Picking up my free Stylist magazine this week (actually, 'picking up' isn't quite right - 'having it thrust at me by a poor sod desperate to give out all her copies so she could go home' is more accurate), I was pleasantly surprised to find five original short stories by female writers, three of which were really, really good. Best of all was Belinda Bauer's 'Everything Must Go' - not only does she share a surname with Jack, but she has also written the most accurate description of the Swedish hell that is Ikea I've ever read:
"Ikea's a maze of pyramidal proportions. It's a prescriptive passage - a strict alimentary canal which swallows you at the door, forces you down the throat and into the bowels of the shop, where you are compelled to snatch up things you don't want or need, on the sole basis of their outrageous value for money. Then it shits you out at the checkout, where you realise that even tealights and plastic spoons cost plenty if you buy them in multiples of a thousand."
Couldn't have said it better myself. Stylist are also running a competition to produce a 100-word story inspired by a photo - the last chance to enter is on Tuesday 16th August, but you must submit your story between 10am and 3pm. Sadly I'll be in class, but here are the details:http://www.stylist.co.uk/life/microfiction-competition-day-5