Flash Fiction Challenge: A Game Of Aspects

Last week’s challenge: Sci-Fi/ Fantasy Open Swim.

A couple days ago I said something hasty and insane about “killing genre,” and in there I hit on something I really quite liked — giving fiction aspects or elements instead of genres. So, instead of searching for “epic fantasy,” you can search for stories that have “fantasy” and “politics” together. Or “jetpacks.” Or “detective / mythology / death in the family.” Whatever.

So, that’s (er, kinda) what I’m doing here, today.

I’m going to give you three columns.

You have to pick one from each column.

And from that, write a 1000-word story.

In addition, I’ll pick three random winners from this pile of participants and give away some free e-books. I don’t know what, yet, so let’s just say it’ll be a surprise. Kay? Kay.

As always, the details remain the same. You’ve got one week (due by noon EST, Friday the 14th). Post at your blog, and link back here so we can all swing by and have a look-see.

(If you really want to get crazy, roll a d10 or pick random number between 1 and 10 from this Random Number Generator. In other words, let fate pick your choices in each category!)

The three columns (pick one from each) are:

One (Subgenre)







Sword & Sorcery


Body Horror

Romantic Comedy

Two (Element To Include)


Serial Killer



Climate Change

Hotel Bar





Three (Theme / Motif / Conflict)

Love Triangle




On The Run

Fated To Die

Man Versus Himself



Ticking Clock

100 responses to “Flash Fiction Challenge: A Game Of Aspects”

  1. Thank you for this challenge, Mr. Wendig 🙂

    Blood and Iron – a 1,000-word story that is probably more sword and sorcery than either of the other two categories. Aspects: sword and sorcery/serial killer/man versus himself. I’m not too sure how much of the third aspect survived the cutting room floor, but enjoy 🙂

    Link: http://cmsimpson.blogspot.com.au/

  2. *Groan!* I made a mess of this one. I’ve been battering my head against it all week, and now I feel like I haven’t stopped writing it, just stopped typing. Too long again (1290 words). I think it actually feels like part of a much larger story, perhaps the first chapter of a novelette?

    Anyway, here it is. The aspects were (supposed to be): Dystopia / Climate Change / Fated to Die.

    It’s called “The Empire of the Sea” and it’s here: http://narratorium.com/2012/09/13/the-empire-of-the-sea/

  3. For some reason this one doesn’t feel like it quite works, and I’m not sure why. Any insight you lot of wordslingers have would be welcome.

    I’ll see if you can figure out how mine was blended from the story, no hints. Except maybe the title. Which might give just a little bit away.

    A Clockwork Vengeance

  4. An oracle and her sword-wielding brother are trapped in a catacomb after following one of her premonitions. When they meet the necromancer awaiting in the heart of the tomb, they must fight against a far more terrifying kind of imprisonment — being trapped within your own body.

    In Two
    sword & sorcery, graveyard, imprisoned

  5. I missed the deadline (bah) and couldn’t figure out a good way to shave off the last 300 words (double bah). But I thought I’d post it anyway, you know, for shits and giggles, since I did use a D10 to generate the aspects, and it was a fun story to write.

    Chuck, please don’t beat me about the head and neck with the +5 Double-Headed Dildo of Obviousness for borking the submission guidelines.

    Anyway, here it is:

    Gossamer Wings: A young boy and his trained butterflies seek vengeance against a corrupt genetic researcher.


    Dystopian, Insects, Revenge.

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