Flash Fiction Challenge: Another Ten Words


Last week’s challenge: Subgenre Frankenstein.

I’m going to give you ten words. Your job is to work all ten of these words into a flash fiction story, ~1000 words in length. That’s it. End of mandate.

The story’s due in a week: Friday, August 30th, noon EST.

Post at your online space.

Link back here.

The ten random words are as follows:

Funeral

Captivate

Deceit

Brimstone

Canyon

Balloon

Clay

Disfigured

Willow

Atomic


141 responses to “Flash Fiction Challenge: Another Ten Words”

  1. “The atomic willow was as disfigured as the clay balloon that floated in the canyon, a funeral of brimstone captivated by deceit.”

    I’m sorry, I couldn’t resist, even if the sentence doesn’t make sense. Now I feel challenged to make some sort of (abstract, psychedelic) painting that gives actual meaning to this sentence… To the sketchbook!

    • I have to admit, I wanted to know more. The crone was so delightfully creepy and odd. I definitely was curious about being able to pull out a soul. Is there a separate place for good souls? Are they a different, brighter color and texture? Definitely had me curious!

    • Well, that IS cheery. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Good stuff. The actual running went on a little too long for my taste — I would have preferred to see an unexpected twist, or a try/fail cycle before the last one, something to break it up. But all in all it was a worthy intro to Mr. Wendig’s challenges :). Well done!

  2. My first entry at this site. I do hope I have not misunderstood any of the words since English is only my second language but I really loved the idea of writing a story based only on a few words. Enjoy!

    ” The first time I ever saw her she held a blue balloon in her hand. Her brown hair was tied up in a neat hairdo that looked far too sophisticated for such a young child. In the background of the old picture you could see the Grand Canyon reaching far above her parentโ€™s heads. She was such a pretty child, even with all the clay on her brimstone colored dress โ€“ no doubt the results from making mud cakes at every stop on the way up to the top of the mountain. My grandmother had on several occasions told me about her childhood, the games she had played with her parents (being the only child) and their trips together.

    She had lost her grandfather at a young age, as he had been captivated on the charges of stealing money from a business associate. He died in prison and his funeral was hushed down by the family who didnโ€™t want anyone from the outside to see his disfigured body. They had told their neigh burghs that he had died from a stroke. A deceit indeed, but a necessary one for the times they were living in.

    To me, all my grandmothersโ€™ tales about growing up in the 1930s always seemed like a dream of some sort. I had loved to listen to her over a cup of tea in her old kitchen; she had been the most amazing storyteller I had ever known. But no one can live forever and as I now recall her bright eyes that was always filled with excitement every time I came over during my summer holiday, the memory I will forever treasure was the time I tried to explain the atomic structure of the tart she was eating to her. Being at that time a student of chemical engineering, I had just taken a course in food processing techniques and was eager to show her what I had just learned. She laughed at me of course, but at the end of the day she was drawing a pretty good picture of the atomic structures of several important food ingredients she normally used in her own cooking. She had offered me an old willow as a token of her appreciation (it was a joke of course) which I had reluctantly accepted. Today it hangs on my wall, a remainder of one of the most wonderful persons I have ever known. She died soon after I graduated but her memory will forever live on in me and in all the other persons she meet, loved and helped throughout her life.

    The little girl in the picture will never die. She will live on in my heart forever. “

    • I tried to post on your blog, but I kept getting error messages, so not sure if it worked. This was great! I love the description of the hero, and when his superpower is revealed, I laughed out loud. Very funny!

    • Now that’s a twist! Love the way you set it up, making us think it was just nerves. Though there was occasional overwriting, the paragraph 4 from the bottom made it all pay off. Pure poetry. Well played, sir!

    • Haha. Oh dear. Classy is definitely the word. Good fun though.

      Just a word, constructively though. I think you used sulphur and brimstone together… They’re the same thing.

    • This piece was a fantastic bit of gritty self-evaluation. The fact that it’s just Jack the entire time is great, because the characters feel the way he probably sees them in real life. The sister is so negative, the mother-in-law is kind of thoughtfully que sera, sera, the wife is sane and tells him what he needs to hear from her, and the disfigured man is uncomfortable, but only initially. By the end, he’s the catalyst, because tJack and Grace’s marriage couldn’t survive as long as both of the people in it blamed themselves for the man’s death. Well done!

    • Love the bigger story at work here. I don’t *understand* the bigger story at work — the time is unclear to me — but this was lovely.

      • Hey that’s okay… no worries. ๐Ÿ˜€ computers and the net does that sometimes ๐Ÿ˜›

        I’m glad you enjoyed it, and I’m not really sure about the backstory myself, but that story just happened exactly that way in my head; and so it came out onto the computer in those words. Plus I’m watching a lot of Supernatural right now on dvd; so there’s lots of Angels and Demons in my writing at the moment ๐Ÿ™‚

    • I don’t think I’ve ever read such an upbeat post-apocalyptic story. I really like it–that sort of “well, it’s probably going to kill us all, but by gosh, let’s explore and enjoy life” sentiment. I could see this turning into a cross between “Adventure Time” and “The Road.” ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. Man, what a list. It was ringing in my head as some historical fiction/fantasy, then he dropped the Atomic bomb on me. Didn’t quite fit. I’m off to see if I can make something of it.

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