Short stories by novelist Michael Craft

appearing in collections and anthologies.

SHORT STORIES often play a central role in a fiction writer’s early training, helping to build a foundation for crafting book-length narratives.

But short stories are by no means the “little cousins” of the novel; indeed, they can be complete and powerful literary expressions in their own right. And sometimes—when they involve characters, settings, and situations new to the writer—they can provide the inspiration for development of novels that would otherwise have been beyond the author’s comfort zone.

The following is a sample bibliography of Michael Craft’s published short stories, including his comments.

“By far

the collection’s

campiest note is

hit by Michael Craft in the delightful

‘VIP Check-In.’”

— Los Angeles Times

VIP Check-In

My short story “VIP Check-In” appears with the work of 13 other writers in Palm Springs Noir, an anthology published by Akashic Books in July 2021. The short story was singled out as “delightful” by the Los Angeles Times and “excellent” by Mystery Scene Magazine. I have since developed the story into a full-length novel titled Desert Getaway.

The list of authors contributing to Palm Springs Noir places me among some very good company:

Chris J. Bahnsen, Eric Beetner, Rob Bowman, Michael Craft, Barbara DeMarco-Barrett (editor and contributor), Alex Espinoza, Janet Fitch, Tod Goldberg, J.D. Horn, Ken Layne, T. Jefferson Parker, Rob Roberge, Eduardo Santiago, and Kelly Shire.

Ordering links: 

hardcover   paperback   e-book   audiobook  

Frog Legs

My story “Frog Legs” appears with the work of 15 other writers “over 50” in Outer Voices, Inner Lives, an anthology published by MadeMark Publishing in 2014. The collection includes a foreword by Patricia Nell Warren, and it was honored as a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award in 2015.

All of the contributing authors explore facets of maturity in the LGBTQ community:

Dominic Ambrose, Sally Bellerose, Michael Craft, Allison Green, Jane Eaton Hamilton, Lee Lynch, David Masello, Richard May, John McFarland, Mark McNease (editor and contributor), Stephanie Mott, Dawn Munro, Neil Ellis Orts, Gary Pedler, James Reynolds, and Jean Ryan.

Ordering links:   paperback    e-book

12 linked’ short stories

My collection, Inside Dumont: A Novel in Stories,  contains a dozen narratives “linked” by the character Marson Miles. Each of the stories can stand alone, but together they serve as episodes of a larger novel-length story. Titles of the 12 short stories:

Frog Legs  •  Just a Gigolo  •  Glee Savage  •  Like It Never Happened  •  In the Fridge  •  The Transit of Venus  •  A Familiar Face  •  Upstaged  •  Crazy Thoughts  •  At the Club  •  Carpet Queen  •  The Perfect House

Published by Questover Press in 2016, Inside Dumont was hailed by Kirkus Reviews as “A delightful novel … laugh-out-loud funny … rollicking and engaging.”

Ordering links:

hardcover    paperback    e-book    audiobook

Prior to publication of Inside Dumont, several stories from the collection had appeared elsewhere, as follows:

Frog Legs

• Chelsea Station Magazine, May 2014, Chelsea Station Editions, New York NY

• Badlands Literary Journal: Vol. 5, Fall 2014, California State University, San Bernardino, Palm Desert Campus

• Outer Voices, Inner Lives (anthology), November 2014, MadeMark Publishing, New York NY

• Off the Rocks: Vol. 18 (anthology), December 2014, NewTown Writers Press, Chicago IL

In the Fridge

• Chase the Moon Magazine: Issue 1, September 2014, Manchester UK


• The Outrider Review: Vol. 2, Issue 1, January 2015, Scout Publishing, Omaha NE

The Transit of Venus

• Glitterwolf: Issue 7, January 2015, Manchester UK

After publication of Inside Dumont, I wrote a short story titled “Mister Puss” as a contest entry for the Palm Springs Writers Guild. The story won first prize, so I published it as a “Kindle short” in 2017 (no longer available), wanting to assess public reaction to a talking cat as the premise for a mystery series.

The response was far more enthusiastic than I had anticipated, and in 2018, I released the first of the three Mister Puss mysteries, titled FlabberGassed. The winning short story, slightly revised, served as chapter one of the novel, which was otherwise populated by characters and situations developed in the Inside Dumont collection. And the entire series was set—where else—right there in the fictitious and idyllic little town of Dumont, Wisconsin.

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