The Excursionist of JCPenney

I have a new story in the February 2023 issue of Metaphorosis. About a woman who is about to lose the only thing in the world that makes her feel special: her sales job at a failing department store.

Lorraine sat in the passenger seat of the Buick with four flat tires, applying her usual shade of lipstick. The fact that the tires were flat was no bother; the car hadn’t moved since her mother died twenty years before. Even if Lorraine could afford to get it running again, it wouldn’t make any difference. She didn’t know how to drive.

It recently (4/4/23) got a nice review in Mythaxis Magazine.

Being one of a select few publications to have generously hosted your humble editor’s own creative output, I ought to be shame-faced in saying that Metaphorosis Magazine lives up to its billing as a home to “intelligent, beautifully written stories for adults”. Fortunately, there is better evidence than mine.

A prime example is Chris Panatier’s contemporary fantasy The Excursionist of JCPenney. It introduces us to Lorraine, a quietly awkward older Floridian of limited means and experiences, whose ordinary existence is unwittingly balanced on the precarious edge of corporate whim, as are so many. The simple telling of her life in a period of approaching crisis gradually opens our eyes to something far less mundane at play, and the result is a wholly good-natured reward for someone who has put up with a life’s trials, old and new, large and small, as do so many.

You can read or listen to it at the link.

Read The Excursionist of JCPenney at Metaphorosis

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