Well, I didn’t win the Flash Fiction World Competition (my entry is here), nor did I even get placed. I’m not bitter (much! Lol), no seriously, I’m fine about it….but, I did find it interesting, what the owner of the site, Vic Errington, had to say about Flash Fiction competition judging.
“I said last time what all writing competition judges say: choosing the winners is a very difficult thing to do. There are always more stories good enough to win than winning places available. I actually considered adding fourth and fifth place winners, but bankruptcy is something I try to avoid.
Many stories are incredibly enjoyable to read but they don’t, in varying degrees, adhere to flash fiction ‘parameters’ and conventions. One scenario that I found in some great pieces of writing is that the story was not a ‘complete’ story – the main expectation of flash fiction.
When readers, after reading an FF story, say that they want to know what happens next, or that they would love to learn more about how the characters developed after the event of the actual story, then, despite the obvious talent of the writer, it isn’t flash fiction. The story needs to stand completely on its own, leaving the reader satisfied and fulfilled.
A flash fiction story should not contain social comment (unless it is part of plot-related dialogue,) or narrator’s thoughts and opinions. The plot is everything in FF. Didactic narrative diverts the reader from the plot and goes against the ‘minimalism’ of true flash fiction – the stripping of everything extraneous to the plot itself. Some great pieces were let down by this.
Many of the stories I read developed brilliantly until the ending. A twist is great, but not strictly necessary. What does have to happen though is that the ending/resolution must say/do something that has a marked effect on the mind of readers – something that teaches them, gives them an aha! moment, makes them ponder long after finishing the story, or even makes them laugh out loud.
In choosing the three winning stories I looked for those that come the nearest to perfection in relation to the points I make above.”
Ok, interesting, back to the drawing board then lol. Entering competitions is as much about luck as it is about talent. Even if the story is perfect, if the judge doesn’t gel with it, you’ve got no chance 😉
Today is World Storytelling Day which doesn’t appear to mean much here in the UK, I’ve never heard of it 😦 There are events going on in some countries, so check out their website for more info. The theme this year is tree’s….so in honour of that, here’s a picture of my favourite tree lol.
So let’s celebrate World Storytelling Day…..Tell me a story….. I know it’s not orally as such, but, it’s as close as I can get to joining in 🙂
I’ll go first……
Once upon a time there was a woman. Career minded, successful, living the dream, but single. Her little brother lived overseas (think, I dunno, running a farm in the outback of Australia) and he was in trouble, financially. She agreed to take 3 months off work to go out there and sort him out (shes a bit of a control freak and works in finance). She meets the man who is bankrupting her brother (the villain). He’s GORGEOUS, rugged and single. She ends up torn between her brother and what could be the love of her life (who turns out to be a rather nice chap and was only carrying out the instructions of his evil step father).
An idea from my note book that will probably never get written….not too sure if I’m really any good at romance 😉
Yesterday’s prompt about the eve of the wedding turned into a story about a young guy, marrying his girlfriend because she’s pregnant….but he doesn’t love her. His mum realises something isn’t quite right and talks him into cancelling. That’s as far as I got, but I’m thinking she’s probably going to try to stop him seeing the baby….very Jeremy Kyle lol 😉 Today’s prompt is write about a family meal. Ooooo, that’ll be fun 🙂
I just realised, it’s Storytelling Day every day on my blog 😉