Round 43: Winners

Posted: November 11, 2014 in Winners
Tags: , , , , , ,

Good evening, FlashDogs. Sorry for the late post, busy day. I’d like to extend a big thank you to Bart Van Goethem for judging the stories this week. You’ll find his comments below.

To use the words of Paul Stanley, lead singer of KISS, on their multiplatinum 1975 double album ‘Alive!’: you deserve to give yourselves a round of applause, let’s go!

As a judge, I wanted to take the rock ‘n roll approach and not over think it. So I read all the stories in one go, took notes, then reread them to see if I hadn’t missed anything. And that was it.

I judged the idea, the tone and the language, in that order. In fact, the less words I had to look up, the more points you got (ba-dum-tss!).

I don’t know if you can generalize it, but in this case the judging says more about the judge than about your writing. I had a longlist that I reduced to a shortlist using an amount of subjectivity like you wouldn’t believe. I no doubt compiled the longlist with that same amount of subjectivity to begin with.

So now, can I please ask on the stage:

Honourable Mention: ‘Bass Cool’ by AJ Walker.

Bass players are cool. Not as cool as drummers, but still. Mister Zevonesque captures this cool perfectly with a laidback feel. ‘Blessed by the Pope, Bob Dylan and his mum.’ Simple, or at least, seemingly simple always wins. The only false ahum, note was the low word count. But if something is groovy, it can get away with anything.

2nd Runner-Up: ‘The Singer’ by Stella.

This is pretty classic stuff: a well crafted story with a nice flow and a last line that just floors you. Funny that!

1st Runner-Up: ‘The Warlocks’ by Carlos.

Rock ‘n roll and warlocks. Do I need to say more?

Okay, then: this is a finely constructed story, the memory and the reality placed in juxtaposition, with a surprising reveal.

And the Round 43 FLASH MASTER is…


Sal Page

with ‘Singing to the Flowers’

You all know me: I’m a tough ass motherf_. But I’m also a sucker for this kind of romantic melancholy. In this lovely tale (did I just say ‘lovely’?) we get to know how grandfather met grandmother, with a clever twist on the photo prompt. We discover what happened to some of grandfather’s friends. And we have to conclude that life really is a bitch, because grandmother doesn’t even remember who grandfather is. All this in 360 words. As a judge – and a drummer – I was quite surprised to read ‘symbols’ instead of ‘cymbals’. But the tone and the language save the day: you feel the main character is authentic. The story feels real. So, congratulations, Sal!

And thank you, Rebecca, for this riveting experience.

Congratulations, Sal! Your story will be featured tomorrow as the HumpDay Quickie! Thanks again, Bart. Next weekend, Nancy Chenier will make her debut as Flash Frenzy judge. We hope to see you all there. 😀



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