Flash Fiction Challenge: The SubGenre Blender

Last week’s challenge: Must Contain Three Things.

This week is one of my favorite brands of challenge — the subgenre smash-up.

Your goal is simple: pick one subgenre from each of the two tables below (preferably randomly, using either a die or a random number generator) and then mash those two genres up into a single story.

This time around, let’s say you have 2000 words. Write it at your online space, link back here in the comments so we can all see it. You’ve got one week — due next Friday by noon EST.

Subgenre Table 1

  1. Haunted House
  2. Space Opera
  3. Cryptozoological
  4. Sword & Sorcery
  5. Cozy mystery
  6. Dystopian
  7. Zombie
  8. Espionage
  9. Arthurian Fantasy
  10. Vampire Erotica
  11. Greek Mythology
  12. Kaiju
  13. Utopian
  14. Lovecraftian
  15. Extraterrestrial
  16. Conspiracy Thriller
  17. Steampunk
  18. Dieselpunk
  19. Cornpunk
  20. Urban Fantasy

Subgenre Table 2

  1. Weird Tales
  2. Technothriller
  3. Noir Detective
  4. Biopunk
  5. Heist / Caper!
  6. Slasher / Final Girl
  7. Alternate History
  8. Disaster Porn
  9. Superhero
  10. Eco-Thriller
  11. Bumbling Detective
  12. Wild West
  13. Artificial Intelligence
  14. Comic Fantasy
  15. Psychological Thriller
  16. Regency Romance
  17. Magical Realism
  18. Bodice Ripper
  19. Paranormal Romance
  20. Satanic Horror

117 responses to “Flash Fiction Challenge: The SubGenre Blender”

  1. Dystopian and bumbling detective. Quite a challenge, Chuck. You do know how to push us novice writers out of our comfort zones…and a GINORMOUS thanks to you for that. Let’s see what I can come up with. Take care.

  2. Zombie Regency Romance. Um, wasn’t that done already? I guess that’s what makes it a challenge, though, to keep it fresh and unique and interesting even when the dice are trying to kill you. 😎

    • We kind of laugh nowadays at the stories of monsters often glimpsed but never seen, of creatures that seem to defy nature and terrorize people and animals in the dwindling remote parts of the world. But there was a time before the internet when stories like these might have been taken much more seriously. People still believe in Bigfoot, not because the evidence is so compelling and widespread, but because nobody was around to debunk it on a widespread scale before the myth could take hold in people’s minds and hearts.

      Imagine what it would have been like in the old west, when there was no internet and barely any newspapers, and you could come to a town and hear stories — believed by an entire town — of a mythical monster that lives out in the mountains.

      You might believe it.

      Here’s “The Crater Devil”.


  3. I’m gonna hang out here for a minute. Little bored. *looks around* I’m actually reading some-HAHA… one’s journal. Smirk. She would fucking kill me if she knew this. Big smile.

  4. Had to roll 3 times to get a combo that I could write and post on my PG blog (not to mention that my MOM reads my blog! Sheesh. There are limits!

  5. In response to above:

    Greek mythos Noir detective – Hero for Hire by Cynthia Pratt on Amazon
    Lovecraftian Superhero – Sara Waite of the Whateley Academy stories by DrBender at Crystalhall.org

  6. After rolling Zombie and Disaster Porn, I was tempted to roll again. But the dice have spoken, and I now think some UK landmarks are going to be in for a tough time.

  7. Arthurian fantasy (a fav, but not one I write yet) and Slasher (a complete dislike, so a challenge).

    My online space is currently out, so I’m writing in a notebook. With a pen.

  8. Who would say that the two subgenres (sword/sorcery and heist/caper) are currently the subgenres of my book! (heist/caper is a little)

  9. I just rolled “Vampire Erotica Disaster Porn”… wouldn’t be able to keep a straight face and I’m sure somebody out there has published this, and possibly made movies.

    Going with “Urban Fantasy Wild West”!

  10. Urban Fantasy Regency Romance. Hahahaha! This is Karma. I recently review- smashed something called ‘Mr Darcy, Vampyre’….This will be fun!

    • So this is an epic fail.
      I tried to write this, started 4 stories and scrapped them all. I am not a reader of these two styles, nor do I watch this type of movie. I had to search for what they were and couldn’t come up with anything good. Not particularly satisfying. In fact not satisfying at all since I hate not having anything to present. Feels like one of those dissertations you have to write in high schools; the white page syndrome. Oh well.
      At least I’ve learned something. That I have to familiarize myself with more writing genres (since I never knew this many existed anyway) and try writing some. Or maybe that horror and cryptozoological stuff isn’t my cup of tea.

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