Ticking Clock

Sometimes, delving through random YouTube videos can be highly informative. Typically, I’m watching them to kill some time, but from time to time I stumble onto a gem. One such video highlighted the space battle from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. Early on, it references Alfred Hitchcock’s definition of tension. While I could quote the man, I’d recommend watching the video so you can hear his full answer. But the important takeaway is about ensuring the audience knows something is wrong...

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Micro Fiction

Training

While it’s been a couple months since I’ve tried writing a comedy, I felt the itch to expand my skills, so I searched through past prompts for NYC Midnight’s Micro Fiction competition. When I read the prompt, the basic storyline thundered into my mind like a truck through someone’s front wall. With each passing second, the vague idea crystalized and in the blink of an eye, the dialogue between a couple tumbled into my laptop...

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Micro Fiction

Fleeting Beauty

While I was setting up my new phone, I stumbled into my Photo of the Day app and I setup its widget on my home screen. With the quick previews, a collection of lavender flowers caught my attention. Instantly, I knew it would be the center of a story. With my desire to create a story based on the image, I collected the URL and prepped my digital notebook for the story. As the days ticked by, the potential story wormed its way through my mind, poking at the collection of characters housed there. Eventually, the tale selected the protagonist, and the story tumbled from the depths of my mind...

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Flash Fiction

Alternatives

It has been said that there are only a few truths that are absolute. The first is the tax man. He will always get his due. However, the other commonly agreed absolute truth is death. While taxes are inconvenient, people strive to extend their time on this earth. The mystery of what comes after our fleeting life is a source of plentiful stories. Countless creatives have tried to capture their image of what happens next...

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Micro Fiction

Bombardment

With only a handful of days left in the month, I dove into the last story for April. Just like Combustion and Extraction, I wanted to explore the dynamic between Marcus and his living partner. From the moment I sat down to work on this tale, the rough outline flourished in my mind, like a weed invading a garden. Despite likening my story to something that’s undesirable, after several rounds of editing, I refined the narrative and fleshed out the dynamic between Marcus and his partner...

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Flash Fiction

Deluge

During my youth, rainy weather was the worst, especially when it struck, and I couldn’t escape to a dry patch. However, just before heading to college, I became a PADI certified scuba diver, forever altering my opinion of storms. After spending time submerged in lakes or the ocean, getting drenched no longer had the same effect on me. Now I can stand in the downpour and the constant patter of raindrops is hypnotic and utterly soothing...

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Micro Fiction

Extraction

Even before I wrote my first piece of exclusive flash fiction, New Personalities for my patrons, I’ve preferred writing some genres over others. After writing Partners, I really wanted to continue exploring this fledgling partnership. Fortunately, my wonderful patrons demanded another ghost story, which allowed me to detail a second entry, Combustion. However, I really didn’t want to wait for my patrons to select the genre again. So, I blended the mystery with Benjamin’s ethereal presence to continue their adventure...

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Flash Fiction

Pursuit

There is great truth in the beauty of simplicity. Throughout my life, I’ve only received one massage. It was a fantastic experience that I would like to duplicate given the right opportunity and means. However, it wasn’t the most relaxing thing I’ve done in my life. Those belong to the simplest of things, like skipping or throwing stones. Once you’ve collected your ammunition, there is something invigorating in the simple motion of flinging rocks. Unfortunately, just because something is relaxing doesn’t mean it can’t weigh you down...

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Micro Fiction

Combustion

Last month, when I sat down to write my ghost story, I thought about my issue with purely episodic storytelling. Before I wrote Partners, the only thing connecting my ghost stories was the note directing the shade to their next step in their journey. However, I thought about my favorite television shows, and I realized they fleshed out a central storyline one installment at a time. So, I created a pair of characters while laying the groundwork for the central storyline I wanted to follow with every future installment...

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Flash Fiction

Retrieval

Unlike the flash fiction I write for my patrons, where they select the genres, when I prepare these micro tales, I maintain complete control over the process. Despite the rapid turnover with flash fiction, micro fiction is even faster with its word limitation. That constant churn works wonders for my skills. The severe limit of this type of writing has its drawbacks and benefits. While it’s challenging to cram the entirety of a story into two hundred and fifty words, it allows me to hone aspects of my word smithing that still require work. Thankfully, that is exactly the reason I love writing micro-fiction...

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Micro Fiction

Duel

Every character needs to have a handful of defining traits. These range from aspects of their personality to specific garments or gear. This gruff wanderer’s key item is his helmet, which was the first thing I defined for Ramas. Eventually, I added a few more pieces of equipment, including his cloak, and gifted him with a set of powers that I was eager to explore. While I enjoy exploring this unique collection of abilities, I cannot for the life of me remember what inspired them...

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Micro Fiction

Crossing

Having just finished Partners and Select Wares, I was staring at the end of the month with one more story to finish for my patrons. However, I didn’t have a single idea for that storyline. Fortunately, when I don’t have any idea about potential narratives, I am quick to pull a prompt to seed my stories. So, I sat down at my laptop and pulled up some past prompts from NYC Midnight and randomly drew the skeleton for my latest thriller. This tale would take place on a canal and a headlight would make an appearance during the narrative...

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Flash Fiction

Tea Time

With each passing year, I fully intend to dedicate all the spare time I have to writing. Despite those lofty goals, life steps in and kicks me in the mouth. Whether I get sucked into some games, tv shows, books, or troubling times, I’ve never been able to claim that level of dedication. This year is no different. The constant barrage upon my focus forces me to make choices concerning the one limited resource we all have: time...

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Micro Fiction

Select Wares

With the month rapidly coming to a close, the moment I finished crafting Partners I turned my attention to the second genre selected by my patrons, Science Fiction. While I have crafted several worlds that could serve as the basis for this tale, one of them jumped to the front of the list. Despite knowing the genre and the location, I was having some trouble crafting the ultimate storyline. With the block fully in place, I plucked a prompt from NYC Midnight’s collection...

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Flash Fiction

Tears

The thing I love about micro fiction is the word limit. Having to tell a story with a cap of two hundred and fifty words forces me to focus on my diction and keeping the narrative tight. With that limitation, I’m willing to experiment with genres that I’m not entirely comfortable with, like romance and comedy. However, that doesn’t mean stories always flutter to the forefront of my mind. So, when I sat down to outline this piece of micro fiction, I pulled a random first line to kick-start my creativity juices...

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Micro Fiction