Text Box: Text Box: Winning Entries Third Quarter 2018

First: Coffee by B. Kuessner Hughes

Second: Desecration and Repentance by Wendy Swarbrick

Third: The Sisterhood by Sandra Crook

Click on the titles to read the three winning stories

Highly Commended: Dust to Dust by Jude Hayland

 

 

Judgeís Report for the third quarterís competition 2018 from Nik Morton

Reading the twenty-five flash fiction short stories in the short list proved fascinating and enjoyable. Sadly, I must select prize winners, while knowing that there will be an abundance of Ďalso-ransí that deserve praise too. Judging a writing competition is inevitably subjective, and we all bring to the task our own prejudices, likes and dislikes, maybe even subconsciously. Iím not a great fan of the present tense Ė though Iíve written screenplays which always employ it! As it happens, of the ten submissions in the present tense, all four winners favoured that tense.

The stories ranged from our everyday world to the far reaches of space, and several were near misses. The majority of the stories in the short-list did not disappoint. There were telling phrases aplenty, with a mixture of pathos, humour and even horror. Well done all those who were selected for the short list.

This is a 500-word competition and, while itís quite possible to write a vignette or tale in 250 words or so, a writer should be striving to use every word allowed and not skimp on description, character, and emotion; adding plot makes it doubly difficult, but it can be done. The winners have to involve the reader and they did just that for me.

Congratulations to the winners. They are:

 

1st: Coffee

Smells and tastes can evoke memories, and this tale does that for the protagonist, Margaret, sending her back to Malaya in 1952. Half a world away, more than half a century away, yet, thanks to good imagery and writing, the sounds, sights and scents permeate the recollection of a traumatic abandonment.

 

2nd: Desecration and Repentance

Again, we have a recollection, showing us that even small slights can linger for years afterwards, along with associated regrets. Good observation, putting us there.

 

3rd: The Sisterhood

A dramatic scene, sparely written, yet there is emotion between the lines. But thereís more to this than it seems as the end approaches. A great final sentence.

 

Highly Commended: Dust to Dust

A haunting tale of regret that packs a neat surprise ending.

 

We regularly receive several hundred entries each quarter, so those making the long and short lists should feel very proud.

 

Short Listed Entries for the Third Quarter 2018ó in alphabetical order

 

Alone and Palely Loitering by Sandra Crook

Breakfast for Two by Gill Mullin

Coffee by B. Kuessner Hughes

Departures by Margaret Leggatt

Desecration and Repentance by Wendy Swarbrick

Donít Look Back by Sherri Turner

Dust to Dust by Jude Hayland

Feral by Robbie Mori

Fly by Pam Bridgeman

Heat by Taria Karillion

In the Vacuum of a Former Astronautís Life by Caroline Murphy

Nemesis by Alison Woodhouse

One Small Step for a Journalist by Rik Lonsdale

Planet Earth Will Soon Be Closing, Please Make Your Final Choices by Taria Karillion

Press to Play by Alison Woodhouse

Seeing Red by Hilary Hopker

The Crime-Time Boogie by Sharon Boyle

The Extraordinary Coda of Rosemary Finn by Taria Karillion

The Girl with the Gold Earring by Malcolm George

The Last Greasy Spoon by Roland Denning

The Price You Pay by Sylvie Nickels

The Sisterhood by Sandra Crook

The Weekend Girl by Dermot McGillicuddy

Tinder Fungus by Frances Clark

Trevor's Head by Lucy Goldring

 

Long Listed Entries for the Third Quarter 2018 ó in alphabetical order

 

Alone and Palely Loitering by Sandra Crook

Anonymous by Julia Hartnett

Bad-Blood Boy by Sharon Boyle

Breakfast for Two by Gill Mullin

Caged by PJ Stephenson

Coffee by B. Kuessner Hughes

Cue Theme Tune by Adam Lock

Departures by Margaret Leggatt

Desecration and Repentance by Wendy Swarbrick

Donít Look Back by Sherri Turner

Dust to Dust by Jude Hayland

Eyes of Gold by Dannielle Grant

Feral by Robbie Mori

Fly by Pam Bridgeman

Heat by Taria Karillion

In the Vacuum of a Former Astronautís Life by Caroline Murphy

It Wasnít My Fault by Edwina Jones

My Hero by Ellen Evers

Nemesis by Alison Woodhouse

One Small Step for a Journalist by Rik Lonsdale

Park by Alan McClure

Planet Earth Will Soon Be Closing, Please Make Your Final Choices by Taria Karillion

Press to Play by Alison Woodhouse

Quantum Entanglement by Tom Serengeti

Rationalists Wear Square Hats by Katharine Derrick

Seeing Red by Hilary Hopker

So Long by Jo F. I. Weir

Sperm Counts by Alison Clink

Step to the Edge by Linda Grierson Irish

Study in Chiaroscuro by Carol Caffrey

The Crime-Time Boogie by Sharon Boyle

The Extraordinary Coda of Rosemary Finn by Taria Karillion

The Girl with the Gold Earring by Malcolm George

The Last Drop by Denise Bayes

The Last Greasy Spoon by Roland Denning

The Man, The Woman by Eduardo Estacio

The Price You Pay by Sylvie Nickels

The Sisterhood by Sandra Crook

The Square on the Hypotenuse by Sarah Mosedale

The Weekend Girl by Dermot McGillicuddy

Tinder Fungus by Frances Clark

Trevor's Head by Lucy Goldring

Who? I! by Victoria Williams