One: The Kiss / The Finger (The Collected Short Works of Brian Jackson Book 1)
My name is Steve Merriman and I’m eleven years old. I go to Darby Avenue Elementary School where I’m in the sixth grade. Today, March 11th, 1969, after school, I have to kiss a girl.
So begins the opening story in this short, two-part collection, “The Kiss”, which tells of Steve Merriman’s predicament that comes about due to a dodge ball accident in which he hits Maureen Keller in the face with a scorcher. To keep Maureen from “telling”, Steve agrees to kiss her behind the bungalows after school. “The Kiss” is a classic story of burgeoning young love set amid days gone by when everything seemed to be simpler and youth was awash in as sea of innocence.
“The Kiss” is followed by the only other story in this collection, “The Finger”, in which the narrator of the story wakes to find a severed finger lying on the coffee table of a shared apartment. But that’s only the start of a really bad day in which chaos ensues.
These two stories were written soon after I retired, while attending a creative writing class at my junior college.
I hope that you enjoy reading these stories as much as I enjoyed writing them. Keep your eye out for other installments in The Collected Short Works of Brian Jackson.
Two: Fading Photographs / Monster / The Night Watchman (The Collected Short Works of Brian Jackson Book 2)
In “Fading Photographs”, the secret life of a beloved aunt is almost discarded in haste, only to be rediscovered in the nick of time. Who is the dashing soldier in the faded photograph? Wasn’t Aunt Jen a spinster? These and other questions are answered in this tragic tale of the greatest love imaginable.
In “Monster”, we see child abuse through the eyes of the abuser as a nightmare from which you can never awake. And just when you thought it was over…
Finally, “The Night Watchman” shows us that when we need help the most, it often comes from the strangest sources. A quirky story of duty and friendship during the night shift at the old town cemetery.
This short collection of stories is the latest installment in The Collected Short Works of Brian Jackson. Keep your eye out for future additional installments in the series.
Three: Some Enchanted Evening / In Walked Trouble (The Collected Short Works of Brian Jackson Book 3)
In “Some Enchanted Evening”, I tell a story from my youth of getting drunk and dancing with a sweater draped lampstand to “Zoom” by the Commodores. Only in this version, the main character enters a fantasy world in which he must fight to defend his lover before tragedy strikes.
In the second and final story, “In Walked Trouble”, we’re whisked back to old-time Los Angeles to confront the ultimate evil in a case fit for none other than Hard Case himself. But then, that’s the trouble with being a private dick in La La Land.
This collection includes two stories I wrote after retiring while attending a creative writing class at my local community college. I hope you enjoy the stories as much as I enjoyed writing them.
Keep your eye out for future installments in The Collected Short Works of Brian Jackson, and in the meantime, watch your back and don’t panic.