Flash Fiction Challenge: Pick An Opening Line And Go

[Edit: Apologies that this didn’t post! I set it to auto-post and was a bit busy today, too busy to see it actually had not posted. But dangit, it’s still Friday so I’m getting in under the wire.]

Last week’s challenge is relevant here: The Return of the Opening Line Contest.

Your job this week is simple in concept, daunting in choice.

Clink that link. Then —

You need to go through the entries — er, all 400-500 of them — and find an opening line you like.

Then you will take that opening line and use that as the opening line of this week’s story.

(You may not choose your own.)

You’ve got the usual 1000 words.

Due by 4/25, noon EST.

Post the story with the chosen opening line at your blog or online space. Then drop a link in the comments here so we can track back and read the story.

That’s it. Grab a line and get to writing!

(I’ll be picking my top three favorites sometime in the next week.)

178 responses to “Flash Fiction Challenge: Pick An Opening Line And Go”

      • Actually, Haniel is an Archangel who used to be good allies with Michael and Raphael. All three of these Archangels used to run and overlook everything on Earth from Heaven – according to my research. Haniel was one of the higher-ranking of the few who worked alongside God and Metatron (the Scribe to God) and so Castiel (whose name is really spelled Cassiel – Supernatural changed the named just a little) isn’t Daria… Haniel is really in the story and is one of the Angels looking after a human.

        And yes, an Archangel can tether themselves to a human and be a Guardian Angel… this is just a twist I thought to add to the mythology. 🙂

    • Intriguing, and definitely different from the others I’ve read so far! It feels like this is a snippet from a novel length story, partway through the first act. Are you into it enough to write a novel from it, do you think? Could be great!

    • Lots of good stuff in this. I really liked the bit on the highway, it read really well. It stopped too soon and that’s a sign that you should write more of this story.

      • No, it doesn’t annoy me at all. Charming has its merits. (though of course I would love to hear words of awestruck adoration hehe) I know my story wasn’t earth shattering or anything. So thank you for reading and speaking your mind, it is always appreciated.

  1. Thanks to George Kaltsios for providing an inspiring first line!
    “Try as he might, the Postman could not stop looking through the keyhole.”

    I wrote a story based on his line and the one I entered: “I met a man made of smoke today”, which comes in at a whopping 180 words.


    • Blatant Begging for Readers !!!

      If you go to read my story you get the ‘Read one Get one Free offer’ available for limited period only.

      (the Free story is the one I submitted for the ‘5 words’ challenge, nobody read that one either).

  2. I did not expect that ending! That said, I’m not sure about the narrator’s voice — it sometimes feels like he’s telling the woman things that he wouldn’t really have any reason to say to her, mainly for the reader’s benefit. Does that make sense?

      • Thanks for reading it.
        Maybe it wasn’t obvious enough. He’s talking to the woman in his own mind. The only word he actually speaks to her is the question ‘Later?’
        Can you give me some idea how I can clarify that please?

        • I got that he was talking to her in his mind, but I couldn’t understand why. I don’t want to spoil the story for anyone else who might read it, but the guy didn’t seem to feel guilty or sad or angry. My reading was that he didn’t grasp the significance of what had happened at all.

          It might help if you imagine why he’s talking to her — the point he’s trying to make or the emotion he’s trying to process. That way, instead of drifting into fairly bald narration (e.g. “you talked about your job, I made some coffee), you can stay in the heat of the moment from which he’s recalling these events. This might also help to make the ending feel like a climax, rather than a twist.

          Hope that helps!

          • Thank you very much. I’m glad he came across as odd.
            He is disassociated from her and from pretty much everything and everybody. When I read the original it felt weird so I was aiming for him to be a Sociopath, maybe I’ve succeeded?

    • I think you’ve got a nice idea going on, but the story is unbalanced. You spend some time getting to the climactic scene and then it’s over before it’s begun. If you trim a bit from the earlier part you’ll be able to give us some more amusement at the end. I hope this is a helpful suggestion.

    • This is a good geeky idea and I was interested to see what would happen at the end. The hero’s attention to detail is impressive.
      The story goes along nicely until the last section where the transition is a bit abrupt. Ree has developed a personality and I guess the remarks in the 7/11 indicate general male approval, but it isn’t entirely clear to me. I think you should stick to the past tense throughout because the change in the last scene doesn’t add anything .
      Hope this helps.

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