Archive | Chapters & Stories


Being American–A Short Story

In THE INHERITORS, Alicia discovers her mother’s history in the abandoned Bartley mansion, once the home of a Chicago industrialist. Such mansions, their marble entries opening into warrens of apartments, dotted the streets of the inner-city district where I worked as a welfare worker. This particular one is fiction, and, bolstered by research into Chicago’s […]

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The Camera's Eye by Judith Kirscht

The Camera’s Eye: Opening Chapter

Here’s a taste of my just released novel, THE CAMERA’S EYE, a story of two women  in search of their harasser.   Chapter 1   The crash sat Veronica Lorimer up in her bed. A second one, followed by a revving engine and spurt of gravel from spinning tires, sent her toward the stairs, pulling […]

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Storm clouds

Take a Break: Read a Short Story

      I’ve been writing novels (for forty years or so) and blogging about them for quite a while. High time for a break. I love short stories and have always long to master them. For writers, they are a wonderful antidote to wordiness, an astringent for the mind. They remind us of the […]

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Family secrets

    Family secrets are imprisoned stories. The silences, the unnamed people or events that threaten the family’s sense of itself or bring stigma are erased by silence. Such is the power of language—cease speaking of it, naming it (or the person), and it ceases to exist. But someone knows or they’d never get passed […]

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Nowhere Else To Go by Judith Kirscht

Nowhere Else To Go, Chapter 1

As promised in my last blod on novels set in the midst of tumult, here is a sample of my first novel. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~   NOWHERE ELSE TO GO by Judith Kirscht Chapter 1      Labor Day, 1968   Cassie Daniels stood at the door of the Norton Bluffs School Board room, taking in the semi-circle […]

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The Gift

Chances are, if you’ve ever been in a writing class, you’ve been asked to do a “freewrite”  in response to a prompt. Writers are routinely asked to produce such spontaneous writing at conventions and workshops–usually protesting that such exercises never produce anything worth the time. I’ve been a protester, but as I was browsing through […]

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Marry Poppins

Why Read?

  We all read because we have to–to bake a cake, to put together a bookcase, to pass a test. But why do so many of us become addicted to that other kind of reading–to stories? We became bookworms as children. As escape? To cure loneliness? Boredom? Because books took us on adventures in distant […]

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