Monday, November 30, 2015

Music Review: Spaceship and “Shake Time Loose”

When I was a kid, I remember lying on top of my parents’ car, staring up into the milky way, and waiting, waiting for the stars to fall. It was summer, a cool night, and the meteor shower had arrived. And I wanted to catch a shooting star. As I waited, I drifted along the gentle breeze and chorus of crickets. I swayed across rhythm, rising and falling to the heartbeat of space, and time fell away. Time shook loose...

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Semifinalist: An Army of Crows

An Army of Crows
by, Melissa R. Mendelson

They watched from the rafters, looking down at their prey. Little, black eyes shimmered with anticipation. Wings nestled in restlessness. Claws etched into wood, and heads turned below to await the action ready to unfold. Soon, they would all be dead.

I wondered why they were watching us with such intent. I wondered why they had us surrounded from above. What were they waiting for? Why were they even here? Why not be outside and fly free, or did we cause them to be here? They said that if you see one crow, death was not too far behind. What do they say about an army of crows?

The cot was hard underneath my back. Coughing and crying mixed in the air. The floor was cold, hard like my bed. There was nowhere else to go. We were forced here, and large crates decorated the empty space of this warehouse. They said that inside were food and water and clothing. Something told me to doubt that, and then there were the crows. They came with the shipment, and now they nestled above in the rafters, waiting. They were just sitting there, watching, and waiting. There was no haven here. There was just a million black eyes dripping with darkness.

I tried to get some sleep. Tomorrow would be another long day. Maybe, if I was lucky, I would see the sun one last time. I could remember what the air really tasted like. I’ve been here too long, and I don’t remember how or why I came here. But something told me that I might never leave, and just as sleep began to grip me, the crates slowly opened. What came out of them was unexpected, and fear slipped an icy knot around my heart.

Balloons. They were once a childhood fantasy. An array of colors would seize the sky as they were set free. There was no childhood now, and there was no sky. Still, they filled up the rafters, and we looked up in wonder, remembering a lost youth. And then the crows took flight.

People started to drop to the ground. They writhed for a moment and then seized. Their eyes were large with fear, slipping into the black like a crow’s eye. The balloons continued to pop overhead by their feet, and then something gentle fell upon my skin. My fate was theirs.

As I laid on the ground, twisting to unbearable pain, all I could see were the crows overhead. Their eyes dripped with death. Their wings flapped as if doing a large applause. Their beaks shined and grinned. The war was won, and we were lost. Now, the crows could survive. Our corpses would keep them well fed until they could return to the outside, but maybe, just maybe they were wrong about that. Maybe, the poison would remain in our system, and as they eat our flesh, their fate would be sealed like ours. And that made me smile as I slipped into the black.

Dear Melissa,

We wanted to take a moment to let you know how well you did in the last New Millennium Writings competition (July 31, 2015).  Although you didn't win, you were selected as a Semifinalist.  Only about 10% of submissions made it this far, and we think that's worth celebrating - we hope you do, too!  The quality in our contests is high, and you should be proud of your accomplishment.  We certainly are.  Please feel free to print this letter, email it to others, or share the news on social media.

In answer to frequently asked questions...

*"An Army of Crows" is the work that made it so far.
* You can read the list of winners at
* Your strong showing does not disqualify you from re-entering this or any other work.
* Watch for your free 2016 anthology to arrive next summer. 
* If you’re interested in the next contest, which has a deadline of November 15, 2015, please visit

Mostly, I just want to congratulate you on your fine showing and express my appreciation for your interest in New Millennium Writings.  You make our work not only possible but joyous!

Wishing you inspiration in all your writings,

Thursday, October 01, 2015

It's Only Five Dollars and a Good Charity

Back in July of this year, I decided to do something different, and that was to start writing a weekly series on a new website called  This series is based off an old Horror/Sci-Fi Story of mine called, Lizardian.  This story was first written back in 1996 when I was in high school, which is why the story now surrounds a girl in her senior year of high school.  Like me, she also struggles with the onslaught of bullies, never realizing that something sinister is surfacing in her small, country town.

You do have to pay for the subscription.  It's only five dollars.  Well, it's really $4.99, but all subscriptions are going to a good charity, The Leary Firefighters Foundation:

Chapters 1 thru 13 are now available:

Please subscribe to this series and support The Leary Firefighters Foundation.

Thank you.

-Melissa R. Mendelson

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Online Publications

Bartleby Snopes Literary Magazine:

Doll House (Short Story): 2007

Essence (Short Story): 2010

When The Dust Settles (Short Story): 2011

Gadfly Online:

2011: Passenger; No Leaders Among Men

2012: We Are The Villains Of This Story; Letters Cast Away; Leaving Nowhere Behind; After Dark: My Favorite TV Shows; My First Taste of Road Rage; Bleeding Through Reality (Let The Fiction In); Rampage; Going Haywire

2013: Living According to Tolstoy; Welcome Back to Tango of the Road Rage Drivers; When I Tried To Become A 9-1-1 Operator; Alarm Set; King of the Lonely Hill; Never in Stone; Saving Gifted Men and a Touch of Paranormal; (Alien) Baby Got Back; Glass Eyes; One Way Ticket; Friendship Rises Over The Dead Zone; Hail to the Three Kings, Baby; The Death of the State Employee; Heroes in Dark; Beyond The Spielberg Dream (My Love of Science-Fiction); A Brief Glimpse Over The Edge; Ghost in the Sands of White (For Walter White); Bye, Bye Mr. Burn Notice Spy; Simple Thoughts; Feeling Yourself Explode (My Take on Being Mad as Hell); Never Meant to Love

2014: Burning Down The Doll House; Over The Porch; Concrete Dreams; Front Page; Cruising Along Fate's Darkness; Where I Hit Record; The Trouble with Past Lives; NeedlePoint; Rhythm of Life; Checkmate; The NY State of Mind Does Not Brake For Enlightenment; You Killed Me Before; Guns Talk (A Parody of 'Little Talks' by Of Monsters and Men); Bleu Room with a Red Vase: Catching A Star At Jones Beach; Dialing The 4400 (A Parody of Adele's song, Set Fire To The Rain); 'Slip and Fall': A Review of Nick Santora's 2007 Thriller; Movies That Speak Volumes; Faded Shades of Rainbow; Remembering The Final Cut: Dedicated to Robin Williams; Don't Forget To Tip Your Cows; Lies (Parody of Sia's song, Chandelier); I Am A Clone; Here We Go Again (Another Tango Driver); Gold Beyond Blue; If Sam Axe Died; Unions; Fragments of Broken Youth; Extra, Extra; D.T.A.; Footprints in Sand; Alien Dream; Along The Rails; Cellar Dawn; Seeing Through The Facade; Blonde Android Shutdown

2015: Flirting with Revolution; Wanting to be a Cool Kid; The Silent War We Wage; Taking On The Universe; 24 Won't Come Back No More (Parody); Death Made a Pie; Spirits Among Us; Underground; Book Review: The Branches of Time; Gone Without a Trace; The Parachute Kids; The World is not Black and White; The Quiet Room; War Of My World; Remains of Peace; Carry On Winchester Sons (Parody of Kansas's 'Carry On Wayward Son'; Hanging Out in the Drive Thru (Parody of Train's Drive By Song); Book Review: Fifteen Digits; A Bitter Mockery; Blazing Eagle; Comic Book Heroes Gone Wild (Parody of Skid Row's "Youth Gone Wild"); Broken (Parody of Rihanna's "Diamonds"); The Waiting Room; What If Heaven Were Really Real?; The Tin Man's Heart; Missing Horror Movies of Days Long Ago; Iron Thorns; Gone But Not Forgotten

Mouse Tales Press:

Waiting (Short Story): 2011

Clay Pigeon (Short Story): 2012

Bittersweet Farewells (Short Story): 2013

Fiction 365:

Discussion (Short Story): 2011

Jolt Literary Journal:

One Mile Left to Go (Short Story): 2012

The Useless Degree Magazine:

Touch of Winter (Short Story): 2015

Bewildering Stories:

Summer Over The Death of My Youth (Short Story): 2015


Poem: A Child's Dream:

Porcelain Log Line:

Glass Skies Over Home Log Line:

The Unknown Rider (Winner of Twitter Short Story Contest):

Waken Dream Log Line:

Lizardian Log Line:

Bystander Magazine:

Glimpse Over Darkness (Poetry): 2015

Antarctica Journal


Shining Through The Echo (For Robin Williams);  Are We Real;  Behind The Door;  Here;  Stone Slate;  Dream Always;  The Hole Within Us;  In Shadow;  Memorial;  Scarred; The Hole Within Us


Farmland;  Kayaker;  Blue Surface;  Silent Post;  Who's Ready For Church;  Fog Rolling In; Manhattan (4 Photographs)

Song Lyrics:

Remember;  Shut;  On White Wings I Fly;  Comic Book Heroes Gone Wild


Photography: Bath Time - Third Place - Contemporary Art Gallery 2015

Photography: Manhattan Construction - Honorary Mention - Contemporary Art Gallery 2015