Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The Story Behind the Story: Abram's Wife

One of my favorite writers is Fredric Brown.
Brown wrote mostly crime and science fiction stories and is well known for his detective novel The Fabulous Clip Joint and his SF story, "Arena," which was adapted for the original Star Trek TV series.
But Brown is also famous for his flash fiction. Known in his day as short-short work, a typical Brown piece of the sort might fill only half a page. Or, as in his story "The End," the same story might appear on the top of the page, only to repeat--backwards--across the bottom.
Meanwhile, in a couple months I'll be releasing a collection of my Holt County novellas and stories. Deputy sheriff Whit Branham is one of my favorite western characters, so I thought it was appropriate that with a new collection soon coming, I'd let him take center stage in a short-short piece of fiction.
The result is "Abram's Wife." 
I wrote this in two sittings. The first draft, typed out at the local deli with a tumbler of iced tea and an '80s pop soundrack weighed in at close to 1,600 words and took two hours. 
I brought it home, mulled it over, and cut around a third of that, added a bit more, and within another 30 minutes had the final story of Around 1,300 words.
After growing up on a Nebraska farm, Richard Prosch worked as a professional writer, artist, and teacher in Wyoming, South Carolina, and Missouri. His western crime fiction captures the fleeting history and lonely frontier stories of his youth where characters aren’t always what they seem, and the windburned landscapes are filled with swift, deadly danger. In 2016, Richard roped the Spur Award for short fiction given by Western Writers of America. Read more at www.RichardProsch.com


  1. What fun! Short fiction has always been a favorite of mine. Thank you for the smile. Doris

    1. Thanks, Doris! This was another fun one to write!

  2. Nice little respite from the other stuff. I liked the story!

    1. Thanks, Oscar! I think the best short stories should aim for just that --short respites in the day. Appreciate your comment!