- Work in progress – The Inspector, a novel set in New Orleans
- Work in progress – The Fall, a novel set in Los Angeles
- Completed – Los Mochomos, a tale of magical realism set in El Salvador
- Completed – The Student, a four-part story of a black girl in Los Angeles
- Published – Transylvania on the Tallahassee, a short story about a Black film studio
- Published – The Baby, a short story about justice
- Published – Independence Day, a short story about freedom
- Published – A Halloween Masque, a short story about a friend lost and found
- Published – A Wedding in Little Tokyo, a short story of magical realism
- Published – The Lowriders, a coming-of-age story set in WWII Los Angeles
Transylvania on the Tallahassee
“Go stand over there by the stairs, Earl. In this scene you’ve just entered the vampire’s castle. He’s expecting you ’cause there’s food on the table and a fire going in the fireplace, but he hasn’t arrived yet, got it? He’s still coming in the coach. You think the castle is creepy. You call out but the Count doesn’t answer. You think you hear the coach’s hoof-beats — you’re looking around, sorta scared…”
“Wait,” said Earl, putting up a hand. “Is he gonna beat my ass for breakin’ into his castle? Is that it?”
“No, he’s not. You’re supposed to be working a real estate deal for the guy, okay?”
“If you say so.”
I actually thought Earl had asked a pretty good, logical question, being a colored man dressed in, well… overalls, in a count’s castle.
Published in Entertainment to Die For in 2023, an anthology from Sisters in Crime / Los Angeles. Introduction by Sisters in Crime founder and best-selling author, Sara Paretsky.
Are a famous director and an illustrious screenwriter best buddies or vindictive rivals? Why does an all-Black cast shooting a vampire movie find their star a bit…lethal? Can revenge last in the entertainment world even into the retirement home? How does a glamorous bartender in a Hollywood tiki bar track the clues in a murder when it looks like a natural death?
Christine felt her emotions fraying. She was beginning to feel like a referee in a battle between opposing forces, which she knew was ridiculous. The bond between a mother and child was not dissoluble. Babies and mothers didn’t struggle at cross purposes. The only will a baby might possess was the instinct for survival.
Published in Avenging Angelinos in 2021, an anthology from Sisters in Crime / Los Angeles. Edited by Sarah M. Chen, Wrona Gall, and Pamela Samuels Young, with an introduction by Frankie Y. Bailey.
Avenging Angelenos, from newborns to neighbors, physicians to funeral directors, athletes, artists, students and teachers, have scores to settle and a nefarious itch under their skin that’s got to be scratched.
It was the 4th of July, the country’s Independence Day. It was Ava’s, too. Although, unlike the nation, Ava was still unsure of what it meant to be free. On the vanity she set the lipstick, “Crimson Dynamo”, and the Colt automatic. Ava hadn’t handled either of these for the five years she’d been jailed at Tehachapi State Prison, but she hadn’t lost her touch with the only things a girl like her really needed.
Published in LAst Resort in 2017, an anthology from Sisters in Crime / Los Angeles. Edited by Matt Coyle, Mary Marks, and Patricia Smiley, with an introduction by Michael Connelly.
Los Angeles, the sun-kissed city of high hopes and second chances, where everyone seems to be from somewhere else. A siren call to dreamers, misfits, mystics and freaks, lost souls and purveyors of sin.
A Halloween Masque
Bridget drove a mile down the gravel road that ran parallel to the highway. She had almost forgotten about it as the shortcut to Cromwell. Bridget’s mother never took that road anymore, since the accident, but Bridget was in a hurry. When they curved around the first bend Bridget’s headlights illuminated a massive, twisted oak tree, its branches extending far across the road. There was a long, deep gash in the trunk of the tree where Victor’s car had veered into it that night last year on his way to the Junior Halloween dance. Bridget saw something moving in the brush beside the tree.
Published in Kings River Life in 2014, online magazine with a focus on the San Joaquin Valley and beyond.
A Wedding in Little Tokyo
As the light danced through the trees it moved toward her with apparent purpose and direction. Suddenly Miraku heard another burst of barks which roused the kit puppy. Pushing a snout through the pine branches, there appeared a snow white fox, a kitsune. Miraku counted five fluffy white tails arched over the vixen’s back and another four carried closer to the ground. Her eyes expressed quickness beyond the cunning of an ordinary fox. Miraku knew she was face-to-face with a vixen of great age and wisdom, capable of wondrous, magical feats. As the fox gazed cautiously at her, Miraku sensed a delicate sensitivity in the kitsune which gave the aspect of a lovely human courtesan. The fox bared her teeth when she spoke and the guard hairs around her nostrils moved together as a field of poppies traced by the wind.
Published in the First Annual Imagine Little Tokyo Short Story Contest in 2014, from the Los Angeles Little Tokyo Historical Society.
Salvador Bernstein stepped in front of the bathroom mirror. It would be his final check of his appearance before taking the long concrete staircase that wound down to La Palma Avenue from his home on the hilltop overlooking Chavez Ravine. His dark brown hair, long on top, clipped above the ears, gleamed from the oil he’d raked through it. Tonight he wanted to impress the other fellows and especially the girls with his white tie and lavender shirt, and the black calf-length coat that squared and widened his shoulders so that he could pass for a man of twenty-five years and not a child approaching seventeen.
Published in LAst Exit to Murder in 2013, an anthology from Sisters in Crime / Los Angeles. Edited by Darrell James, Linda O. Johnston and Tammy Kaehler, with an introduction by Gary Phillips.
From the Low Riders that nightly cruise the Sunset Strip, to the infamous Dead Man’s Curve immortalized in song, Southern Californian’s fascination with their cars has long been the fodder of legend and has defined a culture known for its fast-paced and sometimes reckless lifestyle.