COMPETITION: Scrolls Flash Fiction Challenge 1.3

Those of you who have listened to the latest episode of Scrolls will already know the results of the previous Flash Fiction competition, but as promised, we’re also publishing the top three entries here on the website.  Scroll on down to the bottom of this article to read them, and feel free to post any comments or questions underneath.  I’m sure the authors would appreciate any feedback.

Our latest challenge has actually been set before, but ‘your dog ate your homework’ so we’re going to give you a second chance…

All you need to do is tell us about a Fantasy, Science Fiction or Horror book for us in the form of a limerick.  Send it to us at [email protected] or record it by calling dion.winton.polak on Skype if you like.  The deadline is Sunday, 18th August.

The winning entrant will receive not one, but TWO fabulous books – Advent and Anarchy by James Treadwell, provided by our friends at Hodder.

To get you started, here are a few examples that the Scrolls team came up with:

Carmilla, by J Sheridan Le Fanu

If it’s saucy amusements you crave,

From a lover who’s fresh from the grave,

Then a real lady-killer

By name of Carmilla

Could soon be your vampiric fave.

The Adventures of Ulysses Quicksilver, by Jonathan Green

Need a Quicksilver hero with charm

To face peril with nary a qualm?

In a steam-punky realm,

Ulysses at the helm

Will do nicely! (You’re quite welcome, ma’am)

Slaughterhouse 5, by Kurt Vonnegut

You’re not sure if you’re old, young or born,

Chronal fractures can leave you forlorn.

The illusion of time

Is confusing, but fine

If you live with a girl who does porn.

Elric of Melnibone, by Michael Moorcock

A soul-sucking sword at your side,

Is a curse, not a matter of pride,

I am sorry to say

It’s addictive to slay,

So no wonder you’re friends up an died!

The Conan Stories, by Robert E Howard

For barbaric tales full of blood,

Ancient wonder and terror and mud,

Move with panther-like grace

To the E. Howard place

And read Conan (by Crom, he’s a stud!)

The Number Of The Beast, by Robert Heinlein

For pulp thrills and frivolous treks,

Full of mind-bending mental effects,

With a tongue-in-cheek tone,

Heinlein’s book is your phone,

And the number is Sex-Sexty-Sex.

We’ll read out the best entries on the next episode of Scrolls and announce the competition Winner.  Speaking of which, here are the top three pieces from our previous 100 word Flash Fiction competition:

The Scavenger, Hunted, by Addison Crow (Runner up)

I scan the tree-line with growing concern. Where is Chuck? The scavenge was only supposed to take an hour; he’s been gone almost two. It’ll be full dark soon, and then they will come.

An unholy scream rips through the dusk.

Another to my right.

They’re hunting! The curdling shriek of the females chills me to the marrow. I shift from foot to foot. Do I climb? I can’t leave my post! Come on, buddy…

My worst fear lumbers towards me, crashing heedless out of the scrub: Chuck in rictus, clutching the sucking wound where his heart used to be.

Scanning, by Louise Maskill (Runner up)

An anxious second as the handheld unit ticks gently, then the chime.  I  release a breath I hadn’t known I was holding.

“Clean. Move along, soldier.”

I shuffle forward. The machine points at the next man, ticks again, but  my attention is elsewhere – until the alarm sounds.

The man behind – not a man – erupts in a twisting tangle of limbs,  orifices chucking out blood and marrow as the parasite takes control.  In  seconds he is unrecognisable – and then he is burning, screaming, doused in fuel and torched.

Heart thundering, I am shoved aside as the BioHaz team close in.

Marrow, by Timothy Swann (Winning entry)

Oh, I felt it in my marrow, in-tu-itive-ly, that is.  Some say, heart, I suppose, or guts, or any other bit deep inside you.  The bits you don’t see, not normally, but I suppose I do.  Day-to-day and all that.

But then again, people say to me ‘Chuck, you ain’t normal and you shou’n’t pretend to be.’

Well. If I’m being clear I say I scanned them. Hotted up the microwave. Made them paste-like in their consistency. Grabbed a bit of the warm stuff for the DNA and upload, picked up the bounty credits. Felt it in my bones.

Thanks once again to all the entrants who took part.  We hope to read more from you in the future.

Until then, keep writing!

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