by John Lavin.

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On Writing ‘One and Only Girl’

Laura Windley One and Only Girl began life as an exercise in a long-ago workshop, and then lurked for a some time inside a folder-within-a-folder somewhere on my laptop before I rediscovered the paragraph and finally expanded it into a full story. Maybe it’s just an excuse for procrastination on my part, but my stories,…

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Spring Readings: ‘The Sparkle Of The River Through The Trees’

Neil Campbell Neil Campbell reads his new short story, featured in Issue Four / Spring of The Lonely Crowd.     Neil Campbell is from Manchester, England. Twice included in Best British Short Stories (2012 & 2015). Three collections of short fiction, Broken Doll, Pictures from Hopper and Ekphrasis. Two poetry chapbooks, Birds and Bugsworth…