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A4 Issue 1

A4 Issue 1 - continuing PJ Holden's flashfiction A4 zine, that can be folded into a standee (see instructions here: www.pauljholden.com/a4 )

This issue contains the stories: Glassholes, Wash Away the Pain, Dreamgirl, Big Data, Rollcall, Red Planet and Lord of the Dance.

Download a PDF of this issue a4 issue one


Alrighty, where I can remember I’ll talk about each story and what inspired it…


Firstly, that title came late, originally it was called Glasshouses, and I was just checking it and rewording the story (I treat these like a twitter joke, trying to maximise the effect and minimise the word count) when I realised that title was funny. So, it pretty much came out of two very obvious sources – firstly the insane Musk vs Zuckerberg proposed fight, and secondly the story of Musk apparent “Project 42” a giant glass house. Those two ideas perculated and boom.

This story was also a very late entry, as I’d had a very short short in that place but I couldn’t get it to work (maybe if I can it’ll turn up, but I suspect it’s doomed to be a better idea than an an execution)

In an ideal world this stories obvious initial setting of mars would be stated, but I had a better short mars story that I really liked, which was…


I think I thought of this one at the trolly park outside Lidl’s where there is also a canal, and boom, all at once.


Wash Away The Pain

So my 15 year old is a big music buff (as is his 18 year old brother) none of which came from me or my wife, they’ve both got extensive vinyl collections (I’ve never owned a vinyl in my life, not even the first time around… all cassettes and cds for me) and… well, he’s really gotten in to Prince. And there it is.


Never sure if these stories work, I hope this does, but it comes out of a Christoper Lee interview wherein he was talking about black magic and how it’s all real and he was essentially performing a real black mass and I thought, wouldn’t it be funny if Satan turned up?

I bet there’s a better title though, I just bet there is.

Dream girl

Slightly disturbed myself, creating make believe people and make believe lives and then finding themselves reassuring each other they’re very much real.

Big Data

Maybe not as successful as I’d liked it to have been, but I think I was listening to someone talk about how rubbish their spotify playlist was, and it occurred to me if Ai’s became sentient we’d condemned them to terrible low interest jobs which they might decide to be a bit pissy about – of course I wrote that last month, which means it’s already terribly dated.

Lord of the Dance

A tale as old as time, from the lunatics point of view, everyone is having a high old time.