Something Published: “Gossip and Dinner”

Bullshit Lit published my flash fiction story “Gossip and Dinner.”

It’s a fun literary website that publishes short works of fiction and poetry. Their pitch to writers: “Send us up to six pieces of your finest bullshit. This can be poetry, prose, art, fiction, whatever.” Bullshit Lit wants the type of writing other editors “will reject hands down.” I had the perfect piece. I didn’t expect Bullshit Lit to accept “Gossip and Dinner” but such fun to have a place to submit it!

Sometimes editors specifically state in their guidelines that they don’t want stories like “Gossip and Dinner.” So after I finished the story, I buried it in a file, deep inside my computer, hiding it from editors. I’d explain why, but if I did, it would be a spoiler. (Don’t worry–the story won’t make you blush or cry.)

But Bullshit Lit wants a writer’s “finest bullshit,” so I submitted, never believing my story would get accepted, Still, I was happy to finally have a place to send it, along with a humorous cover letter. This was the most fun I’ve ever had writing a cover letter:

Dear Ms. Bennett:

Attached is my 801-word short story “Gossip and Dinner.” It’s an unpublished story. Heck, it’s a never-been-submitted story. It’s so bullshit that I will understand if it’s rejected. However, I’m so grateful that I can submit it to Bullshit Lit. I was inspired to write “Gossip and Dinner” after my daughter-in-law uttered the phrase, “Ziva is such a cat.” Because I love my daughter-in-law, I’ve refrained from purging this story from my files. The concept for this story was brilliant in my head, but on paper it’s bird crap. But I love that I can actually submit it somewhere without feeling too much shame! Thanks for being there.

If you think I wrote bullshit too many times in this blog, it’s because I’m getting away with swearing! I had my mouth washed out with soap when I was about eight for saying shit, so I’m having a wicked good time repeating the name of the literary website.


[After Bullshit Lit accepted my flash fiction piece, I signed up to receive notifications when they publish new stories. So, far “Millie and Me” is my favorite. You can read it by clicking here. You can read my story by clicking here.]

13 thoughts on “Something Published: “Gossip and Dinner”

    • Bullshit Lit also publishes some very fine flash stories, and they nominate for the Push Cart Awards (which is big). However, my little story falls under their category “send us your bullshit, that other editors would turn down.” I never sent “Gossip and Dinner” anywhere else because editors don’t want stories that have talking animals or characters who turn out to be animals. I was surprised when they took my story!


  1. I knew from the beginning they were dogs because of the Ziva name. I enjoyed watching how you crafted the writing of their canine identities. You had fun with this one and so did I.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Because the characters turn out to be dogs, literary journals would not be interested. Some editors specifically state: No talking animals or characters who turn out to be animals. But Bullshit Lit likes to be serious and to have fun. Besides taking fluffy pieces, they publish some great flash and poetry, and they nominate for the Push Cart Awards. But I have no delusions about my story being Push Cart worthy. LOL


      • Honestly, my head spins whenever I read some (most) literary magazines anymore. It feels like every writer is trying to one-up the the next writer with over-the-top and, often, if-you-haven’t-got-an-MFA-you-won’t-understand type of wit or phrasing that is impossible to wrap my head a round. I love your piece precisely because it was fun and so very well could have been a human conversation. Period. I prefer real and relatable language.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I understand what you mean. I won’t submit to literary journals if I don’t understand the stories in their journals. I want a story the moves me and that I can sit back and understand. I recently went to a nonfiction blog with the idea of submitting a flash essay. After reading all seven of the published pieces, I knew my piece would never fit. My essay was not obtuse enough (or obtuse at all) and it also wasn’t a never-ending string of descriptive imagery, which usually tends to muddy the essence of a story or essay.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. And if a literary magazine saw my last response and all the typos, its head would spin! LOL But I agree, obtuse is not my thing. It’s why, in school, I had a hard time with the American Romantics and Sylvia Plath.

    Liked by 1 person

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