Hello everyone. Last month I received 29 entries from 17 authors. One was disqualified for only being 99 words because it was 100 words including the title. 😦 Another for being 98 words (100 including the title) which was a real shame because it was the author’s only entry and a newbie to this competition.
The winning stories are ones that I reacted most favourably to. They were clever, surprising, eek-making (in a good way),or gave me a warm fuzzy feeling (without being sickly). A tougher mix this month so
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 so do enter new stories this month*, next month, whenever you like (but not in advance!). 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).
Apart from the top three and highly commended, there are some ‘Honourable Mentions’. They don’t win anything but they were so close to being Highly Commended that I wanted them to know how close they came. It’s still something for them to put on their CVs.
*The theme for September is ‘complex’ and you can submit your entries (and do send three) at any time up to midnight (UK time) on Sunday 30th September. Details and entry forms on https://morgenbailey.wordpress.com/100-word-free-monthly-competition. 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 £60 / $60) or a free edit and critique of up to 2,000 words (worth £14 / $18):
Lesley McLean with ‘Peeping Tom’
Mary scraped leftovers into the slop bucket. Her pigs would eat well tonight.
She locked the restaurant door and mopped the kitchen floor.
As she cashed up, she sensed Tom behind her. A swift flick of her mop had him on his back.
Pole positioned over his throat she jumped on it like a surfer mounts his board. Mary didn’t like being watched.
She strung her victim upside down from the pulley. Blood dripped from his slashed throat into the sink.
Eyeballs bobbed like ping pongs in the slop as Mary lifted the bucket to go to feed the pigs.
Two second place (both winning free access to two of my online creative writing courses (currently worth £40 / $40) or a free edit and critique of up to 1,500 words (worth £11 / $14) – in alphabetical order:
Hilary Ayshford with ‘Last One Standing’
She had always known she was not the same as everyone else. At school she was on her own at lunchtime or in the playground, the last to be picked for sports teams, the only one not to have a boyfriend.
Her mother told her that a time would come when being different would be a good thing.
She waited patiently.
When the epidemic struck, killing all those around her, she was left untouched.
She prayed that it would take her too, but here she was, standing alone surrounded by a sea of carnage, once again the one left over.
Patricia Cooksley with ‘Dad’s Café’
What would you call a new café on the Costa Del Sol?
It was Dad’s idea to call it ‘Las Sobras’, which he composed from the initials of his six grandchildren, as he wanted them to help out in their holidays in exchange for lodgings.
It had been his life’s ambition to develop a cafe in Spain and now, in his semi-retirement, ‘Las Sobras’ opened on a busy promenade in Fuengirola.
To his dismay, the café was not patronised.
While drowning his sorrows at a neighbouring bar, amidst peals of laughter, Dad learned the translation of his café’s name: leftovers.
Two third place (each winning free access to one of my online creative writing courses (currently worth £20 / $20) or a free edit and critique of up to 1,000 words (worth £7 / $9) – in alphabetical order:
Celia Jenkins with ‘ The Smallest Snips of Silk’
We got married in the spring. I’d spent the winter months making my wedding dress (having inherited my mother’s seamstresses’ fingers) and was surprisingly pleased with the result.
Silk is notoriously difficult to work with, but I’d ordered extra, just in case something went wrong.
We hadn’t planned on having a baby so soon, but that’s the way it happened. I made a tiny christening gown from my leftover fabric – the ivory bamboo silk was perfect. So delicate.
We used it as a burial gown, on a cold November morning, for a baby we hadn’t wanted until he was gone.
Laura Besley with Being Neighbourly
I know her husband has just died, but still. Opening the door at three thirty in the afternoon in your dressing gown. It’s not on.
I’m holding leftover curry in a Tupperware tub. Always make too much, I do.
Her hand shakes as she reaches out for it. ‘Thank you.’
‘A little advice, dear–’
‘No, thank you.’ She closes the door.
A sharpness around my stomach. I was only going to say. I could’ve been more help to her than she’ll ever know. Nothing beats first-hand experience.
Slowly, I walk back home. I hope I get my Tupperware tub back.
Highly commended (winning my Entering Writing Competitionscourse worth £20 / $20) or a free edit and critique of up to 1,000 words (worth £7 / $9) – in alphabetical order:
- Jennie Gardner with ‘No More Seconds’
- Justin Rulton with ‘Subjugation Pending’
- Lestie Mulholland with ‘Moving On’
- Peter J. Corbally with ‘Clearing Up’
Honourable mentions (not winning anything but only narrowly missing out and still looking good on their CV) – in alphabetical order:
- Bridget Scrannage with ‘Time to Leave’
- Diana Hayden with ‘Plenty for Everyone’
- Ian Marshall with ‘Silence’
- Terri Mertz with ‘The Apprentice’
Congratulations, everyone. The entries for this month are already drifting in. Remember, you can send up to three per month so rather than miss out on a chance by sending one story, do submit more.
If you’ve enjoyed these stories and / or just want to leave a comment, please do so below and / or you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org., although I won’t (can’t) discuss forthcoming entries unless it’s a general query.