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BOOK CORNER: Author pens short-story anthology

“Shorts: A Steam Anthology” by Los Angeles native Phyllis Chestang is comprised of three short stories, each no longer than 10 pages. The stories address topics such as a plague, a dramatic holiday gathering and a less than ideal airline flight.

Having written more than 80 electronic textbooks, “Shorts: A Steam Anthology” is a shift from Chestang’s academic writing to a broader audience for readers that love thrills, culture, drama, ghosts and more.

Chestang combines storytelling and her own personal journeys and growth.

“The stories are from my viewpoint but touch a global tone,” the author said.

Numerous factors served as inspiration for her book.

“My vivid imagination, my work life plus great writers and storytellers — many of whom look like me, including Ntozake Shange, Toni Cade Bambara, Nikki Giovanni, Toni Morrison, Phillis Wheatley and Audre Lorde, plus determination to finish my PhD and to do something with all of it,” Chestang said.

“Shorts: A Steam Anthology” presents life lessons such as dealing with disasters, dealing with crisis with a level head, and controlling your emotions or reactions.

“I aim to present a positive legacy to honor education, literacy, and love of books,” Chestang said.

Her book is intended for a broad audience of adults who enjoy thrills, excitement, and drama.

“These stories are written with a generic tone and the characters may be changed based on race, gender, age, etc” said the author. “The intent is to tell these stories as fiction much like ‘Twilight Zone’ with a little ‘soul.’”

The book could inspire readers to be mindful of others and to look for common ground and experiences from those who they perceive are different.

It is the author’s hope that her book provides readers “entertainment, critical thinking, and a shifted/expanded focus…”

In addition to being an author, Chestang is an auditor, educator and a doctoral student. She lives in West Los Angeles. She is currently working on releasing her latest trilogy, “Guano, Sheba Ghost Ship and Egg Sucking Dog.”

“Shorts: A Steam Anthology” is available for $20 (paperback) or $9.99 (Kindle) online via Amazon. It will soon be available at Malik’s bookstore at Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza.