Posts Tagged ‘Tuesday Tales’

Tuesday Tales 61 WINNER

Uncategorized | Posted by davidludwig
Oct 10 2012

Tuesday Tale Judging

I’m no good at promoting competitions, so I’m pretty happy with the turn out for this week with that in mind. We had some strong entries and several that were real pleasures to read. Since as part of my judging process I take notes on all of the entries, and as a writer I value feedback on my own work, I’m going to share my notes here on my site though I’m sure the official post over at Glitterword will be significantly abbreviated.

Judge’s Notes

Robin Abess (@Angelique_Rider) – Showtime – Something about the word “pitchman” really satisfies me, it says so much about the character and the scene in very little space. Definitely got a grim smile from me at the end. Darned pitchmen.

Rebekah Postupak (@Postupak) – Another excellent hook, you had me smiling and hungry for more in the first sentence of self appraisal. A great cautionary tale, but I’m not entirely sure I understood what happened. My impression, which I’m mostly sure is right, is that the dragon was turned into a human retaining only the draconic tail. Loved your dragon either way.

Ryan Strohman (@rastrohman) – Definitely got a hardboiled detective vibe from your 100 words, with the narrator who knows better and gets in trouble anyway. I like the attention to the shoes and the fact that you incorporated the secret word into the whole concept of the piece rather than just a throw away sentence. Unfortunately something about this piece doesn’t pop for me, and I can’t figure out what.

RRKovar (@rrkovar) – Crossroads – Great voice on your characters, and definitely a sweet way for a witch to get info as long as he does in fact manage to hang on to his soul. You have me curious about the larger story this snippet comes from. For consistency I would have appreciated more alliteration from the demon though, and there may be some grammatical trouble in the first line? I’m not great with grammar myself, but ‘Demon tongue twisted like her tattoo vines.’ doesn’t quite make sense to me.

Lisa McCourt Hollar (@jezri1) – Blind Date – Great immersion in the moment, and coming from you I was expecting some extraordinary twist by the end, and I actually think I was  a little disappointed not to get it. The word count is extremely limiting, but I still feel there could have been more of a story or point to this one. As is I felt like this would be excellent characterization for a longer piece.

Karen Valenzuela (@VictoriaNoir89) – The Cellist – Great period assassination. The disconnect of never getting any names or motives in connection with the murder is highlighted by using The Cellist as your title, first words and protagonist. It really makes me want to know more, which keeps the story in my mind long after I’ve finished reading as well as coming back to comb for additional clues… Though, I don’t think you used either of the prompts, so I think that’s a disqualification…

Nick Johns (@nickjohns999) – Mr Dark’s Designs – Egh, very visceral beginning. Something about bloody finger nails really hits me, so that’s a strong hook. You follow up with great sensory details like the ‘sewer sweat reek’. Really intrigued by the whole setup of paltering away curse marks onto others… It’s fascinating and compelling. Great entry, and very tempting for an honorable mention, but I think I’m deducting a few points for the Wednesday submission.

Honorable Mention

Alissa (@lissajean7) – I love how you started at the bottom of the picture, the shoes, and worked your way up to the art. Can totally buy the character who would rather be barefoot, and you present both the fancy shoe and art scenes in ways that I can strongly relate to. Bonus points for using more than one of the definitions.
Your attention to details and double usage of palter are what snagged you the honorable mention.

 

Winner

Rakel’ Sampson (@SampsonWriter) – Ooo, very nice! Your first sentence hooked me perfectly, I had to know more about whether she would live up to or defy the picture she presented—and what a pretty package for Vengeance! Whether super-hero or fantasy, this is absolutely in my genre, and is a completely told tale in merely 100 words.
You’re the clear winner in my book for such an elegantly constructed piece that fully incorporates both prompts and within the limited word count hit so many of the right buttons for my personal tastes.

*-Winning Entry-*

She looked the picture of innocence; blonde curls and open green eyes. Then his eyes trailed downward, lighting on the artwork of vines and flowers adorning her legs. What a mystery, he thought as they ate dinner.
On the dark walk home he made his move. Before he got a good grip on her thigh, something grabbed his wrist.
“Careful. The more you struggle the tighter my vines get,” she hissed.
“Easy. I wasn’t going hurt you,” he paltered. Then his eyes widened as the tendrils reached his neck. “What are you?” he choked out.
She leaned in close. “Vengeance.”

*- -*

So get onto Twitter, Google, Facebook or whatever you use and spread the good news of winner @SampsonWriter and honorable mention @lissajean7 for all to know their glory.

You can read the other entries at http://glitterword.wordpress.com/2012/10/09/tuesdaytales-61-palter/

Tuesday Tales-Kerri’s Creatures at the Cathedral

Uncategorized | Posted by davidludwig
Oct 10 2011

The air was still as death. Even the soft click of Kerri’s boots on the cobblestone drowned out the distant thunder, with a sad loneliness that wouldn’t even echo. Stopping outside the deteriorating old cathedral Kerri could hear the far off storm—and wished it would make up its mind to blow on in. If it were raining outside that would at least make her decision to go inside much easier. Kerri wasn’t really surprised Mirro had suggested they meet here, but she shivered under the foreboding gaze of the old building. It seriously felt like it was watching her!

*** Continued from Tuesday Tales***

It looked like Mirro was probably already here; she’d left the side door open. Kerri made her way in with a sigh. Just once she’d like to meet in a nice, well-lit, coffee house—or even go shopping at the mall! If Mirro had wanted to hang out in a creepy old building they could’ve just stayed at the mansion Kerri’s mom had left to her… Actually, it was nice to get out of the mansion. Kerri was just picking her way through the overturned folding tables and chairs toward the main hall, when she froze!

This wasn’t an old building at all! It was all blown out, but there was electrical lighting overhead, and in spite of the old gothic style the building was too perfectly formed to be hand-craft. There wasn’t even any dust, which was more than Kerri could say for her own house! As if on cue, the side door slammed shut behind Kerri!

“Mirro? Is that you?” Kerri felt stupid just for asking, but raised her voice anyway, “Come on! Where are you?”

Drawing her wand from her embroidered tunic, Kerri illuminated the end to better examine her surroundings. Now that she looked at them from this side, it looked like the tables and chairs had been set up to barricade the side door. Moving on to the main hall, Kerri noted more damage to the stone inside the cathedral. The stone wasn’t weathered; it looked more like it had been clawed.

“Mirro! This isn’t funny! Where are you?”

Kerri grimaced as an acrid spectrum of rotting scents hit her from the main hall. Pews were scattered and the banners around the room were far too red for the otherwise dark cathedral. Twisted and dismembered bodies of the clergy were flung about the room, and… Where the banners pooling? Gross! Covering her face with her cloak, Kerri did her best to block out the smell as she crept into the room. The clergy were torn apart and left with horrified death-masks, partially devoured. Kerri noticed a trail of blood leading up the stairs to the tower. She also couldn’t help noticing that amid all the corpses and discarded body parts, there was no sign of any of the clergy’s hands. Careful to keep her white boots out of the gore and ichor, Kerri followed the blood trail up to the tower. Already she regretted coming here.

There were a few more dismembered handless bodies on the stairs, mostly at the landings, and the blood trail wound relentlessly upward. At last Kerri heard the carefree humming of her friend, and came upon Mirro kneeling by the corpse on the next landing. Long black hair, dark eyes and pale skin defined Mirro—that and the Victorian fashioned shoes and dresses she liked to wear. If she’d wear brighter colors, like a nice daffodil, she could be cute—but instead she always appeared vaguely gothic. Like the cathedral.

“Oh, hello, Kerri.” Mirro’s voice was as airy as ever.

Kerri groaned as she watched Mirro drag her fingertip over the wrists of the corpse in front of her, severing the hands by sundering reality, and dropping them into an extra dimensional pocket. The blood didn’t show clearly on Mirro’s black dress, but was already caking on her pale hands.

“Mirro! Please tell me you didn’t do this!”

Mirro’s eyes widened in surprise, “Of course not! I haven’t killed anyone in ages!”

Kerri sighed with relief she was determined to hold onto as long as she could, “So then, what are we doing here?”

“A little bird told me we might find something interesting here.” Mirro smiled dreamily, “And no reason to waste perfectly good hands.”

Of course, as Mirro stood up Kerri couldn’t help following her and the blood trail the rest of the way up. Now the pressing question was what did do this? And what if it was still here?

“It was a lovely moon last night, don’t you think?” Mirro glanced back over her should as they reached the door at the top of the tower.

The blood trail went inside. Before Kerri could object, or even cast basic protective spells, Mirro pushed the door open. And whatever Kerri had been expecting, it wasn’t what she saw. A naked guy, pretty cute actually, cradling the mauled body of a young nun—rocking and crying. He heard the squeal of the door opening though, and looked up at Mirro and Kerri with hopelessness and despair.

“She said, they could help me! She said they could do something about it! She said they could stop the changes!”

Kerri wasn’t sure what to say, though Mirro didn’t have that problem.

“She has lovely hands.”