Sunday, January 07, 2018

Flash fiction contest results Round 2

It was interesting to see what you did with building blocks. I noticed that a lot of the entries that stood out in Round 1 didn't make it to the finalist list in Round 2.  I'm not sure why that is, but it was certainly noticeable.

Here are the entries that stood out in Round 2.

Dena Pawling 9:01am
Blitzen kicks me. Hard. “Why'd you pick THAT paper?”

“It was on top!” I splutter.

But he's right. What can we give four calling birds?

@%^!# North-Pole gift exchange.

“I know! Let's give them five gold rings.” I'm brilliant, thank you very much.

Blitzen snorts. “Ring their little necks is more like it.”
This just cracks me up.

Les Edgerton 9:21am
One day I found a volume of poetry by Robert Frost in the prison library at Pendleton and checked it out.
Back in my cell, I read: Home is the place where, when you want to go there, they have to take you in.
When I made parole, I gave my mom a ring to tell her my good news. I found out that my dad had never read Robert Frost.
At least not that poem.

I'm a sucker for what I think of as spiderweb stories: what's important is what isn't said (as in the space between the filaments of the web.)  This is a great example of that. My only quibble is with the last line. I'd have revised that out. 

Amy Schaefer 11:03am
What would it mean, to eat the bird? I glanced nervously around my fianc√©’s family. Heads cocked, beady eyes watchful, like a flock of birds themselves.

I took a bite.
She took a bite.

You’re so relieved, you nearly tip your wine glass. Food matters, here.

Mother nods.

You pull the ring from your pocket.

I love changes in POV within a story. This one is done with great dexterity.

CarolynnWith2Ns 11:57am
Dazed in the ring, hate cleared my head. I can legally kill my ex’s live-in. Hard right. Neck snapped. Won a championship belt for murder.

I'm just in awe of the depth evoked in so few words.

Beth Carpenter 2:46pm
Swans? Now? With a foot of ice on the lakes? Way too many birds in this stupid song. Wait – got it. Seven Swanson dinners swimming in gravy. Next…

Grumman Goose – the quintessential sea plane. National Guard has six of the belly-landers lying, not laying, in the snow. Close enough. Which brings us to…

 It's the "lying, not laying" that just cracked me up here. I'm not a big fan of the hanging sentences at the end though.

More to come!


Colin Smith said...

I'm not sure why that is, but it was certainly noticeable.

It might have something to do with the fact that IT'S HARD TO DO! Think of those TV shows that have a story arc through a season, but each episode is stand-alone. You have to write each episode so it could be viewed without the context of the other episodes. BUT when fit into the context of the others, it makes a bigger story. That's not easy to do.

Writing a 20-word story's hard enough! Congrats to all on the Round Two list. :D

Craig F said...

I think people had different ideas of what the contest was. Some seemed to go for a different story for each day. Others looked at it as a 100 word FF contest.

At this point I'm leaning towards Dena because of how it is building, not just because I owe her a beer. Her story is also cracking me up.

John Davis Frain said...

Love the North Pole gift exchange, Dena. Cracked me up.

Also fell in love with Les Edgerton's ode to Robert Frost. And (fanning myself) I thought the same thing about the penultimate line. That was the hammer. The final line takes a little bit of bite away from the previous. Still, great story.

Kudos to Amy Schaefer. I initially stole her opening for a Round 2 entry, but she did it far better than my attempt, so I'm glad I wised up.

Dena Pawling said...

Glad you enjoyed Santa's sadistic reindeer! It was fun to write.

Now Craig, about that beer.............

Amy Schaefer said...

John Davis Frain, I couldn’t be more honoured that you took a run at my Round 1. I’ll second Colin’s comments - this was so hard.

Dena’s gift exchange is a delight.

AJ Blythe said...

I second Colin. Continuing a story when word count (and key word) were unknown made it rather tricky. At least, that's what I thought, but a few people at the Reef are making it look easy (looking at you Dena and 2Ns).

E.M. Goldsmith said...

So hard. So in awe of those who did this well. This contest tortured me so great job those mentioned.

Anonymous said...

I agree, this was by far the hardest FF contest. I'm in awe of those who told a story in each round, something I knew I'd never manage. I don't think I managed it at all, even with 100 words, but it was a great challenge to try. I kept wishing I could go back and edit previous rounds as prompt words were revealed.

The variety in form and content of the entries is amazing, and there were several I was eager to see resolved. So much talent and imagination on display. Good work, everyone!

Carolynnwith2Ns said...

Am so honored to be mentioned.