I just told my cat, "No." He pawed a thumb drive off of a shelf. I think a short story would make a bigger thud if it fell off a shelf than a thumb drive, but less of a thud than a hand job that you somehow remember for a long time. Or maybe they are all the same thing: the thumb drive, the short story, and the hand job. Maybe even my cat is the same thing as a hand job.
The short story is unfortunate, at least. Like when you fall weird on your wrist or ankle when making a gamble for something unimportant—or at least something inconsistent. Something hard to judge with your eyes. With your eyes. A short story does not start and stop, it just can be seen a little different. Maybe it's two different points in a river. At one point, you're having an MVP season with the San Francisco Giants, and then, holy shit! You're finishing your career with the Dodgers. I guess I'm saying my answer to the question is "Jeff Kent."" — Bryan Coffelt, poet and designer extraordinaire at Future Tense Books