[POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge


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Post August 31, 2016, 10:45:54 AM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Thank you to those of you who gave me feedback, too. Your words were very kind, and I appreciate them. All of us, including me, are on a journey somewhere with our writing and everyone, regardless of experience, benefits from feedback.

I've also found this to be very true: commenting and critiquing other stories helps writers learn more than the comments we get for ourselves. So, anyone out there who has anything they'd like to say about a story or to ask anyone about their story, please speak out.
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Post August 31, 2016, 01:52:27 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

The Fisher of Men wrote:About being evil enough to be killed, using the Lord's name in vain is a chief commandment and a major no no with God. But in addition, he was stealing money from innocent and gullible people for his own wealth and glory and misleading multitudes into believing that salvation can be bought (problem with lots of religious groups and organizations).

kailhofer wrote:These things may well be, but one has to consider one's audience. It can be a tactical error to expect the audience to mirror one's own views. Aphelion has readers of all faiths, all creeds, or lack of both. Also all ages. I always (and this is just my own view) aim for the middle, and try to project which views I think that middle will have, or accept. Also which expectations, which may change based on the kind of challenge presented.

Your storyline was really good and I was interested in it from the start.

This as you presented it was a drama about murder, maybe a Columbo or Monk episode...a homicide. If you wanted God to have dealt out Divine retribution, you needed to have done what Nate said and foreshadow it throughout the story. Showing us God's involvement only at the end takes the reader out of the story and makes the resolution sort of preachy.

Now, IF you want a spiritual or supernatural drama, then it needs to be so at the beginning and all the way through. A twist in the plot is fine, but the reader needs to be braced for it.
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Post August 31, 2016, 03:01:03 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

kailhofer wrote:Thank you to those of you who gave me feedback, too. Your words were very kind, and I appreciate them. All of us, including me, are on a journey somewhere with our writing and everyone, regardless of experience, benefits from feedback.

I've also found this to be very true: commenting and critiquing other stories helps writers learn more than the comments we get for ourselves. So, anyone out there who has anything they'd like to say about a story or to ask anyone about their story, please speak out.

This is wonderful of you Nate, to give yourself to help people become better, more fulfilled in their lives. I appreciate you for your service.

So, we can comment too. I don't think I understood that until now. I'll look it over.

David
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Post August 31, 2016, 03:08:55 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

kailhofer wrote:The Wedding Feast--Not a bad effort for a first story. There's nothing wrong with telling a story to bring people closer to a higher power or to better themselves, but perhaps next time you should try to step away from that sermon framework. Go more simple. I'd suggest trying to help just one or two characters find their way in life, or out of a situation--even if it's just away from an abusive husband, or a little boy to figure out something he loves in life, for example. I think you'll wind up reaching more people and more strongly than one meant for a mass group, from a purely character-driven, human, fiction point of view. Heck, I wrote a story about a couple of rocks that became friends (and I hope that was enough to be inspirational or moving to a reader). I guess what I'm trying to say is you don't have to aim for the stars, as it were, to make people feel good, to find that higher power, or to want to be better to each other.

Oh I see, this venue is more individualized and stories should be written like you're writing to an audience of one instead of an auditorium. The broader brush stroke can't be fully realized in a thousand words so I need to focus on the smaller story. Did I get that right?

Yes, I think I can do that.

Thank you again, Nate.
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Post August 31, 2016, 03:14:29 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Daniel Johnson wrote:The Wedding Feast - Alright, this story, although not structured really at all (understandable for a non writer), was extremely funny and I enjoyed every minute of it. I've never read a religious story that left me with such a good feeling. And the hippie lingo was great!!

Lines like:

"And then a member of the crowd stepped out and said, "We would like to come also to the King's Son wedding feast, but we ain't got much El Denero, Supremo La Grande, that's Taco Bell talk for not much money."

"Now the Sadducees and Pharisees, they were the religious leaders back then, instead of getting all excited and saying, "Far out, the King's Son is here! We don't have to die for being creeps! Let's invite our friends to the synagogue for a covered dish dinner and play some volleyball on the front lawn.”"

Just fun!

I come by the lingo naturally. I hung out with musical groups in the late sixties and early seventies, but unlike them, I kept talking that way.

I'm really glad you enjoyed that and thanks for saying so.
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Post August 31, 2016, 03:20:00 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Lester Curtis wrote:comments: A Sunday-school lesson with modern slang for dialog. I would have liked more originality.

Well, the originality was present in the approach to the dialogue. This was adapted material from the Bible to a sermon to a modern day parable.

But I will try to write something that is not an adaptation and maybe you will like that better. Thanks for responding.

David
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Post August 31, 2016, 03:26:03 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

The Fisher of Men wrote:The misrepresentation of God has been going on even before Jesus drove the buyers and sellers out of the temple with a whip for selling religious merchandise saying, "My Father's house is a house of prayer, but you've made it a den of thieves".

I wondered what if the fall of many of the wicked, self serving televangelist was due to Divine retribution.

The other stories were great and I was pleased to have my story in amongst them.

It was really a blessing.

That was really a fine story, Frank. Why don't you develop it further and submit it as a short story like Daniel suggested. It will give you a chance to perfect your writing in the company of these professional writers.

I'll be a sounding board if you like.
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Post August 31, 2016, 04:46:59 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

kailhofer wrote:Kit and Kaboodle--This was a strong story. I think it could have used a little more character development and less of them gathering the animals, but it's good. The two are clearly friends.

Yes, I would like to make the characters more real. They're real to me, but I forgot the readers can't see them interacting in my mind.

Thank you for thinking my story was good. I am really encouraged.
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Post August 31, 2016, 04:52:23 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Miss Genna,

I think your story was awesome. It was so funny, I kept laughing and laughing.

Can I ask you a question? Were they naked throughout the story? How did you get it past the censors? My characters didn't have clothes either, but I don't think it was an issue.

Kandi

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Post August 31, 2016, 05:58:02 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

This is incredible. I've never had so much help with my writing.

So what you are saying Daniel is, if I want to write a spiritual story, then write one that is clear from the beginning and don't add commentary to a fictional story. You see, that was what I intended to do, but it looks like it wasn't right and messed up the ending. I'll figure out how to write with more clarity.

Thank you everyone especially Nate, Daniel and David for responding.
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Post August 31, 2016, 06:05:14 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Spirit Driven wrote:Oh I see, this venue is more individualized and stories should be written like you're writing to an audience of one instead of an auditorium. The broader brush stroke can't be fully realized in a thousand words so I need to focus on the smaller story. Did I get that right?

Yes, I think I can do that.

Thank you again, Nate.

Yes and no. I think when learning to tell stories (written, not necessarily oral) it's easier to focus on it as I mentioned. In the end, that audience one becomes everyone who reads it, so it could be to a big group, but it reaches them on a personal level, as if they were all the only one reading it. But approaching it as if you were only writing to the one is what makes it work.

I'm not sure I'm explaining that well. Does that make sense?
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Post August 31, 2016, 06:09:56 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Stories by Kandi wrote:Were they naked throughout the story? How did you get it past the censors?

Speaking as the censor, that is really funny! (Hopefully it was meant to be.) I think I figured maybe they were blurred, like when one watches Naked and Afraid on the Discovery Channel. :D
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Post August 31, 2016, 07:39:42 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

I liked "How Do You Like Them Apples?" and "Hearts of Stones" as my two favorites. All the stories are entertaining and I'm glad to have read them.

Can I get involved?
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Post August 31, 2016, 08:42:59 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Anyone can join in. The prompts are posted the same time as the new issue comes out--the evening of the first Sunday of each month.

They are all different. I try to change it up to keep it fresh, and sometimes they can be quite challenging, so don't get discouraged if you hit a hard spot with one. Just keep trying.

I can say this next one is going to be a big departure from what we normally do.
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Post August 31, 2016, 11:53:07 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Stories by Kandi wrote:Miss Genna,

I think your story was awesome. It was so funny, I kept laughing and laughing.

Can I ask you a question? Were they naked throughout the story? How did you get it past the censors? My characters didn't have clothes either, but I don't think it was an issue.

Kandi

Ha Ha! Uh, I didn't really think about it until now, but yes Kandi, they hadn't discovered fig leaves until after the forbidden fruit.

You really have a precious spirit.

Genna
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Post September 01, 2016, 12:55:08 AM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

In accordance with the rules of the challenge, the stories from this month's contest have been added to our Flash Fiction Index. If you haven't checked out Index 1 or Index 2, which hold over 500 of these contest entries, I invite you to take a look. Just go back to the Fun and Games main forum page, and you'll see them, 2nd and 3rd from the top.

There are a tremendous number of really good stories in it, listed with clickable links, and I'm glad to have added the ones from this month.
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Post September 01, 2016, 12:14:38 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

kailhofer wrote:In accordance with the rules of the challenge, the stories from this month's contest have been added to our Flash Fiction Index. If you haven't checked out Index 1 or Index 2, which hold over 500 of these contest entries, I invite you to take a look. Just go back to the Fun and Games main forum page, and you'll see them, 2nd and 3rd from the top.

There are a tremendous number of really good stories in it, listed with clickable links, and I'm glad to have added the ones from this month.

I can attest to this being the finest flash story library anywhere. Complete stories that can be read in five minutes at your fingertips divided by themes, many of them of professional quality.

I highly recommend this library of literature to anyone who enjoys reading.

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Post September 01, 2016, 04:07:11 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

kailhofer wrote:Anyone can join in. The prompts are posted the same time as the new issue comes out--the evening of the first Sunday of each month.

They are all different. I try to change it up to keep it fresh, and sometimes they can be quite challenging, so don't get discouraged if you hit a hard spot with one. Just keep trying.

I can say this next one is going to be a big departure from what we normally do.

I think I'd like to do this.

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Post September 01, 2016, 04:10:14 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

I liked the vampire story, the apple story and the animal story. Everything was good though.

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Post September 01, 2016, 05:19:40 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

To the author of The Onion Field, how did you come upon the concept of a vampire buddy story? Also, what caused you to make it into a comedy?

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Post September 01, 2016, 05:21:44 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

For the author of the story Hearts of Stone, why did you choose stones to give human attributes to and make them care for each other? Why not animals or people?

Also, why did you decide to end it as a tragedy?
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Post September 01, 2016, 07:00:14 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Don Hooser wrote:For the author of the story Hearts of Stone, why did you choose stones to give human attributes to and make them care for each other? Why not animals or people?

Writing a story with stones as the characters is something I've been kicking around for a while. I wanted stones so that it would be more difficult for me. I wanted to have to really work at it.

However, if you want to reveal humanity, a great way to do it is show it through characters that aren't human. It can make those aspects stand out even more.

Also, why did you decide to end it as a tragedy?

I'm very surprised that so many people found it sad. It wasn't meant to be. The two stones become friends. They wind up in a different place, but they're together, friends. Natalie was damaged, but still one stone. True, the stones shed tears, but the last line of the story was 'Tears of joy.'

I meant it to be inspirational and happy.

However, even authors can miss meanings in things they write. That you and so many others saw it differently is not wrong in any way. Everyone is different. So, can you tell me what you found sad in it? What made it sad for you? I would love to know.

Nate
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Post September 01, 2016, 11:21:28 PM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

kailhofer wrote:
Don Hooser wrote:For the author of the story Hearts of Stone, why did you choose stones to give human attributes to and make them care for each other? Why not animals or people?

Writing a story with stones as the characters is something I've been kicking around for a while. I wanted stones so that it would be more difficult for me. I wanted to have to really work at it.

However, if you want to reveal humanity, a great way to do it is show it through characters that aren't human. It can make those aspects stand out even more.

Also, why did you decide to end it as a tragedy?

I'm very surprised that so many people found it sad. It wasn't meant to be. The two stones become friends. They wind up in a different place, but they're together, friends. Natalie was damaged, but still one stone. True, the stones shed tears, but the last line of the story was 'Tears of joy.'

I meant it to be inspirational and happy.

However, even authors can miss meanings in things they write. That you and so many others saw it differently is not wrong in any way. Everyone is different. So, can you tell me what you found sad in it? What made it sad for you? I would love to know.

Nate

Thank you for responding.

One of the stones was damaged badly, because it was abruptly taken against its will. Being damaged, the stone would never be the same. I mean it was cool they could be together at the end, but being damaged was less than if the stone was not damaged.

It's like a couple are together and the guy is shot in the back by a robber and is now paralyzed. She is still with him, but she now has to take care of him so the relationship is no longer as free.

Being damaged is not good, so it's sad.

Also, the dialogue and narrative wording is kind of stilted. It is somewhat believable, but it's flat. The story is a good one, but it has a low level of believability because you can't feel it.

I always like to feel a story as I'm reading it instead of just thinking about it.

I'm not a professional writer so take my thoughts as from a guy who likes to read.

But I think I'd like to do one of these contests.

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Post September 02, 2016, 01:31:20 AM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Don Hooser wrote:Thank you for responding.

One of the stones was damaged badly, because it was abruptly taken against its will. Being damaged, the stone would never be the same. I mean it was cool they could be together at the end, but being damaged was less than if the stone was not damaged.

It's like a couple are together and the guy is shot in the back by a robber and is now paralyzed. She is still with him, but she now has to take care of him so the relationship is no longer as free.

Being damaged is not good, so it's sad.

Also, the dialogue and narrative wording is kind of stilted. It is somewhat believable, but it's flat. The story is a good one, but it has a low level of believability because you can't feel it.

I always like to feel a story as I'm reading it instead of just thinking about it.

I'm not a professional writer so take my thoughts as from a guy who likes to read.

But I think I'd like to do one of these contests.

I found the story quite moving and beautifully written.
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Post September 02, 2016, 06:45:16 AM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

I liked the story a lot. It reminded me of when my daddy was little, he bought a couple of pet rocks at a store. He still has them. I always wondered about those two.
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Post September 02, 2016, 10:45:14 AM

Re: [POLL] Vote: August 2016 Flash Challenge

Don Hooser wrote:One of the stones was damaged badly, because it was abruptly taken against its will. Being damaged, the stone would never be the same. I mean it was cool they could be together at the end, but being damaged was less than if the stone was not damaged.

It's like a couple are together and the guy is shot in the back by a robber and is now paralyzed. She is still with him, but she now has to take care of him so the relationship is no longer as free.

Being damaged is not good, so it's sad.

Also, the dialogue and narrative wording is kind of stilted. It is somewhat believable, but it's flat. The story is a good one, but it has a low level of believability because you can't feel it.

I always like to feel a story as I'm reading it instead of just thinking about it.

I'm not a professional writer so take my thoughts as from a guy who likes to read.

But I think I'd like to do one of these contests.

Thank you for your feedback. I appreciate it.

Please don't discount your value. Thoughts from a 'guy who likes to read' are a lot more important to me than those of a professional writer. In this scenario, you, and every non-pro writer just like you, are exactly the audience we want to reach. Knowing where I hit the mark and where I missed with that audience is of utmost value.

Thank you also to Kandi & Pentecost Believer for your feedback as well.
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