Wednesday, July 17, 2013

55 Word Challenge: Week Sixty-Six


Welcome back to #55WordChallenge!

For those that are uninitiated, the 55 Word Challenge is a contest to write a story in 55 words or less. Not an easy task, but fun and I have been blown away by some of the entries. See for yourself, past contests can be found here. (I am a bit behind in getting this updated.) The challenge begins at noon Eastern time every Wednesday and ends at noon Thursday. The story is based on one of three photo prompts. My only request is no porn. I don't want to hear graphic details. If it is erotic, make it titillating, not obscene. I know that can be done and done well.
The story is to be posted in the comment section below, along with your twitter handle or email address, so I can contact you if you are the winner.


And what does the winner get? Besides bragging rights? This badge, which can proudly be displayed on your blog or website. You can even have it tattooed onto your body, but that might be a little weird.  

If anyone is interested in contributing a prize, a book, cover art, whatever you want, let me know and we will work something out. If you are an artist that would like to have your work featured, let me know!
Photo Prompt:



  1. The mist came in quietly, wrapping itself loose, gauze-like between the trees. It was still ungodly hot, even for July, and Tony’s mind was on better, softer, blonder things. He didn’t notice the shape of the moon cresting the tall shadows of the trees, at least not until the pain came. The blood… the teeth.

    - Axel Howerton @axelhow


    I breathe deeply and remind myself it’s a nice day. Where is she?

    The water is calm, the sun shiny, and the air still. Didn’t she get that I need to see her?

    There should be more people here. I’m not the girl in the picture.

    Bring back the moon! I swear I’m not her!

    55 words

  3. “Will it ever stop, Daddy?” she asked. Her voice was barely audible over cacophony that surrounded us.

    “I don’t know, baby,” I answered. In the distance, the eternal fires burned as hotly as ever.

    “Will we die?”

    I could only squeeze her tiny hand in response. Any answer I gave would feel like a lie.

    55 words

  4. Lila looked at the photo, remembering the car and the day it’d been found full of exhaust fumes. They’d left the house in a hurry; leaving all her toys behind. Living at grandma’s had been tense, and mummy so sad. Forty years on Lila still wondered why her father had taken his own life.

    55 Words

  5. Moon

    He was just out of sight of the cabin, but it would have to do as the moon was even now breaking through the dense fog to illuminate him. His bones shifted, the fur along his back fell from his body, his canines shrank.

    Finally human, he made it to the cabin on two legs.

    55 words

  6. Bump
    by James Mender

    Not every DUST world is pretty. Some of them are cold and grey, even when the sun shines. You NEVER want to get caught out in the open on those worlds.

    Trust me on this one. On those worlds, the things that go bump in the night go bump in the daytime, too.



    ~ ~ ~
    Author’s Note: 55 words, @JamesMender

  7. The Price

    The photo is blurry, like my memory. Even now I cling to knowing she existed. I can’t remember her face. She’s too much to sacrifice to save the world. I don’t want to finish. I want to keep this memory, keep her. I shudder and complete the incantation. A tear falls on a blank photograph.

    55 words

  8. A Twilight Crescendo

    Her incantation spiralled into night’s sapphire sky on the wings of ravens and dark spirits.
    She'd already buried the blazing sun and now the moon shivered behind swirling mists.
    Her utterance rose with haunting clarity and the moon shrank, dwindling, until nothing but shade existed, and her nightmare song summoned and freed dusk’s malevolent doors…

    (55 Words)

  9. You just won’t let me die.

    I’ve jumped off bridges, in front of cars, from the tippiest tops of trees. Hairdryers in the tub, arsenic in my cornflakes, carbon monoxide, endless pink packets of aspartame—all to no avail.

    Given everything you already make me suffer, I’ve got a question.

    Is this hangnail really necessary?

    55 words

  10. “’53 Buick. Cold. Winter. Wool coat. White clapboard siding. Rear garage.” Eyes closed, the psychic caresses the photo. “Death hangs. Pieces in the trunk. Under the floorboard. In coat pockets. Bone fragments scattered like dust. Beneath the innocence of a child, the heart of evil. The camera pulls the spirit in, holds it captive.”

    55 words