Unshod–A book of Short Stories

Unshod twitter

“Short stories consume you faster. They’re connected to brevity. With the short story, you are up against mortality. I know how tough they are as a form, but they’re also a total joy.” – Ali Smith

A couple of months ago, I was invited to contribute a story to an anthology being put together by eight, talented women authors – Jan Morrill, Pamela Foster, Staci Troilo, Joan Hall, P.C. Zick, Michele Jones and Lorna Faith. I would be number nine. The theme was western stories. That stopped me in my tracks. What came to mind was the old west, gunfights and cowboys. I certainly had nothing along that line. Upon further inquiry, I discovered the organizers were looking for an out west theme – era open. West coast got me in the door and my short story Helplessness made the cut.

Here’s what the reader can look forward to in this book of short stories …

An anthology of traditional and contemporary western short stories where the characters are lain bare. Nine female authors pen western tales that you’ll want to retell around a campfire. These aren’t your granddaddy’s westerns. They’re the next generation’s, and they’re darn good.

  • Feel the pain of a young Japanese girl who comes home from an internment camp after World War II and learns it’s easier to go with the flow than to fight the current.
  • Struggle with an expectant mother on the cold winter prairie while she waits for her husband to come home from a hunting trip.
  • Journey with a young woman to the Four Corners as she tries to connect with her Navajo ancestors.
  • Try not to believe in the superstition of the blue moon—if one dies, three more will follow.
  • Know that one way or another, life will change inalterably that day.
  • Walk in the footsteps of an old cowpoke who thought he made the deal of a lifetime.
  • Suffer the torments of a young lady who wants desperately to marry but seems destined never to wed.
  • Walk the wild western paths and run from unimaginable dangers.
  • Choose between an unhappy life of luxury or a happy life of simplicity.

Unshod is free for your reading enjoyment through the following e-book vendors:

Amazon.com       Barnes & Noble      iTunes      Kobo      Inktera      Scribd  

I hope you’ll download this free book, enjoy the read and maybe even feel inclined to write a short review.

85. Helpless

(An original piece of art work drawn by Xiaonan Gao for my short story Helplessness when it appeared on StoryShack)

17 comments on “Unshod–A book of Short Stories

  1. Staci Troilo says:

    You’re right; these aren’t your granddaddy’s westerns. This is an interesting and compelling compilation of stories. I’m proud to be a part of this collection. I hope your readers download the anthology and enjoy it as much as I did.

  2. I agree with Staci, This is definitely not they typical western we are used to. I’ve enjoyed every one of them.

  3. Yep, short stories are almost a-forgotten art form (at least by the Big Five traditional publishers). This looks really interesting. Have no doubt, I’ll be uploading today.

    And, guess what. I’m publishing a collection of my short stories within the week!
    How’s about that for both a shameless plug, and a huge coincidence?

    Best of luck with the project Fran.

  4. Great artwork, too!

  5. P. C. Zick says:

    It’s such an honor to be a part of this anthology with other authors that I so admire. Thanks, Francis! And thanks to Staci for suggesting I join the group. I hadn’t written in the short form in years. It seems counter-intuitive, but I find shorts more difficult to write than a novel. So much to achieve in so few words, but it’s a fantastic lesson in the two things that I believe make the best stories: conciseness and clarity.

  6. Joan Hall says:

    Frances, it is an honor to be included in this group. And yes, they aren’t ordinary westerns, but each story is unique and I enjoyed reading all of them.

  7. Behind the Story says:

    Thanks for recommending this anthology.

  8. Roy McCarthy says:

    99p over here, outrageous 🙂 I’m presently reading De Maupassant’s short stories and looking forward to ‘Unshod’ also.

    • It should be free everywhere, Roy. I’m glad I’m not the only one who keeps getting these odd links – one time I go and FREE, the next time 99 cents. This has happened to me scads of times when people tell me a book is free. Generally, it really is when I check out further down the page and see it tracking on the free list. I hope you enjoy, Unshod, and get it for FREE!

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