Fiction Friday: Miscellaneous Notes From The Time An Alien Came To Band Camp Disguised As My Alto Sax

My first novella, City of Kaiju, is finally out! Available through Amazon and Books2Read. You can see a preview of the very first chapter here. Help support a fresh new author with a fantastic read this winter season.

Fiction Friday is a series where I talk about what I’ve been reading. Short Stories (and sometimes Novellas) are featured as in-between posts and the first Friday of the month will feature a new novel review. Today, I review Miscellaneous Notes From The Time An Alien Came To Band Camp Disguised As My Alto Sax by Tina Connolly.


One thing that drives me to stories is absurd titles. Just read the title of this short story. “Miscellaneous notes from the time an alien came to band camp disguised as my alto sax.” What is it about? Who is this alien? Why does he disguise himself as an alto saxophone? Who knows, but it’s a good flash story for a busy week.

So yeah, the title’s up there, written by Tina Connolly, as featured in Fantasy and Science Fiction Magazine. You can buy the issue featuring it here. It’s been a busy week, trying to get my work done, but I figured a fun flash story would suffice. Plus, it’s rare I review flash fiction anyway, so let’s see what this whole thing is about.

Aliens and saxophones

The story involves an alien visiting a school student who finds out that it can transform into anything. Considering she has a crush on Greg, who she’s trying to impress as much as possible. Thankfully, the alien can turn into her alto sax and give her the performance of a lifetime.

Flash fiction is an interesting thing. I normally see short stories and think of what little room they have to tell such a grand story. Flash fiction is super short, so there’s no room for a big story. What it does, however, is provide small situations that can be entertaining. This was fun to read, if for the fact that the MC is a typical teenager encountering an alien for the first time, and not only wasn’t out to conquer the world, kill her or anything. It just wants to goof off, just like a typical teenager would.

I like stories that are weird, but goofy and fun, and this did a fine job. It’s told via notes that the main lead took. These notes were amusing to read and followed a cute story even without full dialogue. It’s like picking up someone’s notepad and reading what went on.

We know so little, yet know enough to make me appreciate the cast. Greg is that pretty boy heartthrob, the MC is a teenager, maybe college student, with a quirky behavior and an obliviousness to the fact that aliens are here maybe for the first time ever, but who cares, anything to get her crush to pay attention, and the alien is just going along with it. It’s so much fun that I wouldn’t mind seeing this as a short film, maybe 6 minutes. It takes just as little to read it (a little over 800 words, and it’s rare I review flash fiction), but it’s enjoyable seeing the MC go throughout the story, taking note of this transforming alien and it feels goofy and fun.

I could see a whole series of tales about these two trying to win over Greg. Maybe an entire flash collection of notes about her and her alien friend just goofing off in a wonderful slice of life series. I’d read it. It’s silly enough that you could put these two in a bunch of situations. A first date? Fending off the school bully? Maybe she could put that alto sax to good use.
Since this is flash fiction, I don’t have much else to add. It’s a cute story and reading through the notes was an enjoying read. I keep saying stuff like this, but I’d love to see this longer, maybe even other notes about this mysterious alien. So much potential, but I loved this story, even if it could have gone on slightly longer, maybe up to 1000 or 1200 even.

+ A cute concept for flash fiction
+ Hilarious situations.
+ A geeky girl, a heartthrob guy, and an alien going along with it all.
+/- Potential for more of their shenanigans.

Final Score:
4/5 – Great story.

That’s all for today. If you liked this post and want to see more, I have a Ko-Fi page set up. Why spend three bucks on a Starbucks Coffee when you can help support hard-working authors like me? Every bit helps and keeps me going. So thank you, and remember, the inn is always open.

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