Hey. Welcome to LesterRay.com!

Enjoy what you read!  And thanks for stopping by.  Be sure to tell your family and friends about my stories.

And, by the way, I’m looking for an agent. If you are if you know a good one who might be interested in representing some or all of what I write, please let me know or have him or her contact me directly. Thanks!

Lester Ray.

“Lester Ray” isn’t my whole name.  It’s my first two names.  You know, like “Bobby Joe.”  It’s what my mother called me when I was a little kid – and what she shouted outside our front door when I was late for dinner.  For most of my life, my name – as you’ll see on materials I’ve written – is Les Cohen and I live and write in Maryland.

Lester Ray's Signature




P.S.  Two important notes…

All original materials on this website – including content, stories and books I have written – are copyrighted by me, Les Cohen, Ellicott City, MD as of when they were first written.  All rights reserved by the author.

As of June 1, 2023, the short-short stories I have written have been read a total of 25,333 times since they were first published, individually, in the Baltimore Post-Examiner.

My titles…

So far, I’ve written seven ebooks.  All seven are available on Apple Books and Kindle.  Just use the Apple and Kindle links below or go to those ebook stores and search under my name, “Les Cohen,” to see the books and read their free samples.

1.  The Elevator Trilogy

An eBook of 57 short-short stores for high school readers and adults.

Life is short.  Are you tired of not having anything good to read while you’re eating out at the diner by yourself?  Have you flipped through the magazines and catalogs you keep in your bathroom one too many times?  Now you’ll have an answer for people who try to intimidate you, intellectually speaking, by asking, “So what have you read lately?”

Just tell them the name of the last short-short story you read and my name.  They’ll think you read a whole book.  (“Yeah, like that’s ever going to happen.”) “Very impressive,” they’ll say to themselves.  “You’re reading, what, a book or two a week?”  What do they know?

Link to The Elevator Trilogy on Apple Books.
Link to The Elevator Trilogy on Kindle (Amazon) Books.

2.  The Adventures Of Young Elizabeth and Rollo, The Cat Who Thought He Was A Dog
For middle grade readers.

“On a dark night, they walked up a poorly lit side street, empty – as far as they could tell – except for the three of them.  A strange sight at the very least.  This huge housecat, eyes glowing in the reflection of the streetlight not fifty feet ahead, perched there on the shoulder of the young girl who kept walking.  Her friend, Eleanor, at her side.  Individually the three of them were understandably nervous.  Together, on the other hand…  Together they were brave, even fearless, a formidable opponent for any danger they might encounter.”

Hi. I’m Elizabeth – you know, as in “Young Elizabeth” in the title – but then you probably guessed that. “Young Elizabeth” was me, four years ago. I was fifteen then, in the summer before my sophomore year in high school – the only high school in the small town were I grew up. It was a time and a place when friendships were few, but meant something more, and life wasn’t so complicated or scary. I’m a sophomore in college now, an aspiring writer. And the furball lying flat on his back on my bed? That’s Rollo, my cat and long-time friend, a little older and a tad heavier now, but still plenty sharp and always there for me when I need him. Rollo and I, we’ve been through a lot together, but I’ve got a feeling our greatest adventures are still ahead of us.


“Yeah, yeah,” I waved back at him without turning to look up from my laptop. “Hold on while I finish what I’m typing.” He’s so impatient. No matter how many times I tell this story, he still gets a kick out of it. “I know,” I say out loud, rolling back in my chair and reaching out to wiggle my fingers on his stomach. “I’m excited too.”

Link to The Adventures of Young Elizabeth… on Apple Books.
Link to The Adventures of Young Elizabeth… on Kindle (Amazon) Books.

3.  The Clearing
A great, maybe a little scary, short book for Middle Grade and High School Readers.  Just because plants are not human, doesn’t mean they don’t have a point to make.

Trees, some species in particular, have a rudimentary, collective intelligence that enables them to communicate with others like them in sometimes large networks – communities of trees that extend over vast areas.  So sophisticated are these networks that they enable these trees to share nutrients, information about their environment that is essential to their health and survival and, in some cases, to manipulate the very ground in which they are rooted for their self-defense.

– Julia Stillman, Ph.D., Professor of Dendrology, Maryland State University, excerpted

Link to The Clearing on Apple Books.
Link to The Clearing on Kindle (Amazon) Books.

4.  The Water Tower
Hiding in plain sight, no one gave the red-eyed antenna a second thought.  A great, maybe a little creepy little book for middle grade and some younger readers.

The cover image is a picture that I took from the clearing, before the whirling lights came back on and the bowl of the tower started to rise, taking off into the early evening sky just ahead of an unexpected thunderstorm.




Link to The Water Tower on Apple Books.
Link to The Water Tower on Kindle (Amazon) Books.

5.  Or What?
A story for middle grade readers.  Because bullies seldom see courage coming.

“Get off your bike, ass-face.”

The vulgar reference notwithstanding – Some of the middle school kids talk like that all the time.  And my face looks nothing like my tush. – I decided to remain calm and not to counter with a comment that might be construed as even the least bit provocative.  “No,” was all I decided to say.


Link to Or What? on Apple Books.
Link to Or What? on Kindle (Amazon) Books.

6.  Sugar Time
A great short book for early readers about a naturally courageous young girl who instinctively does the heroic thing.

Although she was average size for her age, Amanda still had trouble seeing around the headrest of her mother’s front seat.  With her seat belt tightly in place, her eyes could just barely see out her side window.  Low down in the car, she felt small.

Link to Sugar Time on Apple Books.
Link to Sugar Time on Kindle (Amazon) Books.

7.  The Legend of Zippy, the Fish

A wonderful short story – about individuality and courage – for grade school kids to read with their parents.

And so our tail…  Whoops.  I mean “tale.”  And so our tale begins…  It’s a tale, a story about a fish.  Fish have tails.  That’s why I got confused.  …Oh, by the way, except for a few details, this is an absolutely true story. And, as they say, “you can take that to the bank.”

 “Who says that?”

 It’s just an expression.  You’ll get it when you’re old enough to have your own checking account.

Link to The Legend of Zippy, the Fish on Apple Books.
Link to The Legend of Zippy, the Fish on Kindle (Amazon) Books.