Always the same question: “Hey, are you okay?”
Always the same answer: “I’m fine.”
He wished someone would see past his fake smile.
She wished they’d stop asking and just hug her.
They weren’t fine. They hadn’t been for a long while.
But no one ever saw past their words.
Carmen Olowu is a 13 year old girl who aspires to be a writer. She is in the 10th grade in school.
I stop when I see the three previous exterminators decaying on the front lawn, their faces swollen.
The previous owners stopped paying their mortgage and turned the space between their walls into an apiary.
The bank wants to keep the house as intact as possible, despite the growing body count.
J. Bradley is the author of The Adventures of Jesus Christ, Boy Detective (Pelekinesis, 2016) and the Yelp review prose poem collection Pick How You Will Revise A Memory (Robocup Press, 2016). He lives at jbradleywrites.com
She was living in darkness; he introduced her to sunshine. But in the light she could see the darker side he was trying to hide.
She didn’t know whether the future would be different or a replica of the past; she was trapped amidst the present, which was fading fast.
Preeti Singh is an Indian French Interpreter and Media Professional who is engaged in writing scripts. In her free time she loves to play sundry characters for television series.
You were my rebound love.
You galloped into my heart with flanks rippling.
It wasn’t long before our hearts beat wildly and our bodies entwined.
Surprisingly, it took a while for reality to set in and for me to know that you, the ferocious stallion, didn’t know love at all.
Pat St. Pierre is a freelance writer of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction for adults and children. Her third poetry book “Full Circle” was published by Kelsay Books. Her work has appeared both online and in print. You may find some of her work at: Three Line Poetry, 50 word stories, Fiction 365, Whisperings, A Long Story Short, etc. She is also an amateur photographer whose photos have won awards and been on the covers and included in online and print magazines. Her blog is pstpierre.wordpress.com
Barry had two left feet. No girl would dance with him twice.
Susie stood forlornly by the wall. She blushed when he asked her.
When the music started, she trod on his toes, and he apologised.
Years later, they reminisce about their first and last dance, still in perfect step.
K. S. Dearsley has an MA in Linguistics and Literature and has had
stories published on both sides of the Atlantic. She lives in Northampton, England, and when she is not writing, she lets her dogs take her for walks. Her fantasy novels are available on Amazon. Find out more at ksdearsley.com.
James heard the Gestapo dogs barking relentlessly as they chased him.
He banged frantically on the church door. A man wearing a black cassock answered. “Come in, my son. You are safe here.”
Relieved, James knelt to receive a blessing, then froze in horror. The man was wearing combat boots.
Joann Majerle retired and recently took up writing as a hobby.
He left her a widow, alone… bereft.
Left no will… only debt.
The Repo men left only his urn.
He’d left her in the dark about his ‘little pad’ in the city. It boasted eight bedrooms, a mistress, and three children.
She left his ashes in the bin outside it.
Mary Sheehan lives in what’s known as the sunny south-east of Ireland. Her stories are getting shorter and shorter, probally due to lack of sunshine.
Three men walk into a bar.
“Ow!” cries the first man. He clutches his head and falls to the floor.
“Ugh!” cries the second man, slumping lifelessly to the ground.
“It is done,” says the third man. He passes the bloodied rod to the barman, takes his money, and leaves.
Guy worked in a bar once. This is his sixteenth 50-word story.
The story of the week for January 9 to 13 is…
Vampire by Alexandra Keister
This is a twist story, but not of the type we normally get here. Rather, the title suggests a straightforward fantasy or adventure story, and instead we get an intense, heart-breaking (pun intended) allegory where the title passes from description into metaphor. Alexandra continues to impress.
The winner of the 2016 Story of the Year, along with the $50 prize and enshrinement in the Hall of Fame, is:
Aunt Peg by Jennifer L. Free
Death is one of the more common themes on this site. In fact, death was part of the theme of the 2015 story of the year, as well. But I’ve never seen death explored as subtly, meaningfully, or personally as Jennifer did here. Aunt Peg doesn’t jump out at the reader. It doesn’t assert itself or demand that you read it over and over. And yet it stays with you somehow. After the words and sentences have faded, the idea and the character remain. I still haven’t gotten over it six months later. It’s brilliant work, and I’m proud to have given Jennifer a venue to share this story.
Honourable mentions to the excellent Five minutes until ‘I do’ by Mark Farley and Palindrome by Pontius Paiva, which is the most technically impressive 50-word story I’ve ever read. This is the second consecutive year Mark Farley has appeared as a runner up for story of the year.