Category: Nonfiction

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Everyone Needs A Break Sometimes

The time has come to give The Splinter Generation a break. We could not be more proud of the work of our authors, our editors, and our readers.

Likely, this break will be permanent. But we have one more surprise coming down the pike. Stay tuned!

I was (Almost) a Twentysomething Jeopardy! Contestant

Nonfiction by Mary Catherine Owen

“1977 film in which Luke Skywalker uses the Force in the struggle between the royal houses of York & Lancaster.”

I know this one. “Before & After” is the category; I do well on these clues anyway, but my obsessive preparation for the Jeopardy! College Championship audition led me to go over all the questions and answers (or rather, answers and questions) of the past five years of championship games. This clue was used in 2004.

Realistically Optimistic

Nonfiction by Christi R. Suzanne

I stood on the Hawthorne Bridge overlooking the Willamette River and imagined my death. I felt the chill on my tear-streaked cheeks as the wind blew against them. The feeling of being suspended in time dulled my senses. I tried to call my boyfriend. No answer. Maybe next time he’ll answer. I called again. No answer. I left a message and hung up.

Sleeping in on Sunday

Nonfiction by Tisha Reichle

I missed mass again. Third Sunday in a row that grading papers, cleaning the apartment, going for a bike ride, or watching football have been more important. After more than thirty-five years of being Catholic, I am ready to quit.

Sleeping Over

Nonfiction by Chris Wiewiora

The week that Lauren and I broke up, my father had slipped an envelope through the cat door sawed into the bottom of my bedroom door. A sticker of a mockingbird sealed the clasp. The front read: (to read after you’ve had your coffee and are awake).

What I Didn’t Do for Sam

Nonfiction by Kevin Rabas

Spindly Billy, with his black leather and chains, had me up and pinned to the top lockers. He was about six foot in seventh grade. They had Sam, his head bobbing in the toilet, as they hung onto his head and hair and dunked him. When he was up for air, Sam yelled, “Help, Kevin.”

A Candle in the Dark

Nonfiction by Cj Hayes

It’s cold outside, blustery and nasty—the way that makes joints ache and allergies flare up. Pollen from the redwoods has been painting parked cars green all week, making a sickly mossy mess when the rain inevitably falls. Even now, my head is plugged with the microscopic drift of a dry afternoon.

Nights

Nonfiction by Amanda Lee Hickey

1. Take two orange slices and a few sprigs of mint.

2. Squash them together for a few seconds.

3. Add ice.

4. Add one packet of sugar.

5. Add one part Grand Marnier.

6. Another part orange vodka.

Another Fake Princess

Nonfiction by Christopher Lowe

1.

All I remember clearly is Super Mario Brothers. Looking back now, I can’t recall who from our family came into town aside from my cousins, Toot and Tonner, who helped us set up the brand new Nintendo. I remember sitting on the hardwood floor – slid as far back from the TV as possible to save our eyes – while relatives and neighbors and friends of the family weaved through the controller cords, talking about my father in hushed voices.

Three and a Half Weeks

by Geoff(rey) Line

Trucks are a rigger’s temple. I am in a temple, a Chevrolet I-don’t-know-what, trying not to nod off to Ozzie Osbourne’s yells fused with metal guitar. “Let me hear you SCREAM like you WANT it.” Leonard, the driller takes one of the four turns on the fifty minute drive—a hasty brake and thrust to accelerate. “Let me hear you YELL like you MEAN it.” I strain my eyelids open. Leonard steers through the sunrise—premature crow’s feet round his Oakleys. In the passenger seat, Nate our goliath derrick hand, holds a coffee mug with a massive calloused hand on his knee. Beside me, Muscles, the other roughneck, rolls down the window he’s used to ash his butts past a slit, and lobs the first of three empty Red Bulls to the deserted Alberta highway. Artificial wind blusters through as Leonard rips 140 K to the site. Oil awaits.