Gary writes “Grit Fiction,” because life isn’t always smooth. His stories are characterized by wit, wordplay, and plot twists that will leave the reader guessing.

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Dust to Dussst

DUST TO DUSSST – A murderer without conscience finds his just desserts out in the desert.  (This story appeared in Frontier Tales in April 2020) The hissing was maddening. And loud, as loud as the rattling. Rattlesnakes! Leroy Dust was surrounded by them, as he lay on his aching side in the endless dark.…

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JACKPOT “What do you want?” Not only are there countless ways to answer the question, there are many ways to interpret it. The guy at the front of the line, for instance. Wilted tie, short sleeve shirt, worn out tires and chassis. Long on overtime hours, on dreams, short on manners. He takes the question…

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For Whom The Books Toll

  FOR WHOM THE BOOKS TOLL   Where has everybody been? Safe at home in quarantine.   Streets are quiet, the future looks dim, The whole world is colored in shades of grim.   There sits a dark library, forced to close. Will it reopen? No one knows.   There was silence and emptiness week…

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M is for Winner

M IS FOR WINNER This isn’t just a story with humor, suspense, revenge, and cheating at board games. It’s also a story about a man who lost himself, and then got himself back. Boy, did he ever. That man was me. I had reasons for becoming a competitive Scrabble player. Professionals can make decent money,…

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  WHY I’M NOT A MIAMI DOLPHINS “FAN” ANYMORE Jim Kelly, that’s why. If you’ve got just a moment, we’ll back up a few decades, and then come back to that. I grew up in the part of Florida where the team from Tampa got the full-page color spread on the front of the sports…

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Tino’s Boys

TINO’S BOYS This story is gritty, and horrible, but it’s how it really happened. “Don’t you wish this night would last forever?” Tommy said, and I didn’t argue that it’s actually early morning, and not exactly the best time I’ve ever had, considering every moment’s been spent with him. Still, I grunted something that sounded…

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We Deserve a Break Today

WE DESERVE A BREAK TODAY Riceboro, Georgia, United States, not long ago. Fade in: Interior, Fast Food Restaurant. If this were a screenplay, I would have but a single, simple line. “What are you having?” Easy. Doesn’t need to be eloquent, or loud for that matter; the man is standing a few feet from me.…

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DIAMOND I hold her hand as I tell her the story. Our story. I always hold her hand, every time I tell it, and I’ve told it lots of times. Seventy.. Four. Seventy-four times, yes, ma’am, and this will be seventy-five. Seventy-five, Clara, can you believe it? Seventy-five years ago, I asked for your hand,…

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Two Of Hearts

TWO OF HEARTS Two things my father left me: Congenital heart defects, and an object lesson. Dad had spent his too-few years working in retail, dripping frustration, trying and failing to get ahead. Come evening, he’d slam the door, flop wearily into the easy chair, and tell me for the billionth time about the “Arrogant…

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