They have called me strange since I was young. The wonder kid who couldn't make any friends. They looked for me sometimes, only for homework and chocolate, throwing a little bit of compassion my way through a dull smile. My teenage years were spent watching the colours and freshness of the girls from the shadows. Introvert and prize winner. The glory didn't keep me fed, passion was my only nourishment. Now I'm fine. Devoted and sometimes rash. I threw away self-criticism. I love the image in the mirror: I see the God in me and that is enough.

(Translated by Ruxandra Adriana Dodoiu / 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 2022, the group has 8,750 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.

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