Posts Tagged ‘writing’

Welcome to Round 29!

This weekend, flash aficionado Karl A Russell is presiding judge.

Before we get started, here’s a brief reminder of the rules.

Deadline: Sunday at 6:00pm MST. You all have 36 hours to create your best work of up to 360 words (exclusive of title) and post it into the comments below. Please include your word count (required) and Twitter handle if applicable. For complete rules, click here. 

The winning author and their story will be featured as Wednesday’s Hump-Day Quickie, receive a winner’s page, and be crowned Flash Master of the Week.

Here is your prompt.

 

photo courtesy Ashwin Rao

photo courtesy Ashwin Rao

Welcome to Round 27!

This weekend multiple Flash Frenzy winner and Flash Master, Beth Deitchman, returns to judge.

Before we get started, here’s a brief reminder of the rules.

Deadline: Sunday at 6:00pm MST. You all have 36 hours to create your best work of up to 360 words (exclusive of title) and post it into the comments below. Please include your word count (required) and Twitter handle if applicable. For complete rules, click here. 

The winning author and their story will be featured as Wednesday’s Hump-Day Quickie, receive a winner’s page, and be crowned Flash Master of the Week.

Here is your prompt.

Round 27

photo courtesy Ashwin Rao

Hi friends. Here we are again, with a new batch of winners, and a brand new FLASH MASTER that I’m really excited about. First, I just wanted to say that this photo is one of my favorites, and you all did it justice. Thanks! And thanks, Karl, for judging. 😀

Here is what Karl had to say about this week’s entries:

Another great crop of stories this week, and a real honour to see so many of my favourite flash fictioners turning out to write for me. As usual, I’ve made some notes as I read through them all:

The Roar of The Fall by David Shakes
A nameless protagonist stands prepared for a final showdown, but Shakes wisely shows us how she got there instead and leaves her undoubtedly bloody ending to our imaginations. Using capitalization for groups of people and events, he elevates them to mythic status, suggesting an epic history, no mean feat in 360 words.

Morning Fog by Voimaoy
Voimaoy finds a crossing point between worlds, asking timeless questions about the nature of reality. Surely Greg from Archives is an all too familiar part of our “real” world, but through her off-hand references to patrolling the perimeter, repairing the breach and a life among the waterfalls, Voimaoy sketches a world no less concrete than our own.

Sir Prance-a-lot by Sal Page
Sal sets creeping tension against the chaos of life and a child’s recreation of soap opera in miniature. The smiles brought forth by bandy-legged dancing and birthday arrests pale before the final moment of quiet, inevitable horror.

Saviour on a Horse by AJ Walker
With sparkling descriptions, AJ perfectly captures the self pity and glorification of a terminal hangover. We’ve probably all been where his suffering protagonist finds himself, and Sarah’s no nonsense admonishment is all too familiar, giving the tale an uncomfortable honesty and a laugh out loud ending.

It’s Off To Work She Goes by TinmanDoneBadly
A jilted fiancée takes an idiosyncratic path to vengeance. As ever, Tinman’s style shines through, so unique as to make blind judging an irrelevance, and his work is singularly amusing.

Death Rattle by Brett Milam
Brett shows us a noble beast and his all too human master. Some wonderful phrasing illuminates the squalid realities of war.

A Fairy Tale Existence by C Connolly
Cath takes us behind the scenes in Fairyland and gives us a genre crossing prince, an ungrateful Cinderella and a (sadly offscreen) regenerating grandma. The dissolution of those childhood icons is a sad reminder that even stories need to evolve or die.

The Demolition of The Ugly by Bart Van Goethem
A prime slice of on-the-hoof surrealism, complete with a lisping horse, cathartic violence, jokes about windborne faeces and knowing asides to rival Tinman.

Fallen But Not Forgotten by Patrick Stahl
Another epic battle, but telling a very different tale beneath the surface. The Marquess’ willingness to make his stand and turn his men into a human shield around his wife, and her matter of fact acceptance of his unspoken devotion, shows a wonderful human moment that will be lost in the grand sweep of history.

The Waters of the Oasis by C.R. Jennings
A last ditch rescue attempt is almost scuppered by a weak and fallible human but completed at the last by another noble steed. We are almost wondering why we should care about this hapless wanderer, when the tale is flipped on its head by the final lines and the protagonist redeems himself through the ultimate sacrifice.

The Crystal Stones by Beth Deitchman
A tale of daring theft and headlong flight, propelled by pacey, economical storytelling. Beth wisely focuses on the chase rather than the whys and wherefores of the ongoing magical battle, and we are drawn headlong into her world.

I have three runners up this week, with stories which appealed for a lot of different reasons, and which I couldn’t really separate into 1st, 2nd etc. So, in no particular order, they are:

Tinman
Brett Milam
Patrick Stahl

This week’s FLASH MASTER is…

FLASH MASTER

Sal Page

with Sir Prance-a-lot

My winner by a nose, for that final haunting image.

Congratulations, Sal! Your story will be featured this Wednesday as the HumpDay Quickie! Please contact me here with any bio information, publications, links to personal sites, or any other information you would like to appear on your winner’s page.

This weekend I’ve got something special planned, so watch for the announcement! Thanks again, everybody!

Welcome to Round 25!

This weekend, Voima Oy is making her debut as Flash Frenzy judge.

Before we get started, here’s a brief reminder of the rules.

Deadline: Sunday at 6:00pm MST. You all have 36 hours to create your best work of up to 360 words (exclusive of title) and post it into the comments below. Please include your word count (required) and Twitter handle if applicable. For complete rules, click here. 

The winning author and their story will be featured as Wednesday’s Hump-Day Quickie, receive a winner’s page, and be crowned Flash Master of the Week.

Here is your prompt.

 

Photo courtesy Ashwin Rao

Photo courtesy Ashwin Rao

Hello again, Friends!

What a turn out this week! You guys are amazing. Special thanks to Casey Rose Frank for judging this round. She has comments for everyone, so let’s get to the goods. 🙂

 

What a tremendous collection of tales!  So many that touch upon the heartbreakingly elusive moments of life.
C Connolly does a great job of showing how something like a clean white dress can come to represent so much, especially once it is sullied. The reader can feel the agony of hindsight and how little that does to help.

Stella offers a wonderful chance to reevaluate the freedoms of childhood that should be enjoyed while they can. The examples of the bits of childhood the elderly character still wishes to have captured are sweet and vivid.

Karl A Russel paints a full color picture of a man alone with his pain, physical and mental. “If” is a mighty powerful word, one that has all the power of regret to haunt both the character and the readers.

Image Ronin’s “dark bluish clouds” are such a evocative description of the literal aftermath of abuse and the hovering feeling of misery left afterward.

Sal Page touches upon a personal fear of mine, I do have some window-related fears but I too would have wanted to spend more time with a fairy. The idea of listing instead the things that are not to be feared is a beautiful idea and the list is delightful.

Voima Oy has created such a unique world, drawing on the very real concerning question of what draws a cat’s attention to the walls, and the fantastical trades one might receive the real life disappointments. The gifts left behind and the tricks she performs are such great details.

David Shakes has created an interesting traveling conundrum that is made all the more terrifying when the reader discovers that the other hellish place may in fact be our own world. What is a scarier idea, that our world is bombed or that this poor girl comes back carrying the same radiation?

Wisp of Smoke captures the difficulty of time in making you feel like you’ve gained something while losing so much else at the same time. Living in a state of always wondering is timeless and the reader feels the pain of wanting to find the answers to a life unknown even as we understand the futility of it.

Jacki Donnellan captures the many people one person can be throughout a lifetime in a beautifully bittersweet way. One can only hope that these many selves can have such a joyful ending in real life.

Beth Deitchman uses the classical chilling sound of giggling. Is there ever a time you hear giggling at night and smile instead of cringe? Despite the vividly scary description of the winged beast the unseen giggler is still scarier.

Milambc paints a vivid world through the eyes of a child. The description of the attack of the cookie sheet, still baring cookies is particularly captivating. I too would have eaten one anyway…

Patrick Stahl shows a child’s worldview as her world begins to unravel. The reader is as concerned as Miranda and as grateful that at least physically she’ll be okay.

Zevonesque creates a unique world that initially reads like agoraphobia but instead turns out to be related to a haunting, whether literal or strictly of the mind. It’s intriguing to be left wondering who Jessica really is.

DrMagoo captures in such a sweet and simple way the joys of having a child. Any child running around may make a person smile, but describing what it means to see your own child run, especially one that carries a part of something you’ve lost is a unique beauty.

Second Runner up goes to David Shakes for his fascinating glimpse at the atrocities of our world through an outside perspective and the haunting idea that our mistakes may carry on in such terrible ways.

First Runner up goes to Voima Oy for the vivid descriptions of the fairy girl and what she leaves behind. She feels like pure joy, a welcome balm of “girl found” against “girl lost”.

 

This week’s winner and FLASH MASTER is…

FLASH MASTER

Karl A Russell

If

“If” is such a weighty word, one that all of us examine from time to time. “If” has a way of burrowing under the skin. Russel’s portrayal of not only the severe lingering question of what might of been, but of the hope that still remains despite all else is incredibly powerful.

Congratulations Karl! Your story will be featured tomorrow as the HumpDay Quickie!

Thanks much to everybody who posted stories this week. Next weekend, Jacki Donnellan steps up to the plate to offer her services as judge.  Hope to see you all again. 😀

Welcome to Round 23!

This week, two-time Flash Master Casey Rose Frank is sitting in the judge’s seat.

Before we get started, here’s a brief reminder of the rules.

Deadline: Sunday at 6:00pm MST. You all have 36 hours to create your best work of up to 360 words (exclusive of title) and post it into the comments below. Please include your word count (required) and Twitter handle if applicable. For complete rules, click here. 

The winning author and their story will be featured as Wednesday’s Hump-Day Quickie, receive a winner’s page, and be crowned Flash Master of the Week.

Here is your prompt.

photo courtesy Ashwin Rao

photo courtesy Ashwin Rao

Welcome to Round 21!

Shakes is back to judge another round of great flash based on one of his always great photos.

Before we get started, here’s a brief reminder of the rules.

Deadline: Sunday at 6:00pm MST. You all have 36 hours to create your best work of up to 360 words (exclusive of title) and post it into the comments below. Please include your word count (required) and Twitter handle if applicable. For complete rules, click here. 

The winning author and their story will be featured as Wednesday’s Hump-Day Quickie, receive a winner’s page, and be crowned Flash Master of the Week.

Here is your prompt.

 

photo courtesy @TheShakes72

photo courtesy @TheShakes72

 

Welcome to Round 20!

Your judge this week is Jaime Burchardt.

Before we get started, here’s a brief reminder of the rules.

Deadline: Sunday at 6:00pm MST. You all have 36 hours to create your best work of up to 360 words (exclusive of title) and post it into the comments below. Please include your word count (required) and Twitter handle if applicable. For complete rules, click here. 

The winning author and their story will be featured as Wednesday’s Hump-Day Quickie, receive a winner’s page, and be crowned Flash Master of the Week.

Here is your prompt.

Photo Courtesy Ashwin Rao

Photo Courtesy Ashwin Rao

Communing With Nature

by Casey Rose Frank

Harold felt that he had found the perfect tree in which to climb. He could wedge himself into one of the crooks of these strong tree arms and commune with the woods, as required by all wizards from time to time.

He began to climb.

“Ah, hullo? This tree is taken, sir,” called a voice from above.

Harold looked up. He could see wiry grey eyebrows and a long nose pointing down at him from beneath a bouffant purple hat.

“Oh. I see,” Harold answered.

He stood still for a moment. He really did think that this was the very finest tree in the whole forest. And he was a first rate wizard worthy of this clearly superior tree.

“Here’s the thing, ya? This tree is really prime, so maybe you wouldn’t mind sharing,” he said, making it a statement rather than a question as he climbed up the trunk to the first limb.

“I do mind! I do,” called the other man. Or wizard.

“Yes, well…” Harold began, climbing still with no intent of stopping.

“I was here first you ass! Here, have a cat,” he yelled and with a snick-pop kiss of sound a cat suddenly appeared and dropped onto Harold’s head.

Definitely another wizard.

Harold almost fell but peeled the terrified cat off of his head and placed it on a limb.

“Here’s a panther for you,” Harold called up, pointing into the tree and snick-pop there was a velvety jungle cat sitting next to the other wizard.

“Here’s a lion,” he called back.

Back and forth the two accelerated, yelling over each other as they attempted to overwhelm the other into giving up the tree.

“Here’s a rhino!”

“Here’s a hippo!”

“Here’s twin moose!”

“Here’s a god damn grand piano!” yelled Harold.

As it slammed onto the tree, atop the animals and two wizards there was a hideous cracking sound and the entire tree began to snap and splinter.

Both men landed on the ground and the animals scattered, panicked and confused into the woods.

“Well.”

“Yeah.”

“Best find another tree, yeah?”

The men shook hands and walked away in opposite directions.

Welcome to Round 19!

Your judge this week is Image Ronin.

Before we get started, here’s a brief reminder of the rules.

Deadline: Sunday at 6:00pm MST. You all have 36 hours to create your best work of up to 360 words (exclusive of title) and post it into the comments below. Please include your word count (required) and Twitter handle if applicable. For complete rules, click here. 

The winning author and their story will be featured as Wednesday’s Hump-Day Quickie, receive a winner’s page, and be crowned Flash Master of the Week.

Here is your prompt.

Photo courtesy TheShakes42

Photo courtesy TheShakes72