Joel on October 5th, 2011
A few weeks ago I talked about my writer crush on Sloane Crosley. This week I was reminded of a past crush when I learned that flash fiction wonder Amelia Gray will have a story in the 39th edition of McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern (my favourite literary journal). I discovered Amelia and her tender collection of flash fiction, AM/PM, a couple years ago. In fact, I fell so hard for her that I wrote a series of Amelia-inspired stories in the Ninth Issue of This Great Society. My stories don’t do her justice, so I’ll let “16:PM” speak for itself:
Imagine if you could call up all your exes, and bring them together on a basketball court to play a pickup game. Maybe you could also call the girls you’ve ever loved, split them into the Girls You Had a Chance With and the Girls You Never Had a Chance With. Have them play shirts and skins. It won’t be for your honor, though you’ll be the only one watching. You will promise pizza and beer to the winners. The girls you never had a chance with will spit and glare, and the girls you still may have a chance with will snivel and look at you when they make jump shots.
The winners will take your wallet and invite the losers out. Everyone will forget to give you directions, and you’ll be left sitting in the gym parking lot.
You’ll go home and watch basketball movies. You’ll build a makeshift court from scrap lumber in your backyard, and leave messages on all of their answering machines, inviting them back. You’ll go out back every night and play H-O-R-S-E, waiting for them to return. You will wear your shirt when you are shirts and you will remove your shirt when you are skins.
That’s Amelia for you: funny, heartbreaking, and strangely sexy. She’s also pretty cute. Her first novel comes out next spring and already has an awesome cover. She lives in Austin, Texas, which is also kind of awesome.
For more Amelia, visit her site.