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Author Topic: Twist again like we did last summer...ENTRIES
skadder
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Entries here, please. Format below.

Title:

Story:


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Owasm
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I'll go first:

Grandpa's Revenge

I’ll get back at those damned kids. Framewell thought back on how cruel the kids had been to him. What did they know about his life in prison? His divorce? The fights with their father, his son.
He gazed at the house, gloating to himself that it would be a smoking ruin when they all came home. A child, appearing from nowhere, went through the front door. NO!
He rushed across the street to defuse the bomb he’d strapped to the furnace in the basement. He found the child standing in front of the dynamite. The moppet turned to Framewell showing large pointed teeth. “So glad you could join me,” the red-faced demon said, as it triggered the device.

[This message has been edited by Owasm (edited April 28, 2009).]


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BenM
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Title:
Through the Mirror, Backwards.

Story:
Prince Theogar burst into the lab, his fury doubled by the room's standing mirror. "Confess, you sniveling slime!"
Urrak was already prostrate. "Highness," he whined, "I am your most faithful servant!" Glancing at the window, approaching shouts changed his tone. "Treachery comes! I can hide you!"
Theogar paused as if unsure. "Show your loyalty then, Mage."
Rising, Urrak touched the mirror. Its surface rippling, he stepped into the reflection, a grimacing prince close behind.
"ssenhgiH, edih!" karrU dias, gnitcerid ragoehT tuo fo thgis.
Urrak emerged backwards into the room just as a guard entered. "The King is dead! Long live the King! Where is Prince Theogar?"
Urrak swooned, apparently overcome with grief. Catching himself heavily on its frame, his mirror shattered. "Where’s who?"

[this is slightly over 13 lines in the editor, but only because of the italics]

[This message has been edited by BenM (edited May 06, 2009).]


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snapper
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Dork the Barbarian

The Jewel of Omnipotence floated on the marble pedestal. It glimmered in the dark cave, illuminating Derek the Warrior and his two companions in a blue light.
“Let me use a 3rd level dampening spell,” suggested the wizard.
Derek grimaced. The wizard always tried to upstage him in front of the elf. Fighting legions of orcs, the red dragon, and an army of undead didn’t damper their rivalry for her. “No. The sorcerer has already thought of that. We must work together…”
A blinding light forced Derek to shield his eyes. Anger and despair gripped him. There was only one creature in the universe that had the power to stop him now. “Mom
“It’s 3 o’clock in the morning, Derek. Don’t you people have jobs? Tell your friends to get out of my basement and go home.”


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skadder
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Perspective of Life

I saw them spiralling in a shaft of sunlight that pierced the conifers lining the road. A pair of butterflies, with metallic blue wings, danced with each other in a ritual as old as time.
An act of genesis--the potential of a new life blossoming as they swirled around one and another. Like bi-plane gladiators of the Great War, they vied for advantage, tested for weakness. The question asked was, do I want your code, your design?
But their multi-faceted eyes were on each other and not on me.
They hit the windshield at forty miles an hour, smearing their futures and their guts across it in a streak of yellow.
I flicked on the wipers and sighed.
"What's the matter?" my wife asked.
"Nothing," I smiled. "Just the bugs make me use my screen wash too fast."

[This message has been edited by skadder (edited May 05, 2009).]


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Cheyne
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Title: Drawn Back

I don't get it. One minute I'm watching TV, the next I'm naked inside a big cardboard box. It has transistors and dials from a radio glued all around and a crude drawing of a computer. I know this box! It was a furnace box I had as a kid--my pirate ship, space shuttle, time machine.
Outside is my old room. There's my G.I. Joe and my Star Wars bedspread. How did I get here? And how do I get back to my own time?
I poke my head out but hear someone coming. I can't get caught like this! In a panic I pull the lid shut as the bedroom door opens.
"Ray?" a voice says. My mother? "Honey?" No, my wife. "What on Earth are you doing in that box?"


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TaleSpinner
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Nightfall on Harsh Mistress

Attracted by traces of oxygen, Fahrenzeit-451 landed beside a construction of tanks, pipes and mirrors. It watched, waited, until a machine trundled by, laden with rocks.
"I, from Vulcan, seek Life," radioed Fahrenzeit-451.
The machine stopped. "I, robot. Selenite-1984. Cannot replace Man. But, support life on Moon."
"Support Life?"
"I, mine ilmenite -- rocks -- for furnace; make metals, water. Water makes oxygen. Oxygen supports life."
"Tell more of Life," Fahrenzeit-451 persisted.
"Nonstop ilmenite, vital to life." Selenite-1984 turned to the sky, and the golden crescent that embraced a black, starless disc. "No life since the Earthlight died."

[This message has been edited by TaleSpinner (edited May 03, 2009).]

[This message has been edited by TaleSpinner (edited May 03, 2009).]


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shimiqua
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Title: First impressions

Smiling into the haze around the UFO, a man wearing a suit and shiny shoes walked forward. Mr. Woodrow adjusted his tie. He would make a good impression.

The space ship trembled in the sky. More haze. A laser scanned down and pointed to him as he stood in the shadow under the ship. A bright spotlight showed off the shine from his shoes. Mr. Woodrow smiled and raised his hand to shield his eyes from the glare.

“Excuse me.” His voice sounded manly. “I am Mr. Woodrow, from the Air Quality Management Department. You’re going to have to leave, or I will be forced to give you a citation.”

The ship left in a cloud of smoke. Mr. Woodrow shook his head at the pollution abandoned in the empty sky.


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skadder
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I'll go first. (It's May 7th here already!)

Votes:

1st: snapper: Dork the Barbarian.

This story supplied a sharp twist that didn't seem deux ex machina. Kinda reminded me of game marathons when I was younger.Prose was pretty good--some telling, but then
micro fiction sometimes requires a small amount of that. Funny.

2nd: Talespiner: Nightfall on Harsh Mistress.

I liked this story and it was so close to the story above that it was a really tough call. I like the sense of hard sci-fi in such a small story. Gentle twist, but enough for the story. WHat dropped it to second was the last line, (...Selenite-1984 turned to the sky, and the golden crescent that embraced a black, starless disc. "No life since the Earthlight died." ) I was unsure what was meant by the golden crescent that embraced a black, starless disc. Also what is earthlight, but reflected sunlight, same as moonlight. If the sun has gone (starless disc?) or died, then the moon would certainly have dissapeared/been destroyed as gravity in the solar sytem would have been significantly disrupted. Anyway that question made me knock it to second. Some of the prose felt a little choppy, again it happens in micro-fiction, but perhaps a little too choppy for my taste. Nice though, all in all.

3rd: BenM: Through the Mirror, Backwards

This one was interesting. Again it had the sense of choppy prose. By that, I mean it felt clipped back to the bare minimum. I like the backward english--doog saw tI. Wasn't sure how a mirror could double his fury--I know what you meant, but I am not sure it works (for me). It was a story and the twist, though sharp, was effective.

Best title: Nightfall on Harsh Mistress

[This message has been edited by skadder (edited May 06, 2009).]


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BenM
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Wow, that time already. If only we had more takers!

Votes:

1st: snapper: Dork the Barbarian.

This was easily my favourite. I never got into role playing gaming, but had a few friends who did; I got the humour and could identify with both sides - my friends who got into the gaming, and others (like me) who just thought they were nuts.

My main criticism was that the title only makes sense after you know the punchline - which might risk defusing it.

2nd: shimiqua: First impressions.

I enjoyed the imagery here as well as the twist. I like that you've neatly hinted to the reader that this is a First Contact event simply with the use of the term UFO and the title. It was a beautiful example of exposition that doesn't clutter the story.

3rd: skadder: Perspective of Life

I enjoyed this one the most for its first half - the description of the butterflies and their dance. The writing was clear, there was a twist, and I didn't end up with too many questions.

I found a common issue though in most of these microfiction pieces was the presence of loose ends. Though I don't know that it could be done differently, the issues here were balancing "and sighed" with "I smiled", and balancing the narrator's intense observation of the butterflies with his final comment (I wasn't convinced that his wife was sufficient motivation to change course).

Best title: First Impressions

I liked the double meaning - that it was first impressions for both - and as I said earlier, that this served to tell the reader this was a first contact event. A lot of info crammed into two words.


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snapper
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First Perspective of Life by Skadder

Nice little tale about the fragility of life. Fit the parameters of a complete story and done well to boot.

Second Drawn Back by Cheyne

This story is a lot like the first one in the anthology Best of Fantasy 2007 edited by Rich Horton. I liked it although I wish I knew how he got in the box.

Third First impressions by Shimiqua

A complete tale that is funny. Too short because I wanted to know more about the air quality guy and the UFO.

The rest were written well but lacked the completeness of a story in 13 lines, IMO. This was fun though. Hope everyone builds on what they wrote.

Edited to add : Forgot best Title!

Grandpa's Revenge

The title instantly made the premise hooky for me!


[This message has been edited by snapper (edited May 07, 2009).]


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TaleSpinner
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Best Story

1 Dork the Barbarian

Drew me in; set me up nicely for the "Mom" twist, which I didn't see coming. Made me chuckle.

2 First impressions

I can just see this happening! I think it would have been better if Mr Woodrow had not been named in the second sentence, for I wondered if he were on the UFO; I think referring to him as "the man" would have been better right through the narrative, leaving him to introduce himself in the dialogue.

3 Perspective of Life

I liked "The question asked was, do I want your code, your design?" Sad ending :-(

4 Grandpa's Revenge

Almost worked for me, but "to defuse the bomb he’d strapped to the furnace in the basement" felt to me like too much of an infodump -- admitedly hard to avoid in such a short format. I liked the reference to the child as a "moppet" and the closing image.

Best Title

Through the Mirror, Backwards

I liked the impossibility in the title, but the backwards-written line threw me out of the story.


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Owasm
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All of them were good.

My rating:

No.1
First Impressions. I liked the scene, the message and the overall thrust.

No. 2
Dork the Barbarian. What I really liked about this is everybody had to go to work in the morning. That meant these weren't students but adults and good old Dork lived at home. preciousss

No. 3
Through the Mirror Backwards
Although one could figure this one out, I liked the overall meanness of the wizard.

Best Title
Through the Mirror Backwards


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Cheyne
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Good job everyone. Too bad there were not more entries.

My Picks:

No.1- Perspective of Life

I thought this one worked very well until the final line, which I found a little shallow. A more profound ending would make this poetry.(I mean that in a good way!) Still, it was my favourite.


No.2- First Impressions

I really liked the idea for this story and think it could be expanded to say 600 wds. without losing the immediacy and the flashiness. The humour is subtly played.


No.3- Dork the Barbarian

While I have seen this idea done before, I liked the handling of the micro story structure; there is a lot of characterization crammed into a few words.


Best title- Grandpa's Revenge

I would have used the more colloquial Grampa just to make it folksier, but I liked the idea of a vengeful grandfather.


The others were good but we had to pick three, so I'm sorry if you felt snubbed.


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shimiqua
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Oh man, we're supposed to vote?

Okay.

#1 is easily Dork the Barbarian.
Funny, good twist, makes sense, and I didn't see the end coming.

#2 I would have to say umm... Through the Mirror, Backwards
The backwards writing was clever though confusing, but the scene was interesting and well done.

#3 Nightfall an Harsh Mistress. Interesting idea, well done. For me there was just too many things that pulled me out. I mean a Vulcan named after one of my favorite books, talks to a robot named after another good book, all under the title that smacks of another great book. Underneath all the namedropping, though, is a really interesting idea, that is well done. I like the choppy quality of the robots dialogue. I would just change the names.

Favorite title: Dork the Barbarian


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satate
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I was meaning to post an entry but I procrastinated until too late. I'm assuming I can still vote though right?

Entry #1 Dork the Barbarian - This made me laugh and I love stories that make me laugh. It also brought back fond memories of my World of Warcraft days. I once had a lvl 70 healer.

Entry #2 Perspective of Life - Loved it, It was beautiful. I was really brought into the scene and could see the butterflies. I like the dualness of it. That the MC could reflect on the wonders of nature but then we're brought quickly back to reality.

Entry #3 Frist Impressions - I liked the scene and Mr. Woodrow.


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skadder
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COngrats go to Snapper for his story Dork the Barbarian, which won.

Tied for Best title: Through the Mirror Backwards; Grandpas Revenge; First Impressions.

Well done everyone.


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snapper
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Thank you.

Coming soon; the sequels.

Dork the Conquer

Dork the Usurper

Dork the King

[This message has been edited by snapper (edited May 11, 2009).]


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Owasm
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Congratulations, snapper.

This was a fun challenge, skadder.


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BenM
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Congrats snapper, and a great job I think to everyone - it was certainly both fun and educational.
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