Close Relations

Image by Rudy and Peter Skitterians from Pixabay

I like flash fiction competitions but producing 300 words on a character/location/genre prompt within a two days deadline is a tough discipline. Sometimes I submit an entry which I think is just ok and it does well. Other times I think I’ve written a masterpiece and it bombs with the judge. You just cannot second-guess it. This week I tried comedy but without success. See what you think yourself by reading it at ‘Close Relations’.


VSS 365 Anthology 2019 – advance orders (Kindle)

#VSS 365 Anthology 2019 – advance orders

Mark A. King (Editor) says

I have given it a release date of 23rd Sept.

Go to Amazon in your country and search for “vss365 anthology” to place advance orders.

We tasked a talented global writing community to produce their best work. We provided them with 37 challenging prompts. We gave them a strict 280 character limit.
From thousands of entries, we selected just 365.
What can be achieved with just 280 characters? On these pages you will feel the fabric of love and depths of loss, you will explore mortality and ponder what it truly means to be alive, you will find poetry, prose, wonder, despair, humour and courage.
Most of all you will find exceptional thought-provoking authors who are pushing their form to the very limits and beyond.

The KDP (Kindle) account has been set up so that all the royalties go directly to the children’s literacy charity, The Book Bus.’

Earth to Earth

Image by mitsuecligsx from Pixabay

Not everything that I write is successful. ‘Earth to Earth’ was unplaced in Microcosms Flash Fiction competition – Microcosms 169 – on 30/09/2019.  I thought that it was a reasonable little poem but the judge favoured other entries. That’s how it goes sometimes. You can’t win them all.

The rules required a story in no more than 300 words in response to the following prompts: Character – Coloniser / Location- A”New World” / Genre – Poem or Character – Pilot / Location – Space, Another Planet / Genre – Sci-fi/Fantasy. The story had to be written and submitted within a two day deadline.

The Acrostics Distraction Technique

Background Image by Peter H from Pixabay
Background Image by Peter H from Pixabay

I just knew that all that acrostics practice on #vss365 and #davidlpogson on Twitter  would pay off one day.  I now have my short story ‘The Acrostics Distraction Technique’ winning the Judge’s Pick of the Microcosms Flash Fiction competition – Microcosms 167 – on 17/08/2019.  The rules required a story in no more than 300 words in response to the following prompts.

Character – Prisoner/ Location – Jailhouse/ Genre – Comedy

The story had to be written and submitted within a two day deadline. ‘The Acrostics Distraction Technique’ was the Judge’s choice as the winner. Read it for free by clicking on ‘The Acrostics Distraction Technique’ or Microcosms 167.

‘Ancient’ in the 2019 #VSS365 Anthology

My very short story entry for 1 June 2019 on #vss365 on Twitter was chosen out of thousands of entries for publication in Volume 1 of the 2019 #VSS365 Anthology. Entry was via a 280 character Tweet. The prompt word changed every day. I based my entry on the prompt word ‘Ancient’. I like to combine my stories with an acrostic. I’ll post a link when the Anthology is published.

The Brigadier

LRGS CCF Record Card
LRGS CCF Record Card

I’m pleased to say that my short storyThe Brigadier’ was published in the General Nonfiction Section of the Storyhouse Writers Showcase by The Preservation Foundation on 3 July 2019.  The story intertwines two events  nearly forty years apart, revealing true character and determination. Read it for free by clicking on the highlighted link. 

Graveyard Shift – published

Photo by author

I’m pleased to say that my flash fiction short story ‘Graveyard Shift’ has been published by Sirens Call Publications in its freely downloadable eZine ‘The Sirens Call’ Issue 45 just released.  The theme was ‘Distant Screams’. Read it for free by downloading the eZine at Sirens Call PublicationsJust Click on the highlighted link. It’s on page 101 (not Room 101). 

Sam’s Spot – published

St John the Evangelist Church,  Yealand Conyers, Carnforth, Lancashire.

My short story ‘Sam’s Spot’, a runner up in the Didcot Writers April competition (500 words on the theme ‘all about me’) has been published on website.  Click on this link to read it for free: Sam’s Spot.