This Week’s Reader: Christopher Allen

DSCN5501Christopher is the author of “When Chase Prays Chocolate,” which will be included in our upcoming anthology, SmokeLong Quarterly: The Best of the First Ten Years.


Christopher Allen is the author of Conversations with S. Teri O’Type (a Satire), an episodic adult cartoon about a man struggling with expectations. Allen’s award-winning fiction and non-fiction have appeared or are forthcoming in SmokeLong Quarterly’s Best of the First Ten Years anthology, Prime Number Magazine, The Best of Every Day Ficton, Pure Slush, Bootsnall Travel and Chicken Soup for the Soul. A finalist at Glimmer Train in 2011, Allen has been nominated for Best of the Net and the Pushcart Prize twice. He is the managing editor of the daily litzine Metazen.

What he’s looking for:

I like tight prose that relies less on conventional syntax/contrived mechanics and more on narrative voice, fresh imagery and guts. Eloquent language/style is great, but memorable characters and a fresh story–an idea I haven’t seen before–is like Love to Eloquent Language’s tinkling brass.

Deal breakers:

Sentimentality. “Humor” that’s not funny. Torture. Sex with no point but sex. Stories about bowel movements. Racism. All the usual suspects.

Stories he likes:

Generally, to get an idea of what I like, just read a few issues of SmokeLong Quarterly–it’s all excellent writing. Here are three recent stories I loved:

The Empty Roadby Christopher James

The Sahara is No Place for a Boy” by Vincent Pagé

Wolf Cry”  by Sara Lippmann

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