Alysa Salzberg

Alysa Salzberg
Paris, France
December 31
Writer, copy editor, translator, travel planner. Head servant to my cat.
A reader, a writer, a fingernail biter, a cat person, a traveller, a cookie inhaler, an immigrant, a dreamer. …And now, self-employed! If you like my blog and if you're looking for sparkling writing, painstaking proofreading, nimble French-English translation, or personalized travel planning, feel free to check out


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OCTOBER 12, 2012 11:30AM

Avenue Feuillant

Rate: 14 Flag


- I’m coming to Paris!   I’ll stay with you, like we planned!  What's your address? 

My place is problematic. 

 - It doesn’t matter. I love you.  You don’t feel the same? 

 - I do. Okay: Avenue Feuillant. 

 I google it.  It’s a street in Père Lachaise cemetery.



(image source



This week's Fiction Weekend prompt was to write a mini-saga - that is, a complete short story in exactly 50 words.  Feel inspired?  Everyone's welcome to participate.  The only requirement is that your piece be a work of FICTION.  For information about how to announce your story, feel free to check out the OS Weekend Fiction Club (which is not really a club -just sounded catchy) blog.  And if you'd like to read the other mini-sagas that were written this week, click here for the Stories List.  People announce their work in the comments section throughout the weekend, so check back regularly for even more stories!  Happy reading and writing! 

UPDATE: The boyfriend thought this prompt was a cool idea, and wrote his own mini saga.  You can find it in the comments below. 

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Oooh, harsh! But on the plus side, not involved with a coward. A very real and modern little tale.
Like "The Shadow of the Wind", but more concise.
At least they get to see one of my favorite cemeteries!
Well that's kinda creepy, Alysa! Good heavens!
Ha. Problematic.
I like this little story cuz it tells alot in a little,which
i guess was the point of the prompt.
As they planned. The lovers . In Paris!
Something interfered. In which interval, someone died.
And yet! Communication beyond the penumbra.
Cool. funny. I love it when u show us yer dark side.
Thanks for the comments on my whimsical CORPSE post.
quite a thing to see em before the morticians get to em.
yikes! but it teaches you:
the body is a shell,
the soul was its inhabitant.
Did not see that coming. fantastic job.

Did she tell you to birng your sleeping bag??:)
The boyfriend thought this was such a cool idea, that he wrote a mini saga of his own! Here it is, in French, and then with my translation:

Elle est encore passée me voir. Pourtant je pensais bien l’avoir croquée la nuit dernière. Elle devait donc avoir une sœur, la savoureuse petite souris d’hier. Ma gamelle est vide et comme il me reste encore un peu d’appétit, je vais être charitable et réunir la fratrie.

TRANSLATION (comes to 2 more words than the original version – sorry!): “She came to see me again tonight. But I thought that I really sank my teeth into her last night. So she must have a sister, that savory little mouse from yesterday. My bowl is empty and since I’m still a bit hungry, I’m going to be charitable and reunite the siblings.”
The boyfriend's saga fits so well with what you wrote, Alysa. Love it!
I like both of your stories (the Boyfriend's is, perhaps, even creepier than your own). Now I must try.
The Fall is getting to all of us. I love creepy. You both did a great job.
Read and rated X two, Alysa! These fifty word sagas are fun. I enjoy these prompts [time and you know, money permitting] and, now alert for trapdoors, I've learned how such devices can be catalytic.
Is the digital writers sphere hell bent toward ultra-flash?
Such exercise sure beats a self-portrait with a Brownie Instamatic!
Just another deadbeat?
Give a thumbs up to Mister Cheese!
Nice! I had to read it twice to get it. R
Of corpse! Should have known . . .
How fitting with Halloween just around the corner. Do they celebrate Halloween in France? Rated
Hi guys, thanks for reading,and I'm so glad you've enjoyed my and the boyfriend's mini sagas!

To answer some comments/questions:

James - I love your interpretation of my story. I wanted to leave it vague, so that a reader could imagine what the reason was for the address. I hadn't thought of your version, though....

Linda - You're right - a sleeping bag might be a very good idea in this situation....

J.P. Hart - I hope that ultra-flash fiction won't be the only trend online writers end up following. I feel like it's so important to leave things open, to have formats like this, but also super-long stories, if that's what the subject requires.....It is awful fun to write a mini saga, though, that's for sure!

Blinddream - Love the puns!

trudge - I was worried my story was a little too much information packed into this format. I really think I should have chosen something a little simpler for a mini saga, and given this story at least a few more words.... Thanks for reading it twice.

AtHomePilgrim - Har, har, har, another great pun!

JoeBono - Actually, except for expats like myself, no one here celebrates Halloween. There are Halloween theme nights at some pubs and attractions like Eurodisney, but that's about it. Which makes me sad, because I love Halloween. We usually have a Halloween party at our place, but this year because of all the renovation/remodeling work and preparation, we won't be able to....
very cool...i like short and creepified. may give it a try.
I'm too long winded but will try. Enjoyed yours and the savory siblings imagined by the boyfriend. Great that cemeteries should have street names. Date with a deadbeat?
just posted mine...inspired by the creepiness of yours and your boyfriend...;)
Its always a good time for the undead.

Is Halloween or All Saints Day (toussants?) a big deal en Paris?
Here's mine:

The candles didn’t light themselves. She knew that was impossible. Just as impossible as the chair that rocked no one, and the music that woke her in the night. She will not tell the others. They did it. And now while they sleep, she lets the flames burn them all.

It's haunting! You did so much with so few words.
fernsy - I love the idea of a cemetery having street names, too. I've often thought about using that in a story. It's especially cool at Pere Lachaise because its streets are often lined with sepulchers, which look like little houses.....

mime - Oh my gosh, I love yours! Muuuuuch spookier than mine! So well done!

Thanks again for reading, guys!
Sorry for being late. I really enjoyed the both of your mini sagas.
Your story made me ponder the thought "death has no address... until you arrive there."
The boyfriend's mini saga was good, too. Delicious, one could say.
Great use of the prompt and Paris setting. Also, your boyfriend's. R