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Melissa Balick
It’s me!

Thanks for reading my work! I appreciate it, and I appreciate you. You are too kind. Very attractive, as well. And I really like your shoes, so stylish. Have I told you recently how good you smell? You have the most clever ideas. I dig your panache. Anyway, enough about…


Photo by bady abbas on Unsplash

Lorraine pulled her still-damp fitted sheet off the line in the front yard of her row home. Fabric adopted a baseline moisture in the thick August air that made everyone crabby, shifting in their clothes. She folded the sheet half-heartedly; this was her only set, she’d place it directly onto…


Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

I have three siblings, so I witnessed my father attempting to tell his same weird joke many times to lots of different kids throughout my childhood. It never quite worked.

“What’s this?” he’d ask, bending his index finger in the air over and over like he was pushing a button.


Theses look good, don’t they? Photo by the author.

I’ve been vegan since 2012 and, at this point, I’ve heard all your dumb jokes, rude comments, and misdirected defensiveness about it, so let’s both shut up for a minute and enjoy some hella good Crispy Chocolatey Sunflower Tahini Bars.

Yes, I know you love bacon. I do too, that’s…


this and all other pictures are by the author or Sarita

My friend Sarita is always pulling messed-up cats off the streets of Philadelphia and nursing them to health. She does it so often that she’s already got a whole bunch of permanent cat roommates, so sometimes she tries to pawn off her extra kitties on her friends.

I’m both her…


Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

So, Jared dumped me over the phone even though he lives like two blocks away and he could have easily done it in person like an adult. He’s not an adult, though, not really, so I guess I can’t hold it against him.

He’s 26 but he works at Grounds…


Photo by John Schnobrich on Unsplash

I was an 18-year-old sophomore in college when 9/11 happened. At the time, I did not have a television and I only heard and read about it, without seeing any of the horrific imagery. …


Originally from Khaby Lame’s TikToc, now an increasingly common response meme

Hopefully, by now, you’ve had the pleasure of seeing some of TikTok user Khaby Lame’s hilarious response videos. In them, he replays an overly-complicated life hack or craft, then shows the viewers how you can do that same thing in an incredibly obvious and simple way.

Next, he gestures to…


Photo by Hans Isaacson on Unsplash

Note: This story was shortlisted to win the Reedsy Prompt contest #108: Elemental. I’ve edited it since then, so you should read it here, but check out that site to read the prompt as well as the winning entry and the other stories that shortlisted.

Mom’s guy ran out of…

Melissa Balick

Fiction writer, nanny, reader of books, type 1 diabetic, editor of Fascinating Fiction.

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