The No-Call

Chuck’s challenge this week is a story in 100 words. These are tricky, and Once Upon A Time is back from its hiatus, so…

Sandal, High Heels, Sets, Female, Women'S Fashion, Shoe

Cindy gave her sorority sisters the slip and went to the party anyway. They’d never let her pledge if they found out.

She drank too much. Danced all night. Deftly parried the drunken advances of some guy in a crown.

Next morning, the house was aflutter; the fraternity president was making rounds to name his queen for the spring formal. He had the shoe, he proclaimed, of the magical girl whose company he had shared the night before.

Cindy ran upstairs and threw her mismatched pump in the garbage chute, vowing never again to waste her time with silly boys in costumes.


Unexpected Response

Chuck’s challenge this week: a horror story in three sentences. And since I’m still on a sci-fi bent, why not sci-fi horror?

Three sentences almost doesn’t merit a post here, but it’s a thing I wrote, so here it is. In fact, I might do a few more. These are fun.

Unexpected Response

When we first aimed our dishes at the sky, we feared we might not find anybody. Then we found somebody, and we feared they might not understand us.

Now they’re here, and there is not enough firepower in the world to save us.

Search History Stories

Chuck’s challenge this week: Tell a story using search terms.

Sounds weird; is weird; is also tons of fun. I wrote one, then while thinking of something completely different, another one struck me. So here’s two for the price of one, and I might just return to this format.

Make your own honey
Amateur beekeeping
Increase beehive productivity
decrease beehive productivity
controlling beehive population
webMD how many bee stings are fatal
webMD buzzing in my sleep
webMD urge to eat sunflowers
how to attract a mate through dance

meteor shower viewing
identifying a meteorite fragment
webMD strange rash on hands
webMD rash on entire body
are meteorites radioactive?
visions of the future are they real
biggest lottery jackpot america
private islands for sale

Inkblots on My Heart

Chuck’s Challenge this week: A Three-sentence story. The briefer, the better.

A few months back we had a similar challenge to tell a story in just 100 words. On that day, I cut loose and churned out five disparate stories with a common theme. This challenge felt like another exercise in letting fly with whatever came to mind and rolling with whatever sounded good. I had hoped to come up with at least three or four ideas again, for a smattering of takes on the topic. But I got stuck on just one idea, and nothing else seemed to take shape. So for now, it’s just the one.

Inspired by the Cake song “Short Skirt, Long Jacket,” here’s “Inkblots on My Heart”.


Inkblots on My Heart

They fell in love when he borrowed her pen. For a while, they wrote their sweet romance on the walls. But the girl next door had a really nice set of ballpoints.

Five Stories, One Title

Chuck’s challenge this week:  A Story in Three Sentences.  Initially daunted by the task, I wracked my brain all weekend for the first of these stories and then, like a delicate flower, my consciousness opened and more stories started pouring out.  Enchanted with the concept, I just sort of ran with it, ending up finally with several variations on a theme.  I had a lot more fun than I thought I would with these; I’m quite proud of them.

Here, then, are Five (5!) Three-Sentence Stories that all share the same title.

Hope you enjoy!


Rejected, v. 1

Leonard trembled with rage as his fingers crumpled the latest rejection letter into a rumpled little teepee on his desk.  There was nothing further for it, he decided.  He loaded his mother’s pistol, telling himself again and again that those stuffed suits at McGillis would think twice before they turned down another of his novels.


Rejected, v. 2

Caroline sobbed into a fistful of the pages she had torn from the latest issue of Chic.  The magazine had been telling her for years that her nose was too broad, her thighs too wide, her cheeks too chubby, her hair the wrong shade of brown; from the looks on Darryl’s face during their blind date, he thought it all just the same.  Coroners the next morning ruled that the stabs and slashes all over Caroline’s body and face, originally deemed the work of a demented murderer, were self-inflicted.


Rejected, v. 3

“He’s not like us,” the lungs protested, as the liver, the kidneys, and the spleen listened, nodding in zealous agreement.  “He has to go,” the gallbladder burbled, peeking out from under the pancreas, “guys, you know what you have to do.”  The white blood cells did know what to do, and began their final assault against the transplanted, interloping heart.


Rejected, v. 4

“Not yet,” Carl thought, as he spit the dollar out once more.  It was a perfectly good dollar, of course, but he couldn’t help himself; elation flickered through him at the caress of her fingertips on his buttons, the enchanting pout on her face as she tsked in frustration, the rattle of his frame as she kicked him in what might have been his shins if he weren’t a vending machine.  He would reject her until the end of time if he could, and he buzzed in pleasure as she tried once more to buy a pack of Junior Mints.


Rejected, v. 5

All his life had been lived in a pile, from the pile of rocks in the depths of the earth, to the pile of his brethren in the miner’s pocket, to the delicate pile sitting on the jeweler’s desk in Ethiopia.  But the moment loomed before him now, the moment when he would leave piles behind and become the prized accoutrement on some grand lady’s dainty finger, or the dazzling accessory in a young songstress’s pouty, flaring nostril on a magazine cover.  “Imperfections,” the jeweler said simply, and tossed him into yet another pile of brothers as shattered as his dreams.