Herewith the results:
Special recognition for a creep factor that's off the scale!
Timothy Lowe 9:12am
Just Jan 4:30pm
Poems for the Duchess of Yowl!
Sherry Howard 9:45am
(The DoY congratulates you on selecting the perfect main character for your work)
The Duchess of Yowl is pleased with this
Cynthia Mc 10:09am
LynnRodz 11:00am (and would now be packing her bags, but of course, she has staff for that)
The Duchess of Yowl is sleek not fluffy but is otherwise pleased with this line from Christina Seine
“Cat burglar,” Cop said. Miffed, Duchess flounced her tail at him, a fluffy middle finger.
Speaking of The Duchess of Yowl's tail
The Duchess of Yowl approves of this
The Duchess of Yowl likes this entirely too much
Kate Higgins 10:26pm
this really isn't a story but the structure is just beautiful (first and last lines so nicely paired) that it deserves special recognition for mastery of craft and form.
You have to really read carefully to see the beauty in this, but it's well worth it. It's like sudoku: you have to look for what's not there.
Not quite a story but the twist when you realize the POV is delicious!
abnormalalien (Jamie A. Elias)
A great line in a wonderful poem
Sara Halle 9:59pm
Was exposed as a dastardly dwarf sympathizer.
I love these pieces about Fred The Dragon!
Rene Saaenger 11:20pm
I love this line
Jason Magnason 8:50am
Fluffy clouds pass through me as I fall. What was that the pilot said about a parachute?
These entries are on the long list
french sojourn 10:02am
Tim Archer 9:33pm
Emily Kate 9:39pm
These entries are on the short list:
Marie McKay 10:02am
She fashioned earmuffs from cushions. She'd kept a stiff upper lip for long enough. She'd damn well sulk; had every right to feel miffed. Hell, eight weeks ago she'd huffed and puffed climbing stairs.
The. Way. She. Liked. It!
So meteors and straightening irons don't mix. Shit it! She hated flying. X-ray vision was gross. She fluffed press interviews. NO, she'd nothing cool to say to young people! Her costume looked like it was made by her maiden aunt.
A scream from eight blocks down rises above the city's din.
She straightens. The cushions are off.
And. She. Is. Flight.
The imagination of this piece caught my eye: reluctant superhero! And I don't know why but "shit it" just cracked me up. And when you think about it, X-ray vision IS gross. But then, that last sentence just turns the story around: And.She.Is.Flight.
And you know that Our Girl loves the flying part.
This is charming and well written!
Amy Schaefer 4:48pm
He looks miffed, my handsome husband-to-be, as he stands by the judge. Henry hates waiting. My heart swells.
I notice lint on his jacket. I turn to my father. “Henry has a fluffer—“
Right. Not my turn.
I realize the string quartet hasn’t arrived. I sigh but won’t sulk – it wouldn’t do on my big day.
“The court finds for the plaintiff,” says the judge.
Henry’s smile is dazzling. Father tugs me out the door, handcuffs jingling, those silly things on my ankles making me shuffle.
I catch Henry’s eye and blow a kiss.
Until next time, beloved.
ohhh! Do you get it? The clue is "plaintiff" I love these stories where All is Not What It Seems! And there are some lines that just convey so much, but with such minimalist style: "Right. Not my turn" and
"I realize the string quartet hasn't arrived."
The is elegant.
Lennon Faris 6:14pm
“Calvin! Whatchya doin’?”
Gnarled joints fail, and I fall at the feet of a white-haired woman in coveralls.
“My game consul. Kids stole it.” I jerk my head to the punks in scrubs drinking coffee. “I’m outta here.”
“’s what I said.” Stupid girl.
“There’s a bubble over your head, you know.”
So practical. Always was. “Go home,” I huff.
She’s miffed. “Here’s a thought: what if friends helped each other, for once? Here: on my walker. I’m coming with.”
She’s not so bad, I think. I must be ill. Next thing y’know, Hobbes’ll be made of fluff.
I tripped up on "consul" at first, thinking it was an error. Of course, it's not. It's a brilliant clue.
I love the line "there's a bubble over your head, you know" because it could mean two different things.
And I love "punks in scrubs"
And honestly, any Calvin and Hobbes fan fiction is just my cup of tea.
The ship’s captain grabbed me by the scruff of my neck.
I rewarded him with a six-toed hind kick.
I drew blood and smiled.
This was my boat and I was going to stay.
“Aww, come on Missy Snow White,” he said. “Don’t be miffed.”
The hair on my back went stiff.
What a kerfluffle!
We shuffled in a huff down the gangplank to tre' elegant Key West.
Along fragrant Whitehead Street we strolled.
The captain knocked on #907 and Earnest opened the door.
It was love at first sight.
Eventually, I would have to get rid of Pauline.
That penultimate line elevates this from a sweet anecdote to something with a lot more cosmic horror. What you have to know to get this: Ernest Hemingway had six toed cats and his second wife is called Pauline.
Points off for spelling his name wrong though! Yikes!
And did I miss "sulk" here?
Mark Thurber 11:48pm
The consul keeps to herself more and more--a fish out of water, shuffling dispatches in a foreign land.
“Take me sailing,” she says, eyes distant.
I am iffy--she uses a wheelchair--but I obey. “Thank you,” she says over the stiff breeze. When I look away, I hear a splash that freezes my heart.
I sail back to where she fell off, luff the mainsail. No trace. Only then do I notice the empty dress and false legs, still on board. I hear laughter and look out to see long hair and green scales slip beneath the surface.
I'm a sucker for a mermaid story. I blame Tom Hanks and Darryl Hannah from Splash for this.
I love that up front clue "a fish out of water, shuffling dispatches in a foreign land" that isn't understood until the last line. Lovely story telling.
Claudette Hoffmann 4:13am
Graduation brings a PhD. Alice returns to dorm and cat.
Cheshire, rescue tabby gone mature fluff ball, curls around Alice’s mobile. He paws her hand.
“3pm. South lawn,” reads text. She shuffles papers into her bag and adds Cheshire.
Once there, Alice notices a library chum, by face not name.
“Dodge,” he says stiffly.
Cheshire goes over to the elegant feline, sulking near Dodge. They rub noses. She purrs.
“Friendly sort,” Dodge says.
“She was miffed. He didn’t call.”
“Feline Ethology your degree?”
“Not mine. His.”
Cheshire extends his paw with opposable thumb to Dodge.
As you might imagine, Her Grace, The Duchess of Yowl loved this one a LOT.
I love the imagination at work here. And of course that sweet twist on the first sentence (Graduation brings a Phd.D/His" is just purrrrfect!
Where There's A Quill 8:19am
They talking 'bout keeping Fynn.
Fynn’s the best. Shoulda been kept ages ago, but foster folks always catch him being bad. Like when they found Sister Eight's dollies all burned up in his room.
Couple houses back, Fynn nearly got kept. But then they found the cat and got real scared and didn't want him.
If Fynn’s not good enough none’s good enough, I say. He just huffs and sulks but. Says You got fluff for brains, Tiff; I’ll age out ‘fore someone keeps me.
But Fynn’s the best. These folks might keep him.
I hope a cat’s enough again.
Took me twice to get this one, and it made me gasp out loud.
Do you see it?
The narrator is the one doing the stuff that Fynn's getting blamed for, so that s/he won't be separated from Fynn. Elegant elliptical writing with just enough information to take the reader to the final twist.
This is perfect.
Holy smokestacks, that took me five tries. You guyz are getting diabolical on these prompts!
It's getting harder and harder to choose finalists let alone select just one as the winner. That means of course that it's getting more subjective. Not only what I like, but my frame of mind when I read the entries.
This is the reason I never read queries when I'm in a snit, hungry or really tired. Nothing looks or sounds good. You'll be glad to know I took a nap before reading the entries this week, AND ate dinner!
This week's winner is the one that made me gasp out loud: Where There's A Quill 8:19am
(You will be glad to hear the prize is NOT the Duchess ofYowl arriving for a petting.)
If you'll send me your mailing address and what kinds of books you like to read, I'll get a prize in the mail to you.
Thanks indeed to all who took the time to write and submit entries. It was a real pleasure to read your work.