Friday Flash Fiction – “Cry Wolf”

Wolf

Wolf (Photo credit: Buridans Esel)

 

The first time it happened, he screamed.  The others came running, but they didn’t see it.  Twice, three times, the shape was there, ready to ravage them all. 

Later, the reproaches. 

A turning of the back. 

A running out of town. 

The years had ground on, one village to another, but he would never take another flock.  

Sometimes in dreams, others waking visions, but always coming true.  They had called him many things, but now, in his rags and vacant doorways, he would always be “The Boy Who Cried”.

Friday Fictioneers is the brain child of Madison Woods, and you can keep up with the gang on FaceBook or Twitter (#FridayFictioneers).  Our goal is to write 100 word stories based on a photo prompt each Friday.  In addition, here’s a bit of Flash Fiction insight I found in my travels…

I came across this little gem in an interview I read earlier this week, and just had to share it with you:

 

Kirsty Logan “is a fiction writer, journalist, literary magazine editor, teacher, book reviewer, arts intern, and general layabout. She is currently working on a novel, “Rust and Stardust”, and a short story collection, “The Rental Heart and Other Fairytales”, and she also is the editor of flash fiction magazine Fractured West.  You can read the full interview here, but the part most exciting to flash fiction writers is below (italics mine)…

 

I have spent years trying to develop a writing schedule, but it never quite works out. My only rule is that I always write 100 words a day, no matter what. Even on the craziest, most hectic day, there is always time to take ten minutes and jump into my story. I often write my 100 words on my phone and email it to myself to be added to my work-in-progress. I’m always thinking about my current story, daydreaming about the characters and locations, trying to pick holes in the plot to make sure it’s sturdy. When it’s time to write I don’t need time to ‘get into it’, as I’m already there. I do write a lot, but it’s nothing compared to the time I spend daydreaming!

 

Now that’s using flash fiction at a whole other level!  Be sure to leave your link/comment below, and let me know how you can incorporate 100 words a day!

 

 

 

 

Friday Flash Fiction – “Repeat Customer”

English: I took this picture myself and hereby...

The color seeped through the petals like drops of blood beneath a crisp white shirt.  She smiled at the memory.

A shame, really.  Their meeting was so perfect, so destined, that for half a breath she had believed it could be like a fairy tale.  A charming prince.  A happy ending.

Her damsel in distress act was flawless.

He had no suspicions, right up to the short, sharp stick amidst the crowd.  The confusion of the dancers; her feigned shock and dismay.

She breathed in the aroma of the bouquet, closing her eyes and exhaling with a whispered moan.

“You buyin’ those?  That’s your third bunch this week.”

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The Friday Fictioneers is a group of writers who strive each week to tell a story in just 100 words.  Using photo prompts by group founder, Madison Woods, the Fictioneers can be found on FaceBook, Twitter (@FridayFictioneers), or linked throughout the web via their individual blogs.  Read more of today’s Flash here:

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A Word About Critique

Lots of aspiring writers – or insecure writers of all levels – post rough drafts of their work and ask for feedback.  (Sometimes they aren’t really “rough drafts”, but we keep up the fiction to save face.)  Irish writer Gaius Coffey, remarks,

  “Sometimes early drafts are uploaded with a request to “ignore the typos” and just say whether something works or is worth continuing with. The request is like a sculptor holding up a slab of chipped marble and asking if it will be a good statue… Critique is not about reassurance.

Sometimes early drafts are uploaded as a form of defence (sic) with the writer thinking the sting of criticism can be softened or written off with “well, it’s only a draft.” If so, self-defeat is not self-defence.

By uploading the best piece I can for critique, I maximise (sic) my benefit from the critique. I have

already corrected all the problems I can see, so anything that remains is news to me. I cannot hide behind the pretence (sic) that it is an early draft and I would’ve corrected it myself, because I clearly hadn’t.”

I think Mr. Coffey makes some excellent points here, and there’s a good case for just cracking on with your piece instead of clamoring for early validation.  If you believe in it, the writing should come through and make it something others can see too…AFTER you’ve done the polishing!

Writer Wordart

Writer Wordart (Photo credit: MarkGregory007)

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Friday Flash Fiction – “Old News”

 “You ever seen that before?”

The two boys stopped the absorbing business of shooting B-B’s at cow pies to stare at the pick-up truck.

“No, but I never been on this end of the farm, neither.”

“What a rusted out heap.  Let’s go sit in it!”

Bouncing on the remaining seat springs and fighting over the steering wheel, a foot prodded a bag in the floorboard.

“What’s in that?”

“How am I supposed to know?  Open it up.”

They poured the cash onto the seat between them; read the brittle newspaper story of a long-ago robbery and shooting.

“There’s something else in this bag.  Looks like an old wallet.”

The leather cracked when it opened, the license yellowed around the black and white photo.

“Ummm….It’s your Dad.”

 

Dialogue is an important element to any fiction – long or short. Author and former private investigator, Gayle Bartos-Poole, states,

“It provides plot advancement, character development, and action or movement. In other words, it brings the story to life.

A character blurting out information that advances the plot is far more interesting than a long narrative description.

Through dialogue we discover character traits about the various people who populate our stories. How a person speaks and acts while talking says a lot more about him or her than mere words.

And dialogue provides real time action. You are in the room with the characters as they speak. You’re eavesdropping or right in the middle of the conversation. Or the character might be speaking directly to you.”

How did dialogue affect this piece?  Would the pace have been different if a narrative style had been employed?  As a reader, what do you look for in dialogue?

Leave a comment below, and link to your own flash fiction if possible.

Want more Flash Fiction? Visit these Friday Fictioneers for more 100-word heaven! (If you have a flash fiction piece to share, please leave a link in Comments!) You can also visit the originator of the photo prompts, Madison Woods, or follow the gang on Twitter – #FridayFictioneers.