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Flash Fiction Revival #1 (Theme: Freestyle)

Discussion in 'Reader's Corner' started by Krory, Dec 1, 2019.

  1. Krory

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    THEME: FREESTYLE
    ENTRY PERIOD: DEC. 1st (Sunday) - DEC. 8th (Sunday)
    REVIEW PERIOD: DEC. 8th (Sunday) - DEC 12th (Thursday)

    Welcome to the Reader's Corner Flash Fiction Revival!

    The idea is simple - you submit a "flash fiction" entry that is relevant to the chosen theme at hand, and when the submission/entry period ends folks will rate and (hopefully) critique entries. Aside from just being a contest, it will (again, hopefully) be a means for those who aspire to do more with their writing expand their horizons and fix some bad habits.

    Questions and concerns can be directed to the Flash Fiction Discussion Thread at the top of the section.


    Entry Rules:
    • All entries must be relevant to the theme. A theme of "Freestyle" means anything goes.
    • As with all things artistic, a theme can potentially be interpreted in many ways.
    • Maximum word limit is 500. Any entry over 500 words is disqualified.
    • Each person can only submit one entry per contest/theme.

    Review Rules:
    • You may not review/rate your own entry. Well... you can, but it doesn't count.
    • If you submit an entry, you must rate/review all other entries. If you don't, you are disqualified.
    • You are allowed to rate/review if you did not submit an entry.
    • All ratings must be on a scale out of 10.
    • Reviews should be honest and constructive but also respectful - no flaming.
     
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  2. Island Moderator

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    Thread pinned.

    Not that it really matters since this section doesn't get a lot of new threads, but figured I'd do it anyway so that it looks all official and stuff.
     
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  3. Island Moderator

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    And FYI, we might have to switch to monthly contests instead of biweekly ones.

    The stuff that the Contest Central mods made for how prizes are handled says that these kinds of contests should only be held once a month, so unless they feel like making an exception, we'll either have to make the contests less often or have smaller prizes.

    I'll keep you guys updated on this.
     
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  4. Leeroy Jenkins

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    Spoiler: The Eulogy - 346 words

    The bells chime thrice in phlegmatic reverence.

    "Ladies, and gentleman, we have gathered here today to commemorate the funeral for Icarus," the preacher, adorned in a modest white frock with gold tassels draping down each shoulder, mournfully began.

    "A man who waged war, alone, against the false gods and succeeded in defeating them. Felling these abominations one by one, beginning with the wretch, E'yeid, the "Farseeing"," A sneer coating the epithet. "The foul pretender who spout claims of the future, the lies foolishly lapped up by the tainted and deranged, too blinded to see the deceits his serpentine tongue spoke. It was perhaps his greatest work; but it was not to be the last for as our Great Goddess had laid bare to us through the Golden Prophecy, he was destined to slay the vile filth that contaminated this world - Gabton, the Deceiver; Imsept, the Architect; and The Cosmic Monitor. But, when it was time for him to accept the sacrament that our wondrous goddess awaited to bestow upon its champion, Icarus had returned deluded, betraying his covenant to our Lord. But, it was not unforeseen - no, not to the Illuminated One, for she alone knows the paths of all creation, and she alone has the power to decide where they end in the Great Web of Fate."

    The preacher paused.

    "So, let us not remember Icarus for the betrayal of Cremona, for who among us mortals can truly claim that we are immune to the heresies of higher beings? We, instead, ought to mourn the death of a champion of Cremona and a friend of humanity for he, alone, safeguarded us from the stains of the Others! Let us pray now to Cremona, the Eye of the Fates, for our fallen brother so that she may guide his path in the after life back to Illumination, and back with us."

    The eulogy had concluded, and so had the life and memory of the last unstained human being on Earth. An unimaginable and unknowable cosmic being had succeeded.

    And the bells chimed thrice more for Icarus.

     
  5. Seraphoenix

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    500
    Spoiler:

    “So sorry for the bump! I always forget that step” said Horax.

    “Easy does it” he said as he slowly shuffled the trolley into the bright room. He closed the steel door silently, the only sound being the satisfactory click of the door being locked.

    Out came a sudden laugh from Horax, “I’ve done this so many times, but I still get this nervous excitement. You know that feeling, just before you get on a rollercoaster? Happiness with a slight sense of dread? Too playful my mother used to say. But why wouldn’t I love to play? Didn’t Schiller himself say ‘Man only plays when he is in the fullest sense of the word a human being, and he is only fully a human being when he plays’? She hated when I played with my food, but it was absolutely delightful! I was never more human than then. Imagine. An animal and all its life experience. Every memory. Every perception. Every emotion. All to end up on my plate. It felt like I was eating whole lives! Like a piece of alchemy! The more complex the life the sweeter! The tastier!”


    Horax fastidiously put on his scrubs with a smile and walked to the basin to wash his hands. “Cleanliness is next to godliness” he said with a snicker.

    “Look at me doing all the talking. Suppose you have no choice but to listen though. It’s an important skill. You can get someone so enamored with you just by listening. So many people want to be heard. Want to feel like their world matters. It doesn’t. It never will. Ever. They’ll love you for keeping up the pretense though. Life is suffering no? Am I not a magnanimous man by doing my small bit to lessen it? To pretend their story is THE story? The unenlightened call this ‘manipulation’. I give them what they want, for a few precious moments. I give them their world. Their truth. All I ask in return, is when we’re done pretending, they give me their world back. A fair exchange don’t you think? Don’t look at me like that. I did my part. You owe me.”


    Horax stepped closer to tighten the binds around the body. Frantic movement echoed fruitlessly around the cold room.

    “That’s rather rude for a guest. Here I am with my best bedside manner and you’re belligerently misbehaving. We don’t start the game until I say, sir. Before that is just spoiling the fun! You’ll have plenty of time to struggle! To wiggle! To feel like you can change things. The majority of us still think we can change things, rather than things changing us. A slow realisation for some, sadly.”


    “I am famished. I think I’ll have a leg for lunch, but enough talk from me. Let me take that off your mouth. It’s time for me to listen. I hope you’ll love me” said Horax as he brandished a large knife.

    “The screaming is such a sweet sound.”


     
  6. Luey

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    Spoiler: Flash

    It was a cold dark night in downtown Konoa. Snow from the heavens covered the landscape like a white woolly blanket. The half moon hung elegant in the night sky surrounded by stars of varying luminosity. A few clouds lazily traveled across the half moonlit sky.

    Downtown Konoa had the liveliest night life in all of Konoa. The night clubs were open for business and the drinks and music flowed in rhythm with the energy of the partying spirits. The casinos were open 24 hours a day but the night time was when the big boys of Konoa came out to play. From movie stars to business tycoons who owned movie stars, it was at night the casino’s where really opened. Some restaurants were open for business, with neon lit signboards that screamed “we are so open for business”. It was in one of such restaurants that The Brokerage was holding its latest meeting.

    At the desk was Broly, the director of the brokerage. Seated on the left couch were his ‘managers’ as they were called, each representing a different territory owned by the Brokerage. They were Mr Krory, and Mr Jojo. Each wore a simple casual dinner jacket over black plants.

    Seated on the right where high ranking representatives of other crime syndicates and organizations who had major interests in downtown Konoa. They were Tamaru Kyo who was the right hand man to the head of the Japanese mafia in Konoa , Lady Tiffany who was representing the leader of the ‘Bleeding roses’ crime ring and Juice Dogg who was representing the ‘WestsiderZ’ crime family. Except for lady Tiffany who wore an expensive navy blue dinner gown and an expensive diamond encrusted platinum choker around her slender neck, the other representatives where modestly dressed in a dinner jacket and black pants. Each wore the solemn face that meant this was a serious business meeting.

    They had been summoned here by Broly because of the death of a member of the brokerage at the hands of the Konoa task force just the other day. His was Vinotinto, a 36 year old Italian immigrant who managed the club fronts of the brokerage. He had been gunned down in a fire fight with the task force when they conducted a raid on one of their clubs. The club in question had been used as a front for illegal drug trafficking by the brokerage and as such occasionally was a cache for the brokerages drugs and cash. Somehow, someway, the Police had gotten word about the latest shipment to arrive the club Vinotinto managed. The task force acted on the tip, and Vino lost his life due to it. It was the source of the tip Broly was after

     
  7. Nataly

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    I wish I found out about this early, I might still make something, but there is no guarantee with the deadline coming so soon
     
  8. Krory

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    Deciding to enter this with no proofreading. :pepehype

    Spoiler: 438~

    Well over an hour had been wasted away sitting in his dark sedan across the street, watching as people slowly but surely migrated to the house he was watching. A flask once filled with poor man's painkiller now sat empty on the passenger side seat. He had long since grown tired of listening to the same handful of songs and reports of a string of burglaries from New Brunswick to Cherry Hill and crossing well into Princeton.

    It all played out the same every year for the last five years. High-class homes would find themselves shy a few valuables in the weeks leading up to the Christmas holiday straight up to Christmas Eve. Then they would stop; that is at least until the following year. And every year after weeks of no evidence he would find himself parked outside the residence of one Charlie Bishop. Although there was no record on Charlie Bishop there was a reputation. There was no doubt in his mind that this was the man responsible.

    It all played out the same every year. He would sit in his car and work up the courage. He would go up to the door and ring the bell. He would cause a scene. Accusations would devolve into screaming and cursing would devolve into threats and it would all reach a crescendo that ultimately fizzled out as he fled before the police could be called. The last thing he needed was fellow officers dragging him away... or worse, having to cuff him outside the residence of one Charlie Bishop.

    This year would be different.

    Before he knew it he was at the front door of the quiet one-story suburban home. His thumb had already pushed in the button and the sing-song ringing alerted the household to a presence. Even surrounded by white cold he felt hot, his hands sweating as he checked the inside of his coat pocket protectively. It was still there.

    Although it felt like hours it was only seconds before the door opened and he found himself face-to-face once more with Charlie Bishop.

    "Detective," Charlie Bishop sighed, his voice holding a certain sour tone. He already had his cellphone in his hand, lit up and ready to dial. Charlie Bishop had also been waiting. "Is it really worth it to take the trip down here every year?"

    "Merry Christmas, Charlie." He pulled his hand free from his coat. Charlie Bishop recoiled, gaze shifting to the detective's hand where he saw a small rectangular package, wrapped with care in a shimmering red paper and adorned with a green bow.

    This year would be different.
     
  9. Leeroy Jenkins

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    @Krory - 9.5/10. I liked the quick, tidy set up and the way you quickly sewed the ending together to allow the surprise to linger as the last image the reader holds in their head. Just can't give out a perfect score though.

    @Luey - 6/10. A big part of the loss of points is due to how much was built up to just end with no clear resolution. The attention to detail is praiseworthy though.

    @Seraphoenix - 8/10. Good job maintaining the illusion and obscurity until the last moment when you strip the reader of any pretense. If you could have found a way to make the illusion less ominous and pitted in awkwardness, it'd make the malicious intent so much more dramatic and impactful.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2019 at 12:37 PM
  10. Luey

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    @Krory - 8/10. The twist at the end was unexpected and not obvious. I did not expect he was going to give the Bishop guy a gift.
    @Leeroy Jenkins - 7/10. Took about three reads to finally get what was going on and who Icarus was.
    @Seraphoenix - 8/10. I liked the reveal. You keep wondering what Horax up to then discover he is SAW type of guy.
     
  11. Seraphoenix

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    Some of it might be nitpicky but w/e:

    @Leeroy Jenkins
    Spoiler:

    The opening line seems a little too ornate.

    "Ladies, and gentleman" shouldn't it be 'gentlemen'? or is only one man present?

    "gathered here today to commemorate the funeral for Icarus" Doesn't make sense grammatically. Might have been better to say ''commemorate the life of Icarus" ,don't think you commemorate a funeral.

    "A man who waged war, alone, against the false gods and succeeded in defeating them. Felling these abominations one by one, beginning with the wretch, E'yeid, the "Farseeing" You told me this guy won in the first sentence. I've therefore lost interest in how it happened, as I know the result. Consider perhaps having the descriptions of his fights first to build tension and make the reader wonder whether he wins or not.

    "The foul pretender who spout claims of the future" should be "spouted"

    "So, let us not remember Icarus for the betrayal of Cremona, for who among us mortals can truly claim that we are immune to the heresies of higher beings? We, instead, ought to mourn the death of a champion of Cremona and a friend of humanity for he, alone, safeguarded us from the stains of the Others! Let us pray now to Cremona, the Eye of the Fates, for our fallen brother so that she may guide his path in the after life back to Illumination, and back with us." -Your specific tone and language here is pretty consistent so kudos for that. It has left me wanting more though. You ended this rather quickly. Given you only wrote 346 words I'm feeling a little short-changed.

    Overall I would give it a 6/10 but I'm gonna deduct a point for only 346 words so 5/10.




    @Luey

    Spoiler:

    "It was a cold dark night in downtown Konoa" I wanted to say you should put a comma after cold but I like the rhythm when saying it aloud.

    "Snow from the heavens covered the landscape like a white woolly blanket" nice simile
    "The half moon hung elegant in the night sky surrounded by stars of varying luminosity" elegant should be 'elegantly' as it's an adverb. The part about the stars being of 'varying luminosity' is pretty stale.

    "Downtown Konoa had the liveliest night life in all of Konoa. The night clubs were open for business and the drinks and music flowed in rhythm with the energy of the partying spirits. The casinos were open 24 hours a day but the night time was when the big boys of Konoa came out to play. From movie stars to business tycoons who owned movie stars"- This is a really bland and kind of cliched description.

    "it was at night the casino’s where really opened" This sentence makes no sense
    "with neon lit signboards that screamed “we are so open for business” "- laughed out loud at 'so open for business'

    "Seated on the right where high ranking'' should be 'were' instead of 'where'
    "representatives where modestly" again should be 'were''

    "Each wore the solemn face that meant this was a serious business meeting." You should perhaps try showing instead of telling a lot more in your writing. Otherwise it becomes uninteresting. perhaps we could infer it's a serious meeting by action? For instance a random could make a joke and immediately get punished harshly which would make the reader guess it's a serious meeting. That makes it more interesting than you telling us it's a serious meeting.

    "just the other day" try and avoid common sayings like these imo. They don't really add value. Makes more sense for a character to say this as it can point to a time period or a character's specific quirks. Using the phrase as a narrator is lazy imo.

    "Somehow, someway" same as above

    5/10



    @Krory
    Spoiler:

    "Well over an hour had been wasted away sitting in his dark sedan across the street, watching as people slowly but surely migrated to the house he was watching." Personally not a fan of using common phrases like 'wasted away' and 'slowly but surely' from the narrator as explained above.

    "A flask once filled with poor man's painkiller now sat empty on the passenger side seat" - This sentence is a gem. Love the alliteration.

    "grown tired"- Same as the first comment. Try making up your own description to describe him becoming tired.

    "And every year after weeks of no evidence he would find himself parked outside the residence of one Charlie Bishop. Although there was no record on Charlie Bishop there was a reputation. There was no doubt in his mind that this was the man responsible." - some commas might be appropriate here otherwise you tire out the reader

    "He would cause a scene. Accusations would devolve into screaming and cursing would devolve into threats and it would all reach a crescendo that ultimately fizzled out as he fled before the police could be called. " -Same problem as Leeroy. You tell us the result and then describe it. Also consider substituting one of the 'devolve's for a synonym or something with a similar effect. For example in Harry Potter Voldemort says "Greatness inspires envy. Envy engenders spite. Spite spawns lies". she could have just used 'inspires' in the place of 'engenders' and 'spawns' . The change makes it interesting and also the words she uses also add style as it adds alliteration.

    Overall I like the subversion of expectation. I really expected him to kill Charlie. I'm left wondering why he changed his mind though and you haven't left any clues as to why. Makes the subversion feel kind of cheap if there is no foreshadowing of the potential reason or intent. Gonna give it a 7 but deduct a point for only 438 words. I feel you could have added more.

    6/10


     
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