Beautiful, Complicated Family
Short Stories

Beautiful, Complicated Family

Beautiful, Complicated Family 

Beautiful, Complicated Family is a collection of flash fiction stories from author Rosey Lee. This was my first introduction to flash fiction, and I must admit that I wasn’t disappointed! 

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Have you read Beautiful, Complicated Family? Come on in and let me tell you about it! 

About Beautiful, Complicated Family  

The five heartwarming flash fiction stories in this book explore the connections that can hold people together or tear them apart. The collection features a story nominated for the 2019 Best of the Net anthology.

Best friends who are like family. A granddaughter seeking her grandmother. A chilly reunion. A doctor’s appointment. A mother and daughter struggle with communication.

Like most families, the relationships in this uplifting collection consist of intricate elements. Sometimes things get messy, but it’s always beautiful.

Read each story in about 5 minutes. The stories are well-suited for those who enjoy reading but whose busy schedules can only accommodate a quick read. This collection is filled with relatable characters and endings that pull at your heartstrings, so don’t be surprised if you laugh or cry along the way. 

Thoughts on Beautiful, Complicated Family  

The holidays are rapidly approaching this year. I feel like I blinked and went from August to Thanksgiving. With that comes a combination of joy and stress. Family is a very complicated thing. There are both good and bad, and every year I find myself sandwiched in the middle of it all, chaos or not. Reading these stories really resonated with me. 

When I first started reading volume one of Beautiful, Complicated Family, I had no idea what to expect. Having never been exposed to flash fiction, this was a brand new experience to read. 

What surprised me was that I loved it! Rosey Lee clearly writes from her heart and makes her characters completely relatable. I have seen authors write 400 page novels and fail to achieve the personal connection and character development that Rosey Lee achieves in such short stories. 

With flash fiction, every single word counts. There is no filler, and there has to be an impact. Achieving that takes serious talent! Each of these stories could become a full blown novel, because there is potential for a much bigger story. Yet it isn’t necessary because the story was achieved in a short amount of words. 

I read each of these stories over a cup of coffee in the mornings. This was more interesting than a newspaper article, to say the least. Some of them made me take a trip down memory lane, and brought me a lot of joy to remember. Being able to relate my own experiences to Rosey Lee’s stories made it that much more memorable to me. 

Some stories brought back other memories that I had long ago tucked away in a deep dark corner of my mind. From reading these specific stories, I had a chance to confront my own memories and make peace with them. 

I had no idea that I would get that kind of personal and emotional growth when I picked up my Kindle to read Beautiful, Complicated Family each morning. Families really are a very complicated thing. I’ve also never felt like a book or a writer could impact my life in the way that Rosey Lee did. 

Final Thoughts on Beautiful, Complicated Family 

I’m not going to tell you about the stories in these two books, because I can’t do it justice in a short amount of time. What I will tell you is that you should go and read them, because it will be life-changing and in the greatest way possible! 

Beautiful, Complicated Family is a collection of stories that will not disappoint! 

Discussion 

Have you read Beautiful, Complicated Family from Rosey Lee? Are you a fan of flash fiction? Let me know your thoughts in the comments! 

Are you looking for another great read? Check out my favorite books

About the Author 

Beautiful, Complicated Family
Rosey Lee, author of Beautiful, Complicated Family

Rosey Lee writes uplifting fiction stories about family and friendship. A native of the West bank of New Orleans, Louisiana, Rosey is a fan of good food and a good time. As a child, she dreamed of a career in writing, fashion design, and acting. 

She uses the pen name Rosey Lee as she pursues her passion for writing. Her alter ego is a physician who has dedicated her career to individual and community-based approaches to health equity. She enjoys cooking, flower arranging, listening to live music, and occasional bursts of fanatical bargain shopping.

Rosey’s flash fiction has appeared in Necessary Fiction, Bending Genres, Barren Magazine,

Turnpike Magazine, The Wellington Street Review, and elsewhere. Her work has also been

nominated for the 2019 Best of the Net anthology. 

Purchasing Beautiful, Complicated Family 

To purchase Volume One of Beautiful, Complicated Family, click here

To purchase Volume Two of Beautiful, Complicated Family, click here

Click here for my favorite Kindle I currently own.

Author Interview 

I had a chance to sit down and chat with Rosey Lee about Beautiful, Complicated Family. I am always excited to visit with an author after reading their work and learning more about them and the process of writing, especially something so new to me, like flash fiction. 

What prompted you to write flash fiction?

It’s kind of funny. I totally stumbled into flash fiction. When I started working on my author website, I decided to write a short story so I could post it on my website and give people an example of my writing. But I thought, “I don’t know anything about writing short stories. I guess, I’d better find a class or something”. 

I started looking into online short story courses and came across one on flash fiction. I’d actually never heard of it before then. I’ve since learned about the broad range of options in flash fiction writing. There are so many possibilities with writing styles, and I can’t think of a genre that doesn’t fit with flash fiction. But most of all, I love the idea of providing a reading option for people who feel like they don’t have time to read. 

Is it easier or more complicated than a traditional novel? I can easily see each of these stories becoming a full blown novel. Yet it doesn’t need to be because you accomplished so much detail in just a few short paragraphs.

Thank you so much! That’s the best compliment you could give to a flash fiction writer. The stories are supposed to feel complete, but the reader should still want more. 

It’s hard to say if it’s easier or more complicated than writing a novel. It’s probably both but in different ways. I think it may be a matter of a writer’s personality, writing style, and personal preference. I’m very goal oriented, so it helps me to feel the accomplishment of completing a flash fiction story. While it’s hard to capture a full story in 1000 words, it takes less time than writing an 80,000-word novel. 

And the publication process of a single flash fiction story is typically shorter too. Even if I’m struggling with writing a flash fiction story and it’s taking me longer than expected, I get motivation from looking at the page and gauging how much space is left for me to fill. 

On the other hand, the space limitations of flash fiction can sometimes feel daunting. I usually want to write more than the space allows, so I’m forced to figure out what’s essential for a reader to know, how I can combine facts strategically, and how I can reveal information in unexpected ways. 

Do you have any upcoming writing projects to share with me?

I’m working on a novel about a family that’s forgotten what family is about. I suppose it’s still in keeping with the overarching theme of my flash fiction collection, because the family in my WIP is beautiful yet complicated. Then again, aren’t most families?

Is flash fiction meant to cater to someone with a short attention span or someone who has very little time to read? I personally loved that I could read one story over a cup of coffee in the morning instead of a newspaper article.

That’s a great question. I’ve read that it has roots going back to fables and parables, and even classic authors like Walt Whitman wrote flash fiction. With so many people having busy schedules in current times and the desire for instant gratification in our culture, flash fiction is a great way to address our reading needs and preferences. 

I love the idea of writing stories that appeal to avid readers who can sit and read story after story in a flash fiction book or journal as well as those with busy schedules who can only read one or two stories at a time. 

Are any of these stories inspired by anyone or any experiences for you?

Writing helps me process the things I see in the world–my experiences, but also my reactions to other’s experiences. Whenever I’m moved by something, I try to think about the emotion I feel and why the situation is so impactful. 

Then I think about how an imaginary person might deal with a similar situation. I ask myself a lot of “what it” questions, which helps the story to take shape. I get pretty creative. Any resemblance to my life or actual people is coincidental.  

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28 Comments

  • Despite Pain

    I love flash fiction. Like you said, you can read it while you drink your coffee. From the way you’ve described them, I’m sure I’d enjoy Rosey’s stories. Thanks for sharing such a lovely review.

    • Rosey Lee

      Thanks for your comment. I’m excited to hear that you’re a flash fiction fan! I hope you’ll check out my stories. There’s a free audio version of one of the stories in the collection on my website, if you’d like to give it a try. It’s toward the middle of the “Books” page.

  • Alexandra

    I’ve never heard of flash fiction before and I need to look it up to see exactly what the definition is. It seems that it must be something different than short stories, otherwise it would have the same name. But it sure sounds like something I’d like to explore.

    Now the book sounds like a great read. It sounds like a book where people can find their own story within the pages and possibly not feel so alone with their own personal family holiday stories. What I find I’m wondering, though, is if it is so short that you will feel a loss when the story ends. You know what I mean? To me, reading a story is like a vacation and when it ends there is a short void. Very short but still…

    In any case I think I may look it up. Thanks!

    • Rosey Lee

      Thanks for your comment and interest in flash fiction. It is often described as a very short story. My flash fiction stories are usually 1000 words or less, but there’s no firm standard regarding the word count. Some stories can be as short as a tweet. Others may be up to 1500 words or even 2000 words. Most importantly, flash fiction aren’t an excerpt. They’re complete stories (i.e., have a beginning, a middle and an end). They usually also have an emotional pull of some sort. And some flash fiction stories have a twist or surprise at the end, but that’s not required.

  • Kelly Martin

    I’m an avid reader but I’ve never heard of flash fiction before. I’m really curious about it now. Great interview with the author.

    • Rosey Lee

      Thank you! There’s a lot of variety in flash fiction. There are flash fiction stories in every genre one could imagine. Flash fiction stories can also be written in different forms, such as letters, recipes, or directions. I experimented with form in Volume 2 of my collection. I don’t want to spoil the story for anyone, so that’s all I’ll say.

  • Sarah Emery

    How interesting, as this is an introduction for me to flash fiction and this post has me intrigued. Thanks for not spoiling the book, but rather providing an interview from the author, Rosey Lee. Which is great insight that has me hooked on wanting to know more about her and to read her book, Beautiful, Complicated Family.

  • Rosey Lee

    Wonderful! I hope you enjoy the books. Feel free to let me know what you think about the books, either via social media or a review on Goodreads, Amazon, etc. Happy reading!

  • Amy

    This is so intriguing. I had never heard of flash fiction before. I love the author interview. That’s very awesome you got to write about her perspective.

  • Daphne Takahashi

    I haven’t read flash fiction yet. And I actually haven’t had time to read a book lately so the idea of being able to read short stories over breakfast or after lunch during my break sounds awesome! Plus, loved the theme of the book.

  • Smita

    This had me so intrigued, I had to google the difference between a short story and a flash fiction. Reminded me of the famous story ‘For sale: baby shoes, never worn’, which I now know would fall under flash fiction. Though I’ve not explored the genre too much yet, flash fiction is something that’ll be on my reading list next. Will check out Rosey’s website.

  • Kayleigh

    Oh flash fiction is fun! I don’t honestly get around to reading many novels these days, so I quite enjoy the quick short stories! It’s nice to get a glimpse into the author’s thought process too. Great interview!

  • Lyanna Soria

    That sounds amazing. This is the first time I’ve heard of flash fiction but I’m always up for reading new genres. It’s been a while since i’ve last read a book because of my busy schedule.

  • Scott J DeNicola

    I have honestly never heard of the term flash fiction but love the concept and it sounds like an extremely interestign genre. It promted me to do a bit more reasearch into flash fiction. Family and friendships are two topics we could use a lot more discussions on these days.

  • College Apps Abroad

    I’ve never heard of flash fiction before, and as someone who spent 3 years writing an 80,000-word novel, this is amazing! Definitely the way of the future since we all seem to be finding ourselves busier than ever before.

  • Trish Veltman

    Good flash fiction is a real treat, It’s such a difficult format as readers still want a short piece to pack the same emotional punch and plot twists and convincing characters as they get in longer fiction. From the way you responded to Rosey’s work, she obviously delivers! I’ll be seeking out her work.

  • Britt K

    I have so much respect for authors that are able to achieve that level of connection in flash fiction and short stories. Those that do it right create stories that I can read again and again, surprisingly finding something new each time. It’s crazy how many details can be incorporated in so few words. I haven’t read Beautiful Complicated Family, but it sounds super relatable. I’m going to have to check it out!

  • Kat

    This sounds like a wonderful collection of flash fiction. I like to write fiction myself and am going to get back into writing every day. Maybe writing this type of story would be a good idea, as I can complete one every day. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Stella

    I just downloaded Volume 1 on my Kindle and it will be my bedtime reading tonight. I love flash fiction. I read it on Medium all the time (along with other non-fiction articles) and it really does go hand in hand, as the author said with our expectation of instant gratification. I love the interview and can relate to writing being how we process the world around us. Thank you for introducing us to Rosey Lee.

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