ARCANUM – Jim Gish, Arcanum based writer and psychology instructor for Edison at Franklin Monroe, has published four short stories in six months in various literary venues.
In American Writer’s Review, in the summer issue of 2018, Gish published a short story entitled “On Bloodied Ground”. This story contains some bizarre twists in the life of a Kentucky family where the abusive father gets his just rewards with an Alfred Hitchcock ending the editor called “chilling.”
In an anthology entitled Stories That Need to Be Told, Gish won the $200 first place prize in Humor Fiction with a story entitled “Eunice Buys a Doll” where a conventional and “God fearing” woman defies all convention by purchasing a doll which causes domestic problems and finally climaxes in the arrest of both the wife and husband for disturbing the peace. The volume was published by Tulip Tree Press and Gish’s short story was said to be “deft satire” which the editor said was “the favorite of the editorial staff.”
In May 2019, Gish was notified by The Blue Lake Review that they wished to publish his story “Doomed Men” which uses flashbacks to tell the story of a homeless woman who lives in an abandoned car and falls in love with kind but worthless men who promise her the moon and give her much less. This story was based on the writer’s many summers while he was in college and law school when he worked at a Greyhound bus station and had daily commerce with the homeless and the hopeless and the dispossessed. Gish has said before in interviews and writing symposiums that his tenure at the inner city bus station was like an “adventure in the surreal” and helped to shape his sometimes naturalistic view of life which often rears its head in his writings.
“In a Season of Pain” was recently acquired by Contrary Magazine. It is a story of a young man’s revelatory experiences in religious mysticism where he is first a skeptic and then an unwilling convert in an evening which changes his life forever. Gish believes that much of his Kentucky based writings involve the mystery and beauty and wonder of his Baptist boyhood. Gish had four Uncles and cousins who were Baptist ministers. His father was a noted Bible scholar in the rural back country of the Ohio River bottomland where he grew up. There is often a narrative tension in many of his stories which revolves around characters that leave the church and then return to find the peace and contentment which they lost.
Gish has published stores and won awards for writing since he was 12-years-old and published his first epic entitled “I Am a Cornflake” in a local paper.