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Once upon a time I wrote novels.
They took forever to write and they took forever to read.
It was exhausting. I had a story idea and I turned it into an 80,000 word novel.
How can one do that? It was just a simple story idea!

Now I have a story idea and I turn it into a 1000 word short story
... or maybe 2000 words or maybe even a 100 words.

The story is told, is doesn't take a lot of time and if it was fun to read,
then one can go on to another short story ... the same day.

Okay, so I wrote several dozen short stories and here they are.
I enjoyed writing every one ... much more than writing the novels.

Peter J. Ponzo
written sometime in the year 2014 ...
but I keep adding if I'm sufficiently enthusiastic.

Freakenstein:
Mr. and Mrs.
2002 words (approx.)

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When Mad Scientist left the laboratory, he was alone.

Mad Scientist had laughed and called him Freakenstein.

He needed a mate.

Heidi's Robot
3675 words (approx.)

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Michael Landry is in love with his neighbor, Heidi...who ignores him.

Michael is convinced that, if Heidi only knew him better, she would like him.

He arranges to have a robot, built as an image of himself, delivered to Heidi as a prize.

The robot is so affectionate, kind and considerate, that Heidi falls in love with Michael's clone.

That leaves the road open for Michael to replace the robot.

Frog
391 words (approx.)

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Elmera is a princess, in a tower, waiting for the frog prince.

The spell was clear:

She must stay in the tower until the frog appeared.

When the frog placed a kiss upon her cheek, a handsome prince would appear.

Yet the frog could not reach the tower, so Elmera descended to the moat to embrace the frog.

The frog did, indeed, place a kiss upon her cheek and the two were betrothed ... sort of.

Witch
893 words (approx.)

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Hagatha was an ugly witch. Each day she asked:

"Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of them all?"

She was not. Glow Bright was.

The old witch would change that.

Light Speed
2700 words (approx.)

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Gerry Hilfer is the test pilot for the BNS01, a needle-shaped craft designed to fly at near light speed.

There are various theories concerning the effects of approaching Einstein's light-speed barrier.

Some radical theories even suggest that light speed is not a barrier, but an opening.

Gerry is about to discover the truth of that theory.

Deja Vu
2174 words (approx.)

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The four nibble sandwiches on poker night and discuss the impossibility of time travel.

Someone suggests that episodes of deja vu are really images from the future, not the past.

In reality, aliens control all Earthly deja vu episodes. The aliens attempt to provide images from the future.

The result is unexpected!

Alien aliens
2888 words (approx.)

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They are discussing the existence, or nonexistence, of non-standard aliens.

Someone says that aliens may live in the dark matter that pervades interstellar space.

John Richmond is a research scientist in charge of a huge particle accelerator.

He has been working on 'congealing' dark matter.

That's when he encounters alien aliens.

the Reluctant Vampire
2359 words (approx.)

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He became a vampire during a sexual encounter with a beautiful woman...a vampire.

Drinking blood was an abhorrent activity which he avoided.

But sex and strenuous exercise are catalysts for the urge.

In an attempt to escape the obscene impulse, he decides to move to a remote corner of the world.

He will soon discover other catalysts.

Overlord
2968 words (approx.)

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A world of Plebes and Overlords.

Are the Plebes being manipulated?

One Plebe thinks so ... and intends to prove it at the risk of losing his life.

His biggest problem? Find the Overlords.

He'll be shocked by what he finds!

Parallels
3784 words (approx.)

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Trans World Holidays offers vacations in any one of seventeen parallel worlds.

Many call TWH the Tame Worm Hole, yet the holidays are popular...and exciting.

Tom and Henry will discover just how exciting.

Good Deeds
2315 words (approx.)

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He was only ten when he found the book, beneath a maple tree, wrapped in oilcloth.

He had opened the book and found only blank pages except for the title: Good Deeds.

He had taken it home, writing his name under the title.

For seventy years he entered his good deeds.

When he married, his wife joined in this activity.

When weeks went by without an entry, they felt guilt.

Curios
2765 words (approx.)

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Illia had driven by the old curios shop for years. Now it was for sale...so she bought it.

She had always been intrigued by the artifacts imported from Chuna.

When she browsed the contents, it was the jade skull that caught her eye.

She did not know of its extraordinary properties...

Sgnir
100 words (approx.)

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Mas intends to damage the blue planet.

Yllas, his companion, convinces him to alter his plans.

Oceanus
629 words (approx.)

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Tlaloc was angry.

The sea creatues that provided nourishment for Oceanus had left.

Yet, there was another source of protein.

Dreams
1641 words (approx.)

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Vince is a street bum.

He dreams of escaping winter and living on some Caribbean island.

One day he sneaks on to a cruise ship and eventually finds his exotic island paradise.

It is not what he expected.

Romance
2720 words (approx.)

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Harold fell in love with Sally from the moment he first set eyes on her.

She was delightful, full of laughter, sometimes astonishing, always surprising.

When they confided in each other, the challenge to their relationship began.

Robbery
1148 words (approx.)

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Harry n me decides we's gonna change our life style.

We'll rob us a bank. Harry's not so swift, but I got it all figured out.

Maggie don't know nothin ... but things don't go right.

Go West
2037 words (approx.)

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Clifford Eldridge Urquart is a wealthy Toronto banker who lacks any stimulating experiences.

He read the pamphlet issued by the Canadian Government: The Last Best West.

It was a marketing ploy to encourage Canadians to move West.

He decides to visit the Canadian West and arrives in the town of Pile of Bones, in 1896.

He would book a nice hotel suite and watch the local happenings.

He would partake of the local foods, drink the local wines and meet the hardy settlers.

He was in for a surprise.

Cube
2044 words (approx.)

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It was the most astounding archaeological find of the century:

A giant cube, older than the pyramids, buried beneath the desert sands of Mesopotamia,

probably during the Neolithic era, perhaps 10,000 BC or earlier.

Its contents would surprise even the most sophisticated archaeologists.

Testaments
100 words (approx.)

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The Gods had tried ... and failed.

There was no alternative.

They must try again.

Murder
2118 words (approx.)

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Jake McAlister was investigating a case close to his heart.

He knew the young woman whose body was found in the bush.

The result of the investigation would surprise everyone.

Sasquatch
1872 words (approx.)

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She was very lonely, living in the mountains, facing the sea.

She avoided Uglies who left trash in the woods.

She dreamed of love and affection, but had little to show for her dreams.

People
1080 words (approx.)

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His column, called People, was about famous people.

C.Q. Eldridge, a world traveler, philanthropist, author and motivational speaker was coming to town.

C-Q was his long time hero.

What he learned from the interview would surprise them both.

Aliens
1911 words (approx.)

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He had studied the aliens for years.

He now had an opportunity to visit the alien planet.

He and his space shuttle were cloaked in a visual displacement robe: he wouldn't be seen.

He was astounded by the habits and idiosyncracies of the aliens.

Dance
551 words (approx.)

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He had just bought an old dance studio...it was his dream come true.

He spent months getting it ready for a grand opening.

Then a beautiful lady came in ... she wanted to waltz.

They waltzed all night. He was in love.

Couples
1078 words (approx.)

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After many years of marriage, the love has vanished.

No affection, no gentle caresses: my husband was mechanical, uncaring.

I was eager to have an affair and joined couples.com.

That Internet site would change my life.

Justice
1740 words (approx.)

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After many years in a profession that required youth and vigour, I went back to school.

After graduation I took a job as a legal secretary.

I was very good at my job...but it was awkward.

Many of my boss's clients were also my clients, in the days of my earlier profession.

That posed a very big problem.

Cemetery
720 words (approx.)

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Carl lived life to the fullest.

He was popular with the girls.

He bombed about town in his corvette.

Then, one day, everyone ignored him.

Isolation
1335 words (approx.)

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James Carson hated city life, the traffic, the noise, the pollution.

The terrible nine-to-five schedule, food with a thousand chemicals, government bureaucracy.

He needed to get away from it all ... and he did.

Escort
700 words (approx.)

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My wife of thirty years died.

I spent the next two years suffering from her absence.

I needed love and I needed affection.

A close friend suggested a solution for my needs.

The solution was surprising.

the Door
1680 words (approx.)

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My father always told me that I should ponder mysteries.

Papa was a wise fellow so I always did the pondering.

That counsel often got me into strange situations.

In particular, the mystery of the Door ...

Flight 703
642 words (approx.)

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I admit it: I'm afraid of flying. Yes, it's the safest form of travel, yet...

Flight 703 was a necessity and I was scared, but I had to get to Beijing.

I never expected what happened.

Amnesia
1119 words (approx.)

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I woke up in a dingy room.

How did I get here? Who was I?

I found a card in my tattered coat.

It said La Cucina Italiana.

That was surely a clue.

Sorceress
1270 words (approx.)

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She acted with charity and good will to all.

She healed the sick and brought rain to the parched soil.

She taught her daughter never to act in anger.

She was hanged as a witch in May, 1693.

Her daughter had decisions to make...

Ugly Duckling
100 words (approx.)

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They laughed at him, called him an ugly duckling.

But he would laugh last.

Star Eater
5310 words (approx.)

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A domed world on an alien planet is threatened by a space-time anomaly that devours stars.

The dome leaders seek the aid of the Keeper, a black man who lives on the planet Afria with his people.

The Keeper and his daughter are able to communicate and control the behavior of phonarite crystals.

The crystals have remarkable properties and the Keeper and his daughter attempt to divert the Star Eater.

This short story is actually the "reduction" of a 130,000-word novel !

Robot
720 words (approx.)

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He is the last of the Ultramatic series. His creator has died.

He sets himself the task of solving many problems.

Some are unsolvable.

Apocalypse
2855 words (approx.)

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The last proton bomb had annihilated life on the planet.

Then he and his dog emerged from their undersea habitat.

Were they the only ones left?

Paupers
1740 words (approx.)

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Greg and his friends lived a simple, money-poor but socially-rich life in Miller's trailer park.

Then Greg came into lots of money and they all moved into a mansion.

Then ... ?

Fake
1388 words (approx.)

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He was dressed wealthy, but he was not.

Yet, he impressed the young women in town.

Until, one day ...

Tornado
770 words (approx.)

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He had perfected a technique for redirecting tornados.

He was eager to try it on Adam, the first of the season.

They had scoffed when he tried to describe his technique.

Now he would show them.

Ghost
820 words (approx.)

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He stopped at a small German town on his way to Berlin.

The town was delightful, ancient, with a fairy-tale look.

The ghostly visits each night were surprising.

Surgeon
990 words (approx.)

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Angelo failed to earn a medical degree.

Yet, he was determined to be a surgeon.

He opened a clinic in Mexico and performed novel surgery.

Apparently, few appreciated the novelty.

the Fly
665 words (approx.)

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He promised he'd be reincarnated as a fly.

That was so he could keep track of his wife.

He was certain she was having an affair.

Then, when he did come back as a fly ...

Seed
1620 words (approx.)

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She found the old glass vase in Cairo.

She fell in love with it ... and bought it.

It sat in her shop window, back home.

The interior would glow in the afternoon sun.

But there was something within the vase ...

Little Red Riding Hood
100 words (approx.)

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Little Red Riding Hood was on her way to see granny.

She brought granny's favourite snack.

Ah, but who was there to greet her?

Notes
3065 words (approx.)

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The notes were on her windshield, in her purse, everywhere.

First amusing ... but soon frightening:

"The boogie man is coming. He looks for a bride."

What did they mean? Who was 'boogie man'?

Three Pigs
100 words (approx.)

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They all lived in a brick house.

Wolfy was determined to blow it down.

Ah, but the piggies had a friend ...

Ashamed
1000 words (approx.)

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Granny had raised him from a child.

Their special thing was chocolate cake, every birthday.

It meant love and affection and warmth and togetherness.

It meant never forgetting their special relationship.

Then Granny told him her story.

Kids
688 words (approx.)

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He was a leading expert on war simulation.

Devising optimal strategies was his forte.

His work was quoted in all the best scientific journals

the Dog
550 words (approx.)

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The Dog liked Missus.

He don't like Mister so much.

Then, one day ...

the Mansion
2750 words (approx.)

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He was rich and well-respected.

He was a pillar of the comunity.

He was positively identified in connection with an armed bank robbery.

How was that possible?

Grandfather
1355 words

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Grandpa was old and told marvelous stories.

It's as though he had been everywhere and seen everything.

One story, in particular, was almost too much to believe ...

Knives
1712 words

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Oliver intends to kill himself with kitchen knives.

His wife's prints are all over the knives.
She is the principal suspect.

That's exactly what Oliver wanted!

the Banker
1440 words

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Henry is a rich banker, but not rich enough for his wife.

Marg spends a lot and expects more from her husband.

So Henry hatches a plan to rob his own bank.

Satellite
1345 words

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It has spent thirty years orbiting the sun.

Now, the SEE-01 satellite will be brought back to Earth.

But what it brings with it, that's a surprise ...

Millenium Robot
1115 words

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The humanoid emerges each millenium.

It emerges in 29 AD and listens.

Christ is delivering the Sermon on the Mount.

Robot feels it bodes well for human progress.

Two thousand years later, when it emerges ...

Laughter
1210 words

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Tiddley was a Gwelf and she collected laughter.

She saved laughter in bottles.

Then, one day, there was no laughter ...

Haunted House
1415 words

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Whisper was a lonely ghost.

No one had lived in her Haunted House for years.

Then, Dorothy arrived with her parents ...

Loch Ness
680 words

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He had seen the Loch Ness monster sixty years ago.

Now, a widower, he moves to a cottage by the lake.

He wants to see Nessie one more time.

Serial Killers
775 words

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He admired the Bard, a serial killer.

He wanted to taste the power.

He'd become a serial killer.

He was in for a surprise ...

Cottage
2330 words

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He's a bachelor with no interest in women.

Then he meets Helen in the next cottage ...

the Stranger
??? words (in progress)

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He met the old man in the park, on a bench.

The old man could hear the birds
...but they were not sounds that he heard.

The old man said:
"It's quite short, the wavelength, I mean."

The old man had an incredible story to tell...