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  1. #1

    November 2014 flash fiction competition

    Being English, the highlight of November has always been Guy Fawkes Night, with bonfires and fireworks. Itís an excuse to burn straw effigies of the eponymous villain, more often than not in the pouring rain, eat burnt sausages and half-raw jacket potatoes and place sticks of burning metal into the hands of toddlers. Whatís not to enjoy?

    Anyhow, the event is celebrated by an old rhyme:

    ]Remember, remember, the fifth of November,
    Gunpowder, treason and plot.
    I see no reason why gunpowder treason
    Should ever be forgot.
    So with this inspiration I offer you as the theme for November

    Gunpowder, Treason and Plot

    To be treated (and probably thoroughly subverted) as you will.

    As this is my first time at this and Iím really rather nervous about it, can you please let me know if Iím getting anything wrong. I hope this isnít too similar to anything recent Ė Iíve delayed you all long enough and my computerís playing silly games with me, so I havenít managed to check.

    Length: 1000 words.
    Submissions due by midnight 25 November 2014 GMT.


    1) Think of a story idea that includes speculative fiction elements (fantasy, science fiction, horror elements) and fits the theme stated above
    2) Write story
    3) Edit story
    4) Post story in the Stories sub-forum.
    5) Come back here and let us know that you posted your story and provide a link to that story (makes it easier for me to find your story when it comes time to vote).
    6) Read the other entries and offer comments that help the writer both know what they did right and what they did wrong (in your humble opinion)
    7) Vote when the voting poll goes up

    The winner takes over the next contest and has the honour of picking its theme.

    CONTEST GUIDELINES:
    PG-13 - generally, the forum restricts its contents to what would be acceptable at the PG-13 rating. However, we are lenient for creative purposes in the writing forum. Please warn readers if your story contains adult situations.
    Once you post your contest entry, we discourage writers from altering the original text submitted. While it may be okay to change a few typos here and there, please do not revise your piece substantially. If you would like to respond to feedback, you are encouraged to post your revision within the thread (but not the original post).
    Please refrain from voting for your own story.

  2. #2
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    My first experience of the whole Guy Fawkes thing was when I went to New Zealand for the first time (1995?) to visit my husband's family. I was amazed at how fervently folks enjoyed burning the effigy of that poor guy. I mean, I know he was a bastard and all, but damn. The animosity and enjoyment was fierce! I guess it's a tradition you just have to be born into or something...

    Great theme! I won't be able to participate, but I'll read/vote when the time comes.

  3. #3
    Ohhhhhhhhhhh!!!

    This...this could be pretty sweet. Nice theme!

  4. #4
    Isn't there some argument that Guy Fawkes was the fall guy? The plot was certainly used to foster and fuel anti-catholic feeling in England after James I initially came to the throne in 1603 trying to encourage religious toleration. But then, it is 20+ years since I studied the period, so what would I know.

    Interesting topic. Might have something on treason and plot. Might ditch the gunpowder.

  5. #5
    Man of Ways and Means kennychaffin's Avatar
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    Hmmm....squirrels in masks.....

    Last edited by kennychaffin; November 4th, 2014 at 08:11 AM.

  6. #6
    Registered User Jaigon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kennychaffin View Post
    Hmmm....squirrels in masks.....


    Squirrels rebelling against the humans who don't feed them nearly enough nuts.

  7. #7
    Man of Ways and Means kennychaffin's Avatar
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    Burn, baby, burn!

  8. #8
    Man of Ways and Means kennychaffin's Avatar
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    Given the election results this morning I'm envisioning a band of rebellious squirrels planting suitcase nukes under the congressional chambers....

  9. #9
    Beast on Board Luka Datas's Avatar
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    Finished my flash and it's here... http://www.sffworld.com/forums/showt...024#post745024

    I'm away for the next fortnight or so but def back in time to read the entries and vote.

  10. #10
    We parley for nobody norm's Avatar
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    For the past couple of months I've been addicted to this pc game, Guns Of Icarus, where you crew a flying ship and attempt to gun down other crews/flying ships:




    It's got me halfway tempted to write something about sky pirates. . . Mutiny, flintlock pistols maybe. . .

  11. #11
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by norm View Post
    It's got me halfway tempted to write something about sky pirates. . . Mutiny, flintlock pistols maybe. . .
    Sounds like fun!

  12. #12
    Beast on Board Luka Datas's Avatar
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    Hello all.

    I just realized that my flash entry was too long.

    I took 116 words out of it - so now it's exactly 1000 words.

    Is it alright that I did that?
    Last edited by Luka Datas; November 10th, 2014 at 12:25 AM.

  13. #13
    Registered User danielausema's Avatar
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    Quick question I didn't see an answer to in the rules...

    In the stories sub-folder, the rules state we must have posted a minimum number of reviews/critiques to be allowed to post. Does that apply to contest like this? I've just put up my critique of the one flash entry, and I fully intend to read and critique all the entries this month. But I don't want to run afoul of any expectations.

    Should I wait until there are at least three other entries (and I've critiqued them) before I post mine? Pick some random samples from earlier months and hope the writers are still looking for critiques? Or just post it now and add my reviews/critiques as other entries come in?

    Thanks for answering this newbie question...

  14. #14
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luka Datas View Post
    Is it alright that I did that?
    Hello Luka,

    I'll answer for SallyC because she doesn't seem to be around at the moment - I'm sure it is fine.

    We just don't want folks to substantial change an entry after posting it because...well, lots of reasons, but mostly because it is annoying.

  15. #15
    It could be worse. ~tmso Moderator N. E. White's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danielausema View Post
    Quick question I didn't see an answer to in the rules...

    In the stories sub-folder, the rules state we must have posted a minimum number of reviews/critiques to be allowed to post. Does that apply to contest like this? I've just put up my critique of the one flash entry, and I fully intend to read and critique all the entries this month. But I don't want to run afoul of any expectations.

    Should I wait until there are at least three other entries (and I've critiqued them) before I post mine? Pick some random samples from earlier months and hope the writers are still looking for critiques? Or just post it now and add my reviews/critiques as other entries come in?

    Thanks for answering this newbie question...
    I believe what you are referring to has to do with the Workshop which is separate from these contests. You are more than welcome to post a story. You are not required* to read/comment/vote on the other entries, but it is considered a nice thing to do. Plus, you'll learn some and might even enjoy the stories.

    *Obviously, nothing is required on a forum you visit for fun.

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