As soon as I got there, there were rules. At the beginning, I was in over my head, I still am actually. You have no idea how much I struggle with 500 characters, give or take 20. I sometimes peek at the others, like a schoolboy, and I feel inspired only by being among them. They are weirdos with dividing fences, doors ajar, confessions, gifts and other shenanigans. They throw around metaphors, epithets and figures of speech so much that sometimes I need to read 2 or 3 times in order to understand what the hell they were trying to say. At 3, you leave the group and wake up. I wake up, but I'm not leaving, you know.
(Translated by Ioana Diana Sandu / 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 April 2022, the group has 8,175 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 Ficțiuni Reale.