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  • Melissa Tombro, Author at Litro Magazine
    at the Fashion Institute of Technology SUNY in NYC where she teaches writing In addition to teaching she volunteers for the New York Writers Coalition where she runs writing workshops for at risk and underserved populations She lives in Sunset Park Brooklyn with her husband Matt and their dog Lily Her work has appeared in Eclectica Crack the Spine and StepAway Magazine Website Twitter Facebook Contact Us General 44 0 20 3371 9971 info litro co uk Sales Advertising enquiries 44 0 20 3371 9971 Email Sales Magazine Editorial editor litro co uk All Online Editorial online litro co uk Book Reviews Author Interviews reviews litro co uk Film Arts Editorial arts litro co uk Litro Lab Podcast litrolab litro co uk LitroTV litrotv litro co uk Litro Listings listings litro co uk Subscribe Stockists Submissions Advertising Our Team About Litro Litro Magazine is a free short stories and creative arts magazine in print and online Providing a place for readers writers and the broader creative community to discuss various aspects of literature arts and culture through features reviews non themed fiction interviews columns and more Perfect reading for those with busy lives When the first issue of Litro was published in April 2005 the main free paper for commuters and city dwellers was the morning Metro Since then many tabloid style free sheets have joined the field like the Metro these can be skim read and quickly discarded Litro is different our central aim has always been to provide commuters and city dwellers with an inspiring thought provoking alternative that takes you places you don t normally think about when travelling around the city We believe literary magazines should not just be targeted at writers themselves or even those with a particular interest in literature instead Litro believes in

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/author/mtombro/ (2016-02-15)
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  • The Meaning of Smiling
    people afterwards neither happy nor fleeting We shall not be one another s dogs You will not do my request I will not do yours It is a tired request now and you think you are the first to say it the first to ask this of me Smile because you think everyone should because everyone is capable of smiling But the meaning of a smile to evoke the reasoning for a smile is something you cannot make me do I can spread my face splash a smile as fragile as melting ice I can pretend I care pretend I m Disney like boisterous jolly you say I can do all of that I can play that tune but I don t want to that is an act You cannot force me to smile in a way that means anything you are the kind of person who will never make me smile Laugh maybe Pathetically hopelessly laugh at what this situation is and who you are but smile never You do not have that power In my childhood bedroom watching Hocus Pocus sitting beside my eight year old niece my sister s daughter sharing a bowl of crisps Uncle Tom Yes Amelia What do you think I ll be when I grow up I don t know I say Whatever you want to be You love animals you could be a vet but you might like something else and do that What do you want to be She shrugs I don t know yet Yet I smile Not yet but she will I see my sister in Amelia utterly completely When I first saw her resting between my sister s legs asleep I said she s going to be exactly like Jen My mother protested She s the spitting image of her father Years later when Amelia s quip sass and intrigue set in when her hair grew long and brown when her ability to deal with tough situations efficiently heightened my mother said She s so much like Jen She is of course her own person She loves painting and Pokémon and Roald Dahl and her dragon Lucy She gets upset with she hears my mother is selling the coffee table because she enjoys having her own drawer She adopts traits from me eating strawberries or pretzels out of bowls drinking Pepsi out of mugs She works at my desk when I m out or I ll sit in the chair opposite and read as she copies extracts from James and the Giant Peach or staples papers together to write and draw But she has my sister s qualities stubbornness strength smile Amelia enjoys having her photo taken she beams I once took a photograph of her at Christmas when she was seven and wore a rugged grey onesie similar to Max from Where The Wild Things Are She was on my right at the dining table after we d devoured all of the roast potatoes and were playing

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2015/11/the-boy-with-the-frown-needs-to-smile/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Maid, To Love
    for over a decade I couldn t believe Beth was so money minded Didn t she love me enough to stay But I knew it was selfish of me to think that way knowing that her family needed her salary If we weren t paying her enough who was I to make her stay At the end of the day Beth was hired help My parents knew it Beth knew it so I kept my mouth shut something I sorely regretted in the years to come wishing I had fought harder to make her stay Without a job Beth had to return to the Philippines By that time she was already in her early forties I doubted she was able to find another job at least not in Singapore where employers preferred younger maids who were deemed quicker in their thinking and on their feet At the airport Beth and I hugged each other and cried until we separated and she entered the departure gates After that I bought a life sized Minnie Mouse doll thinking it could make up for her absence It didn t Beth didn t have a telephone or internet connection in her village so we wrote I sent her long letters detailing my life She wrote back too though not as frequently and told me that she missed me Although she was happy to be with her family and friends she lamented that life was difficult What s the use of being together if you have nothing in your pocket she wrote I am just being practical We only kept in touch for a year before her letters stopped I continued writing but there was no response In her last letter she mentioned that she was trying to find work in Singapore or Taiwan I am already at broke stage Really she wrote Life here is very hard so I want to try again Maybe this will be my last chance because I m getting old you know I learned that at the time of writing she was suffering from mumps that was so painful that she couldn t sleep She also commented on how scary natural disasters were At about 1 57am there s an earthquake more or less 2 mins she wrote I was so scared For so many years down there Singapore didn t experience anything like this Down there no earthquake no typhoon nothing That s why I m very scared I kept her letters and even brought them with me to Los Angeles where I am currently living Whenever I reread them I would feel sad In hindsight I wondered if her letter had been a call for help to re hire her At that time I had not even entertained that thought because my parents were barely making ends meet We had moved several times to reduce our housing loans and both my parents were no longer working in their well paying jobs To have a maid was a

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2015/10/maid-to-love/ (2016-02-15)
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  • jinnykoh, Author at Litro Magazine
    Editor at The Southern California Review while pursuing her Masters in Professional Writing at the University of Southern California Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Round The Conium Review Role Reboot Quarterly Literary Review Singapore FORTH Magazine and The Epigram Books Collection of Best New Singaporean Short Stories Volume 2 among others Website Twitter Facebook Contact Us General 44 0 20 3371 9971 info litro co uk Sales Advertising enquiries 44 0 20 3371 9971 Email Sales Magazine Editorial editor litro co uk All Online Editorial online litro co uk Book Reviews Author Interviews reviews litro co uk Film Arts Editorial arts litro co uk Litro Lab Podcast litrolab litro co uk LitroTV litrotv litro co uk Litro Listings listings litro co uk Subscribe Stockists Submissions Advertising Our Team About Litro Litro Magazine is a free short stories and creative arts magazine in print and online Providing a place for readers writers and the broader creative community to discuss various aspects of literature arts and culture through features reviews non themed fiction interviews columns and more Perfect reading for those with busy lives When the first issue of Litro was published in April 2005 the main free paper for commuters and city dwellers was the morning Metro Since then many tabloid style free sheets have joined the field like the Metro these can be skim read and quickly discarded Litro is different our central aim has always been to provide commuters and city dwellers with an inspiring thought provoking alternative that takes you places you don t normally think about when travelling around the city We believe literary magazines should not just be targeted at writers themselves or even those with a particular interest in literature instead Litro believes in reaching the general reader whether they be

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/author/jinnykoh/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Not Falling but Flying
    tucking and rolling like James Bond in case I hit the ground hard I have also practiced what to do if something goes wrong if my parachute doesn t inflate 1 Pull the ring on the right strap to cut away the main chute 2 Pull the ring on the left strap to deploy the reserve chute 3 Assume the arch position Right left arch And then pray that the reserve chute opens My altimeter indicates that we re nearly at 3 500 feet The instructor motions that it s time for us to get ready I ll go first I volunteer I m the only woman I want to prove to my male friends that I m just as brave that I m braver than them The instructor clips me on to the static line Now step out on to the strut he tells me I know that the others are watching me This is not the moment to hesitate Right left arch I don t look at the ground I look at the wing of the plane in front of the doorway I focus on the wing Gripping the doorway tightly with my left hand I lean forward and grab the wing with my right hand right left arch and then I creep out of the plane on to the narrow strut Right left arch 3 2 1 the instructor shouts in my ear GO I jump backwards arching my back flinging my arms wide Right left arch Right left arch Right left arch I open my eyes The plane has disappeared I can t even hear it anymore There is utter silence I look up my parachute has blossomed over my head No need for the reserve And then I look down The landscape is laid out the brown mosaic of Pietermaritzburg directly below the surrounding patchwork fields the viridian hills and forests of the midlands in the distance the escarpment and jagged peaks of the Drakensberg fading into the sky and in the opposite direction the ocean I toggle the parachute controls and swoop to the right and then to the left I m not falling but flying I m a bird It s so quiet I am a feather drifting down I want to stay here forever About Rebecca Rouillard Rebecca Rouillard was born in Oxford grew up in Durban South Africa and now lives in London She s had several short stories published and is currently working on a novel She is the Managing Editor of the Birkbeck Writers Hub Mail Web More Posts 2 Comments comments Prev FOCUSED BREATHING Next Maid To Love Related Posts FOCUSED BREATHING City of Language My Bed and I Litro TV Recent Posts Bringing Up Baby In the Night Time Before the Sun Rises at the Gate Theatre True Love in Los Angeles A R BY ANY OTHER NAME The Echo Travelling in Fiji The Litro Blog View Archive 11th February 2016 Litro 149 The Love issue Letter

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2015/09/not-falling-but-flying/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Rebecca Rouillard, Author at Litro Magazine
    and then she snorted nostrils flaring That s ridiculous Babies don t get claustrophobic Read more Rebecca Rouillard The author has 2 posts published in Litro Magazine Rebecca Rouillard was born in Oxford grew up in Durban South Africa and now lives in London She s had several short stories published and is currently working on a novel She is the Managing Editor of the Birkbeck Writers Hub Website Twitter Facebook Contact Us General 44 0 20 3371 9971 info litro co uk Sales Advertising enquiries 44 0 20 3371 9971 Email Sales Magazine Editorial editor litro co uk All Online Editorial online litro co uk Book Reviews Author Interviews reviews litro co uk Film Arts Editorial arts litro co uk Litro Lab Podcast litrolab litro co uk LitroTV litrotv litro co uk Litro Listings listings litro co uk Subscribe Stockists Submissions Advertising Our Team About Litro Litro Magazine is a free short stories and creative arts magazine in print and online Providing a place for readers writers and the broader creative community to discuss various aspects of literature arts and culture through features reviews non themed fiction interviews columns and more Perfect reading for those with busy lives When the first issue of Litro was published in April 2005 the main free paper for commuters and city dwellers was the morning Metro Since then many tabloid style free sheets have joined the field like the Metro these can be skim read and quickly discarded Litro is different our central aim has always been to provide commuters and city dwellers with an inspiring thought provoking alternative that takes you places you don t normally think about when travelling around the city We believe literary magazines should not just be targeted at writers themselves or even those with a particular interest

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/author/rebeccarouillard/ (2016-02-15)
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  • FOCUSED BREATHING
    I had to rely on was my sparkling wit and effusive personality the existence of both still fairly dubious at this point It was about two weeks before my 18th birthday and I had been invited to a birthday party at Zen nightclub For those unaware Zen at the time was the place to be So snagging an invitation was a virtual coup I still remember the awful dress and ugly shoes I wore my terrible attempt at makeup my daddy telling me I looked grown up and the battle between terror and excitement that waged in my head on the drive there There s not much else I remember about that night There was self conscious dancing with furtive glances at all the other moving bodies to make sure I was in fact moving right There was gossip in the bathrooms of who was dating who and all the other things teenaged girls talk about And then there was the only other moment I remember I guess the one that mattered the most a shy glance a tentative nod a hand on my waist hiding my shaking hands and the soft lips of a virtual stranger welcoming me where so many other girls had already been My first kiss From everything I ve read and seen on TV and in the movies this is supposed to be a special if not life changing moment in a girl s life It should matter or mean something It struck me on the way home lips still tingling my face on fire my head spinning I didn t quite know what it meant I found myself less concerned about the kiss and the now faceless nameless boy and more about the remaining party guests Had anyone seen me What had they thought Would they be impressed Would they be disgusted Should I be disgusted Ashamed even The next day at school was more revelatory than the actual kiss For the first time for something I did completely by accident I felt interesting I realized that frank discussion and a flippant attitude were the key ingredients to this People seemed to love that I told them everything tiny details that should have been private and treasured were now up for public consumption It was when I learnt to give people more when I stopped exaggerating and mugging and told the painfully detailed truths when I stopped writing fiction and ushered in that period of my life when nothing stayed a secret Looking back on that night and the days that followed it s easy to see how much it shaped my eventual awakening and the way I went about experiencing my life through the intervention of strangers and with an audience of many My story escalates as I search for a positive reaction Unnecessary personal details cascade out of my mouth with an air of indifference that I certainly don t feel I take a drag off my cigarette glance around at their faces Everyone seems engaged I labour on all the while hearing the story build as details and intimacies pile on top of exaggerations What are you doing Just stop There s a hint of judgment seeping into the stares of a couple people A little whiff of skepticism I stare back defiantly but certain my eyes give away the real story I press the lit end of my cigarette into a corner of the ash tray obsessively pushing down on every stray ember I chuckle and rise making an excuse and seeking respite in a bathroom stall At 18 I left behind Trinidad for college in New York City For four years I travelled back and forth between NYC and Trinidad earned a degree moved through three boroughs tried to make a home for myself in one made some amazing friends and met a soul mate The most important part of those four years though was that I met and fell in love with me It s something out of a sci fi novel meeting yourself for the first time There s a transformation a mutation happening to the protagonist so slowly that they re totally unaware But the details of the change are documented and unravel right before the reader s eyes so that when the protagonist finally looks in the mirror and is assaulted by the sight of his reflection the reader while not surprised is still deeply affected by what is reflected there When you live your life in your head constantly examining every situation and moment you find yourself filling the roles of protagonist and reader Your life continues to unfold but somewhere in your mind you observe the happenings taking copious notes as only the most critical audience can There were the expected delays My first true sexual experience went the way of my first kiss unplanned unknown and with an audience waiting behind a locked dorm room door And I was left with the same conflicting emotions as that first kiss weighing the importance of another major life event and the perception of the people around me My own judgment didn t matter as much as theirs at least not then I continued to be unabashedly open about my life and most times with complete strangers and in a new development unconventionally free spirited with my body With those moments always came the high anxiety panic attacks and sheer breathlessness I closed myself off to new people leaned too heavily on the friends I had already made isolating myself from new experiences jealous of the acquaintances and friends of those closest to me and started what would be a string of short and shallow romantic connections It took a long time for me to learn the difference between opening up and oversharing between who I could trust and love and who I could not and that the people who did love me completely unconditionally were not going to abandon me for other friends or

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/2015/09/focused-breathing/ (2016-02-15)
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  • Denece Mohammed, Author at Litro Magazine
    student living and working in Trinidad and Tobago She writes mostly about herself her family love friendship and feminism and for herself She uses her writing as a way to examine herself and her role in society and the larger world around her Website Twitter Facebook Contact Us General 44 0 20 3371 9971 info litro co uk Sales Advertising enquiries 44 0 20 3371 9971 Email Sales Magazine Editorial editor litro co uk All Online Editorial online litro co uk Book Reviews Author Interviews reviews litro co uk Film Arts Editorial arts litro co uk Litro Lab Podcast litrolab litro co uk LitroTV litrotv litro co uk Litro Listings listings litro co uk Subscribe Stockists Submissions Advertising Our Team About Litro Litro Magazine is a free short stories and creative arts magazine in print and online Providing a place for readers writers and the broader creative community to discuss various aspects of literature arts and culture through features reviews non themed fiction interviews columns and more Perfect reading for those with busy lives When the first issue of Litro was published in April 2005 the main free paper for commuters and city dwellers was the morning Metro Since then many tabloid style free sheets have joined the field like the Metro these can be skim read and quickly discarded Litro is different our central aim has always been to provide commuters and city dwellers with an inspiring thought provoking alternative that takes you places you don t normally think about when travelling around the city We believe literary magazines should not just be targeted at writers themselves or even those with a particular interest in literature instead Litro believes in reaching the general reader whether they be a commuter someone browsing in a bookshop or in a bar or

    Original URL path: http://www.litro.co.uk/author/denecem/ (2016-02-15)
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