Short Stories, Irish literature, Classics, Modern Fiction, Contemporary Literary Fiction, The Japanese Novel, Post Colonial Asian Fiction, The Legacy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and quality Historical Novels are Among my Interests

Thursday, May 22, 2014

"Laddar to the Moon" by Rachel Fenton (2013)

Rachel Fenton  is a multi-awarded short story writer.   One joy the Internet brings to readers of the world is the ability to discover wonderful  new to them writers.  Were it not for the internet I would never possibly have read anything by Fenton as I don't have access to print literary journals.   Some writers feel the vast number of free short stories on the internet make consumers reluctant to pay for short stories and publishers hesitant to pay any but top tier writers.   I understand this feeling but I think in the long run this will be great for readers and writers of short stories.   Today I want to talk about one of the many  wonderful short  stories by Rachel Fenton.

I will be posting on one more of her short stories soon and she has also kindly agreed to do a Question and Answer session so please look for those items soon. 

Official Bio

Rachel J. Fenton was born in 1976 and grew up in relative poverty in South Yorkshire. She has a BA in English Studies from Sheffield Hallam University, where she studied under the tutelage of E. A. Markham before relocating to Auckland in 2007. Winner of the 7th Annual Short Fiction Competition (University of Plymouth) and the 2013 Flash Frontier Winter Award, she is a Pushcart Prize nominee. Short-listed for the 2013 FishInternational Poetry Prize (judged by Paul Durcan), the 2012 Royal Society of New Zealand Manhire Prize, Binnacle Ultra-Short Competition (named honoree), the Fish One Page Prize, the 6th Annual Short Fiction Competition, and the Kathleen Grattan Award, other listings include the Bristol Prize, and the Sean O’ Faolain International Short Story Prize.


Recent publications include the journals The Stinging Fly MagazineShort Fiction #7;JAAM #30, #31; brief #44-45, #47; French Literary Review #18Cordite Poetry Review;Pank; and Metazen; and a comprehensive list can be found at


AKA Rae Joyce, she is an AUT award winning graphic poet, was mentored by Dylan Horrocks, is featured in New Zealand Comics and Graphic Novels (Hicksville Press), Two Thirds North, The Poetry BusFlash FrontierThrush Poetry Journal, and was 2013 Artist in Residence at Counterexample Poetics. Between 2011 and 2012, she wrote, drew and published a page per day of the epic web-comic Escape Behaviours.

"Ladder to the Moon"

"Beth was pleased to have someone to tell it all to like this, someone who didn’t interrupt to exchange comparative experiences, incomparable anecdotes. Georgia was a good listener. She had a contemplative, quiet face, Beth thought, shrewd, intelligent eyes, a wry mouth – yes, but one which didn’t let out what it knew – sensitive features. Georgia would make a good friend."

"Ladder to the Moon" is the story of two women who almost become friends, about people not quite connecting,being afraid to open up and about risks that should not be taken.  Beth is taking her child to learn to swim in a public pool in Auckland.  Another woman, Georgia, is normally there at the same time and they slowly begin to talk, first just about their kids.  Both seem to be single.  Beth fancies  herself an expert in Sun signs and when Georgis tells her she has met a man, Beth  tells her the relationship won't work, she will end up hurt.  Georgia  stops coming to the pool for a while.  One day Beth spies her in the pool with a man with a large animal tattoo on his back.  I will leave the rest of this very interesting story untold.  As I finished this intriguing story for the third time I began to wonder what each of the women were seeking from the relationship?  

Were either's perceptions of the other close to accurate. 

You can read this story here

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