Thursday, 19 July 2012

The Prediction - firing your imagination

Gosh, it feels like an eternity since I last judged The Prediction and yet only two weeks have passed. A busy time in my life but also in the lives of the Predictioneers as we have been coming into the mad rush before everyone scoots off on their summer holidays!

Over here in the UK everything is gearing up towards the Olympics and the Olympic Flame is touring the country before the greatest sporting spectacle in the world kicks off next week. In the meantime, Predictioneers have kept the fire burning here at Phlambler's World with some top notch flashing (oo er missus!).

So, without further ado, here are this week's winners:

Gold medal goes to Marietta Miles for The Ordinary. Marietta -  you really struck a chord with me with this piece. Written just before the five year anniversary of the 7/7 London bombings, I was transported to a time of chaos and panic where the lives of so many ordinary (and extraordinary) people were changed forever. You captured everything perfectly.

My silver medallist is John Xero with As(sass)in. John - a complete lesson in how to build a scene through the use of dialogue. Brilliant from start to finish and the twist at the end was superb.

And a bronze medal to Antonia Woodville with her untitled piece. Antonia - you made me smile and I think that is such a talent. Great dialogue and a lovely sense of humour. This one turned things up to 11.

So, congratulations to my medallists and thanks to everyone else for your stalwart writing; whilst I may not have been visibly present, I was kept thoroughly entertained by your wonderful works and I wish the podium had been bigger.

Onto this week's Prediction! With the Olympic Torch in such close proximity, it is coming through our town this week, the old tome is a little agitated; I think it is the whole paper versus fire scenario. Therefore I will be quick to snatch the words from its pages!

So, this week's words are:
  • Twist
  • Ginger
  • Moon
An interesting trio for everyone to reflect on and possibly a delight for anyone who has seen the brilliant horror film Ginger Snaps!

The usual rules apply: 100 words maximum, excluding the title, of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy or science fiction. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 9pm (UK time) Thursday 26 July to get your entries in. The winner will be announced by 9am Friday 27 July when new words will then spill forth. If you can, please tweet about your entry using the #fridayflash #100words or #flashfiction hashtags and blog if you feel like it. Please tell your friends and do give feedback to your fellow Predictioneers - everyone appreciates it!
Let your fingers play across those keyboards and delight me with delirious twists!

44 comments:

  1. Hi guys. I loved getting back on the writing. I thank you guys for your tales and stories. You are all very inspirational. I am feeling blue today. The Ordinary came from sad days in September and July. No one needs to suffer the way those poor people suffered, the way their families still suffer. I wake today to find that some fool opened fire in a movie theatre in Colorado. He killed fifteen people. It is not too hard to write frightening things when humans continue to feed that pathetic flame. What we do to each other is a crime.

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  2. Congratulations, Marietta, lovely piece of writing. I just got in from work and heard about the shooting, unbelievable and tragic.
    Congratulations John, master of dialogue!
    Thanks for the bronze medal, Phil, I enjoyed crafting that piece - it came out at 120 and had to be severely pruned, which is good for the writing skills!
    Good words, I have them in front of me for inspiration, either me or Rich, one of us will be contributing this week.

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  3. PS: meant to say sorry for lack of lots of comments last week, I have paid editing, rather a lot of it, which took up all the available time, on top of work it comes rather heavy but I have to, I need the money for essential house repairs, like ... flat roof ...

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  4. Congratulations Marietta! I loved the thoughtfulness and feel of your piece. Shame we keep repeating these tragedies.

    Glad to see you make the grade, John! That was such a fine bit of dialogue, with a killer ending.

    Well done, Antonia! Your piece was refreshingly different. I can still see it in my head.

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  6. Pact

    Staring down, Nate twisted at my feet, I saw a lifetime of promises – to protect each other, fight hard, be real brothers, blood be damned. Mine was.

    “If he’s dead, so are you.”

    “He cannot know your secret. Your power wants out. You must learn.”

    “From you? Not happening.”

    My father produced a book, covered in familiar symbols. “I will show you.”

    “I can read.” My nails dug half-moon cuts in my palms, a trickle of crimson dripping to land on Nate’s ginger-touched hair. “Blood of my blood.”

    I calmly watched my father choke to death on what we shared.

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    1. Read four times just for the pleasure of it. And a fifth to try and work out how. Impossible, so I'll just enjoy, again.

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    2. Rebecca you've conjured up a fine tale of scorcery and loyalty, a fine job.

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    3. Really intrigued with the back story between the pair and the father here. Blood magic is such a powerful thing and love the way you described the 'half-moon cuts'; simple yet very effective.

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  7. Congratulations Marietta, John and Antonia, all very worthy winners.
    I'm in good time this week as I'm away on Monday for a fortnight (fingers crossed I'll find a way to read, if not the time to comment) The first post removed because of a rogue apostrophe.

    The blacksmith’s wife [part 27]

    ‘What wants the earl with you, do you suppose?’
    ‘Letters, information. Another fuck.’
    ‘Another?’
    He had me when I was but fourteen. Small and ginger as I recall, and an awkward corkscrew twist.’
    ‘Not again.’
    ‘Not unless the moon is full.’
    I teased; Gabriel was unappreciative.
    ‘He has a wife, currently with child,’ I reassured.
    ‘Then he is the needier!’
    ‘Of an heir. And I can guarantee its health, its sex, even its survival.’
    ‘You can?’
    ‘He’ll believe so. What payment think you I should ask?’
    ‘Timber, labour, a reduction in the rent? You’ll give him the letters?’
    ‘Not yet.’

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    1. She's quite a girl that blacksmith's wife. Another fine installment.

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    3. Is there anyone our lady hasn't slept with! Nice comic touch to the writing this week Sandra. Enjoy your time away :-)

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    4. I love the teasing banter, and how well she reads him and changes tactics. I can't wait for the next installment!

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  8. A Hearty congratulations to Marietta, John and Antonia, I hope to catch up with last weeks entries before the day is out.

    Poetry and prose is where my head is at the moment This turned into quite a long piece last night so I give you a scaled down version:-

    Under The Ginger Moon
    Rivals by their birth, became lovers by desire.
    The thoughts of love forbidden was tinder to their fire
    True blood and kinship loyalty runs deeper than a kiss
    She lay waste to half his village, whilst her lover slept in bliss.

    Rusty Light outlined her face and the sorrow in his heart
    He held her in a state of grace waiting for her life to depart.
    Revenge is twist with sorrow when the anger starts to swoon.
    An end must come to everything under the ginger moon

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    1. A 'ginger moon' sounds somehow edible, nice.

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    2. Nice piece you have here William. Thought we were going 'Romeo and Juliet' when it started but much more forceful individuals were involved. Even thought 100 words this has the feel of a full length ballad as told by the minstrels of yore. Good work sir.

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    3. This could expand into an epic, and yet the story is told so completely here. Tragic and yet beautiful. I love the cadence.

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  9. OK, comments first : I have actually written something already, which is a miracle, even as I am distracted by the vision of my next door frumpy churchgoing mother of 3 and a teacher to boot so lost in book 3 of Fifty Shades of Grey that her son, charging around with buckets of water and consequently drowning everything, is being ignored...
    Rebecca, thanks for the good words, and a lovely dark piece indeed.
    Sandra, ongoing saga holding up the standard still.
    William, I like this a lot!

    Right, here goes:
    Soliloquy

    Moonshine and you, almost a cue for a song. Where the ginger comes in is anyone’s guess but I can smell the damn stuff and I hate it.
    Come to think of it, I am busy hating you, too, so what the hell am I doing here, why am I holding you and why do I feel –
    Tacky? Fool, that’s the blood which tastes like copper and smells like death. Soaking into my clothes and drenching yours.
    But you don’t care, you're dead and in the hell, no doubt, which you created. Oh joy of joys, I am free.

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    1. I am busy hating you, too That phrase really captured me. I like the way the murder/death slowly occurs to the narrator. This reeks of a terribly abusive relationship. Well done.

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  10. This feels like a descent into madness of one freed of their long suffering torture. A truly messed up individual, in my mind, who I suspect may kill again now that lunacy has taken them. But one question remains, who was keeping them enslaved? Very intriguing.

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    1. thanks, Phil, yes, very tormented individual, not sure what is going on here, it's something to explore one fine day when I have run out of inspiration ... I recall Ray Bradbury saying he took Clarisse out of The Pedestrian and she ended up in Fahrenheit 451 (which he wrote in 9 days.)

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  11. Sorry I've missed a couple of weeks, chaps, but i'm back with the this happy tale!

    Exhibit F – Note Found Next to First Body

    I always loved you. I just wanted to be with you, to dance in the moonlight, to put flowers in your hair, to sing songs and laugh at the pleasure of being together.

    But it was never me, it was always someone else. Others have stroked your ginger locks, others have caressed the curves of your body and known the sweetness of your lovemaking. And every time I saw you with someone else it was like a twist of a knife in my heart.

    Now I guess know we both know how that feels.

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    1. Matt, there is sadness and coldness alike in this, very moving piece.

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    2. Such poignancy laced with resentment, and the bluntness of the ending make this the perfect "nice guy" revenge tale. And the title makes everything worse, seeing as this is only the first body.

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    3. Ah Matt, at first I thought this was a personal note to me ;-) Very, very good piece of writing which oozed creepy stalker tinged with lifelong yearning. Really like it and that last line was killer.

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  12. Greetings All!
    I've ventured away from Nate and Seth this time, as the prompts inspired this.

    Out of Stock.


    Pickled ginger, in a plastic jar, no less.

    Kate read through the spell, written hastily on a receipt for panty hose and watermelon.

    …twist of sweet grass…check, …. Fresh Blood of the Moon. Ew! Collecting THAT had been a rare treat…midnight, three days before the Dark Moon, yeah, yeah that was tonight…and FRESH ginger.

    She touched her bruised cheek, winced, and grabbed the jar.

    No fresh ginger…piss pot of a little town. Oh right, don’t forget that…again, Ew!

    Watching that demon peel the flesh slowly from Joshua’s bones would be well worth whatever Karma handed her for the pickled ginger.

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    1. Oh yes, dark and gory as always, love this, seems to have an intriguing back story going on somehow.

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    2. I see you've shopped at my local grocers. ;) I really like the italicized asides. They're so matter of fact, disgusting, and funny at the same time. And I don't feel bad for Joshua at all.

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    3. Such a well crafted piece with some great little touches which just bring it to life. The hastily written note, that touch to her cheek.... And just the right amount of humour mixed in with the darkness that is bubbling away under the surface.

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  13. Ok I’ll hold my hands up - I’m totally riffing on Batman for this week’s entry and expanding my story from a few weeks ago The Knight. I blame a Bat’s overload this week having watched Begins, The Dark Knight, Return of the Joker and Mask of the Phantasm.


    The Plan

    The moon hung squat in the skyline over Diamond City. He always thought that the city looked its best then, all outline and no definition. All shadow and no light.

    Ginger McCreedy was only a low level enforcer, exactly what was needed for tonight. The plan was simple - start small and work you’re way up. Spread fear and dissension among the street level soldiers. Cut the body from the snake and surely the head would die.

    The knight felt the garrotte twist in his hands. He steeled himself for what lay ahead and stepped silently out of the shadows.

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    1. He's a vicious one, your Knight. If we didn't know he was the hero, he could easily come off quite villainous, which seems quite deliberate on your part. Nicely done.

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    2. Nick, nice piece of gritty crime writing here. Had a real sense of a town rife with corruption waiting for a hero; a tricky thing to do in 100 words. Kapow!

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  14. and ...
    you can't leave it there, Nick! Finish the story!

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  15. Loved these words so much, I had to go again. A stand-alone this time.

    Slumming

    She tasted of ginger ale and alcohol, a college girl come down to Shale Town looking for adventure. She didn’t expect a piece like me to say yes, but I’m a businesswoman first, and she desperately wanted to prove her urges are a passing fancy. She’s wrong, but that’s a personal journey. Someday, she may find her princess charming.

    She’d do better to find a crafty witch, and soon. Some things caught in alleys defy modern medicine. I left her skin whole, but inside, the rotting has begun. One more sacrifice for Merihim. One more broken link in my chain.

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    1. Oooo, I thought this was just a journey of discovery to start with but then that delicious ending. The horror for me is that she won't realise that she is rotting for a while yet. Dark!

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  16. Hello all, what gorgeous weather we have been having here in the British Isles just in time for the Olympics!

    I hope you forgive me, I have taken a slight liberty with 'ginger' but I figured my house, my rules ;-) I suspect you won’t find it too much of an indiscretion!

    Penalties

    Moonlight kissed the tips of the silver grass as the faeries frolicked in the clearing. Their dances were carefree, worshiping life and celebrating creation, their supple bodies mesmerising in their grace.

    Atileas stood staring from the bushes, captivated by the delights before him. It was all true, everything Hadricleas had told him. The myths of his youth standing there in the flesh.

    Gingerly he stepped forward, eager to embrace the impossible. And then everything twisted. Angelic faces became feral and ferocious. Claws appeared where there had been elegance before.

    Hadricleas' final words played through his mind. 'Look, don’t touch.'

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    1. I don't think your use of the word is out of bounds. I was thinking of employing that form myself, but it didn't fit.

      I love the feel of this, a mix between Greek and Celtic mythology, a story that could have played out a thousand times, because we will not learn to keep our hands to ourselves when the creatures come out to play.

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  17. It's been too long... and here I am with one minute to spare so, here goes - untitled.


    Everyone stares as I twist and convulse, revelling in my transformation. I’m a snake, a lizard... a dragon licking its thin forked tongue at the crowd. They stagger back, amazed at my speed and the weight of my colossal tail – it swings side to side as I run at them.

    In my human form I laugh at their fear. They shriek at the stinging cloud of ginger-scented smoke pouring from my nostrils, believing the illusion.

    The moon rises, fat with promise. By the time she finds her companion star I am a child once more, bewitched no more.

    Innocent.

    Beguiling.

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    1. And beguiling is the word for this piece Lily. As ever you bring a mysticism to your writing that is beautiful to read. I like to think of this being in the Orient with all the delights that conjures up. Really glad that you decided to come play again :-)

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  18. Bete Begins.


    Chaney makes it look easy but the first Moon’s a killer.

    It ain’t a hunting howl that tears from a newborn’s throat, it’s every shred of agony you can rend from twisting bones. You don’t know pain ‘til then, but you get acquainted real quickly. And you pass it on.

    Folk imagine we’re mindless predators. Uh-uh. Inside we’re still us. Ruby relished it, like ginger.

    It turned hacksaw black when she took me to the ghettos. She lamed a stray, writhed in his hot blood and taunted me with scents of sex.

    A guy can only hold out so long.

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    1. And welcome back to you too Dion. Great way of making werewolves more human, letting us see the personality inside. I always think they are the poor relation sometimes in the horror stakes. Really liked the opening bit with the twisting bones! You've still got it buddy :-)

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  19. Bloody computer conked out on me as I was trying to publish Bete Begins (awful name for a story, sorry). Oh well, if it's too late it's too late. Couldn't remember hold to Bold the title either. Natch.
    Gotta dash - tons more stuff to do. Hi again, and byeeeee.
    Dion.

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  20. Right, that's it, no more entries this week. Grab yourself a beer, sit back and enjoy the tales above whilst I go do some judging.

    Cheers!

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