Originally from the SF Bay Area, Dylan Fisher is a graduate of Grinnell College. He resides, for the time being, in Duluth, MN. He is also the co-founder of First Class Lit a small online literary journal of handwritten micro-fiction that can fit on the back of a postcard.
June 21st was National Flash Fiction Day – the first one ever – and it's an exciting day for me and many others who specialise in this particular truncated form of prose. A few years ago, I published a book of flash fiction called Sawn-off Tales. But until only a little while before that, I hadn't heard of flash fiction or micro-fiction or sudden fiction or short-short stories. Then, on poet Ian McMillan's recommendation, I parcelled up a manuscript made up entirely of this stuff and sent it to Salt Publishing, a poetry specialist. Fifty-eight stories, each exactly 150 words long. The odds were entirely against me. No one wants to publish short stories, least of all by an unknown. And stories that took less time to read than to suppress a sneeze? I was chancing it, I knew.
I began to produce these ultra-short stories – sawn-off tales, as I call them – when I was commuting from Manchester to Liverpool: a 50-minute journey, often elongated by windscreen-wiper failure, fights on the train, or getting stuck behind the "stopper". But I had a book, as did most passengers. One day while ruminating on the number of train journeys it took