June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting


Writing challenges, flash fiction, interesting anecdotes, amusements, and general miscellanea.

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Post June 03, 2018, 09:45:01 AM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Looks like a great batch of stories! Can't wait to get started!
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Post June 03, 2018, 12:24:45 PM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Interesting how topics of love often cause friction in a readers mind.
When working as a Marine U.S. embassy guard I conducted nightly security sweeps for 'stuff' and found the humor when searching desks of female staff... Most of the books they read while hard at work (remember, this was before the smart phone and computer, people actually read books) were romantic and dealt with romance, love, and of course, sex.

Now, as a comparable, none of the desks belonging to those male staff held any books other than the random intellectual having books of the recreation variety dealing with westerns or science. However, males far outweighed females when it came to magazines, especially magazines full of porn. Interesting how two genders look at 'love'.

Why write this? Well, this contest dealt with love and as a reader, I was not impressed. Why? Because I can feel that way. And, since I've read a lot of stories by the various authors that have submitted stories in the past, I strongly feel they all dropped the ball, with one exception that being I truly enjoyed the story submitted by, Olatubosun David - Damaged Beyond Repair.

Actually, as a writer, it would be interesting to have this exact same premise again with the same authors trying again. It would be curious to see, or then again, knowing humans, maybe this is all that can be expected. Love after all, is one of the most beautiful traits of humanity, and at the same time, its worst.

But, to be a critic is to critique and not just say, "Oh, how lovely!" especially when not seeing it that way. However, (all these caveats one is now forced to use in a modern PC world) However, it IS nice that the contests exist and people take the time to write and submit their work for scrutiny and critique by such as I. So, 'good' job to all and to those powers that exert time and energy to allow such activity.

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Post June 04, 2018, 09:59:00 AM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Charlie Willson by Michele Dutcher

Nice intro to the moon and its slugs. Guys used to join the navy to get away in the old days, but Charlie joined a ‘Slug harvesting farm’ to get away. The company gives ‘cubes’ to help with the long isolation—a mood stimulate I believe. Charlie is in turmoil with his inability to get Nadia’s love. He kills himself hoping to be near Nadia as he dies. Good dialogue and we have sensory input suggesting that Charlie will smell Nadia as he lies on his death bed.




Baby, Please Don't Go by Jolene Wilkerson

I like he beginning as it grabbed my attention with ‘My stub of a tail wagged at the sight of her!” Good one. I loved everything about this story! Seeing the ills of a beer drinking-woman-hitting man though the eyes of a dogs is interesting. And how Diesel loved her—one trait that I always loved about dogs. They are mans/ woman’s best friends. The sentence “I licked my lips which meant “absolutely” could be more emphatic by deleting absolutely. I licked my lips! Would have worked just fine. I really love this one!!! Great job!!



Never Do Business With Stupid People by Jim Stattonm

Good beginning. Love ‘soap opera of a marriage.’ This story is clean and follows a classical pattern of love and a wife’s obedience but one that went too far. I’m sure a story similar to this one is real, somewhere today or in the past. Business is highly competitive, and many will go to extremes for profit----even using their wives or daughters to get ahead. I seen that first hand when I worked of public utility! I seen guys do anything to get a ‘White Hat.’ Good job on this one, and what I like is the story might be flash fiction, but it depicts reality. Good job!!



Rain At a Funeral by Sergio Palumbo

I like the Edgar Allen Poe intro describing a funeral procession from the church to the cemetery.
Classical setting but the story takes off into the twisted mind of a man out to control and get back the love he lost. Interior monologue shines in this one, for its show how adamant Vsevolod is to be in Nadezhda life—one way or the other! Another thing I like is the name. Vsevolod suggest Russian, and with the way he murders Nadezhda’s men, it further suggest that he’s former K.G.B.! Nice! I don’t know whether the author intended it or not but it shows. Great Job!



Ring Around My Heart by Twilight Zee

A short one but warmhearted. A good point made in this one. His mom must have been a great mother----the story indicate that for she worked as a waitress but managed to take care of her kids. Many moms do that today, and they should be honored for their dedication. I heard a corporate executive bitch about how nobody wants to work today when he spends many hours on the golf course during working hours, then returns to a meeting in which they discuss who should have used a different club. Many waitress work three jobs, 60 to 80 hours a week!!! When I told the corporate executive that, he replied the he was payed for what he knows, in so many words!!
That has always been a sore spot for me, when I heard someone being put down----especially when nobody understand to cares about their situation in life! This is a great story that gets a underlining point across! Great Job!!!

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Damaged Beyond Repair by Olatubosun David

Nice intro. Good description of Jack and his perils with the women in his life. Jane the first—his mother’s love had been taken away when Jack was very young. Jane feel out of love with Jack. That happens. Juliet comes from the spirit world. That is interesting, and again Jack suffers at a lost love, but in which Juliet still loves him but can not be with him. Good dialogue and good use of words. I like the poems in this story for they convey a true feeling of love. The story was composed in such a way that I could feel Jack and identify with his emotions and how they affected his life in school and at trying to find another love. Hopefully, Maria will be the one, but the story suggest that Jack’s fate could go either way. Nice job!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------I Love You by Robin B. Lipinski

I like this intro----bribes in the animal kingdom! Very good attention grabbing dialogue during the begiinning and a technique that I’m going to remember. The use of TI as a neutral gender I thought wouldn’t work, but it did. When dealing with emotion, so much is involved that Shakespear couldn’t describe to the fullest how Romeo and Juliet loved each other! The author touches on the common emotions between a male and a female with good understandings. When we try to get into the depth of love, the reasons for love, the wants of love, well, then thing complicated. Good job! Love from a macro direction and see just the surface!
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Post June 04, 2018, 10:00:35 AM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Got my votes in!
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Post June 10, 2018, 12:16:19 PM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Ha! Yes indeed.

The experiment is going most excellent and the results absolutely stellar.

Of this there is no doubt.

To the readers, great job! You are predictable beyond your wildest dreams.
To the writers, you did the best with what you are so in your world of words, great job!
To Jim, thanks for the efforts and time spent providing such contests.

It is a good day.

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Post June 10, 2018, 12:45:43 PM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Congrads to Michele! Nice to see her back into the flash fiction! All stories good.
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Post June 10, 2018, 03:17:37 PM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Congrats, Michele! As soon as I finished reading your story I knew the bar had been set very high for this challenge. Wonderful work, very powerful.

Good stuff again this time.
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Post June 10, 2018, 07:38:46 PM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Jim Statton wrote:
Lipinski wrote:Ha! Yes indeed.

The experiment is going most excellent and the results absolutely stellar.

Of this there is no doubt.

To the readers, great job! You are predictable beyond your wildest dreams.
To the writers, you did the best with what you are so in your world of words, great job!
To Jim, thanks for the efforts and time spent providing such contests.

It is a good day.

There is NO experiment, but some of these statements seem like back-handed compliments.

You must follow the few simple rules to participate in these contests such as...

Rules For Commenting:

02. Never say anything negative about the authors themselves.



I don't want to get into a tit-for-tat posting with you on this, just don't be condescending.

***
(silence)

Writing with words sets the reader up for self-interpretation. So, how would a reader consider my original post? Harsh? Humorous? Dry? Upsetting? Complimentary?

As a writer I have my own agenda with words. As a reader I have my own agenda in interpretation.

I wrote earlier in this thread that I, as a reader, felt the authors based on their past work did not do as well in this premise.

To continue, my comment for the stories is not meant to inflict conflict or angst, rather it is to be honest. In this world of 'like' and "oh that is wonderful," constantly, is not a part of my experiment. Yes, my experiment, and I must say it is spot on as the hypothesis is truly being proven true.

I'm very secure as a writer as such, my story for this premise was written to actually cause unease in people reading (again, all a part of the experiment), a part of the experiment, and for general consumption, fell faaaaar short of being remotely good...(*remember the original post where I said: all writers? Now, if any authors wondering about their story being the best they could do according to their, than bravo! Good job!

So yes Jim, you definitely read my post in the way you desired and wanted. A yes, Jim, you are definitely a part of the experiment. And as I said, great job!
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Post June 11, 2018, 12:28:40 PM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Jim Statton wrote:
Lipinski wrote:Writing with words sets the reader up for self-interpretation. So, how would a reader consider my original post? Harsh? Humorous? Dry? Upsetting? Complimentary?

As a writer I have my own agenda with words. As a reader I have my own agenda in interpretation.

I wrote earlier in this thread that I, as a reader, felt the authors based on their past work did not do as well in this premise.

To continue, my comment for the stories is not meant to inflict conflict or angst, rather it is to be honest. In this world of 'like' and "oh that is wonderful," constantly, is not a part of my experiment. Yes, my experiment, and I must say it is spot on as the hypothesis is truly being proven true.

I'm very secure as a writer as such, my story for this premise was written to actually cause unease in people reading (again, all a part of the experiment), a part of the experiment, and for general consumption, fell faaaaar short of being remotely good...(*remember the original post where I said: all writers? Now, if any authors wondering about their story being the best they could do according to their, than bravo! Good job!

So yes Jim, you definitely read my post in the way you desired and wanted. A yes, Jim, you are definitely a part of the experiment. And as I said, great job!

If you have some personal experiment, do not communicate it in a way that appears I'm apart of it.

When you communicate in these contest threads, - do not - speak to writers in a condescending tone - like this is all some activity to satisfy your curiosity and that I'm apart of it.

This is a place to "encourage" writers, but only in truthful statements of where they do well. Instructive comments are welcome.

This is not going to change. If this bothers you, go somewhere else.

Relax, Jim. Robin hasn't insulted anyone, as far as I can tell. In fact, you are the only one expressing offense, and in the absence of any complaint from anyone else, at that.

And yes, this IS an experiment, in at least two ways: first, for each of the writers, every story is an experiment to see what kind of expression gets the best or worst reaction from readers. Second, your management of the challenges is an experiment, because it's never been done this way for at least as long as I've been here. The results have exceeded my expectations so far; the level of participation is unprecedented.

So, it's your ship to sink now, and in my opinion, a strict disciplinary approach is one sure way to start putting holes in the hull. Creative people just don't create as well when somebody's waving a rulebook in their faces.

As to Robin ... he likes to squink people, and he doesn't censor himself. But rather than quote rules at him, the editorial staff here has given him his own little space where he can be himself. See how that works? And now, I'm part of his experiment, and I'm sure he'll have a good laugh about that.

Take a few deep breaths and try to recalibrate your trigger threshold, please?
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Post June 12, 2018, 12:41:53 AM

Re: June 2018 Flash Contest (Part 1) - The Voting

Just FYI to all writers: Jim had neither asked nor notified me of this action prior to his announcement of it here. I found out about it in response to a comment on the private chatbox that the editors use on FB.

I did not ask for this position and haven't decided yet whether I want to fill the vacancy or not. In any event, I am not at all prepared for it. Please do not send me your manuscripts. The editorial staff will be in deliberation as to how to fill the vacancy, and someone on staff will post a notification about it.

Edit to add: Since Jim is not a member of the 'zine's editorial staff, he has no authority to designate his replacement.
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