Friday, 21 September 2018

Blow the wind southerly

There’s something horribly humourless about the colour of the sky today, the featureless greenish white of a well-used handkerchief. Which has me appreciating more than ever the colourful and vivid imagery presented for our delectation and delight this week. Re someone else doing the judging - more of that in a couple of weeks.

For reasons I haven’t fathomed (unlike the rest of my family I lack the analytical gene) so cannot say exactly why R J Wayne’s ‘The Guardians‘1.2  had such a strong impact, but it went into the number 1 spot early on and stayed there; David T's 'Daddy's Home' came a close second.

Words for next week: deadlock intercept maiden

Entries by midnight Thursday 27th September, words and winners posted Friday 28th

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, 14 September 2018

The Eroded steps ...


Title of an exquisite book of poetry, essays, photographs and drawings based upon a Halifax carpet factory, just this evening rediscovered on my bookshelf and worthy both of re-reading  and referencing  here, where so many of the week’s offerings, as ever, merit several reads, operating, as they do on several levels.

Before I pick a winner (Procrastinating? Moi?) I also thank you for the lovely comments on my two pieces this week, especially heartening because I felt they both felt short and am glad they were not perceived so; they equal the pleasure of winning, for me.

And so ... (no, Sandra, you cannot have four winners!) ...  although David T’s ‘He took her so fast the doorknob was still in her hand' really set my heart beating, and Terrie’s hiccups were such a delight, I choose Patricia’s ‘Now I lay me down ...’ for its all-encompassing potential for nightmare.

Words for next week: brim  cloister  valid

Entries by midnight Thursday 20th September, words and winners posted Friday 21st

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, 7 September 2018

Help me make it through the night


Two phrases this week impressed me with a particularly well-executed horror, exquisitely evoked. The sort that leaves me hoping I sleep sound through the night, and especially between the hours of 2 a.m. and 3, which is when the blackest of ideas return to haunt me. And so, another week with dual winners: Terrie for ‘delicately, and slowly, butchered flesh from bone.’ in Demon-food and David, whose ENFANT, contained ‘screaming until they had no voices’. 

Thank you all for another week of taking innocent words and corrupting them beyond imagination.

Words for next week: deliver guardian knob

Entries by midnight Thursday 13th September, words and winners posted Friday 14th

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, 31 August 2018

“Pleasure after all is a safer guide than either right or duty”


And following Samuel Butler’s claim, albeit out of step, given this is supposed to be a site of horror and noir, this week I’ve chosen two stories purely because they made me smile with sheer pleasure:  John’s fantastically-titled ‘Mishmash and Hodgepodge and a slight bit of Gobbledygook’ and Rosie’s ‘Well Then’, the 144th  instalment of ‘The Adventures of Rosebud, Pirate Princess’ – a consistently delightful serial which never fails to entertain.

As, obviously, do you all, for which I thank you.                                                                                                                                                                                           
Words for next week: buckle  diagnose  parish

Entries by midnight Thursday 6th September, words and winners posted 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 you prefer.

Friday, 24 August 2018

The fathoming (or otherwise) of fables


I struggled so much over this week’s three prompt words, and have been so busy elsewhere, responding to beta readers’ brilliant assistance with a seventh-version novel, that it was both surprise and relief to discover already 56 comments when I finally found time to return to Prediction.

Should have known though, rather than let me down. you contrived to hitch the standard up another few rungs, and I confess I’ve had to pick a trio of you, being unable to pitch one even a smidgeon higher than the other. So congratulations to David W for ‘Does she know', to ZoĆ«, for ‘Edda’ and to David T for ‘Road to Shenandoah’, and especial thanks, as ever, to all who found time to comment.

Words for next week: cast  racecourse  wraith

Entries by midnight Thursday 30th August, words and winners posted Friday 31st

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, 17 August 2018

August and the mornings grow dark again


At least I’m not awake and waiting for it to be four o’clock before allowing myself to get out of bed. Not that last week’s tales wouldn’t have been worth it – as rich a bunch as one could hope to wish for. (Given the inclusion of ‘unborn’ I was not surprised. Nor disappointed.)

As usual a struggle to pick a winner and I feel obliged to stress that, as ever, it is a subjective, but for me there was something very special in R J Wayne’s hauntingly visual ‘Dust’

Words for next week: allegory trust vulgar

Entries by midnight Thursday 23rd August, words and winners posted Friday 24th

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, 10 August 2018

Pricking of more than thumbs


A somewhat uncomfortable week, seeing what each of you managed to do with a cactus and some gin! 
Even being ultra-picky this week my short-list went out of control again, but for once two tales by the same author kept rising to the top and I nominate Terrie as the winner for her double helping of the SAS Diaries, numbers 15 and 16.

This weekly experience of reading both posts and comments is never-endingly pleasurable – thank you all for contributing so generously to it..

Words for next week: fork quagmire unborn

Entries by midnight Thursday 16th August, words and winners posted Friday 17th

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, 3 August 2018

Cardiff, moorhen or a coot?


Late today, apologies – staying at my daughter’s and the days a different shape. My pleasure at reading your entries no less, nor  the difficulty of choosing a winner, therefore, too short of opportunity to insert fag papers between each of half a dozen, I’m naming three time: J E Deegan for ‘In a time past’, Dave for ‘The Liberator’ and Patricia for ‘Broken-hearted Clown’. Thank you all.

Words for next week (inspired by daughter’s kitchen) : cactus, gin percolate

Entries by midnight Thursday 9th August, words and winners posted Friday 10th

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, 27 July 2018

Reading books and drinking shandy


Has been the extent of my activity for much of this week, plus dragging myself into the 21st century with a new phone. Nothing like as arduous as Antonia’s wonderfully described week of scrubbing and shifting. Thank goodness, no-one’s stopped writing and providing, as Patricia pointed out, plenty of musical links, plus some truly soaring one-liners, and Bill and Rosie Owens got their pieces in on time (not that late makes them any less enjoyable a read.)

But once again I find myself having to stab blindly to select just one from the marvellous offerings. Please be assured that naming a ‘winner’ is in no way intended to imply the rest of you in any way whatsoever fell short. And so ... (this is so hard) ... I nominate David’s epic ‘Here we come’ as the one a hairsbreadth in front. That said, we are all winners for being offered such a feast of reading.

Words for next week:  exception half liberate

Entries by midnight Thursday 2nd August, words and winners posted Friday 3rd

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, 20 July 2018

In expectation of at least three evils


An apology. I forgot how much the reading and writing of ‘yawn’ automatically produced one, but am happy to report that not one of the stories concocted around the use of it did anything but jolt a response of one sort or another from me.

This week, I thought I’d allow myself an honourable mention or two, as well as a winner, but when it got to four ‘must includes’ I ditched the idea and, although it feels a little bizarre – and perhaps ungrateful to all you wonderful stalwarts – I’m handing the top place rosette to Unknown’s ‘Slip-Sliding Away, for the delight of the opening sentence and the solidity of the tale.

Words for next week:  cremate monkey suede

Entries by midnight Thursday 26th July, words and winners posted Friday 27th

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, 13 July 2018

The cat sat on the mat

Halfway through my first judging read-through, I received an email from Theresa May but, too busy to read it, I deleted it. Then thought she might have liked to help, because for the love of me I could not find any sort of criteria which would help me decide on a winner. So many greedy attention-grabbing opening lines. So much vivid imagery underlining the horror therein. 

In the end I went for the one that grabbed me on first read, just a little harder than the rest: Chris Allinotte’s glass hearts. Truly, this week you all excelled yourself and I found myself tempted to hunt around for three supremely bland prompt words, but guessed you’d turn even them to nastiness.  So ...

Words for next week:  grease tautology yawn

Entries by midnight Thursday 19th July, words and winners posted Friday 20th

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, 6 July 2018

Maggot-pies and choughs and rooks ...

Macbeth, raving with powerful imagery, and sounding a lot more poetic than those harsh-calling around here all day. I'm having to be a bit more circumspect  re titles - last week's garnered a lot of interest from porn sites!

Shakespeare certainly created something akin to what we have conjured this week, unsurprising given the words but impressive in the breadth of invention. John’s ‘pending quickness’ immediately set the tone, Atlas’ huge grin after a night in the whoremadillo house continued it and David’s smutty organic life forms finished it off.
This week, Joe’s  ‘A change of mind’ is runner-up and Patricia takes first place, but I can’t decide whether it should be with Kursaal  episode 121 or ‘Pure as the Driven’, so leave each of you to decide.

Words for next week:  execute feckless Venice

Entries by midnight Thursday 12th July, words and winners posted Friday 13th

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 June 2018

Rip settings and other devices


Sheltering from the football and selecting a shortlist I realise, for alliteration’s sake, I should pour myself a Smirnoff.  Not that vodka will help – I get the strong impression that each week each of us is spurred to further heights by others’ posts. Jim takes a new path by trying out three endings to his Problem, each of Patricia’s  strong-voiced posts held new delights and I truly loved the hugging humanity of Joe’s ‘The Virus’, but top place, by a whisker, goes to Dave for ‘These things are all fakes’.

Thank you all for your participation – both in offering such a bounty of tales and for commenting.

Words for next week: barbaric nuisance  smut

Entries by midnight Thursday 5th July, words and winners posted Friday 6th

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, 22 June 2018

Dreams out of the ivory gate*


And entries enough to disturb many a dream and delight me with the many wicked abuses of innocent words.  For me, candy floss, remembered for its pink and white childhood appeal and subsequent disappointing hard-edged stickiness, on face and in hair, was much more appealing as a character in David’s tale of the same name and I declare him this week’s winner.
*[Sir Thomas Browne 1605-1682]

Words for next week: auger/augur intrinsic pellet

Apologies:  once again my spelling and failure to check has let me down.
The word I meant to be used is augur but for those quick off the mark the alternative version is equally acceptable (although I will delete if instructed to do so) 

Entries by midnight Thursday 28th June, words and winners posted 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 you prefer.

Friday, 15 June 2018

Black trees against a sunrise sky


I don’t always say, but ought to acknowledge how much your comments validate my pieces. Primarily for me Prediction is valuable for  keeping writing muscles in trim, needless to say your input is a very  pleasurable bonus. 

And bonus points this week, following a lot of shuffling and changing of my mind, go to Terrie for ‘Going Home’. This series goes from strength to strength, plus the title reminded me of Mark Knopfler’s version, theme tune for ‘Local Hero’. 

Words for next week: floss history sketch
Entries by midnight Thursday 21st June, words and winners posted 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. 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.