Today begins a new edition of our blog feature “Variations on a Theme,” in which we devote digital ink to a topic that fascinates us. This week, it’s fiction.

In conjunction with the Reader‘s “Pure Fiction” issue, we’re doing something special: We’ll be premiering Craig Champlin’s “The Ernie Bedlam Stories.” The five-part serial, one of the selections for “Pure Fiction,” will be appearing every weekday at 8 AM on the Bleader.

Additionally, check back throughout the week for some bonus material from Reader staffers on all things fiction.