“Hark, kindred spirit!” yelled Minifiction, when a bout of Internet surfing brought us face-to-screen with British author Nik Perring, a new(ish) face on the block whose online flash fiction publications over recent years culminated in his 2010 collection of 22 short shorts, Not So Perfect.
Yes, the title does refer to the stories within, but no, Perring is not being coy. The title fits because it renders the only theme that all 22 stories could be said to share, each one capturing the not-so-perfect moments in the lives of Perring’s protagonists. Putting that aside, what you have here is an eclectic mix of wide angles and close ups, quasi-bizarro and groundy realism, nostalgic twists and twisted nostalgia. Not So Perfect is well worth a read, although the faint-hearted or pious should come ready for a challenge.