Impress Yourself

by Davin Malasarn

Imagine your reader is a better version of you.

During revisions my cooler self waits in his sunglasses and leather jacket. He smells like hay and gasoline. He guest lectures at the University of Chicago about the importance of patient rights in the age of “big data” pharmaceutical studies.

I offer him my draft, and he rolls his eyes at any wasted details, shakes his head when I’ve been emotionally vapid.

He’s smarter than I am, so I don’t need to dumb anything down.

He’s been through more than I have, so I don’t need to overemphasize my point.

And—most importantly—he’s me, so I don’t need to be inauthentic.

Occasionally, he nods his approval. That’s when I know I’ve written something unique that I’d be proud to put out into the world. I bow my head and wait for him to give me noogies.


Davin Malasarn was a PEN Center USA Emerging Voices Fellow. He has been a finalist for Glimmer Train’s Very Short Fiction Contest, first runner-up in Opium Magazine’s 500-word Memoir Contest, and two of his stories were nominated for Pushcart Prizes. He is a former staff editor at SmokeLong Quarterly. His first collection, The Wild Grass and Other Stories is now available in print and as an eBook.

The 17 stories in this collection will take readers to exotic settings around the world while showcasing how universal the human response truly is.

Click on the cover to visit the book’s Amazon page.

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