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Peter_Glen
(@peter_glen)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 143

I really enjoyed this exercise ... a challenge that has opened my eyes to the benefit of fewer words (will never approach my first edit the same way again!) ... the 250-word version is a rewrite in a style you might find in late 19th century adventure prose.

Theme: Deception
Title: General Firth

500 ====

Eleven dead men. One dead woman. Bloodied bodies scattered upon the less traveled road; horses too. The mystery of their deaths sent a chill down San’s spine.

Beasts? Men? If men, then who, as the soldiers had been Fordic, and they had left their destroyed enemy behind; San should know, they had laid waste to her town. Now, they held all land west of the Divide.

Autumn leaves shifted as a cold wind bit through her clothes and burnt her cheeks.

She passed the dead woman, and the cold stare stopped San in her tracks. She spat, “your fire, your swords, you’ve taken everything from me!” A cold fly buzzed onto the woman’s face. San softened, see what your waring has gotten you?

She shut the eyes, noticing that there was no visible wound. The misbent arm gripped to a saddle bag showed that the fighter had fallen from her horse.

Her stomach growled as she rummaged through the pack; inside was everything needed for the long road ahead. She looked to the fine woolens under the chainmail, the cloak too would be useful in the snow; fine boots would be warmer also.

It took longer than she liked, but San had transformed herself into a warrior, albeit, in appearance only. She dragged the lifeless, naked body down a gully and covered it with sticks and leaves.

It was nearing dusk when she heard hooves chasing up from behind; it was too late to hide. The rider, a handsome young man in uniform, pulled to a halt before her. “General Firth!

“I saw your company and held hope that you still lived.” The man was panting heavily as if the horse had been riding him.

“Forgive me, my Lord.” The soldier dismounted and fell to one knee. San was stunned and speechless.

The young man stood, “How callous of me. You’ve been unsettled by your ordeal. Please, again, forgive me. I am Jeremy, squire to Sir Ruskin, before he fell. They sent me to give you a message.

“But that can wait. Let me escort you. I am yours to command.” He reverted to his kneel.

San had recovered, “You’ve ridden hard, would you like a drink?” She asked, reaching for the dead general’s wineskin.

In awe, the squire answered, “I had heard that you were a benevolent leader, my Lord, but I am fine. Take my horse? I will run.”

They continued, spending days on the road. During their journey, they became friends, laughing at each other’s jokes, taking turns at camp duties.

At breakfast, on the last day before they reached the high pass, Jeremy, with his dirk in hand while slicing a piece from an apple, asked, “my Lord, I am curious.”

San’s heart stopped, something, besides the breeze had changed; smoke from the campfire drifted into her face.

“This whole time, you haven’t asked me for your message?” Jeremy tilted his head, bit the apple from the point of his blade,“my Lord?”

250 ====

The girl, in flight from her ruined town, found eleven dead men and one dead woman down the road less travelled. They had befallen a bloody assault, and the mystery chilled the young refugee to her bones.

Autumn leaves shifted as a cold wind bit through the girl’s clothes and burnt her cheeks. She craved protection from the cold and so, without a thought to robbing from the dead, took the woman’s clothes, chain, and cloak. It may have been a rush of guilt or gratitude that made the body a rustic grave of sticks and leaves.

Now a warrior (by appearances only), the town girl, continued her march down the disused road when she was startled from behind by the rush of hooves. A rider pulled up fast before her, and the young, handsome man exclaimed with joy, “General Firth, you live! I have a message from the west!”

But the girl was confused and confessed naught. Presently, the squire thought nothing of his general’s strange behavior, as she had been through the shock of battle and the loss of her guard.

The pair rode on in tandem, camping along the side of the road for many days. Until, troubled by his thoughts, the friendly soldier asked, “My Lady, for all of these days, not once have you asked of the message I was to deliver to you in person. Are you not curious?”

He drew his dagger and asked again, “My Lady?”

fin.

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Posted : October 10, 2019 11:46 pm
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Gold Member
Posts: 887

Thanks for granting me admittance to the Pack Wulf. wotf010
Tommy has a tracking device so the corporation knows his location at all times.
I'm ready to do what it takes to succeed with your challenges(rolls up sleeves and cracks knuckles) time to write fresh for the day.

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM-V32/Q3
HM-V36/Q4
HM-V38/Q1

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Posted : October 11, 2019 12:14 am
AVDutson
(@avdutson)
Active Member
Posts: 24

After much internal debate:

"Yes!"
"No!"
"Yes!"
"No!"
"Shut your noise, you. And get that suit on!"

I have decided to follow my compadres into battle by JOINING Wulf's Super Secret Brigade. "Once more unto the breach, dear friends!"

~Tony
A.V. Dutson
R : 2, HM : 4, SHM : 2, F : 0, SF : 0, W : 0
"A good writer possesses not only his own spirit, but also the spirit of his friends."
~Friedrich Nietzsche

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Posted : October 11, 2019 12:34 am
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

Thanks for granting me admittance to the Pack Wulf. wotf010
Tommy has a tracking device so the corporation knows his location at all times.
I'm ready to do what it takes to succeed with your challenges(rolls up sleeves and cracks knuckles) time to write fresh for the day.

See, you know that, Storysinger, but did you give us as readers any clues? You have to foreshadow these things. We have to be able to go back and say, "Oh, yes! The mom was worried about that strange bump she always felt on her baby's arm. It always felt so...warm."

See? You don't have to come right out and tell us, but you do have to foreshadow these things. Same thing with the escape tunnel. You have to hint early on it's there, that she had a plan. She had worked so hard on it from the very beginning, before she ever went to the clinic and aroused their drones and seeing eyes...

See? Then, when she pops open the closet and lifts the trap door, we go, "Ah! There's her escape plan! This was what she talked about!"

Otherwise, these things become deus ex machina. We are willing to accept fortuitious events in a story, IF you foreshadow them or present them as logical follow ups.

There is one other danger I'll mention. As writers, we have spent much time in our world, we know how EVERYTHING works. Unfortunately, we tend to forget our reader doesn't know anything about our world, and expects the writer not to cheat them, but to give them the important stuff. A writer often thinks they have, like that tracking device info. I never recalled it in the story. You knew it. I didn't. It will not only annoy your readers, it will annoy your first reader and judge in this contest. You have to hint at such things, foreshadow, give us clues. We don't need everything, but we need enough to say, "Oh, I see!"

Think of my "Moongirl" story. SPOILER ALERT IF YOU HAVENT' READ. What if she had gotten to the end and just said, "Oh, I don't have to put you down, Moonie! I have this storage device in my earring that holds as much memory as a human brain. Let's put you in here!" Readers would have said, "What the hell? Where did THAT come from? Cheater! You just made an easy out for her!" And they'd throw the book against the wall, and probably never read anything by Wulf Moon again.

Foreshadow. Set things up. Be sneaky about it. But we can't just drop in convenient things to save our heroes that we didn't set up in the beginning. That's deus ex machina. They've been lowering the the goddess from the ceiling to save the day for a VERY long time. : )

Again, glad to have you in the Wulf Pack! Should be a fun year!

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 11, 2019 6:58 am
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

After much internal debate:

"Yes!"
"No!"
"Yes!"
"No!"
"Shut your noise, you. And get that suit on!"

I have decided to follow my compadres into battle by JOINING Wulf's Super Secret Brigade. "Once more unto the breach, dear friends!"

Hey, Tony! You took my advice! That suit you just put on? That's a tuxedo, with a colorful bow tie, and I see you walking in it right up to that stage to get your Woofie award.

You chose ... wisely.

Now get your submission materials in by midnight the 20th! No pumpkins allowed in! This is a hard deadline because WE HAVE WORK TO DO!

(Don't forget the book as well. We'll have some homework from it.)

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 11, 2019 7:05 am
Henckel
(@henckel)
Silver Member
Posts: 417

Hello, my name is Henckel and I'm a write-o-holic. I've now written 4 short stories for this "kill yer darlins" challenge. Luckily I've chosen the one I want. I've cut from my 1k to 500 words. .. going to take the weekend for the kids and finish the challenge on monday.

I've been enjoying reading everyones' stories, seeing your strategies for cutting, and reading the final cut versions.

A couple comments off the cuff... I absolutely loved the first few paragraphs of girl with green glasses original 500 word version. Yes, the 250 is tidy and spot on, but the beginning of the 500 was great. ...also re story singer, I was humored to see the animated kick made it in the 500 and 250 version. Also something about her using the child harness just make it a little more "real". Its a decision for that particular character that some parents agree with and some dont (use of the harness) the fact that you put it in there transformed the mom into a real person with an opinion on trivial stuff rather than a cardboard character.

Anyway, rock on. I'll be with y'all in a few days.

(2014) V31 Q1 – R
(2018) V35 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q4 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q1 – R
(2020) V37 Q2 – HM
(2020) V37 Q3 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q4 – Finalist
(2021) V38 Q1 – Semi-finalist
(2021) V38 Q2 – SHM
(2021) V38 Q3 – tba

Coolest Achievements
(2019) Published in Escape Anthology
(2020) Published in Sci-Fi Lampoon
(2020) V37 Q4 – Finalist
(2020) Dream Foundry - Shortlisted
(2021) Mike Resnick Memorial Award - 3rd Place winner!!! (to be published)

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Posted : October 11, 2019 8:01 am
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Gold Member
Posts: 887

You're spot on with that lesson Wulf. I definitely dropped the ball on that one. Not a word hinted at the tracking device but I knew early in the story it was a prominent detail. Lesson learned.

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM-V32/Q3
HM-V36/Q4
HM-V38/Q1

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Posted : October 11, 2019 8:36 am
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

Henckel, we look forward to your contribution to the Wulf Pack! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on some of the Flash stories as well. It helps to know what works, and what moves other readers!

Storysinger, just constructive, trying to help. I trust everyone knows that if I offer a bit of advice. Take it if it works for you. If not, it's always your story. As Obiwan said to Luke, "You must do what you feel is right, of course." : )

Beastmaster Moon

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 11, 2019 11:42 am
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

Comments on "General Firth." Challenge submission requirements by Peter Glen.

The Deception prompt is used again. Actually, all of these submissions stuck to theme and left no uncertainty they were wrapped around deception. Very glad to see this--it means you all can stay on point. I love your sensory details, Peter! It's your strength, and a strength all should read over and study. You feel your heroine's frustration, her desperation, her hunger, her need. New writers often give us a cinematic story, all visual, all external. But it's going inside your protagonist's head that provides the gritty life elements that make us *feel* for the protagonist. If everything is surface, how do we truly get to identify with the protagonist? We do not. Stories that are merely trackers of actions may have plot down, but they have no heart. Getting under your protagonist's skin and showing us how they react internally to their external environment makes us feel for them, because we are walking through their world vicariously through them. Immerse us in your world. Peter's 500 does this wonderfully.

Of these two, the 500 is far superior. Why? Rich detail in the 500 got lost as it was pared down to 250, but still tried to tell the whole story. In vignettes, you are capturing the essence of a scene. You had to throw out your gift to get your entire tale told. The result is actually a weaker tale. No surprise, this is usually what can happen with these, especially on first try. But it doesn't have to be. You could have focused on one scene of that story, stripping the dead body and the feelings that evoked (they were there in your 500), and we would have had a very powerful scene, perhaps about how death sustains life (your protag's), or how war is senseless, or any number of points you might wish to cast light on. And, in writing that very tight scene, instead of skimming the entire tale, you would learn to code potent words in less space to create prose more powerful than that even seen in your 500. When you went to convert this story back up from your 250, you would have carried along that knowledge learned. And that's where we need to be, writing potent words, in less space, saying so much more than what we put on the page. Keep doing this exercise in the way I have suggested, and I think you'll find your writing steps up to a whole new level. In fact, I'll suggest you do another 250, based off the same 500, but focusing on one scene like the one I suggested.

Your writing is excellent in the 500. This will make you focus on making it superior. You also have Voice. It's not something easy to describe in better terms than "you'll know it when you see it." It is the most important asset you have as a writer. Another way to describe it is the sense that you are in capable hands. But it's more than that. It includes the power of originality in storytelling, that a unique and powerful style is coming through the code. Keep honing that. If you use this exercise the way it's intended, and not just as a cutting exercise, it will hone your unique skills. When you expand back up and create a longer story off of these, you'll see the difference.

Well done!

OH KEEPER OF RECORDS, DRAW FORTH PETER GLEN'S BLOOD AND SCRIBE HIS NAME TO THE WALL OF OATHS!

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 12, 2019 5:50 am
SwiftPotato
(@swiftpotato)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 555

OH KEEPER OF RECORDS, DRAW FORTH PETER GLEN'S BLOOD AND SCRIBE HIS NAME TO THE WALL OF OATHS!

Though you thought the cave finished with its gory inscriptions, the whispers swell again. The lantern's flame is half its original size, and you must hold it mere inches from the wall as the new rivulets of blood paint themselves on the damp stone: PETER GLEN.

R, 3rd place Q4 v36!!!
Stories in Apocalyptic, Cossmass Infinities, and Podcastle

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Posted : October 12, 2019 6:20 am
ZeeTeeBeeZ
(@zeeteebeez)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 151

Glad the Wulf Pack name stuck!

Letting my 1,000 word story simmer for a couple days. Targeting it around the emotional prompt is very helpful. I tend to throw too much into my short stories, so this is a great exercise for me.

Great job everyone on everything submitted so far. Can’t wait to join the pack!

*howls at the moon*

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Posted : October 12, 2019 7:44 am
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

Glad the Wulf Pack name stuck!

Letting my 1,000 word story simmer for a couple days. Targeting it around the emotional prompt is very helpful. I tend to throw too much into my short stories, so this is a great exercise for me.

Great job everyone on everything submitted so far. Can’t wait to join the pack!

*howls at the moon*

Thanks, Z.T.. Looking forward to your submission! We will be at ten members now, which is what I called for to do this SUPER SECRETS' master class. But I'm not going to close it here. Anyone that meets the stated requirements by midnight October 20th can still get in. To anyone considering, do read my Vol. 37 requirements over. This will be challenging, and there is a bonus Flash challenge as well (I highly recommend you go for the bonus).

Looking forward to a "howling" good time!

Beastmaster Moon

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 12, 2019 8:10 am
einstein36
(@einstein36)
Bronze Member
Posts: 69

I'm in.
here's my close to 500 theme: Deception.
Title: Project Boondoggle

10-year-old Jake Rosen labored his breathing. The only sound that emanated from the circular escape pod was the hissing sound from the small hole in the wall as air continued to escape. He felt lightheaded as the air continued to escape. He knew from his training that he needed to stop the exit of air from the pod. He used his Trapper Keeper he used for his drawings to stop the leakage of air. The exhale of his breath condensed in front of him as the temperature kept dropping. He wrapped his arms around his body to keep warm. A roll of duct tape floated near him as he pushed it aside along with other items flitting around the small pod. He looked out the port window and saw debris from the ship, Excalibur floating around outside the pod. He pushed the notebook harder against the wall, hoping the air leakage would stop. A small piece of debris probably caused the hole in the pod. He touched the back of his neck where it throbbed with pain. He doesn’t remember how he ended up in the escape pod or if his mother put him in the pod. There must have been an explosion aboard the ship that knocked him unconscious. He knew with each breath he took could be his last. He really missed his mother. If only she was here to comfort him in his last moments. He missed the times his mother took him in her arms to comfort him. She was always there to help him to make it through the program, like the time he was caught cheating on the test to get into the program. He did not know what his mother did for him to stay in the program, but he knew she would do anything for him. He took a breath and passed out.

A computerized voice came over the intercom. “End Simulation.” The escape pod door automatically opened. First aid responders rushed over and took Jake out of the pod. They applied oxygen as he slowly came to. He was groggy as he looked up and met his mother’s green eyes. She stroked his face.
General Epstein walked over. “I’m sorry, Mrs. Rosen, but your son has failed the test. He won’t be able to join the mission.” He turned and left.
Mrs. Rosen looked down at her son. “I’m sorry honey. Maybe next time.”

250
******
10-year-old Jake Rosen labored his breathing. The only sound that emanated from the circular escape pod was the hissing sound from the small hole in the wall as air escaped into space. He felt lightheaded as the air continued to escape. He used his Trapper Keeper to stop the leakage of air. The exhale of his breath condensed in front of him as the temperature kept dropping. He looked out the port window and saw debris from the ship, Excalibur floating around outside the pod. He touched the back of his neck where it throbbed with pain. He doesn’t remember how he ended up in the escape pod or if his mother put him in the pod. He knew with each breath he took could be his last. He really missed his mother. If only she was here to comfort him in his last moments. He took a breath and passed out.

A computerized voice came over the intercom. “End Simulation.” The escape pod door automatically opened. First aid responders rushed over and took Jake out of the pod. They applied oxygen as he slowly came to. He was groggy as he looked up and met his mother’s green eyes. She stroked his face.
General Epstein walked over. “I’m sorry, Mrs. Rosen, but your son has failed the test. He won’t be able to join the mission.” He turned and left.
Mrs. Rosen looked down at her son. “I’m sorry honey. Maybe next time.”

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Posted : October 12, 2019 10:47 am
AlexH
(@alexh)
Silver Member
Posts: 254

I'm in. I tried to send you a PM last week Wulf - I don't want to post my stories directly in the thread. I'll be paranoid of a pro-market in the future Googling one line and finding it here so deciding not to accept my story. The rejections are piling up, and I try to make every story into the one that will sell. I mostly submit flash. So I hope it's okay to post my killed darlings as an image below and also here as nothing but the stories, just in case the images are funky.

My 500


My 250

I hope the deception hasn't become too subtle!

After missing out last year, I didn't want to miss out this time. First, I couldn't write a story close enough to 1,000 words and didn't want to add words for the sake of deleting them, so I cut an existing 1,100-word story about a deception to 500 then 250. But I kept trying, and eventually spent a full day writing my 1,000. I've found writing to a specific word count a million times harder than the cuts, though this new story was harder to cut than the older one as I felt it needed every paragraph. I kept each iteration and think my 751-word version is the strongest (!), though I think the 250 version just about works, and there are other cuts I can use in the 751. I'll attempt to wield a bigger axe on all my stories from now on.

I wrote the 250-word version from scratch - a tip I picked up from someone earlier in the thread (thanks - it only took 10 minutes!). An editor advised me to summarise each scene of my stories, but I don't do it often. This flash challenge is a similar thing, and I realise I should've taken the editor's advice more often.

I'm impressed by the other stories so far - I think they all work as 500s and some even at 250.

I wasn't going to, but I'd like to declare myself in for the flash challenge. Thanks for pushing us, Wulf.

Whether they win WotF or not, I reckon pro writers will come from this challenge.

35: - R R R | 36: R HM R R | 37: HM HM HM SHM | 38: HM HM

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Posted : October 12, 2019 11:18 am
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

Thanks, Alex, this will work! And I did respond--sorry you didn't see the PM. I told you something to the equivalent of 'write something fresh just for this then and sacrifice it on the altar. Everyone else has to, it's a challenge entrance requirement.' And now you've found a way to do so, so you're good. : ) Glad to have you! Will read it soon.

I'll explain why Alex is nervous to those that may not understand. Technically, sharing your work on a publicly accessible forum is using your first rights of publishing up. Many publishers consider a story "published" if it's accessible on the internet. You can understand. Why buy an original painting from you to display in their publishing gallery when at the same time you open up a gallery of your own and offer identical images for free? They make money by owning rights to it exclusively for a certain length of time--i.e., going back to our gallery analogy, if people want to view it, they have to pay THEM for admission, and to buy it.

But here's the thing. Change elements within that painting, and it becomes something new. In art, this would be called, "Water Lillies, Study One," "Water Lillies, Study Two," and so forth. Artists do this all the time. It's changed, so it's not the same thing anymore. How much of a change is necessary before it is no longer the same thing? Well, "Weep No More for the Willow" in the current DEEP MAGIC magazine is one of these. It began as an internet published 250. It even won an award. But it's so far expanded from the original 250 flash piece no sane person would claim it had already been published. It's not the same story. The Flash was just a tiny seed it was created from.

But here in Alex's case, he's not planning on expanding it very much. He wants his 500 to be told as a slightly larger Flash story. So how much change must happen before it is considered changed enough to be considered a new story? Study the guidelines of the markets you submit to, but ultimately, you'll have to make the call. If you're really worried about it, write something just for this, and offer it up on the altar of practice. We will be doing this again. It is a very useful exercise, both to train our skills, and to learn from one another's style. And these "show us what you came up with" exercises allow me to keep guiding you guys with some personal pointers from time to time. It's probably the most useful feature of this challenge--I give you personal critiques like we are doing here to help you level up. And others have valid points to help you with as well. But they can't give them to you if we don't share.

This I say to all: Bite the bullet. Figure out how you personally will deal with this issue. But if you join the challenge, you agree to share in the exercises I give the group. These are not sacred words. They are exercises.

But I do understand if one glows like a gem, and you want to keep it secret, keep it safe. Just do another! These aren't sacred words...

All the beast!

Beastmaster Moon

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 12, 2019 12:12 pm
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

And here's your first CHALLENGE BEAST ASSIGNMENT!

As we're awaiting new submissions by our challenge applicants (ONE WEEK TO GO!), I'd like each of you to read this article and share a few sentences with the group on why it might be beneficial to learn how to create effective Flash stories, even when working in longer forms of storytelling.

Have at it!

http://copper-nickel.org/a-brief-symposium-on-flash/

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 12, 2019 12:31 pm
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

SwiftPotato asked to see the 250 I wrote around 1995 or '96 that I based "Weep No More for the Willow" off of that is now published in DEEP MAGIC Fall 2019. It's only $2.99 for the issue if you wish to hunt for the seed within it. The short story, "Weep No More for the Willow" then became the story seed for my novel. All from boiling down a 1,000 word flash story I wrote for that contest I've spoken of, taking it down to 500, then to 250 words.

It was during this one year contest that I developed the KILL YOUR DARLINGS exercise. Here is my EXACTLY 250 that won for it's respective week, and where you can find the short story if you'd like to see what you can do with these. And yes, this is in present tense. You can get away with experimental things in such short form. I don't recommend doing this in longer stories. Past tense is normally the right way to tell a tale.

_________________________

La Sirena by Wulf Moon

Capriccio moans, shivering as mists wash across his dreams. Ethereal tendrils swirl, lace together, coalesce into liquid flowing crystal. The crystal expands into a torso, budding blue nippled breasts, the sides of the torso spilling forth slender arms and legs. A woman's head forms, crystalline hair rising from the scalp, then tumbling down in rivulets of clear waters. Her eyes blink open, glistening with starlit tears. She leans forward, chill liquid hair spilling across his face, cascading about him in a linn of silver. Her lips press across his, cool crystal tongue surging over the white breakers of his teeth. Powerless, his parched lips open wide, gulping down mouthful upon mouthful of the honeyed sweetness. He swallows again and again as her body flows in liquid silver, pouring down his throat until the waterfall trickles and dries up and is no more.

The Spaniard's eyes flash open. He grips a damp wool blanket, body naked within. Thrusting it to the side, he rises. He shoves a hand through dripping locks, raking them back, gaze wandering in bewilderment across his captain’s cabin. And there, on a mahogany table, stands a crystalline statue of a bare breasted mermaid. She rests atop a stone, hair drawn to one side, the strands swirling in a stream of silver down her cleavage.

“Que diablos?”

As he mumbles a curse, the statue’s head slowly turns, eyes glowing as brilliant as twin morning stars.

The Spaniard drops to his knees, cursing the lonely life of the sea.

__________________________

This is how I wrote around 25 years ago. I would indicate he's in his captain's cabin on a galleon in the opening line now to set scene. And I'd write it in past tense, which I did for "Weep No More for the Willow" in DEEP MAGIC Fall 2019.

And here's the link to Deep Magic if you'd like to see what I did with it, plus you can study a valuable market for your stories!

https://www.amazon.com/Deep-Magic-Fall- ... 190&sr=8-1

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 12, 2019 1:20 pm
SwiftPotato
(@swiftpotato)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 555

Thanks for posting this, Moon! I'm definitely interested in knowing more: why this dream, why him, and, on the subject of the statue, I believe the captain said it best: "que diablos?" I'd especially love to read Weep No More... now that I've read the seed, to see how it grew. How much of it is the same? How much is different?

R, 3rd place Q4 v36!!!
Stories in Apocalyptic, Cossmass Infinities, and Podcastle

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Posted : October 12, 2019 1:35 pm
SwiftPotato
(@swiftpotato)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 555

And here's your first CHALLENGE BEAST ASSIGNMENT!

As we're awaiting new submissions by our challenge applicants (ONE WEEK TO GO!), I'd like each of you to read this article and share a few sentences with the group on why it might be beneficial to learn how to create effective Flash stories, even when working in longer forms of storytelling.

Have at it!

http://copper-nickel.org/a-brief-symposium-on-flash/

This was an interesting article! The line "a quest for the line that felt and sounded as perfect and inevitable as I could manage" especially resonated with me. For me personally, I think writing in longer forms allows me to kind of ramble around the point I'm trying to make until I finally...sorta...get there. Flash offers no such comforts, and that was an excellent lesson to learn through the kill your darlings exercise. When I was forced by the constraints of flash and this particular exercise to go on that quest, it immediately made me more intentional about my longer form writing. It took me from writing down whatever words got me where I wanted to go to thinking about how I could get to this place and retain the voice I started off with.

Anyway, there's me rambling again...thanks for the great read!

R, 3rd place Q4 v36!!!
Stories in Apocalyptic, Cossmass Infinities, and Podcastle

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Posted : October 12, 2019 1:36 pm
Peter_Glen
(@peter_glen)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 143

Comments on "General Firth." Challenge submission requirements by Peter Glen.

Packleader Moon! I'm very grateful for your time and comments, thank you!! I can see exactly what you mean regarding the 250 word attempt and sry i missed the point there...I've included a revision below.

Also, I'm thrilled that you saw the emotional content of the write, I've been working through the book 'The Emotional Craft of Fiction' by Donald Maas as recommeded by you and have since found myself taking special care to show rather than tell the emotive elements in my stories. So thanks again wotf009 .

Yay, I'm in! Owoooooo!

I'm looking forward to reading the last couple of challenge subs too Smile Thumbs up all!

250 ====
Eleven dead men. One dead woman. Bloodied bodies scattered upon the less traveled road. The mystery of their deaths sent a chill down the young woman’s spine, but San was glad they were dead. She stooped over a fighter, there was a gash in his neck. She wondered if this was the one that had broken her sister while she hid hearing everything behind bales in the barn. I wish, I’d been the one to kill you. Murderer. She eyed his sword laying nearby, but knew that cutting a corpse would bring the god curse.

The refugee moved on as Autumn leaves scattered before a cold wind that bit through her clothes and burnt her cheeks.

She passed the dead woman, and the cold stare stopped San in her tracks. A cold fly buzzed onto the woman’s face. Fool, see what your waring has gotten you. Then, noticed the fine woolens under the chainmail and craved the warmth they would provide; the chain too would provide protection from the snow ahead.

Soon, San was dressed in the heavy garb of the fallen woman and was a warrior, if only in appearance. She dragged the naked body down a gully and covered it with sticks and leaves.

Back on the road, more than wild beasts, she feared meeting the enemy for what they would do to her when they discovered her a thief. Then, like a kick in the guts, she heard hoofbeats from behind! San froze.

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Posted : October 12, 2019 2:32 pm
CCrawford
(@ccrawford)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 225

And here's your first CHALLENGE BEAST ASSIGNMENT!

As we're awaiting new submissions by our challenge applicants (ONE WEEK TO GO!), I'd like each of you to read this article and share a few sentences with the group on why it might be beneficial to learn how to create effective Flash stories, even when working in longer forms of storytelling.

Have at it!

http://copper-nickel.org/a-brief-symposium-on-flash/

This was an interesting article! Several things jumped out at me:

"For me flash eschews the more traditional narrative arc; it develops character in surprising ways" -- I think this, for me at least, could be an important function of learning to write effective Flash... finding surprising ways to show character development, rather than what's expected or anticipated.

Also: "flash fiction, should show extreme pressure and extreme focus, from top down. There should be nothing at all that’s extra. Maybe that’s an obvious thing to say. Also there should be movement. There should be an arc, however slight." -- Extreme focus is definitely something I can use in my longer-form writing, and I think Flash is going to be powerful in helping learn to keep that focus while also showing movement ("however slight").

And also Lazarin's comment about not allowing the shorter word count to provide an "out" for saying less with a story... I think I sometimes do the opposite, and let myself ramble a bit whenever I know I have more space for a story, or try to cram in too much rather than staying focused on a primary emotional impact. I'm excited to learn how to create a story just as powerful in far less words, so that I can then be confident, even in longer form, that every word is serving a purpose.

v35: Q4 - HM
V36: R, R, R, R
V37: SHM, HM, HM, SHM
V38: SHM, HM, ??
Indie author of The Lex Chronicles (Legends of Arameth), and the in-progress Leyward Stones series--including my serial, Macchiatos, Faerie Princes, and Other Things That Happen at Midnight, currently available on the new Kindle Vella platform. The Vella story is also available through my Patreon, along with side stories, behind the scenes content, and in-progress drafts of other books from my Leyward Stones world.
Website: http://ccrawfordwriting.com. I also have a newsletter and a blog!
Upcoming short story publication in DreamForge Anvil, October 2021 issue!

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Posted : October 12, 2019 3:43 pm
Retropianoplayer
(@retropianoplayer)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 231

FIRST CHALLENGE BEAST ASSIGNMENT Submitted October 12th, 2019

Interesting article. Different and varied opinions on FLASH. As a backdrop against crafting longer prose or novel form, I gleaned the following pragmatic applications of FLASH from each speaker as follows:

From Murray - Flash eschews the more traditional narrative arc.

From Rodriguez - Ideally, Flash should be less than 500 words to be truly effective.

From Lazarin - There is a "deliberate intensity" to this art form; the Flash should be "testing the boundaries of knowledge and narrative abilities", and most important, "Flash builds a larger world . . . which is an impression of lives." This is instructive because it demonstrates the flash piece can often be used as Wulf continually reminds us of a "story seed."

Finally, Aguilar states it is important "how words fit together" which is beneficial when composing a novelette, novella or novel.

I believe one of the Editors stated that what she is especially looking forward to in a submission is THE VOICE of the author.

I personally believe, although new to FLASH, this type of prose might be especially crucial when submitting to either a contest or literary agent, as often times they're guided by reading the first two or three pages.

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Posted : October 12, 2019 4:41 pm
officer
(@officer)
Bronze Star Member
Posts: 110

In SFF, we have a lot more to accomplish in our first few lines/pages: We have to cram more content to establish setting, even though introducing a character and a problem/conflict is probably most interesting to the reader. An info dump on setting is boring, but we can't delay establishing it, either, since the setting should be intrinsic to the conflict. Otherwise, it's not really SFF.

Writing flash forces us to imply as much as possible in the fewest words. That means efficiently establishing a speculative setting, or enough of it to set the stage for the (initial) conflict. In longer form, the sooner we can establish a problem, the more likely the reader will get hooked. (Yes, there are other ways to interest the reader, too, and other story structures.)

From the article: "The more prose there is, the bigger the safety net [for the reader]." This is also true for the writer, but it can mean we drag out parts of our stories. In particular, the opening, when we need to give the reader something worthwhile as soon as possible.

HM, R, HM, R, R, SHM*, HM, ?, ?
*Finalist, 2021 Baen Fantasy Adventure Award

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Posted : October 12, 2019 6:24 pm
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

Comments on "Project Boondoggle." Challenge requirements by einstein36.

Of the two, I think the 250 is just a strong, and tells the same story without clutter. You still got in the emotional bits, too, like how the boy missed his mother and wished she was there to comfort him. We got a surprise at the end as well, which wasn't readily identifiable. You tricked us into thinking he really was floating in space with the debris from the ship outside the portal. Well done!

Some things to think about. There's a few grammar issues and a missing word or two, and a layout issue at the end. Little things like this really stick out in such a small space. So be careful anytime, but especially in Flash. There really is no room for error, because there's no place to hide. : ) I highly recommend you find yourself a good wise reader, someone that can proof your work for you. If you have the money, many proofreaders work cheap. It's content editors that charge the most. But I suspect there are people here that are pretty durn good that could help you with this. That way, you have your best foot forward when you send stories out.

Also, I didn't know what that Trapper/Keeper was. You know what it is, but we the readers do not. You have to explain things like that, as swiftly and concisely as you can.

Anyhow, thank you for doing the exercise. Good work!

OH KEEPER OF RECORDS. DRAW FORTH EINSTEIN'S BLOOD AND ADD IT TO THE WALL OF OATHS! HE IS BOUND!

And, Einstein? Can you do something about that hair? It looks like you put your finger in an electrical socket.

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 12, 2019 7:28 pm
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

Comments on "Night Shadow." Challenge requirements by AlexH.

Some vivid descriptions in here, specifically: "thick steam from fumaroles" and "yellow muck splatting up her jeans." Lots of nice images like this, which help us envision your world. It's not a pleasant place. Something bad has happened, and your protagonist can't trust anyone, which makes us read on to try to understand why. All good things.

As for using the Deception prompt, it is subtle. If any of these people talking to her are the Nightshade, then that is deception. Problem is, I can't tell what's real and what is not, and I don't know what a Nightshade is. The 500 works better because I have a few more clues to work with, but I am still at a loss. This is no doubt because you know in your head, or it's in your longer piece you spoke of, but it didn't get onto the page. So remember to leave clues and define your terms--like a Nightshade--so we can understand what is happening.

You have a couple of grammar issues/missing words as well, and a tense change to fix. My wish for this story when you took it to 250 (or so, it doesn't have to be exactly 250, it just can't be over 250), is that it would focus on the girl driving up, and your protagonist doesn't run away. Maybe she stays too long, talking at a distance, as the girl steps closer and closer to her. She knows she should run, but she's just so lonely after her parents died, and maybe this is a real girl. That would create a lot of creepy tension. I know I'd like to write that. Right now. : )

Sometimes we want to put too much into one scene. Flash doesn't give us that luxury, it forces us to rethink how we'll tell the tale, or just an aspect of the tale. In the future, try to do the exercise as I described--I think you will gain more that way. And it's okay if you're over or a bit under on your 1,000 word Flash. After, you just have to take it to 500 or under, and then 250 or under. Doesn't need to be exactly 500 and 250. I hope that helps.

Anyway, creepy world with strange things going on. Good job of having the speculative element up front.

OH KEEPER OF RECORDS, DRAW FORTH ALEXH'S BLOOD AND ADD HIS NAME TO THE WALL OF OATHS! Um, he's looking a little faint, said something about knives and needles. Phobia issues, apparently. Maybe you should have him lie down.

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 12, 2019 8:05 pm
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

For Peter Glen's new 250 revision:

This is good, and thank you for doing the extra work--I did not expect that, but I'm happy you went at it. It focuses on one scene within your tale, adding potency. As you expand it back up into your bigger tale, develop this scene and her feelings of revulsion at death even more. And her hatred of whoever might have killed her sibling. One comment: if you were doing it as a Flash for sending out to market, you'd want a stronger ending line. Right now, it ends like a scene might end, not how a story needs to end.

And just a note to all. Someone mentioned privately if they could use these seeds for contest stories, since they wrote them in here and maybe they could be identified. Don't worry. Of course you can use them for contest stories. First, it's HIGHLY unlikely any judges will ever be in here reading these--they simply don't have the time. Second, they will change substantially from what you wrote in here as you expand them up. It's a non-issue. These are tiny seeds, not the big tree. And for those doing the Flash challenge, it's not like you'll be posting what you wrote each month in here. This is just an exercise we're doing at the opening. It helps me see where each of you are at.

All the beast,

Beastmaster Moon

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 12, 2019 8:26 pm
Wulf Moon
(@wulfmoon)
Platinum Plus Member Moderator
Posts: 2286

I've been enjoying your comments on the Flash article I asked you to read. Swift wrote this, which I thought was pertinent:

"The line "a quest for the line that felt and sounded as perfect and inevitable as I could manage" especially resonated with me. For me personally, I think writing in longer forms allows me to kind of ramble around the point I'm trying to make until I finally...sorta...get there. Flash offers no such comforts, and that was an excellent lesson to learn through the kill your darlings exercise.'

Yup, you got the point. That's it in a nutshell. And how it will help us as we write our longer works!

Cheers!

JOIN THE WULF PACK! http://the super secrets.com
"Super-Duper Moongirl and the Amazing Moon Dawdler" wins WRITERS OF THE FUTURE VOL. 35 & BEST SF&F STORY OF 2019. Order WotF Volume 35 HERE!
“Muzik Man" in Deep Magic Fall 2020 wins BEST SF&F STORY of 2020
NEW! Don't miss the Super Secret "Character Agency: I Need a Hero!" in DreamForge Anvil Magazine!
JUST RELEASED! BEST OF DEEP MAGIC ANTHOLOGY TWO! Three Super Secrets Workshop members made it into this best of the best anthology! KD Julicher, Brittany Rainsdon, and some guy named Wulf Moon. Click HERE to get yours!
MY NEXT MASTER CLASSES ARE AT FYRECON ONLINE, NOV. 18-21ST. UPDATE: 50% FULL. Click HERE before they are sold out once again!

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Topic starter Posted : October 12, 2019 8:29 pm
Henckel
(@henckel)
Silver Member
Posts: 417

And here's your first CHALLENGE BEAST ASSIGNMENT!

As we're awaiting new submissions by our challenge applicants (ONE WEEK TO GO!), I'd like each of you to read this article and share a few sentences with the group on why it might be beneficial to learn how to create effective Flash stories, even when working in longer forms of storytelling.

Have at it!

http://copper-nickel.org/a-brief-symposium-on-flash/

I'm not officially part if the Wulf Pac yet, but I'll post my story tomorrow. ...still thought I'd comment on the article.

My first observation was that, for a group of people commenting in flash fiction and being brief, they had an amazing ability to waffle and circumnavigate directly answering the questions. wotf019

Still, they had some good gems. The two that particulary stood out for me are (1) the editors desire for a unique voice and (2) "With flash there’s a tendency to be more poetic, more risky, less obvious."

Lastly, it was a real eye opener reading Wulf's 250. I've read the full story (excellent, btw). One huge difference between Wuld piece and everyone else's is that he moved a lot closer to the vignette while the rest of us are still trying to show the "whole story" in fewer words. ... I'm guilty too. I've just not posed mine yet. ..... so, now that I can see I'm going to shift mine closer to the vignette with slight arc rather than condinced story with full arc.

... let me know if I've totally missed the mark.

(2014) V31 Q1 – R
(2018) V35 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q3 – HM
(2019) V36 Q4 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q1 – R
(2020) V37 Q2 – HM
(2020) V37 Q3 – SHM
(2020) V37 Q4 – Finalist
(2021) V38 Q1 – Semi-finalist
(2021) V38 Q2 – SHM
(2021) V38 Q3 – tba

Coolest Achievements
(2019) Published in Escape Anthology
(2020) Published in Sci-Fi Lampoon
(2020) V37 Q4 – Finalist
(2020) Dream Foundry - Shortlisted
(2021) Mike Resnick Memorial Award - 3rd Place winner!!! (to be published)

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Posted : October 12, 2019 9:09 pm
SwiftPotato
(@swiftpotato)
Silver Star Member
Posts: 555

OH KEEPER OF RECORDS. DRAW FORTH EINSTEIN'S BLOOD AND ADD IT TO THE WALL OF OATHS! HE IS BOUND!

And, Einstein? Can you do something about that hair? It looks like you put your finger in an electrical socket.

A wild, spiky shadow appears as the whispers swell once more. The flame in your lantern gutters ever lower, but you are still able to make out the new word on the wall: EINSTEIN.

OH KEEPER OF RECORDS, DRAW FORTH ALEXH'S BLOOD AND ADD HIS NAME TO THE WALL OF OATHS! Um, he's looking a little faint, said something about knives and needles. Phobia issues, apparently. Maybe you should have him lie down.

The whispers do not die away, but no new writing appears. You cast about and see one of the shadows on the wall lay down on the floor with another bent over it. Behind you, another word appears: ALEXH.

R, 3rd place Q4 v36!!!
Stories in Apocalyptic, Cossmass Infinities, and Podcastle

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Posted : October 13, 2019 12:25 am
storysinger
(@storysinger)
Gold Member
Posts: 887

I like the way poetry and prose are compared to the art of writing flash fiction in the discussion. It brought home to me the fact that participating in the Secret Challenge brings me full circle.
One day I realized songs and poems are, after all just short stories. Hence my storysinger name.
I wrote a short story for an anthology that was accepted but never published. I've written a novel since then that is in the polishing stage.
Now I'm back to flash that is shorter than some of my songs.

Today's science fiction is tomorrow's reality-D.R.Sweeney
HM-V32/Q3
HM-V36/Q4
HM-V38/Q1

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Posted : October 13, 2019 2:39 am
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