Flash fiction: Mirror image II


Julianne regularly said good morning to magpies, would never walk under ladders, and always threw salt over her left shoulder. ‘To blind the devil,’ she said. Sometimes when we sat opposite each other at night outside the kitchen, I thought I saw something there, just behind her.

Despite all her precautions, Julianne was unlucky, or some said clumsy. She broke mirrors, tripped over paving, and electrical appliances would hiss and fuse when she came near.

Everyone said what happened must have been an accident, but they didn’t see what I did: that creature of the half-light staring back at me through the dark kitchen window.


This is a 105-word piece of flash fiction based on the picture prompt above, this week provided by Dawn Q Landau. It’s part of the Friday Fictioneers group run by Rochelle Wisoff-Field. Rochelle dedicates a great deal of her time each week to uploading, visiting and commenting on all our pieces of writing. To join in with your own story, visit Rochelle’s website here, or to read some of the other stories based on this prompt click here.


This week I need some help, particularly from US readers. Can you suggest any names of successful US authors of commercial women’s fiction? Not the really famous best-sellers, but those who are fairly well known, with well-received books. Thanks!

29 thoughts on “Flash fiction: Mirror image II

  1. I hope after destroying Julianne the ghost didn’t take over the narrator.
    As to your US authors question…off the top of my head I can think of Laurie Notaro, Alisa Valdes, Lisa Howorth, and Donna Tartt. I believe they are all still living and writing.


    • Thanks Melanie. I had in my mind that the narrator is actually the devil-figure, as reflection in the kitchen window, but I’m not sure that really came across. (I read it to my husband and he didn’t get it. Still I think it works without knowing that).
      And thanks for the names. I’ll look them up.


  2. [Shudder!]
    Wonder if there’s anyone following me like this? I can make computers flash a blue screen of death just by walking past them….. have done it in doctors’ offices, little boutiques, groceries …. now you have me wondering ….

    Great read!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear Claire,

    Gives a whole new meaning to the words, ‘chosen people’. I hope I never find out what Julianne did. Great story.

    As for your question re authors, is Phillip Roth on your list? Perhaps he’s far afield.. What about Jodi Picoult? Tess Gerritsen does crime novels with women characters. My mind is a colander and all the noodles have been drained, sorry.




    • Thanks Doug. I love that – ‘my mind is a colander and all the noodles have been drained’ – I might have to put it in a novel. I’ve read a lot of Phillip Roth and really like his writing, but it’s probably too literary for what I’m looking for. Jodi Picoult is a good one; Tess Gerritsen I haven’t heard of, so I’ll go and look her up.


  4. Claire, I didn’t get the part at first of the narrator being the devil figure, but went back and read it after reading some of the comments. Creepy story. That reflection in the dark window was especially scary. Evil and/or deranged people are much scarier than ghosts or spirits as they really exist. My daughter also lives in Chicago and is a reader. Her boyfriend writes short stories. I’ll ask her about writers. She’s an actor and writes some of her own material. Well written as usual. 🙂 —Susan


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