Friday, 30 September 2016

Necessary words to fire the imagination

I’ll be posting/commenting later in the week but in the meantime

Words for next week: articulate bud incident

Entries by midnight Thursday 6th October, new words posted on Friday 7th

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialised fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media.

Friday, 23 September 2016

You get to choose again

I’m off travelling again for the next ten days, from the North East to the South West, an area visited only a handful of times, and not for ten years. Since a second television series has just begun I anticipate seeing references to ‘Poldark country’. I re-read the first five of Winston Graham’s wonderful novel last year and found them just as enjoyable as when reading them in my teens. Couldn’t bear to watch the tv series as the characters are already so vivid in my head. As, of course, are the characters created here, week on week; I firmly believe it is more enjoyable to be able to exercise my own imagination, fired only by your words.

Yet, for me this week, the stand-out piece was Patricia’s haunting ‘Tempus Fugit’. Poignant and thought-provoking, it struck many chords, not least of which was awe at fabricating in from the prompts on offer.

Words for next week: fancy taunt visit

Entries by midnight Thursday 29th September, new words posted on Friday 30th

but I’ll ask each of you to nominate your personal winner because I’ll be staying with family in circumstances which might not allow time to do my usual summary.


Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialized fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media.

Friday, 16 September 2016

Reward and challenges

Last week began with a mingling with four hundred fellow writers (and, for me, a lovely validation by one professional and a much-needed pointing out where I was going wrong by another) only to be upended by the vituperation surrounding Lionel Shriver’s speech in Melbourne warning of  the challenge to fiction writers posed by those brandishing the ‘cultural appropriation’ banner.
So good to come here and see the eagerness and skill with which we face the weekly challenge. Patricia managed to quell her doubts and produce three excellent pieces, Jk’s vengeance was a powerfully-written gut-kick and Antonia’s Captain awaits his new sails.
Rosie has yet to face the challenge of commenting, but I have no hesitation in declaring ‘A Poor Choice of Cargo’ this week’s winner.

Words for next week  are: chafe French voyage

Entries by midnight Thursday 22nd September, new words and winners posted Friday 23rd

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialised fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media.


Friday, 9 September 2016

Brave new worlds and final killings

Several of you commented this week on the power and glory of the worlds each of us was creating and populating. I tried using that as a measure of comparative merit, but every one a winner in its way.
In so few words the opening line is vital - you all know that too. And all are masters of the jolt at the end to complete the tale. So in terms of choosing this week’s number one I was back to where I started – where I usually am  – hoping that in selecting one you all appreciate the tight-packed rest of you were just a nose-length behind.

So, for the epic and other-worldly quality of ‘Sinners Anonymous’ I declare this week’s winner to be to be bdcharles I might even get to present the trophy in person this weekend as we’re both attending the Festival of Writing at York.
Thanks also to those of you who took time and effort to comment – always a vital part of this group.

Words for next week  are: fob, indigo, prevent

Entries by midnight Thursday 15th September, new words and winners posted on Friday 16th


Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialized fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media.

Friday, 2 September 2016

Passports and awkwardly-inspired tickets to ride

What an entertaining crop of entries we’ve had this week, especially given the somewhat uncomfortable-together prompt words. But wrestling them into something coherent and meaningful proved well within everyone’s capabilities.

And so many further insights into so many different worlds, from the piratical marine, of Rosie’s and Antonia, Jk’s galactic and Patricia’s multi-peopled Kursaal and railway station – visiting them, becoming familiar with each of them, is part of the joy. This week it is Zaiure’s gem of fantasy, Need [05] which tops the list.

Words for next week  are: channel, hike, petrichor

Entries by midnight Thursday 8th September, new words and winners posted on Friday 9th

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialized fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media.

Friday, 26 August 2016

Dictionaries of different ages and sizes

Zaiure’s use of ‘sabulous’, and my search for its meaning reminded me of the dictionary game we played in Alabama last month – inventing plausible definitions of words such as ‘shypoo’, ‘megass’ and ’kipsie’. A two volume Oxford dictionary (supplied by Gita) had an abundance of unusual words to play with.

As with words (but even more so this week, so much the standard continues to rise) the choice of winner is a tricky one and I’ve had to declare a tie, between Gita’s ‘Cobalt Blue’ and Patricia’s ‘At a convent in Brittany’, but Antonia and Zaiure, William and Rosie posted almost equally wonderful pieces - all a joy to read. The other strength of this site is the comments, not so much for the praise as acknowledgement that we’ve been read – what every writer craves.

Words for next week  are: alpha, convulse, refulgent

Entries by midnight Thursday 1st September, new words and winners posted on Friday 2nd

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialized fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media.

Friday, 19 August 2016

Precisely

At the tiny village primary school I attended we occasionally did exercises in ‘prĂ©cis’.  I invariably finished mine in three minutes flat and sat for another seventeen watching others slog and mutter, red-faced and frantically rubbing out. I wished we did more of it because it was the one occasion I was able to shine but, unlike Antonia, I’ve never been offered a job on the strength of it.

As ever, there’s been plentiful demonstration of tight-worded strength in the telling of tales this week, one of which was, for me, a clear winner: Jk’s Gostegodd 03. Apart from my delight at the title and the tale, I am each time impressed with how much is conveyed in so few words; long may this serial continue.

Words for next week  are: amanuensis, bow, rattle

Entries by midnight Thursday 25th August, new words and winners posted on Friday 26th

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialized fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media.

Friday, 12 August 2016

Strong spells and tricksy tales

And, as I was enchanted by, and rewarded, last week’s stand-alones, this week it is the turn of episode 59 of our second longest-running serial, Antonia’s ‘Infinity’ and the ever-fascinating Captain to occupy the high place on the podium. with our newest – William’s tenth episode of Little Martyn – one place below. In truth, each of Antonia’s episodes is worthy of winning almost every week, but for me, episode 159 has all the elements that make it such a staunch success. And I thank you all for participating and for commenting.

Words for next week  are: bramble, drift. sally

Entries by midnight Thursday 18th August, new words and winners posted on Friday 19th

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialized fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media.

Friday, 5 August 2016

Tales of Tardis Quantity

As a serial serialiser myself, I have long appreciated the several others that run on this site, offering twists and turns for a regular cast of characters. This week, however, my especial admiration has been for two complete and very individual tales: Gita’s ‘Her contribution’ and Jk’s ‘The disgraceful widow', each of them seeming several times larger than the number of words it took to tell them. I declare them this week’s joint winners.
Thank you to all of you who take time to comment – such acknowledge of other’s posts is part of why this site is so successful.

Words for next week are: packet shore zodiac 

Entries by midnight Thursday 11th August, new words and winners posted on Friday 12th 

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialised fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media you prefer.

Friday, 29 July 2016

Just add water

Already enjoying  a week of  concentrated prompt writing I've found an equally rich harvest of them here. The downside of which is I'm truly spoilt for choice: choosing a favourite this week has been exceptionally difficult. But after much deliberation, I'm nominating Zaiure's Insult to injury #2 as winner, with  Gita and Rosie as delightful honourable mentions. And sincerely thank you all.

Words for next week  are: wake envelop hem

Entries by midnight Thursday 4th August, new words and winners posted on Friday 5th

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialised fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media best pleases you and, if you like, remind your friends that we are open to new and returning writers.

Friday, 22 July 2016

The Joy of Writing

Later today I’m off to Alabama to spend a week with some of the very first on-line writing friends I made, whose encouragement and writing contributed enormously to the development of mine. I have scheduled next week’s words at the usual BST time and shall aim to post, comment and choose a Prediction winner as soon as I am able.

This week, two winners: Patricia’s ‘Attention to detail’ and Bill’s ‘The bigger they are...’  Both have a precision which totally delighted me. Tony’s ‘Softness came from Starlight’ would have been a third but try as I might I could only see the place where ‘minute’ had been edited out – far too easy to do!

Words for the coming week are: archer lid whinny

Entries by midnight Thursday 28th July, new words and winners posted on Friday 29th

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialised fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media best pleases you and, if you like, remind your friends that we are open to new and returning writers.

Friday, 15 July 2016

Grand and inter-National

With less than eight hours to go before the deadline, this week threatened to be a two horse race, one of which is automatically disqualified, the other a triple delight from Patricia, who gave me a fright. Misreading in its title the ending of ‘Cripplegate Junction’ I re-read the whole of it and was astonished (and envious) of how smoothly it read and how well-plotted, even while knowing that it could not be so. From the joy which Patricia brings these out each week I sense she is as addicted as I  to the weekly ‘necessity’ of writing something. 
William and Rosie were last minute but very welcome and Antonia, the Prediction’s most stalwart supporter, did not let us down. For her grog-befuddled Captain in Infinity 155 I have a great deal of pleasure in naming her this week’s winner.

Words for the coming week are: carrier minute temporary

Entries by midnight Thursday 21st July, new words and winners posted on Friday 22nd

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialized fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media best pleases you and, if you like, remind your friends that we are open to new and returning writers.

Friday, 8 July 2016

Looking back

This past few weeks I’ve been more than usually aware of martial history, both the still-terrible impact of a century ago and the ill-judged one  this century so it’s not surprising that William’s ‘The Bitter Field’ had an immediate impact and was judged and this week’s outright winner. As ever, the delightful episodes from Antonia and Rosie, and phrases such as William’s 'poking your stodge' and Patricia’s 'dolorous dirges' to delight in, I consider us all winners. Thank you all for participating, both in posting and in you very generous comments.

Words for the coming week are: arid raise, prophet

Entries by midnight Thursday 14th July, new words and winners posted on Friday 15th


Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialized fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media best pleases you and, if you like, remind your friends that we are open to new and returning writers.

Friday, 1 July 2016

And now for a drop of the hard stuff ...

... and  no, not this week’s coming words but what’s in my drinks cabinet: – it’s single malt; Highland Park for preference, (Dubonnet indeed!!) and I raise a glass to each of you who contributed, commented and nominated so ably last week.

Hard too to choose a winner, but after some blind stabbing with a hat pin I’ve eventually plumped for two: Patricia’s ‘Kat Shelton’ and AR Martin’s ‘Marital bliss’ - hope to see more of this writing, and if you've friends of similar ilk please invite them .

Words for the coming week are: grant stodge volume

Entries by midnight Thursday 7th July, new words and winners posted on Friday 8th July

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialized fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media best pleases you and, if you like, remind your friends that we are open to new and returning writers.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Playing late

Another three words for you, which I hope I’ll get time to have a go at before the deadline - I’m looking forward to a lot of catch-up reading. Hopefully enough of you made something of last week’s words to be struggling to decide your own personal favourite.

Words for the coming week are: bliss south Tudor

Entries by midnight Thursday 30th June, new words and winners posted on Friday 1st July

Usual rules: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. Serialised fiction is, as always, welcome. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Feel free to post links to your stories on Twitter or Facebook or whichever social media best pleases you and, if you like, remind your friends that we are open to new and returning writers.