My worth lies in the likes I get. In the absence of the little hands with their thumbs upward, the yellow smiles and the red hearts, I do not exist. My life was designed for the sole purpose of receiving little hands from strangers. The next sentence must be brilliant. If it is not brilliant the little hands do not come and life flows past me needlessly and unbearable. Life is like a mountain spring at sundown, or maybe not. That's it, I was brilliant. I feel the flow of hands, the meaning of life, storming towards the text.

(Translated by Delia-Maria Cocoş / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I / Corrected by Silvia Petrescu, coordinator of the translations)

Real Fiction is a collective project started in 2013 by Florin Piersic Jr. The concept of Real Fiction continued to exist as a Facebook group, after a volume of stories was published at Humanitas Publishing House. (In July 2021, the group has 6.800 members.) The authors write ultra-short stories, with the texts limited to 500 characters (in Romanian, so the length of the English translation might be a little different) - a flash-fiction exercise on a topic that changes almost daily. The group's coordinators are Florin Piersic Jr., Gabriel Molnar, Răzvan Penescu, and Luchian Abel. (Drawing by Adrian T. Roman)

Versiunea în română a acestui text se poate citi aici, în rubrica Ficţiuni Reale.

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