• Urhi


“Imagine,” I tell my students in the opening lecture of Religion as Contemporary Myth, “an all-knowing deity hiring the devil for heaven’s middle-management. I mean, how did he pass the job interview, right? Was it just a busy week? God just had a lot going on, what with building and breaking apart Pangea and with all those varieties of finches to intelligently design, so he decided to make the offer to that go-getting, cloven-hooved fellow? It’s absurd.”

Hell is Empty and All the Devils are Here is number eighteen of our announced features in The Needle Drops... Volume One. More often than not, reflection reveals that our greatest fears are only born from ourselves... With Short Fiction, we explore the various subgenres of horror in creative and unexpected ways.

For a theologian studying the canonical Satan, evil is an academic concept—the crossroads of history, politics, and ancient superstition. The devil, he’s sure, is an invention of the powerful to control the uneducated masses.

On an anniversary date with his wife, however, this conceit will be challenged when personal revelations and supernatural forces reveal that devilry can dwell in the secrets we keep from those we love, and in our disregard for the suffering of those we choose to stand apart from.

Evil is an academic concept--the crossroads of history, politics, and ancient superstition.

M.C. Schmidt is a baker of artisanal breads, fanatical consumer of music and horror films, and best friend to a cat who barely tolerates him. His recent short fiction has appeared in New World Writing, BULL, Spectrum Literary Journal, Litro Online, Abstract Magazine, and Every Day Fiction among other publications. He holds an MFA in Creative Writing. His novel, The Decadents, is forthcoming from Library Tales Publishing.