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The Drum

Issue 19. December 2011

LESLIE PIETRZYK Lady of the House


Leslie Pietrzyk's novel excerpt Lady of the House brings a crisis into the already unsettled life of sisters Nettie and Lucy in the Chicago of 1900. At the turn of a new century, with their father recently dead and Lucy newly married, both women face decisions about how to respond to the pressures of motherhood and marriage. Their situation sharpens when a maid introduces a crisis of her own into the sisters' household. (43:07)

about the author

novel excerptlargecrisisrelationships

JESSICA BARKSDALE Marco on the Beach


Jessica Barksdale's "Marco on the Beach" captures Marco trying to make do--with food stamps, with his girlfriend who can't sleep enough, with uncertainty over where to live. As he and Sara negotiate the grocery-store aisles and settle down over a meager meal, a new discovery makes Marco imagine his life, an alternate future spinning out from a single choice. (24:25)

about the author

short fictionmediumrelationshipscrisis

LIZ MOORE Zip-Code Stories


Liz Moore's "The Start of Something" is our featured Zip-Code Story for the month of December. Moore's piece about Framingham's 01702 captures that feeling of being pulled into new experiences and new places even as we yearn for what we know. As she contemplates her own relationship with her hometown through adolescence and young adulthood, Moore gives us a vivid sense of the excitement and wistfulness in realizing that there's always the start of something new. (3:57)

about the author


theme: comedy

theme: crisis

theme: relationships

theme: family

genre: essay

novel excerpt

short fiction


under 10 min

under 20 min

under 30 min

under 40 min