Round 39: Winners

Posted: October 14, 2014 in Winners
Tags: , , , , , ,

It’s Tuesday again! Time for winners. Many thanks to Jacki Donnellan for volunteering her time to act as judge this past weekend, and many thanks to YOU, the writers, for coming out to play.

Here are Jacki’s thoughts:

Comment: I really loved the prompt this week-there’s just something about pumpkins, isn’t there?- and I have had a really fantastic time reading the thirty (thirty!!) truly amazing entries. Each take on the prompt was different from the next, and it felt like that pumpkin had just exploded in everyone’s imagination. So many wildly colourful and vivid tales; so many bright and tender moments. Each and every writer produced something wonderful and  as always I am grateful for the privilege of reading your work.

With so many stories, I’m afraid I will have to use that old judging cliché “I wish I could comment on them all”, and beg you to believe that it’s heartfelt.

And so: these are the stories that were, for me, the pumpkin-flavoured cream of the so-very-juicy pumpkin crop:

Runner-Up: The Pumpkin Patch by Karl.A.Russell

I just loved this story, because it was just that- a complete (thrilling and entertaining) story with a beginning, middle and end, all told within 360 words with enough room left for gasps. It’s not that I believe that every piece of flash has to follow the arc of a short story- far from it- but when you read something short that manages to do so, it’s fantastic. Like a bite-sized bar of (very dark) chocolate.

Runner Up: Wifely Wisdom by Catherine Connelly

I read and judged all of the stories blind and I was surprised when I subsequently discovered that Catherine had written this one, as I had no idea that she wrote humour so spectacularly well! But this is not just a humorous tale, it is also skilfully sinister, from its ridiculously gruesome and wonderfully described premise right through to its brilliant ending. I loved it.

Runner Up:In the Dirt by Casey Rose Frank

This is such an exquisitely sad twist on a fairytale. So cleverly, beautifully told- once it became clear who Cordelia really was, I looked back through the story and realized just how many deftly crafted clues there had been. The corset to create “the perfect posture I was raised without”, the yearning for the hay and dirt, the mouse… A truly original and lovely take on the prompt.

And your round 39 FLASH MASTER is…


Nancy Chenier

Carving Out a Space

I loved the brilliantly clever title. I loved the way that the first line opened as a movie in my head. I loved the gorgeous, effortless world-building- “the waning glow from the primary oozes maple syrup light over griddlecake hills”-even while the story is all about what’s happening inside the narrator’s head. A lot of flash fiction which describes another world gets as far as “imagine a place where…” and stops there. I love that this story not only took me to another world but told me its history, its probable future and the zoomed-in life story of two of its characters, all within 360 words. I was left feeling satisfied, and yet yearning to read more. And I can still see Copiae in my head, as clearly as if I’d spent all of last week reading a whole novel set there. A stunningly, enviably good story.

Congratulations, Nancy on your two-week winning streak!  Your story will be featured tomorrow as the HumpDay Quickie!

Thanks again, Jacki, for your time and comments. This weekend, Amy Wood will be climbing into the judge’s seat. Hope to see you all there.



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