Saturday, 21 December 2013

Holiday Horrors!

We had but two authors send entries for the contest, but what entries they were!  You can read all of them below.  To both Sandra and Dorothy Davies I extend my deepest thanks.  Their work is, as always, brilliant.

I hope you all enjoy reading them as much as I did.


Dorothy Davies

I HATE holidays, Christmas most of all. Too much to buy/do/send/cook … with the time ever ticking away.

Alto – no, also, damn fingers! Like me, fit to throw histrionics at any moment. Try again.

This year will be different. I have vowed it so and it will be so.

I am going for something different for the Christmas meal, one that will take them all by surprise and end me an ongoing problem at the same time

He knows it not yet but he will be the main course. Long pig.

With sauce.

For dessert, soufflé of blood.

What else?


Sandra Davies

Merk arrived as they were leaving, the distinctive nose of his car blocking the end of the drive.   Had David been driving he’d’ve backed down but Viv was made of sterner stuff.  The alto voices singing love to all men clearly didn’t apply to her...

That ticking on the CD was annoying though, he’d suggest the radio soon.

‘Arrogant sod,’ Viv muttered, changing up to third, having turned right instead of left since the lane was too narrow for them to pass, ‘bet Lucille is having histrionics now, thinking I don’t like her or something!’

Involuntarily, David grinned.  ‘You don’t.’

‘Merk darling, you’ve just missed David...’

‘Saw them, Viv driving.  David drinking, I suppose?’

‘Oh, no, I don’t think so...’

‘Heaven forfend he should do anything wrong!’

‘Well, I’m not rationing anyone: help yourself!’

Under cover of pouring a drink he checked the pigeonhole.  The envelope, David’s distinctive scrawl, didn’t look as fat as last year.  Bit of a setback if he’s given her a cheque and not his usual wad of twenties.  Merk tilted his head at Lucille who, primed, said, ‘Mother, I’d love to see the dress you’ve bought for Christmas Day’ and steered her from the room.

Dutifully daughter-in-law, Lucille scattered flattery like autumn leaves.

Merk’s mother had already cottoned on.  ‘You still at it?’

Tilted-chin defiant, ‘What?’

Impervious. Accusing.  ‘Merk, shackled to your greedy little fingers, has been drained beyond emasculation.   Do you really need his brother too?’

‘David?’  Fake innocent, a lie intended to alarm, hopefully precipitating heart attack.

Against septuagenarian experience, it failed.  ‘Larry.  He and Sonia will be here for Christmas lunch, as well as David.’

‘And?’

‘And then we’ll see which woman has the biggest balls.  My money, for what it’s worth...’ (watching Lucille’s mercenary eyes light up) ‘is on Viv.’

Candle-light reflected off the over-varnished portraits of several dingy ancestors whose cold-eyed disapproval was, today, perfectly justified.

‘She choked – on your pea soup!’

‘On the chilli-flavoured croutons you insisted on adding...’

‘She’d just swigged half a glass of Merlot...’

Mother’s head now lay in the multi-coloured puddle whose eruption had preceded her demise.  Three sons, plus wives dabbed ineffectually;  no-one attempted resuscitation.

‘We need to call the police... ’

‘We need to find the will.’

‘You’re a mercenary bastard, Merk...’

Defensive, ‘Can’t tell me you’re sorry.’

‘... shouldn’t be hard to find, though.  She changed it just two days ago.

All eyes swung to David.  Larry spoke first as question and exclamation erupted from the other three.

Viv checked for signs of life.

‘Changed it?  From what?’

‘How do you know that?’

‘What’s she done with the house?’

‘Is it ... fair?’

‘How much – do you know? – was she worth?’

‘Christ, you lot!  Listen to yourself, she’d not even cold...’

Viv was on the phone.

‘... I just drove her there.  Helped her up the steps.   Waited.  Drove her home.  She didn’t say.’

Viv was heard saying ‘The evidence points to plain unvarnished murder, sir.  You’d best send DS Pettinger.’

'Tis the Season

For all manner of delights and a hearty dose of frights, as well! What a fantastic group of stories you gave me last week.  I admire the way everyone rises to the challenge in such myriad ways I hardly notice the given words. That makes my task challenging, as well.

The winner this week is AJ Humpage with the all too realistic Hush, Baby. Such a terrible story made all the worse by how easily it could (and does) take place.

Honorable Mention goes to Sandra Davies for the fantastic phrasing and dark anticipation in
Dish of the Day?  I am totally hooked.

The Tome has forgiven me for putting a ribbon on its spine (which it summarily shredded in a fit of pique) and gives us these words to ponder:

Prong
Distend
Obstinate

The usual rules apply: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. Because this coming week contains a holiday or two, I'm going to extend the deadline to January 2.

Go forth, be merry, and take out any holiday frustrations with irritating relatives or rude shoppers on your poor characters. I eagerly await your tales!

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Best Laid Plans

Alas, my desire to get to winners and words early was a bust. That's what happens when one has a day job. Also what happens when it snows quite a bit and someone runs you off the road into a ditch. I have managed to make it home, only a little worse for wear.

Judging the entries from last week has been really difficult.  There were so many good stories. I am truly grateful to all of you for coming here each week (or as you're able) to share your stories and give feedback to your fellow writers. This was a robust week, and I appreciate your enthusiasm.

Edging out the competition this week is Zaiure, with Twice-Born. The world building in so few words is impressive, and the whole thing was both beautiful and disconcerting.

A most honorable mention goes to John Xero for his latest installment of (rise). I want so much for this to be a full-length book some day, so I can find out what happens to Olivia and George, et al without waiting.

The Tome has offered up these words for our perusal and delight.

Erupt
Varnish
Cold

The usual rules apply: 100 words maximum (excluding title) of flash fiction or poetry using all of the three words above in the genres of horror, fantasy, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words and stems are fine. You have one week. I can't wait to see what tales you tell!

Saturday, 7 December 2013

Cold Winds Blow


There's a wicked storm making its way across the U.S., and while I'm out of the worst of it, the cold is bitter indeed. All the better for staying inside, drinking hot beverages (with or without a bit of liquor, I won't be saying), and snuggling up with a nice bit of darkish fiction.

While there were only four entries last week, they were each of them a delight to read. The one that cut through my fluffy down blanket to near-freeze the blood was AJ Humpage's A Sign of Things to Come.  That was a fine and nasty piece of (I hope) fiction.

I know it's a bit of a rush with the holidays and weather being unpredictable, but do feel free to invite your friends over to The Prediction to share their words with us.  I would so love to see our community grow, whether from old friends returning or new ones being made.

And now that I've done my little push, here are the words I hope might tempt you:

Flatter
Cotton
Shackle

So innocuous, and yet I see great potential for mischief in them.

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

Monday, 2 December 2013

Change Up

Greetings, Predictioneers!

This is Rebecca, stepping in for Colleen for the foreseeable future. Family business requires her attention for now, so she's asked me to take over hosting duties. Luckily, I already have posting rights, so the transition should be smooth indeed. Naturally, none of my stories will be considered for judging, though I do hope to continue to play in this delightful sandbox.

As Colleen has often noted, choosing a winner is hard!

For sheer horror, I have to give the win to Sandra Davies for Disconnection. I found it both sickening and oddly amusing. 

Runner up goes to AJ Humpage for Just Another Day. The ability to present us with real-world horror and make us truly see it is a gift.

And now for fresh words. The tome has made itself at home and given up these choice morsels to whet your creative appetites:

Pigeon
Cover
Setback

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

The gates are open, and you're more than welcome to bring friends over to play!

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Holiday Horrors!

Good morning!

I find myself needing to apologize again for being late.  There is something seriously wrong with my home network, methinks.  I am able to get onto some sites sometimes, but rarely the ones I need to get on all the time.  I will continue to see if the problem can be fixed.  In the meantime, as ever, I very much appreciate your patience!

With the holidays fast approaching, The Tome and I have decided to throw a strictly volunteer challenge out to all our wonderful writers.  Anytime between now and Saturday, December 20, 2013, I'd like to see how many holiday themed horror drabbles we can gather.  I have a notion to gather them all up and put them in one big post for all to read and enjoy before the New Year.  You may write about any holiday you wish, religious or secular, or make one up!  You may  use the prompts from any week from now until then.  Serials are welcome, as long as they are completed by December 20.  On that day I will make a separate post containing all the submissions and will announce winners.  As I said, this is strictly voluntary, a little something extra and fun.

I'd like to keep the stories a surprise until I make the final post on the 20th, so if you'd like to participate, please email me your stories at ravenways@gmail.com.  You are welcome to submit as many as you are inspired to write during that time.  When you submit a story, please include Holiday Horrors in your subject line, and please note the date and what the prompts were.  It'll help me keep track of things a bit more readily.

I'll be networking  this as much as I can, in the hopes of attracting new folk to come and play with us.  Please feel free to do the same!

And now let's get on to winners and words!

Even though we had but three authors eligible to win this week, I still found it very difficult to choose.

This week's winner is Sandra Davies with A Change of Focus (63):  The dialogue is snappy and has a wonderful, natural, feeling to it and your surprise ending is a fantastic hook to keep the reader wanting more. Thank you!

The Tome has had it's treat of bacon, and provided new words for us to play with!

Alto
Histrionic
Ticking


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

As the Thanksgiving holiday is approaching this week for some of  us, I will accept submissions until Friday, November 29th at 3:00 PM.  Winners and words will be posted by 11:30 PM that evening.

The Gates Are Open my friends.  Take what the Tome has offered and craft your nightmares into reality!

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Well it's about TIME.

Good morning, all.

First off, let me extend many thanks to RR for posting to let you all know about my continuing tech issues. Next, let me thank all of you for your infinite patience in putting up with said issues.  Being trusted to host Prediction is a huge honor for me, and I am so grateful to have such understanding folks here with me.

All right.  I'll get right to it.

This week's winner is RRKovar with Modus Operandi: I must agree that "silvered young" is one of my favorite phrases here. I half get the idea that the woman in question has no idea whether she'll become "partner in crime", as it were, or "victim", and that she'd be quite happy either way.  I do hope we get to find out exactly what's in that lab, and what becomes of her.  Thank you!

And this week's runner up is Antonia Woodville with Infinity (31):  This story continues to fascinate. VERY nice use of the prompts this week.  I'm very curious as to just what the Captain believes that crew mate is thinking!  Thank you!

The Tome has offered new words.  Give me just a moment to gather them up.  Ahhhh...there we go...

Crosswind
Intervene
Cajole

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, November 21st , to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, November 22nd.

The Gates Are Open my friends.  Take what the Tome has offered and craft your nightmares into reality!



Saturday, 9 November 2013

Expedience

Good evening all!

I'm a tad rushed just now, so I hope no one minds if I get right to it.

This weeks winner is John Xero with his continuation of (rise) Olivia continues to fascinate and I like the hints into the personalities of the other characters.  This story still has me completely hooked.  Thank you.

And in second place this week is Sandra Davies with Finale:  Brilliant work weaving things together and ending all!  I loved this!  Very nice use of the prompts.  Thank you!

And now on to new words!

Beacon
Grandiose
Wisp

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, November 14th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, November 15th.

The Gates Are Open my friends.  Take what the Tome has offered and craft your nightmares into reality!

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Prompts and writer's block.

Good morning.

I suffered a bit of writers block this week, while trying to move a thing I've been working on forward.  For the life of me I couldn't decide how to get it where I wanted it to go next.  Every paragraph I came up with scanned as trite and immature.  I finally gave up completely for a couple of days.  Then I had an idea-rather a desperate one, but....I picked up the Tome and begged it for one word.  Just one.  At first it was loathe to cooperate.  It knows its job is to give words to Prediction.  I finally convinced it to give me just one to use on my own.  It worked. The word it gave me inspired a fresh idea and I got my little scribble moving again.

The experience allowed me to see just how useful and challenging, even one word that you don't have to think of yourself, can be.  The Tome earned itself a treat of bacon for helping me understand more fully how prompts work.

And with that said, let us get on with winners and words, shall we?

This weeks winner is RRKovar with Well Laid Plans:  My first thought was "Poor Donal and his garish cow."  Both about to be victims of the machinations of their peers.  The prompts were nicely used, and the story itself left a slightly bad taste in my mouth, which is precisely what good horror is supposed to do.  Well played, my friend.  Thank you.

In second place this week is Antonia Woodville with her continuation of the Captain's story.  I love that you named a ship Foxglove.  This piece is, as usual tightly written and the prompts well used.  I love that we finally got a solid hint as to the possible origin of the shadow people.  Thank you!

The Tome has indicated that it would like to provide words now, as the sun is shining on my work desk and it likes to sit there in the mornings.  So, let us indulge the toothy critter with a scritch along its spine and see what happens.

Provenance
Godforsaken
Answer

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, November 7th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, November 8th.

The Gates Are Open my friends.  Take what the Tome has offered and craft your nightmares into reality!



Saturday, 26 October 2013

The Art of Humorous Horror.

Good evening all!

So, two of my favorite horror writers are Stephen King, and Dean Koontz.  One of the reasons I love them both so much is their ability to, at just the right moment, inject humor into a perfectly horrific situation.

An example of this comes from  Dean Koontz's Odd Thomas:  A cow explodes in a splashing, gory, mess, and the udder lands upside down on a fence post.  Within the context of the scene, this is awful, and hysterical.  I almost felt guilty for being amused by the visual.  And yet it was so perfect.

I mention all of this because this week's winners both have that element of a humorous twist in them.  The Tome and I found them both terrifically entertaining.  I believe that book actually chuckled.  At least I THINK that's what that sound was.  I'm still not certain.

Anyway, let's get to it, shall we?

In first place this week is Paul Richardson with Demonic Eye For The Straight Guy:  First of all, the play on the title is hysterical.  The character of Mestrious is perfectly realized and I really like your use of the prompts.  Thank you!

And in second place is Zaiure with Prize:  It was wonderful to see a strong female character with a mercenary attitude who remains likable.  I'd love to see more of Anora in the future.  Thank you!

And now, The Tome has offered new words.

Foxglove
Tableau
Garish

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, October 31st, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, November 1st.

The Gates Are Open my friends.  Take what the Tome has offered and craft your nightmares into reality!











Sunday, 20 October 2013

I swear it's possessed.

Good morning!  My apologies.  This is my sixth attempt at posting winners and words.  Hopefully it'll go through this time.  As the title says, I swear my computer is possessed.  It's quite old and sometimes just refuses to do things, like work.

Any rate, let me get right to it as I'm so abysmally late with this.

This week's winner is John Xero with his continuation of (rise):  John, as always, the Steampunk feel of this is totally engrossing.  I've read it about a dozen times now.  This week's prompts seem a perfect fit and you wove them in beautifully.  Thank you!

And in second place is RRKovar with The Greater Depression:  This whole thing just feels grey and laced with grim determination and hopelessness.  It's a wonderful read.  I find myself hoping you'll actually favor us with more of this.  Thank you!

I also must give Honorable Mention to Antonia Woodville with her continuation of the Captain's Story.  Antonia, the Captain never ceases to intrigue.  I love where you're taking this and I'm honored to be along for the ride.  Thank you!

And now, the poor Tome, who has been given a slight case of indigestion by my not being able to post, has given us new words.

Drab
Unbecoming
Gestation

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, October 24th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, October 25th, barring any further computer issues.  Again, my apologies for the random timing of my posts.

The Gates Are Open my friends.  Take what the Tome has offered and craft your nightmares into reality!



Sunday, 13 October 2013

New words, new inspirations.

Good evening!

I can't tell you how much fun I've had reading your submissions this week.  There is a part of me that is always filled with such excitement when it comes time to announce winners.  Admittedly, there is also a part of me that dreads, just a tiny bit, the process of doing so.  It's because the stories, whether submitted by our small core of regulars, or those who come to visit and play only occasionally, are just so damned good.  Mind you, I'm an adventurous sort of girl and I love a challenge, so it's still great fun.

It never ceases to amaze me, the sheer joy that I get from reading a well crafted piece of dark fiction.  You are all very good at that, so I'm often quite happy, and I thank you.

This week's winner is Lee Hughes with Bad Bric-a-Brac:  I can add you, Lee, to the list of folks here who are just amazing with dialogue.  I loved the natural feel of it.  Also, the last line made me shiver and giggle at the same time.  This is a truly fine piece of writing.  Thank you!

Our runner-up this week is Asuqi with Emancipation:  I love the fairy tale feel of this.  "I ruined my hands digging through mud." is my favorite line.  It smacks of determination and faith to me.  The way you've used the prompts feels totally natural.  I find myself wondering if there will be more to this.  Thank you!

And with that, the Tome has brought forth new words for us!

Framework
Snake
Astride

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, October 17th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, October 18/th!

The Gates Are Open my friends.  Take what the Tome has offered and craft your nightmares into reality!
I look forward to your return.











Sunday, 6 October 2013

In a Hurry

*Dashes in, tosses purse on table.  Grabs up a squealing tome, places it in my lap, and begins to type*

Good evening, all!

Yep, a bit late again.  I knew there was something I should have been doing last night when I was sitting on the hood of my truck in a Dunkin' Donuts parking lot, staring at the moon!  My apologies.

I'll get right to it then.  Our winners this week are:

Zaiure with Plain View:  I have always loved the notion of hiding things in plain sight.  I hope you plan on doing more with this. I really want to know what's inside.  Nice use of the prompts.  Thank you.

RRKovar with In Deep:  You have given us an inkling into the things that really make Seth tweaky here, and I love it.  It seems rare that you let us peek that deeply into his psyche.  Also, I love the way you used the prompts and you gave me the perfect set up.  Thank you!


Didn't have time to make bacon this week, so the Tome has made do with a bit of leftover Chinese, and has provided new words.

Curio
Inherit
Temerity

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, October 10th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, October 11th!

And with that...The Gates Are Open!



Saturday, 28 September 2013

Good evening once again, my friends.

Things are a bit hectic here just now and I didn't want to be late, so...

We had to bid goodbye to The Tome's favorite companion, Mofo, this week.  If you don't remember, Mofo was my housemate's tarantula.  Sadly, she passed on Tuesday.  The Tome has been sitting on top of her cage of late.  It obviously misses her, as does my housemate.  Christmas is coming, however, and I am considering the notion of gifting my friends a new friend.  We shall see.

Rest In Peace, dear.

On to winners and words.

This weeks winner is Sandra Davies with A Change of Focus (56):  This was just such a snapping good bit of writing!  As always, great use of the prompts and the story continues to surprise at every turn.  Thank you!

And in second place is Antonia Woodville with her untitled continuation of the Captain's journal:  Antonia, this story continues to fascinate.  This has a lovely, rich, texture to it.  Thank you.

Make ready, m'dears.  The Tome has brought forth new words!

Alabaster
Pore
Waxwork

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, October 3d, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, October 4th!

And with that...The Gates Are Open!



Saturday, 21 September 2013

Perfectly crafted nightmares.

Good evening!

The Tome is sitting by the open window tonight, looking out into the dark.  There's a small patch of woods across the street from our house, and I have come to believe that it can see things in them, that I cannot.

However, I have enticed it away from the window for a few moments, with the usual treat of bacon, and we are ready to announce winners and words!

All of this week's entries were darkly brilliant and as usual, you've all made it very difficult for the Tome and I to choose!

This week's winner is Zoe Farr with Bring Me The Head Of 18):  Zoe, it was the amazing dialogue that netted you the win this week.  It was just so perfectly natural feeling.  Really nicely crafted.  Thank you!

In second place is Angel Zapata with Deadbolt: Angel, you did an amazing job of building tension with this.  I could feel Benjamin's madness and desperation as the story progressed.  The last line was so powerful and frightening.  I just love this piece.  Thank you!

And now for our new words!

Fallacy
Visage
Anoint

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, September 26th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, September 27th!

Go forth and craft us new nightmares to read, my friends.

The Gates Are Open!






Saturday, 14 September 2013

I'm terrible at titles!

Evening all!

Really.  I have the hardest time coming up with titles for anything!  Ask RR.  I often have to ask her for title ideas for my stories.

Any rate,  I was very excited to see some folks back, and a new author come to play as well, this week!  The Tome was quite pleased for the extra stories I had to read to it this week.  We sit in the darkness of my room, the only light coming from my little computer screen, and I read your work to it. It seems to find the nightmares you all so beautifully craft, quite soothing.

And so...on to winners and words.

This week's winner is Veronica Marie Lewis-Shaw with Parting Sorrow:  Veronica, I must repeat myself.  I loved this.  It instilled that deep, slightly sick feeling that only stories based in reality can elicit.  And it continues to remind us that some monsters are real.  Thank you!

And in second place this week is Antonia Woodville with Infinity (22):  Antonia, as always, the Captain is beautifully eloquent and the complexity of his character continues to intrigue me.  I love the depth you've given him. I often find myself wondering what his "private" journal looks like.  Thank you!

I have called the Tome out of it's nest beneath my bed, and given it some bacon, and it has rewarded me with lovely new words!

Interbreed
Caliber
Unclean

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, September 19*th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, September 20th!

The Tome has retreated to the darkness beneath the bed to snore and dream of the stories you will write.  I'll be waiting too.

The gates are open!

Saturday, 7 September 2013

They talk in my head.

Good evening!

This evening I find myself recovering from an entire day of being pretty much rigid with impotent anger at several situations that have been going on for some time.  Here's the thing about that, though.  Some of my characters, who had remained pretty quiet whilst the previous week's moods were more fear, apprehension, worry and doubt, have made themselves heard today in no uncertain terms.  Nate in particular has been incredibly vocal for the last several hours.

That being said, I find myself wondering if all writers go through this sort of thing with their characters, or am I just nuts?

The tome is snuffling about on the desk nearby and is awaiting my request for new words, and so let's announce this week's winners.

For sheer nightmare factor, this week's winner is RRKovar with Circa 1906:    This is just beautifully horrible. That you have couched it in the normalcy of workers plodding in to start their day, makes it all the more so.  That the reporter rated a "gourmet" label just made me laugh.  Thank you.

And in second place this week is Antonia Woodville with Infinity (21):  I seriously cannot wait to figure out what's up with the shadow people.  Also, I'm pleased to see the Captain continuing the tradition of cheating the crew a bit.  It's historically correct, if I remember my reading correctly, and besides...Pirate!   Lovely phrasing in this piece as well.  Thank you.

All right, time for new words!

Hateful
Branch
Throne

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, September 12th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, September 13th!

The gates are open!



Saturday, 31 August 2013

Working Title

Good evening all!

I'm gonna get right to it this evening.  Whew!  You all made it very difficult this week.  EVERY story was brilliant, each for reasons unique to author and subject.  Thank you!

However, as it is my job to choose, chosen I have.

This week's winner is Zoe Farr with Once They Get A Taste For It:  What an amazing, horrifying, little world you've created here.  Brilliant phrasing.  And the subject matter is just nightmarish!  Thank you!

In second place is Zaiure with The Post:  Dragons!  As mail delivery vehicles.  Lovely!  I adore Camille's scars and burns, and her attitude. Fantastic intro to a character I definitely would like to know better.  I agree with RR.  You get us seamlessly into the world.  It feels completely natural.  Thank you!

Honorable Mention:  I'd be remiss if I didn't give RRKovar's Somewhere After The Fall  a nod.  It made me chuckle.  It takes a delicate touch to horrify and amuse at the same time, and it's a skill you definitely possess.  Thank you!

All right, the tome has obliged whilst I've been typing and so...

Muckrake

Gloss

Trappings

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, September 5th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, August 6th.

Before I leave you this evening, I must again thank every one for your patience at my absence, and for your warm comments upon my return!  You are all wonderful.  Thank you again!

That being said:

Let the games begin, my friends.  The gates are open!

Monday, 26 August 2013

*headdesk*

Good evening,

Again I must offer my deepest apologies for leaving you all hanging for so long.  It seems as if my life has gone into a permanent state of "mercury in retrograde" the last month or so.  Besides some ongoing tech, health and car issues, fate saw fit to deal me an employment thing as well this last week or so.  All honestly, I got so caught up in trying to straighten it all out, with only moderate success, that Prediction, and one or two other things, simply got away from me. 

I'm very much hoping that enough of the rough has been smoothed over that such will not happen again.  I love Prediction.  I love being admin, and I adore my authors.  Yes, I think of you all as my authors, at least when we are all here.  *grin*

So!  I am back and ready to move forward.

The Tome has missed you all very much and it is more than ready to bring forth new words. But first, our winners for this round!

This week's winner is Sandra Davies with A Change of Focus (51):  Wow!  Sandra, I was completely sideswiped by the revelation at the close of this!  What a lovely twist!  And I must make comment on ..."a voice harsh as grated skull-bones."  Just brilliant!  Many thanks to you!

In second place is Antonia Woodville with her untitled continuation of the Captain's story!  Another amazing installment.  This story gets better and better and you never cease to impress the hell out of me with your flair for gorgeous phrasing!  Thank you!

As always, every story thrilled and intrigued.  My thanks to all of you.  And now, our new words.

Impotent

Blatant

Whelp

 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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, August 29th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on August 30th.

I realize that I'm leaving us a bit short-timed this week in an attempt to get us back on track.  Again my deepest apologies for the inconvenience.

The gates are open!





Saturday, 10 August 2013

No rest for the electronically challenged.

I think I'm going to start saving my posts in Word, so that I can re-post them on  Saturday morning, when my computer decides it can't be bothered on Friday night!  Jeez!

Good morning, all. 

The Tome is not going to be happy about this.  It's 7:00 AM here in the states, and I'm going to have to wake the little darling to get new words.  It's rather a nocturnal creature, you know.  Perhaps if I toss a bit of bacon under the bed, where it nests...

Anyway, let's announce winners whilst we wait for it to wake up, shall we?

We had a good crop of amazing stories this week, and choosing winners has been challenging indeed.  However, there were a couple for me, that did stand out.

Our winner this week is Sandra Davies with A change of focus (50):  Sandra, this is just gorgeous from one end to the other!  It reads and flows like poetry.  Your use of the prompts is fantastic!  And the surprise ending makes reading this a perfect treat.  Thank you so much! 

In second place is Helen with the conclusion of The Dare:  I've been hooked on this story from the beginning.  Freddy has been such an interesting character.  Loved the little twist at the end as to where his power came from.  Thank you!

And this week, I must give honorable mention to Zoe Farr for her Untitled piece.  First and foremost it made me chuckle.  But I love the normacly of the conversation combined with the fantasy aspects of the world that converastion is taking place in.  This was great fun to read.  Thank you.

The Tome has left new words as I've been typing.  Let's see what we have.

Threshold

Grate

Invert

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, August 15th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on August 16th, tech issues permitting.

Please feel free to post, tweet, and otherwise network our little game.

The gates are open! 

Saturday, 3 August 2013

Take Two!

Good thing I noticed that the post I made last night didn't actually post.  Grrrrrrrr....so what I said was :

Good evening!  My technology issues continue, so let's hope all goes well.  
It's been sort of a quiet and introspective, yet very busy week.  The Tome and I have been dealing with a few issues that require tons of paperwork and much time spent on the phone, leaving time for very little else besides my work obligations.  Looking at our small number of entries this week (3, to be exact), I find myself wondering if I'm not the only one experiencing such a time right now.  

In one of the few quiet moments I was able to glean out of the week a story idea occurred that is mildly reflective of this.  In it, Satan tailors the hell each soul experiences, to the personality of the person that soul belonged to.  For each of us, as writers, that hell was being kept etenally busy with torturously mundane, yet life threatening activities, while simultaneously coming up with one brilliant story idea after another, and never, ever, being allowed to write them.  Forever.  Did I have time to write it?  I did not.  ;)
OK, so maybe it was just MY hell, but I thought I'd share it anyway.

And now:

As we had but 3 entries this week, and as they were all amazing bits of writing, I'm declaring that all three are winners.

Zaiure with Showgirls:  I just love the last line.  I honestly didn't see it coming.  Thank you.

Helen with The Dare #5:  Freddy is just such an interesting character!  I really like the humming to initiate his defensive actions.  Thank you.
  
Antonia with Infinity 17: The captain's continued apprehension about the shadow people, and the fact that the severe weather bothered them not a bit was a lovely touch.  Thank you.
 

 Seriously ladies, each of your entries this week embodied everything that I look for in a winner.  Prompts were used creatively and to great effect.  The writing in all three pieces was tight and yet flowed quite naturally, and each story kept me hooked and desperately wanting to know what's going to happen next.   

While I've been writing, the Tome has brought forth new words.  Lets see what it has given us, eh?

Bury
Sacred
Vibrato

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, August 8th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on August 9th.


Please feel free to post, tweet, and otherwise network the hell out of or little game.  I'd love to see some more folks coming to play now and again.  I'll be doing the same, as my tech issues permit. 


And now, venture forth and when you return, bring me the nightmares you have wrought!
The gate is open!


And hopefully this goes through this time!

 

Saturday, 27 July 2013

So THAT happened.

My deepest apologies my friends.  Technical issues prevented me from getting online last night to post winners and words.  Things seem to be back to normal for the nonce.  As I'm late, I won't bother with introductory bits.  Let's just get right to it.


This week's winner is Phil Ambler with Start Over:  This is such a great bit of writing.  I really like your use of the prompts this week.  The idea of creation by committee, of a new world, and the destruction of the old one, is chilling in its practicality. The implication is that said destruction and creation, is also a simple task.  There seems to be no indication of any difficulty in accomplishing the thing.  Simply decide, and do.  It brings to mind the standard question of who would get to make such decisions?  Who are they?  Thank you!

And this weeks runner up is RRKovar with Cause and Effect:  Rebecca, the repetition here, rather than being dulling and redundant, makes the story doubly hard-hitting and effective.  It makes the impact and irony of the final line that much more.  Thank you!

The tome has had its breakfast and is ready to bring forth new words.  Let's see what it has for us this week.

Kin

Cinnamon

Wrangle

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, August 1st, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on August 2nd.

The gates are open!


Saturday, 20 July 2013

Unexpected horror.

 Have you ever had the experience of a perfectly mundane thing becoming horrific in ways you never expected it could?  You all answered yes.  I know, because everyone has had that experience to some degree or another.  Suddenly things just become weird and awful and there's not a damned thing you can do about it, except try to come through with as few scars, physical or otherwise as possible.  And what do writers do with such experiences?  We incorporate them into our stories, of course.

My first order of business is to again thank RRKovar for her invaluable assistance whilst I was away this week.  It was a blessing knowing that I had left the Tome, our playground, and you, my wonderful friends, in her care.  Thank you again, sister-mine.

NOTE:  So, somewhere along the way my choice for winner got eaten.

Without further ado, this week's winner is Sandra Woodville with Post-operative!   There is such truth here, that I think for many people, the reading of it would bring a shudder.  And that's what makes it such good horror.  There's just enough truth in it to keep the reader grounded in reality and not allow them to suspend disbelief.  This sort of the story sticks with folk for a long time.  Thank you Sandra!

And in second place Antonia Woodville with Infinity 15:  Antonia, I cannot get enough of this story.  This week's chapter is so beautifully woven with gorgeous phrasing.  The story itself is enchanting in all the right, dark, ways.  Thank you.

The Tome seems to have missed me whilst I was away.  It sits on the desk at my side as I type this.  I have petted it and given it the usual treat of bacon, and been rewarded with the following:

Amber

Travesty

Undone


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, July 25th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, July 26th.

The gates are open!










Saturday, 13 July 2013

Step Right Up. Don't Be Shy.

As you know, Colleen is on a well-deserved vacation and has left me in charge. (Cue maniacal laughter...)

I must admit, judging is much harder than it would appear, especially with such a talented bunch.  And while I'm on that topic, please feel free to spread the word and invite other writer friends to come test out ideas, delve into scenarios, and otherwise give into their noir/horror/fantasy urges. The fact that we regularly give positive feedback sets us apart from purely competitive writing challenges, and we always welcome new voices.

Also, don't be shy to post links to your entries to Twitter or Facebook or whatever social media you favor. We like new readers as well as writers!

Also also, if any of you regulars have a blog and would like a link on our sidebar, just let us know. If new folks stick around (or old friends return), we'll do the same for them. We're all about spreading the love. And sometimes the gore, but you all don't need much help in that arena.

Now, having made my pitch, it's on to the winners:

Zaiure takes the win for Payload. There is so much detail and characters packed into that 100 words, and if that were the opening of a novel, I would keep reading just to find out the history and what happens next.

Honorable Mention goes to Helen for THE DARE Part 2. This is a great follow-up to Freddy's story, and I'm even more intrigued than before.

My thanks to everyone who wrote and commented. You make this a great community.

I am very excited about this week's words. The Tome offered them up with nary a snarl, and I can see why. They hold such promise. I cannot wait to see what you do with them!


Surge

Hypnotic

Bouquet

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, July 18th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, July 19th.

Saturday, 6 July 2013

Sometimes you aren't afraid...

...when you really should be.  Have you ever noticed that?  I wonder if those of us who spend so much time thinking and writing about all things horrific, somehow become desensitized to real world things we should be  afraid of.  Or...do we accept the horrors of the real world BECAUSE we play with the scary things, willingly and with joy, even, that many folks eschew?  It's just a thought I figured I'd share.

Our winner this week is Antonia Woodville with her untitled continuation of the Captain's Story.  Antonia, I love the feel of this.  "This is my journey!"  The whole of it leading up to the one thing. It felt like following along through the mental process of epiphany!  Really well done.  Thank you.

And our runner up this week is Helen with The Dare.  Was it a game of Truth or Dare that lead him into the house? ".It spoke the words with an ejective force, the lilt foreign, full of venom."  This is a brilliant line.  Hooks me on the entity right off.  I want to know more.  Thank you.

I have coaxed the tome with a treat of bacon and been rewarded with new words.

Conscript

Payload

Creep

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, July 11th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, July 12th.

The gates are open!  Let the games begin!

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Good morning!

The tome has been frisking about the room this morning, whilst I've been trying to wake up and start my day.  It's funny how it remains quiet until I have gotten my first cup of coffee.  It seems almost to know and have respect, for the fact that I am so VERY not a morning person.

However, I am dressed, and that first cup is half empty now, so let's start the show.

Winners and words.

My winner this week is RRKovar with Turning The Tables:  This is just a brilliant and elegant bit of writing.  You've moved the story forward with brutal efficiency.  Also, was NOT expecting Nate to stab his brother.  Nice twisty bit there.   Thank you!

And this week's runner up is Zoe Farr with Flashback (20):  Zoe, every glimpse into Ame's character makes me hungry to know more.  You did a great job of weaving the prompts in, too!

As always, thank you all for playing!  Each week brings so many amazing stories.  You continue to make it hard to choose!

And the tome has brought forth new words!  Yay!

Bristling

Ejective

Crossroad

I am particularly in love with Ejective, though at this stage I have no idea what I'll do with it!  The tome continues to challenge!

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, July 4th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, July 5th.

The gates are open!  Let the games begin!






Saturday, 22 June 2013

She shoots! She...drops the ball!

My apologies all.

Yesterday was a bit stressful.  It was GOOD stress, for a change, but enough that I obviously completely forgot about my duties here.

The tome has reminded me, by crawling from beneath my bed and glaring pointedly up at me, whilst biting my foot.

And so I shall delay no further.

In first place this week is John Xero with Rise:  John you are just brilliant with dialogue.  You wove the prompts into the rest in such a way that's it's seamless and feels completely organic while giving new insight into the folks we already know AND introducing new ones.  No easy task, that, and you accomplished it beautifully.  Thank you!

And in second place this week we have Matt Farr with Peace of Mind:  Matt, it's just insidious.  I love it.  The feeling reminded me of Soylent Green and the Stepford Wives and even Equilibrium.  There's a quiet, creeping horror here, all wrapped up in a pretty "this is GOOD for you." bow.  I loved it.  Thank you!

And now to words.  The tome has just showed me where it left them last night while I was absent.  They're a bit dried out and flaky now, but I've managed to get them separated and sorted...

Distortion

Trammel

Implausible

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, June 28th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, June 29th.

The gates are open.  Let the games begin!





Saturday, 15 June 2013

Barkeep! Another round!

Good evening!

It's been a pretty dull  week around here and I don't really have much to say for an intro, so let's just get right to it shall we?

Winners!

First place goes to Tony Cowin with: Child Safety Locks: As  Standard:  Tony, I know I shouldn't, but I can't stop giggling at this.  Her absolute casual attitude is just grand.  And the red pen.  In terms of horror, it's a great piece.   Well written and just plain fun to read.  Thank you.

Second place this week goes to Philamber with: Leopard Spots:  I actually cried the first time I read this.  His sorrow for her, still felt in the midst of her gruesome betrayal is such a powerful image.  Thank you.

I've given the tome a break this week, and so the lovely RRKovar has provided us with words.  Many thanks, dear!

Numerous

Swell

Invent

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, June 20th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, June 21st.


Saturday, 8 June 2013

Changing Perspectives.

Good evening!

Changing perspectives, indeed.  Sometimes it's as simple as standing in a different corner when you look across a  room.  Seeing things from a different direction can change the way they look and "feel".  The same can be said for looking at a situation from a slightly different point of view.  I've been doing that today, and, lo and behold, I have found a new perspective on it.  It doesn't have to be quite what I thought it was.

Why bring this up?  Because it happens that examining the above mentioned situation from a different point of view, also had the effect of encouraging me to look at my own writing from a new perspective.  I have always seen my writing as something I enjoy doing, but am not particularly good at.  When people liked my stuff, I considered it a lucky coincidence, having nothing to do with any innate talent I may actually have.  This, in spite of having been told flat-out, by folks I consider knowledgeable about such things, that I am  a pretty good writer.  And now I find myself wondering if other writers go through the same thing.  I imagine they do.

So.  My question is this.  Have any of you gone through that?  At what point did you finally think, "I'm a writer.", without feeling uncomfortable saying it?

Anyhow, the tome is ready to do its thing, so let me announce our winners this week.

In first place, is Sandra Davies with Muttered Conversation:  Sandra, I love the dialogue here.  I love not knowing who is saying what, just yet.  I also find it a very intriguing way of introducing new characters.  Thank you.

My second place winner is Matt Farr with The New Overseers Speech:  As always, Matt, you've incorporated the prompts seamlessly.   More so, however, was the subject matter and the way you approached it.  Thank you.

And now for new words!   Ready?

Defeat

Crafty

Malefaction


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, June 14th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, June 15th.

The gates are open!  Let the games begin!

Saturday, 1 June 2013

And then I'm late...

Good morning all,

My apologies for my tardiness, again.  One's family occasionally does "unexpected" sorts of things when they get old.

The tome is a bit out of sorts this morning.  The last couple of days here in the Northeast have been hot and humid.  Evidently, the little darling likes that sort of weather just as little as I do.  It watched me install the air conditioner on Thursday.  It seemed amused by my struggles with the electric drill but was happy enough to settle right in front of it when all was said and done.

I imagine I ought to get on with winners and words, as the tome seems to realize we are late, and is hovering at the very edge of the the table near my desk, drooling greenish stuff with random letters floating about in it. I don't believe it likes our forced tardiness anymore than I.

Winners!

First place this week goes to Zoe Farr with Bring me the head of (12):  Zoe, there's an underlying tension in this that carries through the whole piece.  That can be tough to maintain and you've done it wonderfully.  Your dialogue is tight and the you worked the prompts in very smoothly.  And again, that last line is killer!  Thank you.

And in second place is RR Kovar with her Seth and Nate piece, This Modern World:  RR this is just the perfect set up piece.  Its tone is so quiet and matter of fact, and yet you conveyed Seth's tongue-in-cheek "concern" about Nate's reaction so perfectly.  I had a hard time answering with what I thought was matching quality.  Thank you!

And now....the words!

Escort

Utility

Heresy


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.


You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, June 6th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, June 7th.

The gates are open.  Let the games begin!

Saturday, 25 May 2013

I'm Early!

Evening, dears!

The tome is frisking about in front of the fan as it blows a lovely cool breeze across the desk.  It's been quite warm and humid here the last few days, and I think both of us were feeling a bit heat knackered. The cooler evening seems to have revived our spirits just a bit.

As always, I must thank everyone who came and played this week.  The stories and poems you leave are brilliant gifts that glitter in the darkest recesses of my mind as I read them to the tome in the night.

And with that, this week's winners are:

John Xero with (rise):  John, the whole piece is packed with tension and I loved it.  The first line, however, is just gorgeous!  I liked the boy right off, and find myself hoping we see more of him.  Lovely work.  Thank you!

Second place this week goes to Sandra Davies with 'Twas ever thus:  Sandra, I just love this girl!  "Smugly sanguine" is just lovely!  It's nice to see Tao thrown a bit off his game.  I'm very eager to see what happens next.  Thank you.

And now I have coaxed the tome to come close.  Let's see what it gives us this week...

Huddle

Antiquated

Dimsighted


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.


You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, May 30th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, May 31st.

The gates are open.  Let the games begin!


Saturday, 18 May 2013

I'll be brief. LOL

Good evening, m'dears!

It's that time again.  I don't have a whole bunch to say this evening, so what say we just get to it, shall we?

This week's winner is Matt Farr with  Bonfire of the Vanities:  Matt.  Wow.  I'm still almost speechless.  This is just lush and beautiful and savage from one end to the other.  I love the feeling of transformation through destruction.

In second place this week is Zoe Farr with Flashback (14a):  I really liked how this piece gave us a much deeper insight into Nina's personality.  The combination of both self-confidence and lack thereof was really interesting to read.  I loved both the stealth and bravery she displayed in this piece.

And so on to our new words.

Disarm

Spurt

Jockey


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.


You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, May 23d, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, May 24th

The gates are open.  Let the games begin!

Saturday, 11 May 2013

It Was A Dark and Stormy Night...*grin*

Or rather, it is a grey and bleak morning.  It's fitting enough, I suppose.  We write some pretty bleak stuff around these parts.  And that is a beautiful thing.

The tome is glaring accusingly at me from the foot of my bed.  Poor dear sounds like it might be suffering from a bit of indigestion from holding on to the new words.  I shall make amends later.  There's bacon in the fridge.

And so let's begin.

When I first took over The Prediction, RR and I decided that her Nate and Seth stories would not be considered for award each week, because we felt it might constitute a conflict of interest, as I co-author with her.

I am thrilled, however, to be able to announce that her Dining In? is my choice for first place this week.  RR, this is just a brilliant bit of writing, all the way about.  It's lushly descriptive.  I've met the waitress with the lavender eye shadow, more than once.  She's always a bit sketchy, isn't she? I believe that we have all visited an eatery that inspires just a bit of "not quite right", and you've captured that feeling perfectly here.  And the reveal at the end is perfect.  Thank you.

In second place is John Xero with (Alpha):  Honestly, John, I had a really hard time deciding between this and (Rise).  Both are fantastic entries.  However, your use of the prompts in (Alpha) was incredibly smooth.  The dialogue felt completely natural.  And, as always, you've moved the story forward brilliantly in very few words.  Thank you.

Finally, Honorable Mention this week, must go to Matt Farr with Generals:  Matt, every now and again, one of us writes a tiny little story (that 100 word limit, you know...), that makes my head explode in thinking about a larger picture.  This did that.  A death on a battlefield is sadly commonplace in our world, but you've taken that, and expanded it into a consideration of the value and reality of faith.  Thank you.

As always, you all gave the tome and I a run for our money, this week.  Deciding was very difficult.  Thank you.

And now, without further ado:

Salvo

Modesty

Function

The tome has crawled off to nap beneath in the closet and I must get ready for work.  Many thanks for your patience this week, my friends.  I hope you find the words to your liking after the wait.


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.


You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, May 16th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, May 17th

The gates are open.  Let the games begin!




Winners and Words on Sat, May 11

Good evening, all.
I hope no one will mind too much, but I'm putting off winners and words until tomorrow morning.  I'm feeling  a bit head achy and I'd like to go to bed a bit early tonight. I'll have the new post up by 10 AM EST tomorrow.  Thanks in advance for your understanding.

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Something new.

Good evening!

It's been a bit of a slow week here at The Prediction.  Those who were not able to play this week were sorely missed.  Those few stories that were left at the gates however, filled the void with amazing complexity and quality.  Many thanks to those of you who were able to play.

I'd like to put forth a proposition.  I've been considering the notion of occasionally entertaining guest judges.  I've been talking to a few writer-types who are interested in that, and so I'd like to know how you would all feel about it.  It's not something I'd do often, because I love doing this. I thought perhaps one week every other month. My thinking is that it might be a good way to get some new folks to come check us out, and perhaps stay to play after their stint as a guest judge.  Also, if any of you regulars would like to take the helm for a week, please do let me know!  I'd love to do that, as well.  Please let me know what you think when you leave your entries this week.

The tome has perched on one of my stereo speakers, patiently awaiting my call for new words.  It's watching as I write to you all. It seems to like Gregorian Chant, and The Ramones, and Walk The Moon.  We'll leave it to listening to Vampire Weekend while I announce winners for this week.

My winner this week is Sandra Davies with Opportunity Knocks:  Sandra, the whole situation you set up in this chapter is just so intriguing to me.  And the phrase "virgin witchling" is still randomly skating through my head.  You have a consistent skill for moving things along quickly in spite of the word limit.  Thank you.

And in second place (but not really), is Zoe Farr with Bring me the Head of...(10):  Zoe, I love the way you write dialogue.  The way the characters speak to each other feels so natural and real, and yet you convey the tension they're feeling beautifully.  Thank you.

And now. to the tune of Everlong by the Foo Fighters, I have coaxed new words from the tome:

Pungent

Heaven

Asinine

Use of the prompts as root words is, as always, fine.


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

The gates are unlocked and opened wide.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, May 9th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, May 10th

Saturday, 27 April 2013

I'm terrible at titles!

Evening all!
There's a fat, just past full-moon, shining in through my bedroom window.  The tome is basking in the blue-white light as I write this.  We have something of a routine now, and it waits quietly for me to ask politely for new words each week.

I'll get right to it, as I seem to be suffering from a tiny case of writer's block.

My winner this week is Antonia Woodville with Infinity (4):   Antonia, this is so seamlessly written and it moves things along beautifully!  Thank you!

My runner-up is John Xero with Games:  John, that last line is really what hooked me.  The story moved quickly along, but hat last line was just brilliant.  Thank you!

As always, my deepest thanks to those who played this week.  All the entries were such fun to read.  Thanks to all.

And now as I turn to the window, I see the tome has already quietly disgorged new words.

Cover

Taboo

Endowment



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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, May 2nd, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, May 3d.

And so the gates are open again.  Come in and leave your offerings for the tome!


Saturday, 20 April 2013

Dawn breaks on new horrors.

This has been a week of horrors, far too real, and too close.   And so, in typical perverse fashion, I find myself exited to be here this evening, about to announce winners and coax new words from the tome.

Why?

Because the horrors we concoct here are fictitious, and delicious, and to me, just plain fun.  And I love the way I can come here each week, and read what you all have brought, and have the real nightmares cleansed away a bit.  I know that may not make sense to some, but the community we're building here, provides a sense of stability and safety that the rest of the world has seriously lacked for me these last weeks.

And so...

Our winner this week is Matt Farr with Departure:  Matt!  Welcome back!  This story is just gorgeous and lush and ...I honestly don't even have words.  I can't even tell you why it effected me so deeply and I'm not sure I even care. The visuals here...just amazing.  This story made me happy.

Second place this week goes to Sandra Davies with Body of Evidence:  There is something about the flow of this...it's so smooth.  Truly a beautifully woven piece.


And now, on to words....

Intimate

Caustic

Avenge


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, April 25th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, April 26th.

Go now, my friends, and create new horrors for me to revel in!  The tome sleeps....


Saturday, 13 April 2013

Loss and Gain, Creation and Destruction, and other cyclical things.

Good evening all.

This week has served to remind me of the cycles and circles of all existence.  I lost a dear friend on Tuesday, but have gained a deeper sense of myself and my soul through musing on that loss.  As Winter continues to fade, and Spring to flourish, I am reminded of the creation/destruction/creation cycle of all things.

The tome seems to be somehow aware of this as well.  It appears to be shedding a bit, and has taken to perching on my bed, watching birds fly by.  It growls and mutters to itself, or to me.  At the moment, it is sitting by my feet, gnawing happily on the edge of a small area rug made of rags.  It really does love chewing on things.  It also seems to know, more and more, when it's time to bring forth new words, and seems almost to be awaiting a cue from me.

Let's get on with with winners so we don't keep the little dear waiting too long, eh?


My winner this week is Helen with The Offering (Part 5):  Elspeth becomes more and more fascinating with each turn.  Also, I simply couldn't get over "His skin, marmoreal to the touch...".  That was just creepy and wonderful.  I cannot wait to find out more about Elspeth, and what she does next!  Thank you.

Second place goes to RRKovar with The Mechanic:  I have read this about a dozen times now, and I get something new each time.  This has flavors Shadowrun, and The Transporter movies, and Dean Winchester's love for his car.  And yet...both character and story feel fresh, lively and new.  Thank you.

Again this week, I have an honorable mention, because I just HAD to!  Zoe with Flashback:  Zoe besides being a great story, your unbridled creativity in working in the prompts simply had to be mentioned!  This is a  great bit of writing!  Thank you.

As always, every story this week was a wonderful gift and I thank you all.

And now, I have scritched the tome on what I guess is the approximate location of it's chin, and it has obliged with some new words.

Impress

Locus

Sentient

Many thanks to RR for helping me coax words from the tome this week!





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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM EST on Thursday, April 18th, to get your entries in..  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:30 PM on Friday, April 19th.





Saturday, 6 April 2013

On the elusiveness of words and webs...*grin*

Evening all!

Seems that both the internet, and the tome, have a bit of wanderlust tonight.  I've been chasing the latter about the place for some time now.  Each time I get it settled and begin to write...my network goes *splut*!  Not to worry about the tome, though.  I've hauled out the big guns (bacon, no less), and it should be along any moment.  As for the internet...

Hopefully, third times the charm.  Let's find out, shall we?

This week's winners are....drum roll, please!

First place goes to Antonia Woodville with Infinity (1).:   Antonia, I loves me some pirates and your mention of a particular favorite tickled me.  Besides that, though, your story is lush and rich with visuals and good solid starting arc. Just plain good writing, lady.  Thank you.

Second place goes to Zaiure with Deep:  I said it in comments, and I'll say it again here.  This is just a gorgeous little story.  The characters are interesting right off the bat and you set a beautiful scene.  I particularly love your description of the jelly fish.  Thank you.

And finally, but not last by any stretch...I must give honorable mention to Asuqi, with B and John and All the Rest of Us:   I must admit, this made me cry a bit.  It's beautifully written and evokes so many levels of thought and emotion each time I read it.  Thank you.

As always, I must thank all of you who come to play here, and leave such beautiful gifts each week.  I'm so honored that so many of you return again and again, and that more new folks seem to be finding us.

Please continue to spread the word about our dark little playground!

And now as I look to the floor by my chair, I see that the tome has made off with the snack I left, and has left some new words...

Charity

Trample

Piston


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM (Eastern Standard Time) Thursday, April, 11th to get your entries in.  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:00 PM on Friday, April 12th.

Off you go, m'dears.  As always, the tome and I await your return!






Temporary Delay

Miss Colleen has had quite the week, and is just now getting settled in to make her decision and present us with new words. Once she catches the tome, which last I heard is leading her a merry chase. Her post will be up shortly.

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Good Evening!

The tome and I are oddly energized this evening.  It could be that it was warm enough to open windows for a bit today, and there's been a lovely, cool breeze all day.  The evening is a bit more chilly, and there's an almost wild scent in the air tonight.

The tome is stretched out at the edge of my bed, sniffing mightily at the curtain as it blows inwards on the wind.  It seems content enough for a few minutes while I announce winners.

I had a very hard time this week.  Every story used the prompts beautifully.

This week's winner is Jon Xero with (Alpha):  The visuals are what got me in this story.  You do a brilliant job with description.  It's one of the things I consistently love about your work.

And my runner up this week is RR Kovar with Uncommon Courtesy:  I just love this piece.  Knowing RR's writing style as I do, I'm sensing there's at least one twist here that we haven't seen, even if she doesn't favor us with any more from these characters.  Though I really hope she does.

And now...new words!

Turbulent (Turbulence, or any form is fine)

Grunt

Handbook

Hmmmm...interesting combination there.


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM (Eastern Standard Time) Thursday, April, 4th to get your entries in.  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:00 PM on Friday, April 5th.

The tome has gone to sleep.  Go and create, my friends.  We'll be waiting...






Saturday, 23 March 2013

Horror Springs Eternal...

Evening all!
I have no idea where that title came from, except that it's First day of Spring here, and we write horror and...

Anyhow, the tome seems to realize I've made a timing change.  It has harumphed its way up the stairs from visiting with Mofo, and is currently snuffling about at my feet as I write.  I've provided a small snack, as has become my habit when I want new words.  It should be finished with that and ready to provide new prompts in just a few moments.

First of all, Happy Spring!  Don't know about the rest of you but I've about bloody had it with winter.

Second, I'd like to apologize for not commenting this week.  As admin, I feel particularly badly about that.  I'm slowly getting settled into my new life and job, but it's been a bit more complex a process than even I imagined, and it's not over yet.  Still, I have read every word each of you has written, and I've been thrilled, entertained, appalled, and frightened.  It's been grand!  Thank you.

Now to our winners this week.

First place goes to AJ Humpage with Just Another Face In The Crowd:   What a horrific notion, that demonry is the cause of such mundane horrors.  And to give us his thoughts, knowing what he does, as he waits to detonate the bomb.  Brilliantly awful!

And our runner up is: Matt Farr with: Except from "The Practical Demons Guide to Perils of the Mundane Realms":   Matt, this was great stuff!  I adore the idea that as RR said, they are as afraid of us as we are of them, and that they have a whole agency to deal with dealing with us!  LOL.  

Congratulations to our winners!  Fantastic writing from all, as always.

Seems the tome has brought forth the new words whilst I wasn't looking.  Little blighter "brought them forth" onto my shoe!  Right, so...

Eldritch

Manse

Aristocracy

*I was chatting with a friend as I was writing this.  He told me one of his favorite words.  It's syzygy.  I had to look it up.  Anyone who'd like to add to their challenge, can feel free to include this one as well.  It's just such a great word.  Including it, or not, will not affect my decision-making this week.  I just figured I'd toss it out there as a fun thing for anyone who might want to give it a shot.


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM (Eastern Standard Time) Thursday, March 28th, to get your entries in.  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 11:00 PM on Friday, March 29th.

Go and create, m'dears.  The tome and I will be waiting...







Thursday, 21 March 2013

ANNOUNCEMENT

Hey gang,

Winners and Words will be posted by 11:00 PM, Eastern Standard Time, on Friday, March 22nd.    

RR is unable to post for me this week as she's going to be travelling.  

I'd also like to continue with that time on Fridays, going forward, if there are no objections.  It will make it easier for me to maintain things and guarantee that the posts get made on time every week.  

If the new time is going to cause serious problems for anyone across the pond, please let me know and I'll make an effort to do something more convenient for all.

Thanks so much!

Friday, 15 March 2013

Times, They Are A-Changing

Well, Colleen sent this to me this morning, and I completely spaced that she is in the Eastern time zone, whilst I am in Central. Pray forgive me for posting this late.  - Rebecca
 
 
Good day!

The tome has built itself a nest under my bed.  It crawled out to greet the new day covered in shamrocks.  I suppose it could be covered in far worse things and I'll not complain.  Not sure where it got into the shamrocks, but I can only imagine it's a nod toward St. Patrick's Day, which is fast approaching.  Any rate, at the moment, it's exploring the confines of my bedroom.  

Before I get to this week's winners I have a favor to ask of all of you.  The time frame for entries and judging is a bit difficult for me to juggle, due to my new training and work schedule.  Would anyone mind if I moved it by a few hours , in one direction or another, so that I can devote more time to the blog and my responsibilities as admin?  I'm trying to be mindful of the fact many of you are across the pond, and I don't want to make things inconvenient for you.  If anyone has major concerns, please feel free to let me know either in comments, or at ravenways@gmail.com.

And so on to this week's winners!

First place this week goes to Anthony Corwin with The Karmic Wheel:  Anthony, I loved this story from the first line.  I've a deep-rooted childhood fear of carnivals and I think it was brilliant to use one a the setting for your story.  Even with the 100 word limit, you moved the story quickly from start to finish while maintaining a very strong visual of your world.  Really enjoyable.  Thank you.

Our runner-up this week is Helen with The Offering:  Helen, I like this girl.  I want to know more about her.  Her casual attitude at having so easily turned the tables on her attacker is just lovely.  I want to know what that blood is going to be useful for!  This is a tightly-written and clever bit of writing.  Thank you.

As always, I want to thank everyone who came out to play this week!  I am in such fine, fine, company here and it's wonderful to see new people visiting and staying to write for us.  Thank you all.

And on that note, the tome has somehow gotten into my lap, and is making happy little chuffling sounds.  Let's see what it has for us...


Demonry  (If you really hate this, you can use any form of demon, though I would love to see what you do with "demonry", 'cause it just sounds so cool!)

Catalog

Abyss


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM (Eastern Standard Time) Thursday, March 21st, to get your entries in.  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 3:00 PM on Friday, March 22nd.

*sigh*  The tome has sneezed, and now I'm covered in shamrocks, too.

Go forth and create, my friends!

Friday, 8 March 2013

Marching Forth

Good afternoon, all.

A quick side note, before winners and words, if you'll be so kind as to indulge me.  

Lily and Phil often included in these posts, news and information about various writing contests and opportunities for networking.  If you know of such things, and would like to share them, please feel free to send all the pertinent information, including a link, if possible, to me at ravenways@gmail.com.

I'll be more than happy to include them in the weekly winners and words posts.  

That said, I have cleared the gates of snow and the tome has emerged from beneath my bed and is happily chewing on the corner of a sheet, waiting its cue to bring forth new words for us to play with. Let me get on with announcing the winners before the little dear goes for my brand new quilt, shall we?

I can't tell you all how lucky I consider myself to have the privilege of judging this little contest each week. I get to read fantastic stories written by folks I've come to know a bit, and that is a joy beyond measure.  I love our dark little playroom.

And so, this week's winners:

First place goes to Zaiure with Anatomy:  I just loved the whole tone and feel of this.  The almost lighthearted pragmatism in discovering a one-eye cat mucking about with a human hand, in a garden! You have a great skill at creating a sense of place, using very few words.  And again, Poe is just lovely.  I'd really like to see more of him.

My runner-up this week is Zoë Farr with Flashback 2:  Zoë, you did such a great job of capturing brother/sister "I hate you right now..." banter with your dialogue!  I've heard siblings snipe in exactly this fashion.  I also rather enjoyed Jiro's surprise at the end.  ; )

And now it appears the tome has finished its 250 thread-count snack, and is ready to bring forth new words!

Decant  (Decanter or any version thereof is also fine here)

Notch

Straddle

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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM (Eastern Standard Time) Thursday, March 14th, to get your entries in.  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 3:00 PM on Friday, March 15th.

Hmmmm...I rather like these...

Have at it, m'dears.  See you back here soon!

Saturday, 2 March 2013

The Tome Ate My Homework

Hi!
Well, that went well, eh?   This morning, as promised, I wrote a post for winners and words and emailed it RR.  She never received it, nor can I even find it now.  I'm so very, very, sorry I dropped the ball gang.

OK, so...winners and words.

You are all still making it very difficult for me to decide.  Judging this week has been as challenging as ever.

However, without further ado:

First place goes to Phil Ambler with Dare You.  This is such a great little story, Phil.  Reading, I knew something was going to happen, but I had no idea what or to whom, until the last line.

Our runner-up this week is Matt Farr with Just Hanging Around: Matt, I still can't stop chuckling at that last line.  And it was a brilliant notion to let us know what it feels like to be a scarecrow!

Congratulations to the winners, and many thanks to everyone of you who posted and entertained me so much!  I can't tell you how helpful reading your work has been this last week when everything's been so hectic.

I do not recall the words the Tome provided this morning, and so, after much pleading on my part, it has begrudgingly spit out some new ones.  Just let me peel them off my shirt...

There we are!

Herbs

Altruist

Wary


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, science fiction or noir. All variants and use of the words as stems are fine.

You have until 11:30 PM (Eastern Standard Time) Thursday, March 7th, to get your entries in.  Winners will be announced and new words will be posted by 3:00 PM on Friday, March 8th.

Again, I am so sorry for my email gaf.  Here's hoping this weeks words stir your creative juices!