The Summer and Autumn issues of Saddlebag Dispatches, a quarterly journal covering the Old West and edited by Spur Award-Winner Dusty Richard, published my fiction in 2016.
Six miles away from the stagecoach line and Eustace Novacek, a man who liked living alone on the Nebraska frontier, still couldn’t visit the privy in peace. He was used to the breeze whistling through the vertical cracks of the leaning frame outhouse, and he didn’t mind the snow accumulating in the corners. But on a winter’s night, when the wood smoke from his cabin got lost in the wind before it could cover the stink of the latrine below and the temperature dropped faster than his pants, he shouldn’t have to share an evening constitutional with a needy, pestering varmint.
Again the white paw came under the door from outside.
“Eustace and Cats” appears in the Summer Issue (Vol. 2, Issue 2).
Barney Bogart, dressed like a cowboy with long sleeves, vest and chaparrals, and riding an old roan, didn’t think of himself as a bad fellar—which is probably where he and Stank Carmichael differed.
Stank, riding at Barney’s side on a gray gelding and dressed like a citified dandy (complete with brown English bowler), saw the two of them as rough and tumble outlaws. “Real owlhoots on the dark ways prod,” he’d sometimes say. “Jail broke desperadoes.”
The two hadn’t so much broke jail as simply walked out of a Colorado cell during the guard’s drunken lunch hour.
Be that as it may, they were now headed for Stank’s home town of Emoryville on the green flint hills of Kansas.
It was Sunday, and mischief was in the air.
“Killing Hilda Kempker” appears in the Fall Issue (Vol. 2, Issue 3).