Thoughts and Inspiration for Creative Writers

-from Chrysalis Editorial

This Week’s Confessions: Fact or Fiction? Featured Author

Posted on | June 14, 2011 | 2 Comments

As we said last week, we are very proud of the authors who contributed to the recently published anthology Confessions: Fact or Fiction? Keeping to our promise, we have posted another author feature this week.  We hope you enjoy reading about this talented writer, and again we challenge you to guess whether his piece (excerpt posted below) is fiction or fact…and we’d love to hear why!

**Don’t forget to visit the Confessions website too!**

This week’s featured author is R. Dean Johnson, another Confessions contributor scheduled to read at Left Bank Books in St. Louis, MO on June 30th.

R Dean Johnson Picture 036R. Dean Johnson lives in Kentucky with his wife, the writer Julie Hensley, and their son.  He is an assistant professor in the Brief-Residency MFA Program at Eastern Kentucky University.  His essays and stories have appeared in, among others, Juked, Natural Bridge, New Orleans Review, Slice, and The Southern Review. “Catching Atoms” originally appeared, in a slightly different version, in Ruminate.


THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL AND IT’S ONE OF THOSE cold ones where the sky looks like it came right out of a black-and-white movie. We’re still unpacking, and the box with all my jackets is who knows where. So it’s either my winter coat, which even I know would look ridiculous in California, or my dad’s old work jacket—a navy blue, sharp-collared, cut-tight-at-the-bottom-so-it-doesn’t-get-sucked-into machinery, machinist’s jacket. I go with the work jacket even though it fits all saggy in the shoulders and so long in the sleeves I have to cuff them just so my hands can make it out far enough to carry my backpack. And on top of all that, there’s a patch over the heart with my dad’s nickname on it, “Packy.”

My mom says it’ll be okay, that making new friends will be tough for my little brother and sister too. But Brendan and Colleen are still in grade school, and little kids don’t care what you’re wearing or how you do your hair. Not like junior high, where everybody notices everything. Especially when you’re new. That’s why it would be a lot easier if I had my Paterson All-Stars jacket, because then the guys would all see I can play ball, and they’d probably like me right away.

When I get to school, I don’t stuff the jacket in my locker like I would have back home. In southern California, everything is outside. Instead of hallways, there are breezeways, which is a nice way of saying tunnel. And you might not think it can get all that cold in California, but on a cloudy day you can keep ice cream from melting in one of those breezeways.


2 Responses to “This Week’s Confessions: Fact or Fiction? Featured Author”

  1. admin
    June 21st, 2011 @ 9:29 pm

    Dean is so talented. I thought for sure this was a personal story, but he assured me otherwise. the question is: do i believe him?

  2. Mesut
    October 3rd, 2015 @ 6:22 pm

    What an amazing find! I aulosbtely love your photo. Daisies are one of my favorite flowers so I would be so happy if I found a field of them. I’m going to pin this one so I can remember it!

Leave a Reply