Fiction Sneak Peek: June 17, 2023 Issue

Shutterstock / Yulistrator ©

A warm welcome to our look at the fiction in this week’s issue.

Short Stories

Donna’s only good at one subject at school – Maths. How will that shape her life? Find out in our opening story, “The Right Formula” by Leonora Francis. Artwork, Jim Dewar.

What has brought an incomer to a small Spanish village? All is revealed in Gabrielle Mullarkey’s “A Spanish Sunset” (image from Shutterstock, above).

Confidence trickster, Paul, thinks if he can just make it through dinner with Jill, a painting will be his… Barbara Dynes’ “Art Of The Steal” has an illustration from Philip Crabb.

A silver birch in the middle of a cul-de-sac is special to everyone, in Jenny Worstall’s “On Hope Close”…

…while travel agent, Mari, knows how to get people to their ideal destination, in Teresa Ashby’s “Going Places”. Artwork, Jim Dewar.

Having Mr Burton for a teacher is proving to be a challenge in our next story, set in 1978 – “The Right Formula”. By Eirin Thompson, it’s illustrated by Sailesh Thakrar.

Our final short story of this week is Becca Robin’s “Stages Of Life”. Juliet is part of an am-dram group, but how will she react when cast as an older character? Artwork, Jim Dewar.


A brand-new serial begins today – Alison Carter’s “Back To The Valley”. In four parts, it’s set in 1939 and is the sequel to Alison’s lovely “Lily Of The Valley”. With artwork throughout from Andre Leonard.

It’s the penultimate part of “Hearts On Fire”, and the group are back at King’s Peak with another tough assignment to complete. By Sue Cook, artwork is from Gerard Fay.

Final instalment next week!


In Stefania Hartley’s “Welcome To Quayside”, will Charlie change his opinion of the library?

While over on “Riverside”, something strange is happening at The Ship Inn! By Glenda Young.


Lucy Crichton

Fiction Editor Lucy is always on the look-out for the very best short stories, poems and pocket novels. As well as sourcing enjoyable content, she enjoys working with our established contributors, encouraging new talent, and celebrating 155 years of 'Friend' fiction!