Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Flash Fiction Contest Winner!

Well I had to really think hard on this one.


You rascally writers just up the stakes Every Single Time. (Very cool!)



I re-read all the finalists, and I even brought myself to re-read Mr. Forti's entry.


I soon realized there could not be just one winner.



Three of you wrote pieces that are aspects of the same heartache.





Madeline Mora-Summonte


BJ Muntain


KD James



are all winners this week.



Here are their entries again:



Madeline Mora-Summonte



Lizzie studies the empty dish then looks around. She doesn't know this place.


At the stove, an old man hums, spoons scrambled eggs into a bowl. She doesn't know this man.


Lizzie flings her fork at him. She tries to run, but she's wearing slippers, a robe.


He says he's her husband, Paul. Married many years. He points to her diamond, holds her gnarled hands. Says sometimes Lizzie forgets things.


He serves her eggs, butters her toast.


She doesn't remember. But she forgets.


Or so he says.


He turns away. Lizzie slips the knife into her pocket.


Just in case.






BJ Muntain


Seven plates. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven...


Seven forks.


Seven spoons for dessert.


Six steak knives and a butter knife for the kid.


Dishes for the Caesar salad. Dad's favourite!


Bringing out the food now: ham, scalloped potatoes - cheesy, just the way Dad likes them - creamed corn, peas...


The turnips. Where are the turnips? Dad will freak if there aren't...






Burning eyes, removing the place setting at the head of the blurry table, avoiding the looks of the others as they take their seats.


No turnips tonight.







“You have to come, see for yourself,” my sister said. “The dementia’s getting worse.”


Dad carefully places dishes out for tomorrow: bowl, spoon, cereal. Plate, fork, knife, for the frozen meal he’ll insist on for dinner.


“G’night, Timmy,” on his way to bed. It’s barely seven.


Timmy. My twin who died when we were ten. “Sleep well, Dad.”


I grab the milk carton next to the bowl, return it to the fridge.


He needs the visuals: Rolls of tp piled on the bathroom counter. Mismatched clothes laid out. Old photos of Mom.


And I wonder… will I, too?



If each of you will send me your mailing address, and what kinds of books you like to read, I'll get your prize in the mail.



Thanks to all of you who took the time to write and post entries.

It's always a real pleasure to read your work.


And now, back to conniving about how to thwart my nemesis. I really thought I had him this time.





Steve Forti said...

Congrats all three!
And so happy to have one of these back.

Timothy Lowe said...

Awesome choices Janet! Thanks for getting the band back together. I will gladly be the punching bag if it means we get to share our work like this!

Amy Johnson said...

Congratulations, Madeline, BJ, and KD! Way to go! Thank you for sharing your stories.

E.M. Goldsmith said...

Awesome. They sure hit the nail on the head. A lot of that kind of pain going around. A LOT Great job, all three of you

Lisa Bodenheim said...

Congrats to all three of you! Heart-touching stories that are only too familiar to too many of us. Thank you.

Kitty said...

Congratulations to all three. Your subject hit home with me.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Thank you, Janet!

Thanks, everyone! And congrats, too, to BJ and KD!

CynthiaMc said...


KDJames said...

Oh wow, I was not expecting this. Thanks, Janet! This was one of those entries that makes you glad no one can watch you make the sausage. What a mess. Rough draft 187 words, after ruthless editing, 236. Concluded I couldn't write and set it aside. Good thing I'm stubborn.

Congrats, BJ and Madeline!! I'm delighted to be in your company.

Kate Larkindale said...

Congrats to the winners! Very much deserved.

BJ Muntain said...

I should not be dancing this much. I'm getting too old... but I love it!

Thank you so much, Janet!

And congrats to my co-winners, KD and Madeline! Well deserved, you two!


Mallory Love said...

Congrats to the winners!

Colin Smith said...

Congrats Madeline, BJ, and KD!! Well-deserved wins. 😀

I have updated the Contest Spreadsheet in the Treasure Chest. Check it out to see your name in lights, or to look over past winning entries. By my reckoning this was contest #166, so there's plenty of good reading there.

NLiu said...

Congratulations, winners three!
You are the best the best can be.
Hope poor Tim is soon set free,
And flash contents run on endlessly.
Now myself Carkoon I'll see,
For daring with bad poetry,
The Sharkly wrath to sore provoke,
Alas! A fin! She bites my thr-
-[indistinct gurgling and splashing noises]

In other news, my unwell kid (subject of flash piece) is a lot better, and back at home with meds that appear to be working. Another very heartfelt huzzah.

I love these flash contests, and the Reefly banter. No other writing community is half this wonderful.

Just Jan said...

Congratulations, you three! Great job!

Beth Carpenter said...

Congratulations, winners! I was on the road and missed the whole thing, but it was wonderful reading through the entries when I got home. I'm missed this! Thanks to Janet for giving these incredible writers a place to shine!

John Davis Frain said...

No surprise Janet had to award all three. If I ran these, the book budget would run dry after 1 and a 1/2 contests.

Amazing entries. Keep writing!

AJ Blythe said...

Those were very touching and I can well see how they couldn't be separated. Congrats you talented trio!!