Directory By: JulieD

Like You’d Understand, Anyway, by Jim Shepard

Guilt, Guilt, Guilt

Here’s what it’s like to bear up under the burden of so much guilt: everywhere you drag yourself you leave a trail. Late at night, you gaze back and view an upsetting record of where you’ve been. At the medical center where they brought my brothers I stood banging my head against a corder of a crash cart. When one of the nurses say me, I said, “There, there, that’s better. That kills the thoughts before they grow.”

I am Borish Yakovlevich Prushinsky, chief engineer of the Department of Nuclear Energy, and my younger brother, Mikhail Vasilyevich was a senior turbine engineer serving rector Unit No. 4 at the Chernobyl power station, on duty the night of 26 April 1986. Our half brother Petya and his friend were that same night outside the reacher’s cooling tower on the Pripyat River, fishing, downwind. So you can see that our family was right in he thick of what followed.

The Oxford Book of American Short Stories, Joyce Carol Oates (Ed), 2013

With stories (and not the same old stories) by: NElson Algren, Sherwood Anderson, William Austin, James Baldwin, Russell Banks, Donald Barthelem, Pinckney Benedict, Paul Bowles, T. C. Boyle, Ray Bradbury, Raymond Carver, Willa Cather, John Cheever, Charles Chesnutt, Kate Chopin, Samuel Clemens, Stephen Crane, Junot Diaz, Ralph Ellison, Louise Erdrich, William Faulkner, F. Scott Fitzgerald, More Info »

Good People, by David Foster Wallace

They were up at a picnic table at that park by the lake, by the edge of the lake, with part of a drowned tree in the shallows half-hidden by the bank. Lane A. Dean Jr., and his girlfriend, both in blue jeans and button-up shirts. … Their postures on the picnic table were both the same forward kind with their shoulders rounded and their elbows on their knees. In this position the girl rocked slightly and once put her face in her hands, but she was not crying.

A Late Encounter With The Enemy, by Flannery O’Connor

In the spring, when the old homes were opened for pilgrimages, he was invited to wear his uniform and sit in some conspicuous spot and lend atmosphere to the scene….

There Will Come Soft Rains by Ray Bradbury

the house was an altar with ten thousand attendants, big, small, servicing, attending, in choirs. But the gods had gone away, and the ritual of the religion continued senselessly, uselessly.

There Shall Come Soft Rains by Ray Bradbury

A house stands alone in a post-nuclear-strike landscape. It is one of those Tomorrowland kind of houses that people dreamed of in the 1950s: the stove is cooking eggs and bacon, the mice-robots are scurrying out to clean, the automatic systems are trying to entertain the absent occupants. Absent? Yes, and we find out what More Info »

Electric Literature’s Recommended Reading

A new story every week on Tumblr.

The Fun Parts by Sam Lipsyte

“Bold, hilarious and deeply-felt fiction” Published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, ISBN-10: 0374298904 ISBN-13: 978-0374298906

The Distance of the Moon by Italo Calvino

A wonderful, sci-fi fantasty fairytale told in an almost everyday way. A fabulous example of high-imagination meeting everyday truths. Funny and moving and utterly charming.  

East Of The Web

Monthly featured stories, some by award-winning authors. Features nine genre sections for easy browsing.   Read more at or get the iOS app: