Issue 75, Winter 2024

Editor’s note

A.E. Decker
A.E. Decker

Hey-ho, my readers, and welcome to the start of a fresh new year! Amazing how quickly time spins its dial, isn’t it?

To begin our first issue of 2024, I have some exciting news to announce; namely that our 2024 short story competition is now open to submissions. If you’d like to see your work potentially published in a BWG anthology or here in the Roundtable, please refer to the contest section of the BWG Roundtable and read the guidelines carefully. The theme is holidays from Thanksgiving to New Year’s. Good luck! We’re eager to read your work.

Two of the stories featured in this very issue were entries in last year’s competition. I trust you still retain enough of the holiday spirit to enjoy “On the Road to Bethlehem” by Janice Rodgers and “The Holiday Princess Vs. the Big Chicken” by Pat Remick. Congratulations to Janice and Pat for penning such delightful tales.

Of course, not all the authors we publish enter their work via a competition. I am very pleased that the main part of the stories and poems featured in this issue were discovered through our rolling submission periods, open twice yearly. Our featured story by Marie Anderson, “Are You All There, Pretty Angel?,” details a mother’s fears, while our featured poem, “Midnight Skating,” by Sofia Jarski, exalts in a young girl’s daring. Poem “Jammed,” by John Grey,  and short stories “Good Things Happen in the Hood,” by Maureen Mancini Amaturo, and “The Day My Father Died,” by Alex Silberstein, round out our offerings. Plus, as always, we bring you Betty’s Tips to suggest help for writers, and Literary Learnings, where an editor discusses a work of literature dear to their hearts. This issue’s choice is dear to mine as well, as editor Dianna Sinovic has focused her attention on Martha Wells’ delightful Murderbot series.

Finally, but certainly not least, our celebrity interviewee this issue is Marlo Berliner, the most talented author of the bestselling The Ghost Chronicles series. Marlo will also act as our celebrity judge for our 2024 short story contestants. The BWG extends its gratitude to Marlo.

We hope you readers enjoyed your holiday season and are, like us, looking forward to the future and all the creativity it can offer.

The 2024 Short Story Award Submissions Window Is Now Open!

The submissions window is now open for our 2024 Short Story Award. The theme is holiday tales, and our judge is award-winning author Marlo Berliner. See all the details on our contest page.

Featured story

“You All There, Pretty Angel?” by Marie Anderson

“Exceptional social intelligence,” Ms. Nickels said. “Everyone loves Hannah.”

“What about her speech?” I asked the teacher. We sat in two preschool-sized chairs across from each other, our knees almost touching.

My daughter sometimes sounded like a broken record. She’d wrap her mouth around a few words and say them over and over. This morning she’d chanted, “Wellow nana wellow nana wellow nana,” until one of her brothers figured it out. “Banana!” he’d shouted. “Hanny wants a yellow bananny!”

Read more . . .

Featured poetry

“Midnight Skating” by Sofia Jarski

tori knows not to ice skate at night but indulges
if only for the glow on the surface
of moonlight kissing solid dreamscape. tori twists like she’s weightless, and the rest of the world bends to her will when she’s up there somewhere among stars and snowflakes and the sweet silence of the absence
of her thoughts

Read more . . .

Also in this issue

A story by Alex Silberstein

A story by Maureen Mancini Amaturo

A poem by John Grey

A story by Janice Rodgers

A story by Pat Remick

Interview with contest judge Marlo Berliner

Literary Learnings by Dianna Sinovic

Betty’s Tips and Mixed-Up Words

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