Monday, January 3, 2022

Ringing in the new with Meriah Crawford, in a flash.

With this week’s Flash Fiction Challenge, I introduce you to Meriah Lysistrata Crawford. Our RVA City friend is an associate professor of research and writing at Virginia Commonwealth University, as well as a private investigator, writer, and editor. She has published short stories in several genres, a novella, essays, a variety of scholarly work, and two poems, and co-edited the anthology Trust and Treachery: Tales of Power and Intrigue. Meriah has also co-written several stories, as well as the novel The Persistence of Dreams, with Robert Waters.

At VCU, Meriah teaches a mix of research and writing classes for sophomores and freshman, as well as literature, creative writing, interdisciplinary studies, and a variety of topics in independent studies. Her wide-ranging research interests include trauma, point of view, and teaching and learning.

Meriah has an MFA in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA program, and a PhD in literature and criticism from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Her work as a private investigator, spanning over fifteen years, has included investigations of shootings, murders, burglary, insurance fraud, auto accidents, backgrounds, counterfeit merchandise, patent infringement, and missing persons.

For more information about her work, including articles about writing, visit her website at, or connect on Twitter:

@MeriahCrawford or Facebook:

We’re grateful Meriah joined us in our flash fiction foray.

What is this challenge?

Write a fifty-word flash. That’s it. However, the story must incorporate three randomly selected words and revolve around a single, overall theme. The words have been drawn and shared; letter, afford, and yard. The theme is despair.

A Killer’s Dream

Meriah Lysistrata Crawford

The letter “P” printed on hot pink paper was pinned to his chest with the broken end of a yardstick. TV told me there was a test to tell the type of printer. Of course, the county couldn't afford it. Killing without consequences in Cabot Cove was a killer’s dream.

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