Inside the Issue: Tia Clark Reads from “Nutcracker”


Tia Clark’s story, “Nutcracker,” opens our current issue. Set in a Modell’s Sporting Goods store in one of New York City’s shabbier suburbs, the story is told in the sharp, funny, and frequently affecting voice of a teenaged girl trying to define herself at the edge of a brave new world of independence and sexuality. […]

Online Fiction Interview: Amber Sparks


There are at least as many ways to title a story as there are to write one. An author might conjure up a title that points to a story’s symbolic weight (“A Perfect Day for Bananafish,” say) while another might employ a seemingly benign phrase (“Family Furnishings”) only to have it churn and reverberate in the mind of a reader throughout the reading experience. […]

Until It Isn’t: An Interview with Antonya Nelson


Antonya Nelson’s eleventh book, Funny Once, was published this past May by Bloomsbury. The collection includes the story “Winter in Yalta,” which appears in the most recent issue of American Short Fiction. Over a slew of emails, she took some time to talk to me, among other things, about the origins of her love of reading, obsessive fascinations, and the difference between therapy and writing fiction. […]

Online Fiction Interview: Alison McCabe

Alison McCabe

Alison McCabe’s “Heirloom” deftly trades in contrasts. Over the course of  a few hundred words, the diction evolves from the colloquial to the lyrical, and the strangest of details—a cat toy mistaken for a rodent, a son-in-law’s name long forgotten—are also the story’s most humorous. We recently emailed McCabe to ask about her work […]

Online Fiction Interview: Kim Addonizio

Kim Addonizio author photo by Lin Tan_1000SQ

Earlier this month, we brought you Kim Addonizio’s “The Other Woman,” a piece that depicts three people in a tight, tense orbit. Addonizio is a poet, essayist, and fiction writer, and we were curious to ask her about working across so many different forms, and about what leads her to write in one over another. […]

Imaginary Enemies

Iowa state flag: "Our Liberties We Prize and Our Rights We Will Maintain"

Elbow and I ducked out of our nephew’s birthday party and drove to Walmart to check on ammo prices. I didn’t care about ammo prices. I was along for the ride. Elbow was married to my sister and just out of the Marine Corps. His hair was still high and tight, and he strutted around with […]

ASF Reads