Sarah Layden’s The Story I Tell Myself About Myself, winner of the inaugural Sonder Press Chapbook Competition, is an intimate, deftly crafted collection. The fictions housed here, while brief, are delicate and deliberate, each capturing at once the vast, fleeting fragility of our existence and the singular, profound experience of each moment lived.  And while these are stories of abandonment and regret, of desire, guilt and longing, there is love and good intention, faith and wonder here, as well.  Layden crafts her prose with precision and a keen understanding of the nuance of language. Each story is a measured mouthful, sweet and full on the tongue. The Story I Tell Myself About Myself tells the story of all of us, the spectrum of our lives laid bare, our own reflection refracted.

The Story I Tell Myself About Myself

Sarah Layden


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"...Layden gives readers a collection of unforgettable and superb flash fiction. The stories superbly written and expertly crafted that they feel richer and more complex than most full-length novels...Slippery, secretive, and sensual, Layden's short fiction is simply magical." - Dan Grossman & Laura McPhee for

"The Story I Tell Myself about Myself by Sarah Layden is a wonderful assemblage of pure storytelling genius. These fifteen stories are by turns heart-wrenching, funny, and deliciously surprising. Layden is a deft, intelligent writer at the height of her powers. Read this book, then seek out everything else she has written." - Kathy Fish, author of Wild Life


“Sarah Layden’s excellent new chapbook is sleet and ice cracking. It’s ducks, boots, candles, and comets. It’s phone calls and packages; ham salad and ovulation. It’s so many things all pulled together with the strong, confident pen of Sarah Layden. These stories dwell in leaving and loss, displacement and memory. Layden lets the world in, breathes the world out. Join her.” - Sherrie Flick, author of Thank Your Lucky Stars


"Loss and disappointment permeate Layden’s stories, often fantastical allegories…we feel it, too, in the straight-shooting family narratives…Either way, the dead-on characterization grounds the reader…There is something familiar in Layden’s stories, and it stings." - Thea Swanson, author of MARS & The Curious Solitude of Anise

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