Flash Fiction Challenge: The Unlikable Protagonist

Last week’s challenge — “One Small Story In Seven Acts” — is deserving of your penetrating stare.

Next week, I’ve got a post queued up about protagonists.

And, in one portion of this post, I discuss the power of the unlikable protagonist.

The balance is writing an unlikable protagonist that still remains compelling — we still find some reason to keep reading, and we may even find empathy or sympathy with that character.

Even if we don’t want to “go out and get a beer with him.”

So, that’s your task.

You’ve got up to 1000 words to write a tale featuring an unlikable protagonist that still remains readable and compelling. Having this as a flash fiction challenge offers up one bonus and one disadvantage: the disadvantage is that you won’t have more than those one thousand words to establish the complexities an unlikable protagonist might need. The bonus, however, is that flash fiction is short — you can get away with a lot more because you’re not expecting that the reader will have to hang with your story for 300 pages.

Get to it, ink-slingers.

One week is all you’ve got. Challenge ends at noon EST on Friday the 17th. The drill is the same: post your story somewhere on the web, link back here in the comments so that we can all come and read.

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