Friday Flash Fiction Train

Friday Flash Fiction Train

All aboard the Friday Flash Fiction Train! Each week, a new prompt will take us to parts unknown – sit back, check out the prompt, and enjoy the ride.

But first, some rules.

  1. Every week, a random prompt will be posted on Friday. Participants have until Wednesday at 12:00 PM EST to write and submit a response in the comment section. Your story must be posted in the comments to count.
  2. The catch – after the first week with a winner, the responses to the weekly prompts must build off the previous week’s winning entry, continuing its story. To avoid never-ending stories, the contest will reset every 5 weeks. We’re aiming to tell a story in 5-episode bursts.
  3. Voting will be open to decide a winner from Wednesday at 12PM EST to Thursday at 10PM EST. Voting will be on site and also in our Facebook group, OWS Word Mafia.
  4. The winning piece will be featured in the next prompt, with links to the winner’s social media.
  5. Word limit: 400.
  6. All responses are property of the authors.
  7. Completed stories might also be compiled into ebooks in the future!

This past week, we had a submission and therefore a winner! B.W. Martin has started off what feels like a coming of age story. Where will you take it next? Check out his entry below and the prompt, then pick up where he left off.

“Look at how she stands,” Clarissa’s voice ran rich with disgust in a mocking tone. The head cheerleader pointed at me and laughed, as I passed the front steps of the High School.

‘Whatever did I do to you,’ I said to myself just before the question brought back memories of the teenager’s response from the times that I bothered asking. Attempting to put a safe space between me and the small group seemed to be a lost cause as every quick glance back, the cheerleaders seemed to be gaining ground.

‘Great.’ My feet picked up the pace as the cafeteria doors came into view, the closest place of freedom I could get to. My training in track and field gave me an advantage as the sound of my shoes on the cement sidewalks became louder and quicker as I entered a slow sprint.

“Oh Joy,” Clarissa called out my name, “where do you think you are going?”

As if Clarissa’s words were a signal, two forms stepped out from around the corner of the building. Prissy expressions played upon their face as I ultimately slowed to a stop, arms at my side I slowly turned around.

‘At least I don’t have any books for her to knock onto the ground.’ The thought began to aggravate me the longer I waited for Clarissa to catch up to where I was. ‘I shouldn’t be happy that I didn’t have anything in my hands, no one should have to go through this.’

“Thought you were getting away from me Joy?” Clarissa’s voice grated my nerves.

“Why do…” My words were cut short.

“Because I can!” Clarissa knew what I was going to ask, blond hairs framed her sarcastic expression as she made her way to stand directly in front of me.

“Just leave me alone!” I could taste the anger and fear in my mouth as I yelled at Clarissa for the first time ever.

“Oh we’re getting brave here Joy? Just take it like the trash you are!”

Without realizing what was going on rage took the reins, all of the years of abuse boiled into this moment. The pain of my knuckles brought me back to reality, my view lowered to Clarissa’s form and her bloody nose being released down the front of her cheerleading outfit.

I never spoke another word to them, and the same was given in respect.

PROMPT: Everybody’s youth is a dream, a form of chemical madness. – F. Scott Fitzgerald

Be sure to check out B.W. Martin at his social media:

Remember – participants should include name/pen name and any links they’d like to share for promotional purposes (Twitter, FB Page, Goodreads, Website, etc).

Not sure you want to play? Check out the contest’s previous incarnation for an idea of how it works.

Hop aboard the #FriFlashFicTrain & enjoy the ride! #amwriting #writing #prompt Click To Tweet

Friday Flash Fiction Train

Friday Flash Fiction Train

All aboard the Friday Flash Fiction Train! Each week, a new prompt will take us to parts unknown – sit back, check out the prompt, and enjoy the ride.

But first, some rules.

  1. Every week, a random prompt will be posted on Friday. Participants have until Wednesday at 12:00 PM EST to write and submit a response in the comment section. Your story must be posted in the comments to count.
  2. The catch – after the first week with a winner, the responses to the weekly prompts must build off the previous week’s winning entry, continuing its story. To avoid never-ending stories, the contest will reset every 5 weeks. We’re aiming to tell a story in 5-episode bursts.
  3. Voting will be open to decide a winner from Wednesday at 12PM EST to Thursday at 10PM EST. Voting will be on site and also in our Facebook group, OWS Word Mafia.
  4. The winning piece will be featured in the next prompt, with links to the winner’s social media.
  5. Word limit: 400.
  6. All responses are property of the authors.
  7. Completed stories might also be compiled into ebooks in the future!

To the prompt!

“A woman is like a tea bag – you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

Remember – participants should include name/pen name and any links they’d like to share for promotional purposes (Twitter, FB Page, Goodreads, Website, etc).

Not sure you want to play? Check out the contest’s previous incarnation for an idea of how it works.

Hop aboard the #FriFlashFicTrain & enjoy the ride! #amwriting #writing #prompt Click To Tweet

Friday Flash Fiction Train

Friday Flash Fiction Train

All aboard the Friday Flash Fiction Train! Each week, a new prompt will take us to parts unknown – sit back, check out the prompt, and enjoy the ride.

Two weeks ago, we had a winner! Congrats to Stephanie Ayers on kicking off our story. Be sure to congratulate her at her social media links:

Check out her piece below, then give the prompt at the end a shot!

The cacophony of bird song woke Julia earlier than usual. A warm ray of sun filtered across her face from the gap in her bedroom curtains. She basked in it for a moment, waiting for the warmth to work itself into her heart. (43)

Her heart… She didn’t think she would ever feel anything but stone there ever again. The weight of it crushed her chest, weakened not only her will to survive, but also to ever leave this room again. Her only hope now lay in finding her daughter’s killer and acquainting him with every torrid mark he left on Sophie’s body. Every morning the sun shared a ray, she found new resolve. It only took one new piece of information to bring her closer to his hiding place.

His hiding place… If the cops hadn’t quit, he’d be found by now, but they did. She put all her resources into picking up where they left off. If the beast lived, she would find him. She swore to her daughter’s grave it would happen.

Her cellphone vibrated off her nightstand, landing face up on the floor. She eyed it reluctantly, wary of anyone calling her this early. 842-657-5454 glowed from the screen. Her eyebrows furrowed and her mouth dropped in shock. Impossible!

“Sophie?” she answered, hope hiding behind uncertainty. No sound came from the receiver.

“Sophie?” she tried again. She closed her eyes, held her breath, and listened hard. Breathing. Shallow and thick, but there.

“Sophie? Is that you?”

The breathing quickened. “Mo–” squeaked out before the line died.

“No! Don’t hang up!” Julia screamed at her phone. “Sophie!” She pressed the redial button and called her back.

Ring. Julia’s heart hammered in her chest. Ring. She jumped as the second ring burst the silence. Ring. Her chest heaved as she breathed. Ring. Nothing but the stabbing silence. Riiinnnnggg. Click.

Julia’s hand trembled as she stared at her phone. Deep breaths calmed her down yet blood still raced through her veins. She pulled open her nightstand drawer and fumbled around until she found the business card she sought. “Det. Ian Somerall” glared at her in thick black print. The corners had been worn thin from her fingers picking at them. Her hand trembled harder as she punched his number into her phone. She’d worn his number out in the early days, too, and didn’t even know if he would answer now. She had to try.

Ring. She sighed as no one answered. Ring.

“Hello?”

PROMPT: “For every good reason there is to lie, there is a better reason to tell the truth.” – Bo Bennett

Remember the rules:

  1. Every week, a random prompt will be posted on Friday. Participants have until Wednesday at 12:00 PM EST to write and submit a response in the comment section. Your story must be posted in the comments to count.
  2. The catch – after the first week with a winner, the responses to the weekly prompts must build off the previous week’s winning entry, continuing its story. To avoid never-ending stories, the contest will reset every 5 weeks. We’re aiming to tell a story in 5-episode bursts.
  3. Voting will be open to decide a winner from Wednesday at 12PM EST to Thursday at 10PM EST. Voting will be on site and also in our Facebook group, OWS Word Mafia.
  4. The winning piece will be featured in the next prompt, with links to the winner’s social media.
  5. Word limit: 400.
  6. All responses are property of the authors.
  7. Completed stories might also be compiled into ebooks in the future!

Remember – participants should include name/pen name and any links they’d like to share for promotional purposes (Twitter, FB Page, Goodreads, Website, etc).

Not sure you want to play? Check out the contest’s previous incarnation for an idea of how it works.

Hop aboard the #FriFlashFicTrain & enjoy the ride! #amwriting #writing #prompt Click To Tweet

Friday Flash Fiction Train

Friday Flash Fiction Train

All aboard the Friday Flash Fiction Train! Each week, a new prompt will take us to parts unknown – sit back, check out the prompt, and enjoy the ride.

But first, some rules.

  1. Every week, a random prompt will be posted on Friday. Participants have until Wednesday at 12:00 PM EST to write and submit a response in the comment section. Your story must be posted in the comments to count.
  2. The catch – after the first week with a winner, the responses to the weekly prompts must build off the previous week’s winning entry, continuing its story. To avoid never-ending stories, the contest will reset every 5 weeks. We’re aiming to tell a story in 5-episode bursts.
  3. Voting will be open to decide a winner from Wednesday at 12PM EST to Thursday at 10PM EST. Voting will be on site and also in our Facebook group, OWS Word Mafia.
  4. The winning piece will be featured in the next prompt, with links to the winner’s social media.
  5. Word limit: 400.
  6. All responses are property of the authors.
  7. Completed stories might also be compiled into ebooks in the future!

To the prompt!

Last week, we had a winner! Congrats to Stephanie Ayers on kicking off our story. Check out her piece below and pick up where she left off:

The cacophony of bird song woke Julia earlier than usual. A warm ray of sun filtered across her face from the gap in her bedroom curtains. She basked in it for a moment, waiting for the warmth to work itself into her heart. (43)

Her heart… She didn’t think she would ever feel anything but stone there ever again. The weight of it crushed her chest, weakened not only her will to survive, but also to ever leave this room again. Her only hope now lay in finding her daughter’s killer and acquainting him with every torrid mark he left on Sophie’s body. Every morning the sun shared a ray, she found new resolve. It only took one new piece of information to bring her closer to his hiding place.

His hiding place… If the cops hadn’t quit, he’d be found by now, but they did. She put all her resources into picking up where they left off. If the beast lived, she would find him. She swore to her daughter’s grave it would happen.

Her cellphone vibrated off her nightstand, landing face up on the floor. She eyed it reluctantly, wary of anyone calling her this early. 842-657-5454 glowed from the screen. Her eyebrows furrowed and her mouth dropped in shock. Impossible!

“Sophie?” she answered, hope hiding behind uncertainty. No sound came from the receiver.

“Sophie?” she tried again. She closed her eyes, held her breath, and listened hard. Breathing. Shallow and thick, but there.

“Sophie? Is that you?”

The breathing quickened. “Mo–” squeaked out before the line died.

“No! Don’t hang up!” Julia screamed at her phone. “Sophie!” She pressed the redial button and called her back.

Ring. Julia’s heart hammered in her chest. Ring. She jumped as the second ring burst the silence. Ring. Her chest heaved as she breathed. Ring. Nothing but the stabbing silence. Riiinnnnggg. Click.

Julia’s hand trembled as she stared at her phone. Deep breaths calmed her down yet blood still raced through her veins. She pulled open her nightstand drawer and fumbled around until she found the business card she sought. “Det. Ian Somerall” glared at her in thick black print. The corners had been worn thin from her fingers picking at them. Her hand trembled harder as she punched his number into her phone. She’d worn his number out in the early days, too, and didn’t even know if he would answer now. She had to try.

Ring. She sighed as no one answered. Ring.

“Hello?”

Be sure to congratulate Steph at her social media links:

Remember – participants should include name/pen name and any links they’d like to share for promotional purposes (Twitter, FB Page, Goodreads, Website, etc).

Not sure you want to play? Check out the contest’s previous incarnation for an idea of how it works.

Hop aboard the #FriFlashFicTrain & enjoy the ride! #amwriting #writing #prompt Click To Tweet

Book Review: The Butterfly Crest by Eva Vanrell

Title: The Butterfly Crest (The Protogenoi Series #1)
Author: Eva Vanrell
Genre: Fantasy & Magic
Amazon rating: 4.3 stars

The Butterfly CrestBetween the shadows of the human world, a war as old as time is being fought. Ageless pantheons scheme to obtain or keep control, provoked by the weight of human belief which has altered the realm of the divine.

An ancient prophecy speaks of a human woman who will alter the course of this divine war, a descendant of a Great House mired in misfortune and blood, whose history was shaped by the cruelty of the gods.

On a day as unremarkable as any other, Elena Vicens, a young woman living a seemingly ordinary life, receives a letter about a deposit box belonging to her mother, nineteen years after her mother’s death. When this letter sends her on a journey halfway across the world from New Orleans to Japan, Elena unknowingly comes into possession of a cursed inheritance. She is suddenly thrust into a world of myths and legends, where the intangible and the strange are the fabric of everyday life, and deathless gods vie for victory at any cost.

As allies converge to help Elena fulfill the prophecy, one of whom is struggling with his own inheritance, Elena must choose for herself the measure of her own destiny.

Reviewed by: Katheryn J. Avila

The Review:

The Butterfly Crest is a great read. Beautifully written with exquisite imagery and attention to detail, it sucks you right in until the very end, immersing you into a world both familiar and strange. I’ll admit, I had some trouble with it at first, but that’s just personal preference for brevity. The author’s description of the scenery and creatures really puts you right into the scene with Elena, and that’s not a quality many authors have. A few times she ran the risk of over-description (if that’s a thing), but she always balanced the scenery with witty banter or internal dialogue. I can’t get enough of Elena’s conversations with the strange beings around her – most of all the antagonistically friendly gods that help her (I’m looking at you, Galen and Bryce) – and all the dialog really does come across as natural, going a long way in the character development department for me.

Elena is a great protagonist: well-developed, strong, and yet vulnerable and capable of asking for help. Eiry is the perfect leading man: caring, protective, but willing to concede to Elena and not falling to the “Edward Cullen” type of male character. Not only are the two main characters very well-written and developed, but the entire supporting cast – from the most minor demon to the larger gods – were well-researched, developed, and given personalities. Eva Vanrell does an incredible job of juggling a large number of characters without letting any of them feel flat. A few examples: Bryce, Galen, and Gavin. Without risking spoilers, they’re on the peripheral for most of the story, not extremely central characters, and yet their personalities come through in every gesture, every word, so that, while not as expounded upon as the two main characters, they feel just as real. The same can be said for any of the other minor characters. From their descriptions to their dialogue – they are supremely vivid and alive.

Just like the characters, the plot was complex, intricate, and compelling. The deeper the author drew me into the story and the world around Elena, the more questions popped into my head, mirroring Elena’s own thought process and experience as she did her best to navigate what was now her life. The mythology behind Elena’s situation is creative and inventive – completely inspired! Every twist and turn, while unexpected, made complete sense, and as the story went on, everything fell in place like puzzle pieces. It’s such a great story, I really cannot wait until the sequel! And, although I already own a digital copy, I might be investing in a paperback – just because I can.

Conclusion: I highly recommend this book to anyone who’s into any kind of mythology. It’s an epic fantasy that reads and feels like a mix between the epic poems of old (Iliad, Odyssey) and some current globe-trotter novels (The Da Vinci Code). I can’t wait to see what’s in store next for Elena!

Beautifully written with exquisite imagery! #amreading #bookreview @katheryn_avila #ourwriteside Click To Tweet

Friday Flash Fiction Train

Friday Flash Fiction Train

All aboard the Friday Flash Fiction Train! Each week, a new prompt will take us to parts unknown – sit back, check out the prompt, and enjoy the ride.

But first, some rules.

  1. Every week, a random prompt will be posted on Friday. Participants have until Wednesday at 12:00 PM EST to write and submit a response in the comment section. Your story must be posted in the comments to count.
  2. The catch – after the first week with a winner, the responses to the weekly prompts must build off the previous week’s winning entry, continuing its story. To avoid never-ending stories, the contest will reset every 5 weeks. We’re aiming to tell a story in 5-episode bursts.
  3. Voting will be open to decide a winner from Wednesday at 12PM EST to Thursday at 10PM EST. Voting will be on site and also in our Facebook group, OWS Word Mafia.
  4. The winning piece will be featured in the next prompt, with links to the winner’s social media.
  5. Word limit: 400.
  6. All responses are property of the authors.
  7. Completed stories might also be compiled into ebooks in the future!

To the prompt!

“With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

Remember – participants should include name/pen name and any links they’d like to share for promotional purposes (Twitter, FB Page, Goodreads, Website, etc).

Not sure you want to play? Check out the contest’s previous incarnation for an idea of how it works.

Hop aboard the #FriFlashFicTrain & enjoy the ride! #amwriting #writing #prompt Click To Tweet
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