Introduction: Stories to hide in

I love dens. When the world feels too much there’s great comfort in the idea of making a place to hide – a smaller world within the world. In the woods I’m pretty handy with fallen branches, and I make excellent indoor blanket and under-table dens, but sometimes when anxiety hits even imagining a den is beyond me and I have to exist in a bookless, wordless hole. I know I’m beginning the climb out when I can read again and start putting myself back together with words.

Short stories make perfect dens. Some of the stories below feature worlds within worlds, some seed the idea of a world within me when I read them, some are stories I get lost in, many are fictions about fiction. All are stories that when I read them create an imaginary space about me with walls that are still standing for me to return to long after I put the book down.

Happy den-building, everyone!

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