300 short stories:: story 234

story: “Aquacero”

author: Patricia Engel

year: 2019

where: Dubai at Big Gate’s, then at home

note: This story was selected for the 2019 O. Henry Prize collection (first appeared in the Kenyon Review).

a line: “’Survival requires different things of different people.’ I don’t know where in me this came from. It was something I hadn’t even begun to understand for myself.”

theme(s): survival; abduction; abuse; disappearing


100 days 100 short stories:: story sixteen

story: The Happiest Girl in the Whole USA 

author: Manuel Muñoz

year: 2015

where: on the High Line, not the New York one

note: thinking about the long bus ride I had to take from Phoenix to San Bernadino

a line: “She’s someone who might not have anything in her purse except the folded-up map, who might not know how much money to take on a trip like this.”