I’ve not tended to have much success with submissions. Firstly, I had a habit of submitting old stories that I wrote years ago, hardly representative of where I am now as a writer. And secondly, I’ve never been very diligent in actually submitting stories to competitions or opportunities. Not sending anything is always going to get in the way of winning plaudits.
This week a friend suggested I enter a flash fiction competition at FlashFlood, an online flash-fiction journal. For once, rather than yet again repurposing old material, I threw together a new story in short order. After some helpful edits, I submitted it and… was accepted!
Needless to say I’m thrilled! Not just to have the story be accepted, but also for the generation of new material, a foundation upon which to build.
And the story itself? I’ve since re-titled it for future submissions, but I present to you: Death Penalty.
I really enjoyed writing the three sentence short stories in April, so when Chuck Wendig put up another three sentence story challenge, I decided to give it another go.
Here are the first two I wrote this morning:
This will be my last cigarette and I savour the feel of the smoke in my lungs and the rush of endorphins to my brain. It’s at times like this that I feel as if all things are possible and my days will know no end.
All of time and space are at my disposal at last! Perhaps I’ll witness Hannibal’s elephants crossing the Alps, or stop Oswald shooting Kennedy. Or maybe I’ll undo what never should have occurred and stop my parents meeting.
But the one I finally chose to submit was this one:
The liquid life that I pull up through my roots has nourished me for decades, allowing me to spread my boughs wide. When the wind rustles through my leaves, I am filled with so much love for all the life that surrounds and suffuses me. But if that little shit climbs me one more time, I swear I’m going let him fall to his death.
I’ve not been able to do much writing at all over the last week or two, work was successfully pummelling me into submission. The next week or two is likely to be similar, but I managed to snatch a window of time on Sunday to have a go at Chuck Wendig’s Flash Fiction Challenge: The Three Sentence Story. These are what I came up with:
Amelia’s parents chose her name to represent passion and individuality. She grew up as they hoped, strong, independent and headstrong. So much so that she resented the imposition of someone else’s moniker and changed her name to Doris.
Jeff felt physically sick at the thought of eating the meal his girlfriend had cooked for him. No amount of marinading and preparation could disguise the fact that she had served him lamb. It always reminded him of the time a sheep had touched him inappropriately as a child.
The wall around the city served both to keep the residents inside and the rest of the world without. The wall-builders had not thought, though, to build a roof over the prison. The inmates flew free and proud like Icarus.
I eyed up the magnificent woman before me dressed in the floor length dress. She clearly resented the imposition of my gaze and what it meant. But I knew the dress concealed her insectile limbs.