My dreams make my stories—the emotionally charged mysteries that I wake up to and attempt to unravel—that said, sometimes even I am unprepared for what my Jungian cookie monster brain throws out there. Like these two friends who are girls in New York (think Kristin McCloy's Some Girls and "My So-Called Life" and probably "Girls" all rolled up into one). One is dark and feral and just can't get anything together, whether cleaning her apartment or getting to her job, and the other, a is a blonde, from Texas via Copenhagen (and a lovely strange accent) who she runs into on the street—Rayanne to her Angela.
But the girls disgusted me. They lived in squalor; they each think the other is beautiful when they're plain at the most generous, hideous at the most honest. And yet they are very feminine and chaotic, seductive in their femininity (and miniskirts and heels and jars of Ponds facial creme). The blonde soaks her bra, panties, and bedsheet in her urine-filled toilet because she decides she wants to be Piss-Christ for Halloween.
These girls are as revolting as they are fascinating, and I don't know where they came from. I'd regret reading about them if I can upon them in a short story, but I'd probably never forget them.
Jen Michalski is author of the novel The Tide King, winner of the 2012 Big Moose Prize, the short story collections From Here and Close Encounters, and the novella collection Could You Be With Her Now. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize. She is the founding editor of the literary quarterly jmww, a co-host of The 510 Readings and the biannual Lit Show, and interviews writers at The Nervous Breakdown. She also is the editor of the anthology City Sages: Baltimore, which Baltimore Magazine called a "Best of Baltimore" in 2010. She lives in Baltimore, MD. She tweets at https://twitter.com/MichalskiJen.