Adam Welch

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Recent publications.  

Short Fiction
July 2020

Short Fiction &
University of Essex
Short Story Prize 2020
Highly commended

Larva, Nymph Imago

From the car I can see the stranger through the convenience store window, drifting between the aisles. He has a long, pale throat, a protruding Adam’s apple, a face that peers uncontrollably, all fringe, forehead and nose. His right hand clasps a tube of Pringles, which is not what I wanted, and it is nobbled and veiny, the fingers far too long. His skin is sallow under the low, yellow lights, which cast caramel-coloured shadows under his eyes. I wait, fuming, because I asked for ranch popcorn, or candy cane kisses: something I would never eat at home, because that was the whole point of this, not being there. But he doesn’t seem the type for candy cane kisses. He seems the type that likes what he likes.

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Open Pen
February 2020

The Flaw

She was in herbs and spices, pushing the shopping trolley along, and the baby had screwed up its face, as if it knew. This was the problem with these trolleys: the baby was always facing you, staring balefully upwards, into your soul. It was adorable, this baby, round-faced, with dimples, the neck fat piling up in folds beneath its chin. Also, she had to love it: it was hers. But the expression it was making—eyes narrowed, lip snagged up and right, a sliver of toothless gum visible—was not pleasant. The expression was like it could see what she was thinking, and was horrified...

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August 2019

Sweet Nothing

Now that people can look up whatever they want on their phones it’s not that impressive to know things, because everyone does. The most interesting people now are the ones that don’t know anything. Like Jane, who I used to work with, and sort of dated for a while. In the beginning I would just stand behind her in the office kitchen, while she waited for the coffee jug to fill. She would stare at the coffee dripping through the filter, and I would stare in turn at the back of her head, which was covered in short, straight, flicky-out brown hair, like a coconut, and wonder what was going on in there...

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Best British
Short Stories
July 2019

August 2018


Finally, they dropped all the pretences and produced a drug that had no benefits, just side effects. Carlos told me about it. It's the Chinese. They cook up some new snortable chemical every day, give it a catchy name and sell it to twelve-year-olds on the internet. Don't ask me why twelve-year-olds are chopping up lines when they should be running around in the sunshine, or doing their homework, or at least learning basic HTML, so they can get a job someday. I don’t know why things have got so bad. I spend a lot of time wishing that they hadn’t. But that's not going to stop these kids from getting their rocks off. Nothing will, Carlos says...

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London Short Story
Prize 2019

As Close as it Comes

At the unfortunate age of 44, around 32,000 feet in the air, a man described on his passport as DANIEL JORDAN SYME (Ojai, California) passed away in his sleep. He was sitting at 48H, an aisle seat about halfway down the plane, mostly remarkable for being equidistant from both sets of restrooms. He had not been unwell before it happened, aside from the odd nosebleed now and then. On the contrary, he’d been a robust specimen for his age: lean, fit and, poignantly, somewhat handsome. He wasn’t the kind of person to just randomly die. But then, he did...

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