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Category: Steemit

Holiday Booking | A 50 Word Short Story

The line for the best-selling author was long.
Toby hadn’t seen him for ages.
“Come back next time,” said his assistant.
“But–”
“He’s a popular man.” She handed him a card.
The bookmark was signed by his father. “Sure. Next time.”
He dropped it in the trash as he left.

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On the Origins of Halloween | 50 Word Story

The cult leader reached the fields where her people toiled. They bowed as she approached.
“Family, our sacred book will now be replaced by…” Mother Rhapsody held up a triangle and struck a pure note. “This.”
As one the followers tore the pumpkins from the vines and flattened their leader.

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A Proper Goodbye | 50 Word Story

Grandpa’s eyes fluttered closed, face now still like a shrunken wax facsimile.
I touched Dad’s shoulder. “He’s gone. Let’s go.”
He smiled, lips tight with hidden grief. “I need a few moments.”
I swallowed. “I understand.”
I walked out into the autumn air, wishing I’d hugged him instead of speaking.

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To Edit is Divine | 50 Word Story

“Did you even read this before you darkened my door with it?” The editor glared.

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Pop | 50 Word Story

The coroner scribbled in her notebook. “Is that twenty-five feet? Thirty?”

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The Rise and Fall of Yellow Things | 50 Word Story

Surrounded by guards, the parent-murdering despot gave a jolly smile.
So close, but too far to reach. Especially for a boy.
If he did hit him, he’d be captured. Jailed. Killed.
The boy looked for something to throw. He weighed a lemon in his hand.
It was worth the risk.

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The Priest and the Pirate | 50 Word Story

The shade slew the last sailor.
Only the captain and I remained. And I, no pirate, but a priest disguised.

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The Break | 50 Word Story

Cassandra spun the dial.
“You done yet?” Joel never believed in her. “Security. Two minutes tops.”
A few more turns…
He sighed. “Time. I’m leaving.”
His footsteps faded just as the safe opened.
Pocketing the gems, she checked her watch. Thirty seconds.
Time enough to escape from security. And Joel.


I had so much fun with the challenge last week that I thought I would taking another crack at @jayna’s awesome fifty word story challenge again. This time the prompt was “break.” Never let anyone tell you that writing or editing a fifty word story should be easy just because it’s short. Ha! Here’s a glimpse of the effort that went into this.

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Baby in the Blender: How I Learned to Love Critique

We all write for different reasons, but sometimes I think that deep down, I think part of the motivation for writing at all is that we want to be loved. Just a bit. Maybe that’s why we take it so hard when people point out the flaws in our writing. It feels like rejection, and it hurts.

Let me paint you a picture.

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Hook, Line and Sinker — Story Openings (Part 1)

The Hook

Distractions. The world is full of them. The modern world even more so. There are a thousand things a potential reader could be doing other than reading your story (or novel, or screenplay, etc.). Even a reader who is willing to cooperate–who has made the commitment to spend time in your story with you–still has thoughts going off in the back of their mind. The siren call of their phone, the expectation that their kids will come home soon, the ever-present question about whether they really did turn off the gas. There are any number of reasons why even the most willing reader will put your story down. Then there are editors.

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