Tag Archive | Kay Sully

Flash! Friday # 31 — WINNERS!

One cannon. One mountain. Infinite number of story possibilities! You all showed up with arsenals exploding with creativity. No matter the prompt, you always manage to knock our socks off with your writing. Thanks as ever for coming out to play and to encourage each other. See you next week!

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Judge Dan Radmacher says, This week’s prompt seemed to really get the creative juices flowing. Dragons, magic, mysterious backdrops and, of course, lots and lots of battles. This was a great collection, as usual, making the judge’s job pleasantly difficult. 

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HONORABLE MENTION

Kay Sully, “Imagination.” This was a sweet tale that charmingly captured the innocence and imagination of youth. Well done. 

SECOND RUNNER UP

Sarah Cain, “The Glory of Battle.” In some ways this was the tonal opposite of “Imagination.” This wasn’t about innocence and imagination; it was about a man who long ago lost his innocence and who had seen things he never could have–or would have wanted to–imagine. The weight on his shoulders is palpable, thanks to the excellent writing.

FIRST RUNNER UP

Mary Decker, “Heritage.” This lovely little tale bridges the thematic difference between the honorable mention and the second runner up. There’s innocence. And indifference. There’s what must have been a horrific battle, but with more distance and a greater sense of duty. And then the indifference and distance are overcome as the main character realizes the meaning of honor and sacrifice and bravery. Awesome.

And our Flash! Friday familiar competitor but first-time gold medalist

 DRAGON WINNER IS….

CRAIG ANDERSON!

for “Ill-Tempered.”  Let me count the ways I love this piece. First of all, I love the title’s subtle pun. There’s some very descriptive prose here. You really put the reader in Smith’s shoes. The ending provided a nice little twist. In addition, you managed to hint at a much larger tale that made me want to learn more. It’s not often I read the very first entry and realize I’ve probably already found the winner, but that’s what happened this time. Wonderful, compelling job.  

Congratulations, Craig! Here are your Winner’s Page, your magnificently crafted eBadge (below), and your winning Tale. Please contact me asap (here) with your email address so I can interview you for Wednesday’s Sixty Seconds feature (I can’t wait!).

Ill-Tempered

The liquid glowed red like a sunset as it poured from the melting pot. The Smith wiped his brow with a thick leather glove to prevent the sweat from trickling into his eyes. He carefully guided the substance into the mould under the watchful gaze of his captors. They frantically made notes, studying his every move so as to eventually remove his usefulness to them. The only way to prolong this miserable existence was to keep them guessing. He changed the process again, this time pouring cold water onto the sculpture. It hissed and spat in protest as they scribbled away.

The ugly one with the moustache barked at him in broken English. “Why you add water?”

“It settles the metal quicker, makes it stronger. Allows you to pack it with more gunpowder, to fire further.”

Ugly smiled a wicked, one-toothed grin.

It would take several days for the metal to cool, and several more for them to ship this evil contraption to the castle. By the time they tried to fire it he would likely be dead, but he would get the last laugh when the weakened steel exploded in their faces. This would be his final contribution to the rebel cause.

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Flash! Friday # 24 — WINNERS!

YEEEEHAW, and yippee yi yay! You all WENT TO TOWN with the cowboy this week. What a romp it was, start to finish. Dark in places, bright in others, and clever all through. Really great job, everybody! Thanks for coming out to shoot a round with Flash! Friday. Thanks too to our own gunslinger/judge Dan Radmacher, for another fine bit o’ work.

As ever, be sure to check back Monday to see which of your stories will star at Flash Points; and join me Tuesday for Dragon Munchies. Wednesday will feature an interview with today’s winner. And new stories keep popping up throughout the week; they just won’t stay in the corral, no matter how mean the cowboy. Be sure to check back!

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Judge Dan Radmacher says, As usual, a really good collection of stories all around. I like the different directions people went with the prompt. It led to some very interesting tales, making it hard to pick a winner.
 
Still, several stood out:

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SPECIAL HONORABLE MENTION

Crystal Alden“The Cowboys.” Great humor and dialogue. I would never have guessed an 8-year-old wrote this. Terrific ending! 

HONORABLE MENTION

Kay Sully“Standoff.” What a great, little story. The writing brings the scene and the emotions to life. “His mustache was something to aspire to.” Really wonderful. 

THIRD RUNNER UP

S.J. O’Hart, “Standoff.” Great tension and descriptive writing. Wonderful cliffhanger of an ending. 

SECOND RUNNER UP

J.M. Mendur“Jake and Clem.” This was a fun read with a great surprise ending. Centaurs … and talking horses? Fantastic.

COMMENT ON THE TOP TWODeciding between the first runner-up and the winner was agonizing. Both of these stories were captivating and descriptive. Both deserve to win, but, alas, only one can.

FIRST RUNNER UP

Suzanne Purkis, “Blood and Honey.” I just loved this one. Great decision, taking it from Honey’s perspective. The description of the shadow riders was eerie. Well done.  

And our Flash! Friday first time winner (think twice before hiring him for your wedding)

 DRAGON WINNER IS….

THE IMAGINATOR!

for “Photo Shoot.”  The dialogue sings in this tight, well-constructed story. “Shot?” The one word gives us the tiniest taste of foreshadowing of the very satisfying conclusion.

Great story, with much more hinted at.

Congratulations, Imaginator! Here are your Winner’s Page, your super duper eBadge, and your winning Tale.  Please contact me asap (here) with your email address so I can interview you for Wednesday’s Sixty Seconds feature.

Photo Shoot

“This ok for ya?”

“Yeah that’s it, that’s great! Just stay still like that for me.”

“How much longer do I gotta stay like this?”

“Nearly there” said Jake as he poked his head out from underneath his photographer’s cowl, squinted at the man sat on the horse.

“Alright, now look down at your nose at me, and frown a bit – that’s it! Look mean!” he said, then ducked under the cowl again.

Eli put on his best scowl. “Say, you done taken pitchers of any of ma friends?”

“Like who?”

“Clayton McGraw, or Lantry Dawson?”

“Sure, in fact I think I shot one of ‘em just last week”

Eli wrinkled up his nose and squinted at the camera. “Shot?”

“Here we go!”

Flash, bang – the horse reared and Eli fell to the ground.

Jake ducked out from under the cowl, looked over at Eli’s still body as the horse bolted.

Frowning slightly, Jake walked over to where Eli lay face down in the dirt then stood looking down at him for a few moments, biting his bottom lip. Couching down next to him, Jake took a hold of Eli’s shoulder and turned him onto his back.

Eli’s head lolled to one side, blood dribbling out of the corner of his cracked lips and blossoming through the breast of his shirt.

“Yup, I shot that bastard alright; just like I’ll shoot the rest of your gang for what you did to my mother and father when you raided our ranch last year.”

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