In his first short story collection Tim Chapman explores behaviors that are at once familiar and bizarre, while introducing us to an odd assemblage of characters. A reformed hit man has to kill to save the love of his life. An advertising executive deserts her family to find happiness as a forest nymph. A downsized factory worker decides to fake a disability. A young girl has to decide whether her divine power is a blessing or a curse. Engaging stories about family, class, crime, and love from the author of "Bright and Yellow, Hard and Cold."
Tim Chapman is a former forensic scientist for the Chicago police department who currently teaches writing and tai chi chuan. He holds a Master’s degree in Creative Writing from Northwestern University. His fiction has been published in The Southeast Review, the Chicago Reader, Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, Chicago Tribune’s Printers Row Journal, and the anthology, “The Rich and the Dead.” His first novel, “Bright and Yellow, Hard and Cold,” was a finalist in Shelf Unbound’s 2013 Best Indie Book competition. His short stories have been collected under the title, “Kiddieland and other misfortunes.” In his spare time he paints pretty pictures and makes an annoying noise with his saxophone that he claims is music. He lives in Chicago with his lovely and patient wife, Ellen, and Mia, the squirrel-chasingest dog in town.
"Kiddieland and other misfortunes" is a collection of short stories and short-short stories. It's pretty eclectic, containing crime stories, science fiction, and literary fiction. This is from the first story in the collection, Dear Hart.
Kiddieland and other misfortunes
Karin didn’t answer. One question answered would lead to another asked, and then it would be like a pebble rolling down a hill, gaining momentum and picking up other pebbles along the way until they knocked loose the giant, fucking boulder-sized question she couldn’t answer. She turned her head just enough so she could stare out the window at the snow-shrouded countryside without appearing to deliberately turn away from her husband. That was the impression she had hoped to convey, but in her peripheral vision she saw the corners of his mouth turn down.