Category Archives: 52/250 Challenge

Friday Flash: Gingerbread

This will be my last Friday Flash for awhile (but not forever) so I can concentrate on editing and submitting my longer fiction. More significantly, Gingerbread, written for the theme threesome, is my final flash to be published at the 52/250 flash site. I successfully submitted a story for each of their themes every week for the past year. Some of them had to be submitted or rewritten several times, but the editors of 52/250 are a wonderful bunch.

The 52/250’s third Quarterly, Thirtynine, also features It’s All Greek to Me – a nonfiction story about my favorite teacher. It was written for the In My Life section, where the most frequent contributors were asked to submit a flash about someone who influenced them.

In the meantime, I’m currently working on editing, revising, and submitting more of my projects. The Oglingston Spitworthy serial, which I’m revising into single short story document, is about two-thirds complete.

Sunday’s episode of the My Writing Niche podcast will talk about Douglas Adams and Towel Day. Thank you for your time, and have a lovely weekend.

*image courtesy of the Center for Jewish History, NYC via Flicker. No known copyright restrictions.

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Flashing Past…

At least for a little while.

I’ve been a regular contributor to #Friday Flash for over a year, and in another week my final submission to the 52/250 Flash site will be published. I’m taking a break from weekly flash, not forever but for awhile, in order to concentrate on longer fiction. I have a few short stories I’ve been tinkering with and a couple of rough draft novels I need to edit. I’ve been working on them off and on, but while flash has been a great exercise, I think it’s time to move on. I’m still submitting, so hopefully some of my flash fiction will find homes in other markets.

I just want to say that I love the communities that have developed and helped me improve over the past years, especially #Friday Flash and the 52/250 Flash challenge. During the past year (and more) they’ve beta read, given advice, feedback, sympathy – and just been there to show that writing doesn’t have to be a lonely occupation. There are plenty of kind and wonderful writers out there willing to extend a virtual hand or pat on the back to someone relatively new to the craft. With their help, my writing has improved enough that I feel I can tackle my current and future projects a much better writer than I was before. I might not be Shakespeare (after all, I don’t think he wrote about zombie unicorns or flesh eating gnomes), but I feel ready to move forward.

The 52/250 editors will be moving onto other projects as well – such as Blog Carnival. #Friday Flash will continue, not only on Twitter and FaceBook, but with a new site and the promise of a second anthology. As far as my own projects are concerned, the My Writing Niche podcast will be updated on a regular basis every other Sunday, writing prompts and the odd bit of poetry or prose will be posted on a weekly basis, and I will continue to post book reviews for the Functional Nerds.

I’ll pop in from time to time on Twitter and Facebook but with a reduced online presence there. I hope no one forgets me! I certainly won’t forget my Twitter and Facebook friends; thank you and I wish you all the best. I hope you will continue to follow my blog. On Twitter, you can follow me as ganymeder and on Facebook you can ‘friend’ me as Catherine Russell. Thank you for your time.

**lightning photo courtesy of bigfoto.com

 

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Friday Flash: Naughty

Please visit the 52/250 website for my flash story, Naughty, for this week’s theme – Tainted Love. Comments and feedback are appreciated.

Thank you for visiting my blog, and please come back on Sunday for the My Writing Niche podcast.

**photo courtesy of Ggorgo via Flicker. Some rights reserved by Ggorgo.

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Friday Flash: A Time to Remember

This week’s #Friday Flash, A Time to Remember, can be found at the 52/250 flash site. This was actually my second submission for the theme Blind Spot. I hope you enjoy it!

My hands and arms seem to be doing much better. I’m taking it easy, but I’m almost back to my normal writing schedule. Hopefully, within the month, I’ll go back to knitting again as well (not writing related, I know, but I miss it). In the meantime, my review for Xombies Apocalypso is up at the Functional Nerds website.

As always, I beg for welcome feedback. Thank you for your time, and have a lovely day.

**lightning photo courtesy of bigfoto.com

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Friday Flash: Shell

Due to pain in my hands and arms I have been unable to post regularly this week. Though I do not believe this to be very serious, I am mostly writing via a speech recognition program via my phone in order to prevent further injury. In the meantime, please visit the 52/250 website for my flash story, Shell, for this week’s theme – Broken Shells. Comments and feedback are appreciated.

Also, sometime during the next week, my book review for Xombies Apocalypso by Walter Greatshell should be up at the Functional Nerds website. The My Writing Niche podcast is postponed again this week, though I hope to resume podcasting by the following Sunday. The podcast topic will be alternate writing methods besides typing and writing by hand. All my other internet activities will also be postponed for the next week, due to my current condition.

Thank you for visiting my blog and my very special thanks for your comments, emails, and suggestions concerning my injury. I’m very moved, and your concern is very much appreciated.  Again, thank you.

**lightning photo courtesy of bigfoto.com

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Friday Flash: Password

The story below was an alternate story I wrote for the 52/250 prompt ‘Password‘. ‘Safe Room’ was the other story I submitted to the 52/250 flash site.

PASSWORD

Saint Peter scanned the Book of Life and frowned. “Sorry, but you’re not listed.”

The woman paled. “You mean…?”

Peter’s frown deepened. He scratched his white robe, adjusted his halo. “Sorry, but I can’t admit you.”

But I went to church, volunteered-”

Are you suggesting God made a clerical error?”

Well, not God personally, no, but somewhere along the bureaucracy-”

I’ll see what I can do.” From his robe, he pulled out a PDA, and tapped the screen. “I’ll put in your… Yee-es. Seems there’s been a major snafu concerning your demise; sorry. Your override password is being emailed to you.”

From the woman’s coat, a sharp ping sounded. She pulled out a dripping cell phone. “It still works?”

Saint Peter fixed her with his steely gaze. “You drowned and your consciousness still functions; so why wouldn’t your phone work?”

She shook water from the cell. “Dammit…uh, DARN. I can’t remember how to sign in. Must be the trauma of death and all.”

Peter shook his head. “Sorry, but if you aren’t on the list, then the Pearly Gates only open by the override password sent you in that email. I can’t access it. It’s personal.”

Is this some test? Like a riddle? I mean, the gates aren’t ‘pearly'; they’re silver and gold.”

Saint Peter patted her in friendly condescension. “It’s a misnomer. Tell you what, I’ll see what I can do on this end, and in the meantime find a nice place to haunt.” He placed the PDA somewhere in the folds of his robe, then added, “I hear Jamaica’s nice this time of year.”

The end

*

To any regular followers of my blog, I apologize for my lack of content the past week. I had severe pain in my arms, wrists, and hands that made it difficult for me to write. I’m beginning to feel better now, though I still need to do things in short spurts.

My poem “Conformity”, written for the theme ‘Crowd’, has been posted at the 52/250 flash site. Though I had planned on using some of my 52/250 submissions for #Friday Flash, the poem is not fictional.

My other writing projects are coming along. I should have a book review up soon at the Functional Nerds website. The collaborative project I’m beta reading for is coming to a close in the next few weeks, and on April 1st I’m participating in The Great April Fool’s Day #Friday Flash Blog Swap ala Tony Noland.

Thank you for visiting my site. As always, I beg for welcome feedback. Barring any other medical issues, I will post My Writing Niche on Sunday and further content throughout the week.Thank you, and have a great week!

*image courtesy of Oregon State University Archives via Flicker. No known copyright restrictions.

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Friday Flash: Long Distance Phone Call

Long Distance Phone Call

Betty sat beneath the lamp, phone cord wrapped around her arms, loose skin hanging from her bones. She smiled and laughed – something her caretakers rarely saw her do. The calls from her husband had become more frequent over the past year; she relished every word. Though he’d traveled far, Howard contacted her frequently to let her know how much he cared.

The attendants smiled and wheeled her back to her cell, locked her inside and made sure she took her medication before lights out. The delusion of her long dead husband’s calls harmed no one and left their patient happy.

As she drifted off, Betty smiled. Howard had told her he would come for her that night. Cloaked in darkness, the figure of her husband extended his hand and brought her home.

*

Now that my Oglingston Spitworthy serial has ended, my #Friday Flash stories will be focused more on my 52/250 submissions. Today’s was an alternate story I wrote for the week #38 theme- Long Distance. If you are interested, here is the version published on the 52/250 site.

My most current 52/250 flash stories can always be found here.

I hope you return on Sunday for the My Writing Niche podcast when I will read this story for #Spoken Sunday. Also, I’m finishing up a book to review for the Functional Nerds website – If you haven’t checked them out yet, you should! In the meantime, I beg for welcome your comments and feedback. Thank you for your time.

*image courtesy of The U.S. National Archives via Flicker. No known copyright restrictions.

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Friday Flash: The Great Outdoors

My story, The Great Outdoors, can be found at the 52/250 flash challenge site.

The theme for this week’s submissions was Urban Convert. When I originally read the theme, this scene played out in my head right away. I’ve camped a lot in my life, mostly as a Girl Scout growing up and later with my family to save on travelling expenses. I’ve never been a fan of the Great Outdoors. I am too enamoured of my air conditioning and microwave oven. Thus was this week’s story born. I hope you enjoy it.

On a more personal note, I’ve been submitting more stories and poems and even have two being considered (fingers crossed). I’ve been working on a couple flashes about gnomes that tie into each other, but I’m having trouble with the second flash that’s supposed to complement the first. So I’m saving that one until they’re more polished.

Don’t forget to check out #Friday Flash on both Twitter and FaceBook for some great short stories. I hope you’ll come back in a couple days for my podcast, My Writing Niche, featuring my #Spoken Sunday story. Until then, have a great weekend!*

*Ironically, the photo above was taken of a small garden next to a shopping center parking lot. I just thought that since you couldn’t see the lot, it seemed like a nice idyllic outdoor setting.

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Friday Flash: The World at My Fingertips


The World at My Fingertips


The Palm Pilot spoke to me through text that flashed across its screen. My appointments, my phone book, my ebooks and documents showed up as letters against its glowing background – the world at my fingertips.

However, I was surprised when it told me to call in sick to work. At first I thought some mischievous colleague had pranked me, but the device never left my side. Then the words ‘Take a mental health holiday’ flashed across the screen. I decided it had a point. I called in sick and searched through my phone book.

Either I needed a shrink or really good tech support. My whole life was on that thing.


THE END

This week’s theme for the 52/250 flash challenge was The Palm of Your Hand. Since I wrote two pieces for the theme, my poetry submission “Poet” appears on the 52/250 site while my prose take on the theme appears on my blog for this week’s #FridayFlash.

On a more personal note, I’m expecting my paperback copies of The Best of Friday Flash soon. I’m very excited to see my name in actual print for the first time, and I’m honored to have been a part of the project. As I’ve said before, this anthology is fantastic. Even if I hadn’t been personally involved, this would still be one of my favorite story collections. The Friday Flash community is filled with very talented as well as diverse and wonderful people.

I’ve planned another My Writing Niche podcast in time for #Spoken Sunday, so I hope you revisit my blog soon. I’m not sure if I will record more than just the short story itself. Since the podcast is a bit of an experiment for me, I don’t wish to record just for the sake of recording. Rather, as well as it being a learning experience for myself, I hope to be able to talk about things that will be of interest to others who care about writing and becoming published. While I may mention some of my personal ups and downs concerning the craft, I don’t plan on speaking unless I have something that may be relevant to others. If anyone has any suggestions for the podcast, I will gladly consider them.

As always, I beg for welcome comments. Thank you for your time, and have a great weekend!

*This file (image) licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0

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Friday Flash: The Postcard

My story, The Postcard, can be found *here.*

My #Friday Flash this week is at the 52/250 flash challenge site. This week’s theme was The Postcard.

Well, Nanowrimo is almost over. Monday is officially the last day, but I think I’ll probably finish this weekend. I’m at 47,607 words now (Thursday, November 25, 2010 at 21:05), but I’m taking Thanksgiving off. I’ll probably hit 50k before I reach the end of my story though, so I’ll need to keep writing til I reach the end. I can’t abandon my characters at 50k when they’re just about to confront the Lord of the Underworld; Now can I?

I did order myself my Nanowrimo winner prize for my incentive for the last few thousand words. It’s a pink fountain pen with brown ink, but I’m not allowed to use it until I’m finished. I’m so excited!

I hope you enjoy the story. As always, I beg for welcome comments!

Also, please don’t forget that I will be posting another episode of My Writing Nichehere at my blog on Sunday to coincide with #Spoken Sunday. Please tune in!

Thank you for your time.

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Filed under 52/250 Challenge, Flash Fiction, nanowrimo, slice of life, Writing Corner