6-word Stories Tell a Story on Their Own

I worked on this last week, but I guess I forgot to post. It was something I saw on a Facebook feed from a previous year. Someone had shared some 6-word stories and they were heartbreaking. Beautiful though, but amazing how they were able to portray so much with so little words. It’s such a great challenge though for creative writers.

Let’s see what you can come up with…here’s mine:

Seven 6-Word Stories

1.  Brian said, “Goodbye.” Then he jumped.

2. Snowflakes danced around flower-covered headstones.

3. Black coffee drank up searing disappointments.

4. The advertisement read: need companion, non-violent.

5. Clutched hands trembled, the doctor spoke.

6.  Tail wagged. The Vet said, “Ready?”

7.  Birds chirped happily over rushing water.

Random Flash Fiction: Miss Green

Hmm. Wanted to write some fiction tonight. Sat down and this kind of popped out. Not sure I’ll continue…but hey, it’s something. 

Hope everyone is having a great night, and happy writing!

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Miss Green

Her hair was the color of straw; in dreads and pulled up on the top of her head. I loved the way it looked heavy and woolly, like she was carrying some sort of burden that spoke of an adventurous spirit, a need to get a way and explore.

She wore an electric green top, and the jewelry on her nose and ears and hands were a metallic green. She looked like something electric and natural, like a cyborg-computer mixed into the natural environment; something that couldn’t be outdated or out-sourced.

I’d ventured into this club because my friends told me to. Go to The Hollow they told me, you’ll love it. “Eclectic,” another friend had said. “Eccentric,” said another.

I found it to be a place full of oddities – like me. I wasn’t in any position to judge, really. My shy, awkward persona seemed to melt well into the absurd: the guy wearing the golden tights and the black sparkly mask, the woman dressed in garb that looked nineteenth century, and the blonde with the silver bikini and chewbacca tattoo on her stomach. What guy couldn’t resist a woman who had an ode to one of the greatest movies on earth tattooed on her body?

I found Miss Cyborg-Green on the dance floor. She was dancing to a funky beat; something with all drums and a nasal groan. Every one else seemed to be talking or drinking – not the typical mixed drinks and beer, no – mostly ales and wine, and I saw someone drinking coffee.

The lights were dim, but not completely dark. There was an atmosphere of frivolity. If I blinked my eyes, I could lose myself in another world. I felt the magic, the otherness in the air and was certain that Miss Green was a person that I wanted to meet.

Writing Prompt # 147: ‘Sorrow croons for love…”

Looking for a little inspiration tonight. Liking the new location, but still struggling to become comfortable with new surroundings and this is very important for us writer-types. We need to be able to find our writing voice anywhere, and I want to make sure mine is still there alive and kicking.

Got this prompt off creativewritingprompts.com because the book I usually use is packed away somewhere and I haven’t opened all of my office boxes yet…whoops. Not sure if its supposed to be a short story? A poem? Where it goes, nobody knows…

(Oh, and it totally isn’t # 147 on the website, I lost the number when I clicked away from the page. Oh well, it’s somewhere!)


Sorrow croons for love lost

tomorrow is another day

today is an opportunity

The young woman closed the book in her lap with a snap. “What a bunch of hooey,” she muttered.

Love wasn’t an opportunity for her…far from it. She grabbed her black shoulder bag where it was squashed against her legs on the concrete. She stood up and brushed the dirt off her clothes. Like it would matter. Her skin crawled and her head ached. Her dirty-colored blond hair fell in tangled waves around her pale face.

She walked on. The streetlights cast the street in a strange green type of glow. The road looked like it was full of molten lava, all cracked and glowing as cars rumbled over the potholes.

The librarian she’d met while she was rummaging through the library’s trash bins didn’t know what she was talking about.

“Here, honey,” she’d said. “I was going to take this home and shelve it…but you have it. You look like you could use a little love in this life.”

She’d taken it with numb fingers. She’d never been one of those people to remember gloves. And the old woman had looked so clean and smelled of lotion. The kind that her mother used to wear before she’d had thrown herself out of the window after Daddy shot himself.

She wasn’t sure if she had even said, ‘thank you.’

The woman had given her a weak smile and then had shuffled off. Like she knew already that Sarah didn’t have the words to say what she should have.

Sarah found a more comfortable place amongst the moss and the concrete, and the trickles of water underneath the red bridge which cut across the only dirty water-way in her not-so-small town.

She opened the crinkly pages, ran her fingers over words that were clean and very old but brand new to her. She pondered that for a brief moment, how words were never the proper age to anyone. They were always becoming something new, meaning something different to anyone. Somewhat…timeless.

A frog jumped and she with it, and the croak he left with a splash gurgled across the empty spaces, the cool night, the sound of concrete rumbling, cars and artificial light.

“Words are timeless,” she read.

age is but a number

crawls across space

and time, and I with it

“Don’t be just another number,” she continued, eyes glued to the page.

be the delicate words

you are reading so much about.

 

 

Flash Fiction: The Proposal

I write a lot of notes in my phone’s notebook. Grocery lists, dreams, story ideas, names, blog ideas…you get the picture.

Found this in my phone written about a year ago. I guess I was going to submit it somewhere, but had forgotten about.

Going back and reading my dreams, too, are a hoot, but I think that’s worthy of a post all on its own. Anyway, enjoy. 🙂


The Proposal

A man leans against his black SUV in the early morning chill and stares down at his burning hands. His girlfriend left him, or maybe she died; it doesn’t matter now.

He thinks it might matter when he can get back inside and finally warm his hands, but he can’t decide what to do. His thoughts are jumbled, and panic ignites in his chest. He fumbles with the door handle behind him and climbs back in the SUV, rubbing and blowing at his hands.

He eyes the velvety box sitting in the glove box, which has spilled open, papers sliding down to the mat on the passenger side floor. He calls 911 and starts to sob into the receiver.

“Fiance,” he gasps. “Floor. Not breathing.”

He relives the scene etched forever into his vision as he begins to describe what happened. Her collapsed body on the sofa, her arm dancing towards the floor. The other one pinned awkwardly underneath her chest. She could have been passed out from drink, she could have been drooling into the sofa cushions, but she wasn’t.

Yesterday, she had told him yes, but today doesn’t feel like an affirmation.

Later, they will tell him that a complication with her medications was the cause; a misuse of sleeping aids. It haunts him to think that maybe she couldn’t sleep because she wasn’t happy, or that maybe she was too happy and sleep wouldn’t come.

Either way the cold continued, and he could never warm his hands.

A bit of Flash Fiction: Fairytale World

Probably been marathoning a little bit too much Once Upon a Time today on Netflix. 😉 But when you don’t feel well, what else is there to do?

An old hag yelled at me today. Did I forget to mention she’s my boss? I imagine her as this crumpled type of creature with claws for fingers and eyes that glint with rage and blindness.

I was assaulted by the copy machine. She snatched those papers out of my hands so fast, she might have snapped her fingers…poof. Papers gone in a flash of magic.

Oh, if I were to have magic. What a glorious world this would be. What a glorious one I would live in. Still, a 9 to 5 isn’t some kind of torture chamber… Mostly.

Now, where would the prince charming fit in? I suppose the guy in marketing has some kind of charm. He did wink at me the other day. Or maybe there was something in his eye?

“Cindy!?”

I look up and there’s the old hag herself. Hands on her hip, glaring down at me. “Didn’t you get my email?” She says. She throws more papers on my desk. “This is the wrong report. I want the one I gave you yesterday.”

After a few, “Yes, ma’ams,” from me, she’s on her way.

I watch her in her gray skirt-suit as she storms away, her ridiculous black heels look like those crooked ones that witches always wear.
Huh, how appropriate. I imagine myself with a bow and arrow trained on her back. One released breath and twang she’s down for the count, never to terrorize anyone again.

Lucky for her, the phone rings. I pick it up without another thought. “Mrs. Applebaum’s office. How can I help you?”

Ah, I suppose there’s always another day.

50 Word Stories: Turmoil

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I think I took this when super storm sandy happened.

Water fell in torrents. What a perfect end to a stormy night. Rain poured down the gutter, my face fell with it. I looked down at my speckled blue rain coat, and flicked the dark drops from my shoulders. Tomorrow will be a new day. Today, I’ll bury the hatchet.

Writing Prompt #12: Write a story that consists mostly of dialogue

“So then Robbie told me that he caught this giant lobster, and it practically took his arm off.”

“What’d he do with it?”

A shrug from the man across the lunch table from me. “Dunno.” He picked at some chicken in his teeth. “Cooked it up–No. That one he threw back.”

Rafael has been regaling me with tales of fishing with his cousin in Maine. In the last fifteen minutes, I’ve learned that people in Maine talk funny, chowdah is the tits, and don’t stick your face in front of a lobster. Specifically, its claws.

“What’d you do this weekend?” He asks me.

I shrug. “Went to the park. Worked out. Got a pizza.”

“Your life is so boring, dude.”

I shrug again but its more like a wince. “Daniella left, you know. Again.”

“Why you wasting your time with her? Get a new one.” He juggles his hands in front of his chest knowingly. Our co-worker, Jane, makes an appalled face.

I bite back a laugh. “Naw, man…I don’t think Merlin would approve.” Merlin’s my five-year old rottweiler who’s part human and part dog-child all wrapped into one-hundred and thirty pounds of goofball; but mostly he just hogs the covers.

“I think I have a cousin, you can meet,” says Rafael.

“I hope it’s not Robert.”

Chicken goes down the wrong way, and comes flying out across the table. “You’re gonna kill me, man.” Another cough. “It’s Ashley. You know, bright-blond, kinda slutty?”

I grunt. “What happened to Sarah?”

“Oh, she got married last year. Met some guy in Vegas. I told her not to, but she said he bought her some kind of leopard-printed dress that matched her ring…and well, she said her new man’s got style.”

“He rich?” asks Jane. Rafael gives her an odd look, like he forgot she was there, eating her PB&J.

“Yeah, where you been?”

“Any kids?” I ask.

“Twins. Cute, too, although you wouldn’t think it, cause her new husband, some kind of Antoniohe’s got a dog’s face, dude. Guess you can be ugly when you’re rich.”

“That’s not very nice,” says Jane.

For some reason, I immediately feel sorry for her. She gets up from the table and  slumps from the room.

“What’s her problem?” says Rafael.

I shrug. “Bad weekend, I guess. ” But my eyes are still on the open door of the break room.

I get up then without thought. “I’m going for a smoke.”

Rafael looks up at me, startled and then he looks down at his paper plate and realizes he’s already eaten his chicken and he’s spilled his rice all over the table.

“You’re such a slob, man.”

He laughs as he swipes rice into the trash. “Wait up, will you?”

But I pretend I don’t hear him as I walk purposely from the room. I can hear him calling to me from down the hallway.

“Oh! And there’s also my cousin Mary-Patrice…”

 

In Which, Somebody Dreams

000_0010She sat at her desk and drummed her fingers across the keyboard. Seven more days of this, she thought. Seven more days until she could surround herself in sun tan lotion and sand. Already she could hear the sound of the gulls and the waves lapping at the shore. Soon, she would stand in the surf and let the water wash over her ankles, sinking. Sinking and relaxing. Isn’t that what vacation was all about it?

Sinking her paycheck…but sinking…no, absorbing all the sun, waves, blue sky and soft comforter that she could stand. That time in the morning where you relish in the fact that there’s no place to be. No work, no appointments, no commitments whatsoever. Just the promise she’ll make to herself when she stretches her toes out of the covers and reaches her arms up over her head. Soon it’ll be the time to relax, to slough off the bruises of a long day, and the scourge of human emotions. Soon. But not yet. Not yet.

Some Non-Fiction: Today’s Observation, a Conversation at the Lunch Table

I’ve been listening to David Sedaris’ Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls, at work for the last few days. His book is a collection of essays about his life and some short stories. For some reason, it inspired me to try a little bit of non-fiction writing. I do need to record more of what I do, and the conversations I have on a given basis. Mr. Sedaris apparently writes too much in his journal, or so he confesses.

Non-fiction isn’t always easy for me. I don’t know if writing about your life, and the people in it is easier for some – but for me, I have to hold onto the little bit of friends I have. So it is difficult for me to just let go. Being a writer is about writing truth…and I worry too much about what people think.

Anyway, the point is, I am trying to challenge myself to try something new. I do not write enough about my life, and that is a shame. As boring as it is, there’s got to be some gem amongst the stones, right? Right?  Ahaha. Here goes.


 A conversation at the lunch table.

“Someone stole my carrots!” I look down into my lunch bag at the lonely tub of hummus. It stares back at me blankly, smudgy, feeling like old cement.

“Well that’s just great!” I say as I shove my lunch away. “Now I have nothing to eat my hummas with.” The last part is said with a bit of a whine. If its one thing that pisses me off, it’s going hungry.

I look up to a stare from my fellow co-workers. The woman next to me gets an uncertain look. “Someone stole my soda once.”

“Seems unlikely,” says another woman, her hair is grey, long, down her back. “I mean, if it was a bag of chips…”

“At least you have pasta,” says another.  A young woman, who reads graphic novels and writes in a journal covered with cartoon characters. “I have this,” and she gestures towards a microwave pizza she bought in the vending machine. It’s one of those french bread kinds, that are usually better in an oven.

“How it is?” I ask, already a bit skeptical.

She shrugs. “It’s not as crunchy as I thought it would be.”

I respond with a thoughtful, “that’s too bad,” and make my way out of the break room. One thing I do like about my job: the people I work with. There are other things that leave much to be desired. A clean floor would be nice, for one.

“I suppose I could have left it on the counter…” I mumble a bit disappointed, turning the dial on my lock to shove my purse away in my locker. “But it sounded so much better being stolen. Other than me just being forgetful. You know, I was late to work this morning.”

The older woman with the long hair laughs. “And that’s your story and you’re sticking to it!”

“You’re darn right.”

I watch her head back up the stairs, back to work. Back to the monotony and a desk that smells like dust and sometimes burnt coffee. I’ll sometimes prop my folder up on my desk, to keep the computer from blowing hot air on my face. For some reason, this gives me a weird sense of victory. I suppose there is pleasure in the little things in life. Like I’ve beat the system. Like who cares if the computer may over-heat, at least my face is cool.

Back to work…back to work…

When I get home, I am hungry and tired, and I find a bag of carrot sticks sitting propped up against the microwave. I wave a fruit fly away.

“Think they’re still good?” I mutter, as I inspect the orange skin, that now looks dried and crackley, like they’ve been in the desert doing some serious time and not lounging serenely on my counter all day in an empty apartment.

My boyfriend gives a deep chuckle from the next room. “I’m sure they’re fine.”

I scrunch up my nose and laugh as I put them in the refrigerator, feeling suddenly like a little kid and then shaking my head at the absurdity of it all. How silly I was to think people would actually steal healthy food. Crunching carrots on the sly, isn’t exactly inconspicuous.

Unless there’s some kind of crazed vegetarian out there, just ready to go postal.

I’m starting to think I should be on the look out for Bug’s Bunny. I’ve tried the “What’s up, dock?” thing to Michael while munching on a carrot before. He doesn’t find it attractive.

Ah, next time I suppose.

 

Flash Fiction: Smooth, Dark, World

Eh, just looking for some inspiration. Something different to write. Here goes…nothin’. Been having a hard time prioritizing my writing time again. This is something I definitely need to get into the swing of again. Found this writing prompt online via google. It was supposed to be for a poem, but suddenly I found myself in a fiction mood. 🙂


Writing Prompt: Write using all of the following words: smooth, soothe, work, dark…

It was a smooth, dark, night. A world full of purple and black. A night that touched the skin, and felt like velvet, a world that kissed and made promises.

He stood outside of the nightclub and held my hand. Across the street, the wind blew restlessly through the green trees in the small park. His eyes were wide and purple as they looked down at mine. I knew he had contacts in. I knew the diamond stud in his ear wasn’t real.

“Babe,” he said, as he held my hand. “Babe, I just need to focus on my career, on my work right now.”

I felt my stomach plummet. Suddenly, the street lights that tipped our shadows across the street, felt too-bright and intrusive. I stared up at him. Was his hair pink? Maybe blue? I batted at something that twinkled by his head.

I felt his grip tighten, or was he pulling me closer? “You’re drunk off your ass,” he said. “What else did you take? Acid?”

One didn’t need to take acid to discover how musical his voice was not. He enunciated something to me. I watched his soft mouth open wide and then purse together. Like a fish. Huh, fish lips. Fish gills. Fish and chips!

“Fish and chips?” He slapped my face. “Wake up!”

I stumbled back from him, moment gone. “I don’t need to wake up,” I blubbered as I touched at the blood coming down my nose. It was the drugs that made me weepy. It was the world that was taken away. It was the magic that had filled my head, and then was dumped out onto the street, useless, had lost its sparkle.

His skin was too pale anyway. His hair too black and greasy. He needed to focus on his music, right. Focus on a new pair of tits, and an ass that fit his hand better. Boy, I sure knew how to pick them.

I stumbled across the street.

“Adriene!” He called to my back. I ignored his grave voice. The wind that blew music through the trees was calling me. The smell of something new and fresh and not forgotten called me, soothed me.

The moon came alive on my face, then. The light that managed to trickle down into the city, lit all of the trees and the benches and the large grey stones next to the park’s entrance in a gray-blue light.

It was the fairies calling me. The fairies and soft green grass and a ground that fit just right. I imagined myself curling into the long grass, the tickle of wild flowers next to my face, and then I was doing just that. I was in the grass and in the dirt and I would lay there forever and never wake up.

Never wake up.