More Meat, More Quickly

Betty Crocker

OK, so, in the interest of biting the bullet and taking the whole “challenge” concept from my last post way too seriously, I have decided to go ahead and post my “Horror Story” for the Short Story Challenge in the competition critique forum.  It seems like a very participatory group, which is different from any contest I’ve entered before, and I was all Big Talker Betty Crocker about having nothing to fear from feedback on this story, which is a lot easier to say when you keep the story secret and don’t give anybody the chance.  So here goes.

  • My Assigned Genre: Horror
  • My Assigned Subject: A Genetically Modified Organism (GMO)
  • My Assigned Character: A Prisoner
  • Max word count: 2,500

They’re looking for “interesting and inventive” stories, and  I’m gunning for big points in creative interpretation of genre and theme.  With that in mind, please enjoy “More Meat, More Quickly.”  And if reading it horrifies you, by all means say so — this is probably the only time I’ll take that as a compliment.  Continue reading

A Challenge? The Horror!

Since The Man from PigPerfect mysteriously turned up on her front porch, Janessa Chang-Showalter has had to shoot her dog, watch someone else shoot her hormone-crazed husband, and now she’s scared to death of the baby she’s being forced to deliver. She’s beginning to wonder if running off with Andrew to his Nebraska hometown was such a hot idea after all.


I love a good writing exercise.  Timed exercises; photo prompts; ones that use structure, like 100 words or haikus — I like the way they get things flowing, and I love to see the way a gang of writers can take the same prompt and take it in a hundred different directions.  So when a friend of mine told me about NYC Midnight’s Short Story Challenge, I was all in. There’s a time element (8 days, in Round One, to write a story from scratch), a word limit (2,500), and prompts relating to genre, subject, and character — a competition seemingly designed just for me!  I figured as long as I didn’t get Horror for my genre, I had this on lock.

The night before the Round One assignments were revealed, I actively fretted: I hope I don’t get Horror as my genre for the Short Story Challenge.  And the Universe, as is occasionally her wont, picked up on two key phrases — namely “Horror” and “the Short Story Challenge” — and lined ’em right up for me in the nick of time.  By fretting about it, I had more or less asked for it, and I sure did get it. Continue reading

If It Ain’t Broke

There are few things I love as much as I love The Golden Girls, which is why I love these Valentines!  I can’t take credit for whipping them up (you know I would if I could), but I’m happy to post them here for the third year in a row for you to Snip and Send (or, well, hand deliver — today is the 14th.).

Yeah, it’s a Hallmark holiday, but what the hell?  I figure any excuse to celebrate love — be it for your partner, your smoldering secret crush, or priceless television comedy — is something you might as well seize.