Frances’s fiction marries her love of still and moving images and her ongoing commitment to issues that concern contemporary women


Why not? I mused. A short romance will be a nice end to the vacation, give me a chance to fully relax. The idea quickly became a conviction. I deserve it, I thought, as I watched him pull up the barstool next to mine. Our eyes locked.

Touching the Past

Urgh. What’s she doing there? Lukas grumbles as he careens over cracks in the path on his skateboard. The sound of hard plastic wheels over concrete sends birds flying, but an old woman sits, seemingly unfazed, on the bench he thinks of as his.

Four White Walls

I sit on a wooden chair surrounded by four white walls. They define the spatial limitations of my world. I examine the chair, wondering where it came from, and I ask myself, why doesn’t it match the décor?

Behind the Mask

My fingers go numb as I turn the page, and read the news of your death. “Emmanuel François Blanchard of the 6th arrondissement, found dead on 27 August 1914, circumstances unknown.” Our encounter was fleeting, but the memory has stayed with me in the twenty years since.


“I can’t… ugh .. get … argh …” Caroline mutters as she struggles to extract her left foot from a bed of cast metal. Her deep-set eyes stare vacantly, across an expanse of grey concrete floor. At the far reaches of the room, floor to ceiling windows give out onto Chicago’s East Monroe Street, scorching in the midday sun. Caroline forgets; she is stuck. She drops her hands to her sides, allowing them to lightly brush her generous hips. Her small breasts spill outwards to touch her long, thin arms.