Hello everyone. This month I received 27 entries from 19 authors. One was disqualified for only being 99 words as the final word was split from its question mark so it ended up being two words. When the question mark was reinstated, it therefore sadly reduced the word count. Another was only 85, and a third quite a way over and included separated full stops (periods) which in themselves counted as three words, e.g. ‘full . . .’ instead of ‘full…’ which counts as one. Fortunately, both authors had each sent another story which were entered into the competition. There was another 99-word story which was the only one sent by that author so they missed out which was a shame.
You may be reading this thinking I’m harsh but it’s fair to everyone if I stick by the rules. I’ve taken great care to make the rules comprehensive but do let me know if you feel there’s anything unclear or lacking.
The winning stories are ones that I reacted most favourably to. You may have chosen a different order or indeed not placed one or more of them so if you entered and didn’t find your story / stories here, don’t lose heart. You probably only just missed out (there were originally eight highly commended then I whittled down to the maximum five) so do enter new stories this month*, next month, whenever you like. NB. If your story has been published, you’re still welcome to use it elsewhere providing they accept previously published stories. I’m not greedy in demanding exclusivity. 🙂
It’s an ongoing competition and free, so you could win at any time. There were new and familiar names this month so anyone could win… it’s all dependent upon whether your story grabs me, for whatever reason (whether it be clever, funny, unusual, quirky, or sweet). *The theme for September is ‘cool’ and you can submit your entries at any time up to midnight (UK time) on Friday 30th September.
So without further ado, below are the successful entries this month.
First place (winning free access to three of my online creative writing courses (currently worth £45 / $60) or a free edit and critique of up to 2,000 words (worth £14 / £22): Paul with ‘Unwanted Birthday’
He lay in total darkness, caressed by silk, when a creak from nearby tore him from his slumber.
He sprung upright only to collide with hardwood.
“Bat-crap!” He swore, then slowly pushed the lid off his coffin.
Head down, Igor spoke.
“Sorry to disturb, Master. I only meant to leave your Birthday cake.”
“It’s OK, Igor. Being immortal, birthdays are unwanted.”
“Unwanted?” Igor whispered.
“Yes. You see being a vampire truly sucks. I hate the taste of blood. I’d like a steak, just once!”
Igor smiled; then he hammered the wooden wish into his Master’s cold black heart. “Happy Birthday!”
Second place (winning free access to two of my online creative writing courses (currently worth £30 / $40) or a free edit and critique of up to 1,500 words (worth £11 / $17): Lestie Mulholland with ‘Woosome Twosome’
I was not looking forward to turning 40 next week, it really would be an unwanted birthday. I mean, me turning forty was like dying alone. I‘d been divorced for eight years now, single and lonely and couldn’t bear the thought of inviting myself to my own party.
There was a nice huggable man behind me in the movie queue. He picked up my parcels and told me his name was Harry.
“So, have you also come to the movies on your lonesome?” he asked.
“No,” I said cheekily, “I’m here with you.”
“Ah. Thank heavens,” he answered.
Third place (winning free access to one of my online creative writing courses (currently worth £15 / $20) or a free edit and critique of up to 1,000 words (worth £7 / £11): Gar Marsh with ‘A Day to Remember’
No one really enjoys that kind of birthday. “It makes me sound SOO old. I’ve no idea where the time went. Can that be another year? There’s still so much more to achieve before the end.” 140 characters. Perfect! She clicked SEND.
Her words went out to her 26,491 followers and she sat back waiting for the words of support to come flooding through the ether.
The deafening silence crowded in, one message here, a couple there. Her moment had passed. She realised, she was now a child of a yesterday generation.
“Finished! A nobody! It’s all over. I’m twenty.”
- Asra Choudhury with ‘Too Soon a Goodbye’
- Chantal Gaudiano with ‘Oh, Shoot!’
- Kenneth Weene with ‘The Cake’
- Paul Isaac with ‘Emily’
- Sowmya with ‘Rewarded Birth’
Congratulations everyone. I look forward to reading your entries for ‘cool’. You have until midnight (UK time) on 30th September when the theme (for October) will then become ‘a crime story’ (my favourite genre!). See https://morgenbailey.wordpress.com/100-word-free-monthly-competition for details inc. rules, prizes, and the entry form.