Flash Fiction Challenge: Choose Your Motif

Last week’s challenge: “Photos of Impossible Places.”


What, is it, you ask? Besides someone explaining that they have plenty of chompers in their mouth? (Wait for it, you’ll get it. I’ll just stand here while you… ah, good, you got it.)

A motif is not a theme.

It is not a mood.

It is a recurring element. A repeated symbol or overarching image.

(Birds are a motif found in my novels Blackbirds and Mockingbird.)

So, today, I’m going to give you 10 motifs.

You will choose one. Randomly, either by d10 or by random number generator.

This motif will be a significant symbol or element in your story. Symbolically and/or literally.

I’ll also toss in two other categories: setting and subgenre.

Choose (randomly or otherwise) one from each.

You have, as usual, up to 1000 words. Post at your site, link back here.

Due by Friday, February 1st, noon EST.



  1. Birds
  2. Skulls
  3. Blood
  4. Eyes
  5. Snakes
  6. Swords
  7. Water
  8. Storms
  9. Mirrors
  10. The Moon


  1. Dystopia
  2. Erotic Fantasy
  3. Noir
  4. Paranormal Romance
  5. Comic Fantasy
  6. Cozy Mystery
  7. Transhumanism
  8. Ecothriller
  9. Wild West (In Space)
  10. Mythpunk


  1. A train
  2. A virtual reality world
  3. A king’s bedroom
  4. A labyrinth
  5. Inside the mind of another character
  6. An amusement park
  7. A restaurant in space
  8. A villain’s volcano lair
  9. In the chamber of the gods
  10. Route 66

80 responses to “Flash Fiction Challenge: Choose Your Motif”

  1. 10. The Moon
    5. Comic Fantasy
    6. An amusement park

    This is so far outside of my box that by the time I’m done I’m going to be clawing at the walls looking for any way possible to get back in.

  2. Huh. Skulls, Wild West (in space), and In the chamber of the gods … I think this is one that’s just sort of going to have to happen. If I think to hard, my brain might do a Raiders on me.

  3. Motif: Birds
    Genre: Noir
    Setting: Inside the mind of another character

    I like the motif, I just had to have Google define Noir for me, and I’ve never tried a setting that’s not a real place. Let’s see how this goes…

  4. I feel bad about missing the last two weeks (damn you far cry 3!) so I’m gonna try really hard on this one. I rolled 8,9,5. This is gonna be weird.

  5. Mirrors, ecothriller, and a villains volcano lair. I was going to QQ @ ecothriller but now I’m thanking the RNG for not throwing me erotica 😮 I think I will give it a try!

    • The first couple are easy but the third, which is clearly a king’s bedroom, could almost also be inside of another character’s mind. I guess I didn’t understand that as a setting and am glad I didn’t roll it. Glad I’m over 18 and was allowed to read it.

  6. 3-9-4. Blood, the wild west (in Space), and a Labyrinth.

    What? Star wars responses on the next post? Oh, sorry… 😉

Speak Your Mind, Word-Nerds

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: