Wednesday’s Rambling Writer – Tick Tock Flash + ROW80

For those of you participating in ROW80 you no doubt already realise that Round 3 ends tomorrow!!! For those of you that aren’t I will tell you – Round 3 of a Round of Words in 80 days ends tomorrow!!! I am smack bang in the middle of the big push towards the finish line.

So I thought a piece of flash fiction I wrote a few months back entitled ‘Tick Tock’ might be appropriate. It had been submitted to a contest through the Creative Competitor website. Sadly, I didn’t win the competition but I still love the story and I hope you do to.

The rules were that the story had to be a maximum of 250 words and had to revolve around a pocket watch. So without further ado here it is (oh and my ROW80 word counts for the week are at the bottom, make sure you check them out because they are awesome – if I may say so myself).

Tick Tock

Tick. Tock. My heart pounded out a congruent rhythm.

‘The watch is the clue.’ Those had been his words. But I couldn’t see it. To me it looked like an ordinary pocket watch. Ornate, old, tarnished. I turned it over in my hand.

Tick. Tock.

The hands were moving too fast. Time was running out.

How did it come to this? Here in this square, white room, the stench of disinfectant almost overpowering.

Rhetorical question. I knew how I got here. The sins of my past were a series of stepping stones leading to this inevitable end.

‘The watch is the clue.’

I resigned myself to the fact that I would never know the answer, closed my eyes and listened to the last few minutes of my life ticking away.

No wait, that was it!

Time. Time was the clue. Not the watch.

To be more precise, the passing of time.

Time heals all wounds. That’s what he’d meant. He was telling me that he forgave me my sins. Unforgivable as my sins were. He forgave me.

Another tick.

With an audible beep the plungers on all four syringes began their automated journey. Apple green liquid snaked its way towards my manacled hand.

I looked down at the watch, given to me by the father of my victim. A final absolution of my sins. Somehow its presence provided me with strength, quenched my fear.

Another tock.

I tightened my fingers around the pocket watch. It would all be over soon.


ROW80 Weekly Update

Thurs – 1031

Fri – 603

Sat – 1142

Sun – 1406

Mon – 1117

Tues – 1214

Wed – 1782

Yes that’s right people, this week I have written 8295 words on Soul Hunter 😀

I was determined to come home at a full sprint and I still have a full day to go.

I will post a full review of all I have acheived over the course of ROW80 once it is all over (probably on Friday) Tomorrow I am hoping to do very little other than write, write, write!!! [except Son has had a temp all day today and husband heads of overseas tommorrow and I have to make cupcakes for Daughters last ever day at preschool, but still I am going to try and write as much as I can]

I hope you have all had a great week and I don’t forget that words written on the last day still count! Oh yeah and make sure you leave a comment and tell me if you liked my story 🙂

Jody Moller

Wednesday’s Rambling Writer – Powering Through To The End

There is only a week left of ROW80 and I am looking forward to the end. We are sprinting down the final straight – it is the point in the race when you really start to feel the burn in your muscles, that point where you really have to buckle down and power through to the end.

I’m not ashamed to admit it – I have been struggling. The past few weeks life seems to be overwhelming me. I feel like I have no time to write, no time to blog, certainly no time to read and comment on other blogs. Basically I have no time at all.

This can’t actually be true. I am fairly certain that the number of hours in the day have remained the same – clearly it is what I am doing with those hours that has changed. Perhaps it is just that now the weather is so divine (Spring has hit here with full force) I am spending more time outside (if only I could find a way to write my story while pushing my kids on the swing!)

Today I really struggled. I didn’t turn on my computer at all until after the kids were in bed and at that point I still hadn’t had dinner. I could barely keep my eyes open and for the first time in weeks the thought of just skipping my 500 word goal for today genuinely crossed my mind. But I have come so far and the last thing I want to do is falter at the finishing line.

I have some experience with this (take my unfinished story – Kali Jacobs, Please Take a Seat as a fine example). But today when I was thinking about faltering it wasn’t my failures as a writer that I was thinking of, it was a far more literal interpretation of ‘faltering at the finishing line’.

When I was 14 I was taking part in the Regional Cross Country (a running race over a few kilometres between the best runners from the surrounding schools). In order to make it to the next competition, at State, you needed to come in at 9th or better. So I ran my little heart out. As we were approaching the finish line someone yelled out to me that I was coming 10th and low and behold I could see the girl in front of me and she seemed to be struggling, so I stepped it up a notch. I caught her with less than 100m to go in the race, and with my lungs burning and my legs aching I ran past her. The only problem was that as I ran past her my foot hit hers and I stacked it face first onto the asphalt.

It wasn’t one of those little stacks where the person lands a bit awkwardly and jumps back up onto their feet and continues as if nothing happened. No I landed on the ground hard and then skidded for a few metres (embedding lots of nice bits of rock and dirt into my wounds for the Dr to dig out later). Needless to say I didn’t come in 9th place. I came in 10th, well sort of, I was actually carried over the line by some of the MANY witnesses to my spectacular fall.

So why is this story relevant? You ask. Well – two weeks later I received a phone call telling me that as the 10th place getter I was the first reserve for State. Someone had injured themselves and I was being called up – only I was still injured myself and was certainly not capable of competing. The moral of the story is that sometimes just finishing the race is the goal. All those years ago if I hadn’t tried to run past that girl then I would have gone to State.

So today when I sat down to write I decided to hit my 500 words but not worry about the extra 600 I would have needed to reach 5000 for the week. I would have been pushing myself too hard and goodness only knows what might have happened. So I can proudly say that I completed another week where I wrote at least 500 words a day, everyday. My word counts for the week were:

Thurs – 569

Fri – 661

Sat – 596

Sun – 628

Mon – 870

Tues – 549

Wed – 516

Which gave me a total for the week of 4389 and a total so far for ROW80 of 49728 (yep that’s right almost 50K since I started!)

One week to go. One week to go. One week to go. Repeat the mantra people. We will get there 🙂

Are you struggling? Are you looking forward to the finish line? I hope you have all had a good week.

Jody Moller

ps. I apologise for any spelling/grammatical errors. I am so tired I am not even going to proof read this before I post it – I will do it tomorrow!


Wednesday’s Rambling Writer – Character Meme + ROW80 update

I feel like crap! I’m sick. My head feels about four foot wide, my back aches, and I’m super tired. So, no suprise that I haven’t even looked at starting the flash fiction piece for the writer’s campaign that I was going to post today. So instead something a bit different.

A few days ago Jo Eberhardt posted a Character Meme on her blog. That she had taken from Anthony Lee Collins. Who in turn had taken it from Maggie’s blog. (All awesome blogs and well worth the click!)

So I thought I would post the Meme and my answers here. If you are doing it make sure you pick the characters before you read through the questions. It will make it more fun!

Step 1: Randomly pick 12 of your original characters without looking at the questions.

Okay, so it didn’t specify whether or not the characters should be from the one novel or not (but I struggled to come up with 12 from 1) so I decided to choose very diverse characters from 3 completely unrelated novels (not even in the same genres). Turns out this was a good thing! Made for much more entertaining answers 🙂

My 12 characters are:

1. Anderson (17-yr old girl the the ability to teleport –  from Ankhari)

2. Nate (19 yr old guy with the gift of mind control – from Ankhari)

3. John (54 yr old not-so-nice man with the power of telekinesis – from Ankhari)

4. Kyle (19 yr old college student, no powers (poor guy) – from Ankhari)

5. William (Anderson’s father, also has the ability to teleport – from Ankhari)

6. Ava (17-yr old school student, no powers – from Ankhari)

7. Grace (Anderson’s mother, no powers – from Ankhari)

8. Zepherina (800-yr old Demon – from The Soul Hunter)

9. Meredius (900-yr old Demon – from The Soul Hunter)

10. Reed (28-yr old human – from The Soul Hunter)

11. Kali (15-yr old cancer patient – from Kali Jacobs Please Take a Seat)

12. Riley (15-yr old guy – from Kali Jacobs Please Take a Seat)

Step 2: Answer the questions below to gain some insight into your characters!

1. Who would make a better college professor: 6 or 11?

Ava or Kali? By coincidence these girls are the two stereotypical blonde bimbos from two different stories. I have scientists, musicians, demons, and nurses and I have to pick between two blonde school kids! I call it a tie, but I wouldn’t want either of them teaching me unless the subject was cheerleading 101.

2. Do you think 2 is hot? How hot?

Nate. Ahhhh, hell yes! (That is if you are into 19-yr old guys of course). Tall, brown hair, green eyes, rippling abs, perfectly formed v-muscles – it’s all there girls!

3. 12 sends 8 on a mission. What is it, and does it succeed?

Riley who is a kind of geeky-muscian 15-yr old sends a violent Soul Hunting Demon on a mission? Hmmm. I guess it would be to take out all the bullies at his school. Does she succeed? Of course, she’s awesome!

4. What is, or would be, 9′s favorite book?

Meredius’s favourite book is actually mentioned in my manuscript. It is ‘The Elathial Texts’ a kind of modified version of the bible.

5. Would it make more sense for 2 to swear fealty to 6, or the other way around?

Nate would defintely sweat fealty to Ava – he is just that kind of stand up guy. (She might return the favour if it meant she secured herself a new boyfriend).

6. For some reason, 5 is looking for a room-mate. Should they share a studio apartment with 9 or 10?

William has to choose between Meredius or Reed. Well Mer would definately be more fun (he is an Anarchist Demon afterall) but as he resides in Hell I am afraid that I have to choose Reed.

7. 2, 7, and 12 have dinner together. Where do they go, and what do they discuss?

For some reason I missed this question when I was doing my answers on paper the other day and now my head hurts too much to bother coming up with an answer. I will pick Italian for not other reason than it is my favourite 🙂

8. 3 challenges 10 to a duel. What happens?

John challenges Riley. John wins. He is a nasty piece of work and he has superpowers to boot so it’s not really a fair contest.

9. If 1 stole 8′s most precious possession, how would they get it back?

Anderson steals Zepherina’s most precious possession. While I have no idea what Zeph’s most precious possession might be (even she can’t decide!) I know that she would certainly be able to get it back. She is a Demon with impressive powers of persuasion. Or at worst she could get a Redemption Demon to ‘take care’ of Anderson for her.

10. Suggest a title for a story in which 7 and 12 both attain what they most desire.

Grace and Riley? Maybe ‘The power of regret’???

11. What kind of plot device would you use if you wanted 4 and 1 to work together?

No plot device necessary, they already do.

12. If 7 visited you for the weekend, how would you get along?

Grace would be a mothering figure. Caring, generous, if I was lucky she might even clean the house and cook me dinner.

13. If you could command 3 to perform any one task or service for you, what would it be?

To replicate the virus he creates in my manuscript that cures cystic fibrosis.

14. Do any of your friends resemble 11 (either in appearance or personality)?

Kali looks and acts like some of the girls I went to school with – not the ones I was friends with – I will leave it at that!

15. If 2 had to choose sides between 4 and 5, which would it be?

Nate would have to choose Kyle, who is his best-mate, no contest.

16. What might 10 shout while charging into battle?

Reed would say something along the lines of ‘Revenge’ (if he had to speak – in reality he goes into his own personal battle in silence).

17. If you chose a song to represent 8, which song would you choose?

Zepherina is an albino Demon (I am not kidding) so it would have to be ‘A White Demon Love Song’ by The Killers.

18. 1, 6, and 12 are having dim sum at a Chinese restaurant. There is only one scallion pancake left, and they all reach for it at the same time. Who gets to eat it?

Anderson would give it up for Ava (they are best friends after all) and Ava would give it up for Riley (she is a consummate flirt).

19. What might be a good pick-up line for 2 to use on 10?

Ummm. Nate and Reed – wouldn’t happen. Ever!

20. What would 5 most likely be arrested for?

Of all my characters probably one of the least likely to be arrested. Maybe for illegal gambling?

21. What is 6′s secret?

Ava has many secrets, it depends which book you are referring to. Besides, I can’t say it here as it would give it all away!

22. If 11 and 9 were racing to a destination, who would get there first?

Meredius can use portals between Hell and the surface and Kali is limited to a wheelchair so not really fair.

23. If you had to walk home through a bad neighborhood late at night, would you feel safer in the company of 7 or 8?

Grace would be pretty useless so the obvious choice would be Zepherina. The only problem is that Zeph is far scarier than anything you’ll find on the street.

24. 1 and 9 reluctantly team up to save the world from the threat posed by 4′s sinister secret organization. 11 volunteers to help them, but it is later discovered that he/she is actually a spy for 4. Meanwhile, 4 has kidnapped 12 in an attempt to force their surrender. Following the wise advice of 5, they seek out 3, who gives them what they need to complete their quest. What title would you give this story?

Ahhh! I’m confused.

Step 3: No I’m just kidding that’s the end!

Hope you enjoyed it. If you are trying to get develop your characters further I can highly recommend it (or if you just want a laugh).

Okay so now onto my ROW80 check-in. Don’t worry it will be quick.

Word counts for the week:

Thurs – 1045

Fri – 870

Sat – 686

Sun – 577

Mon – 719

Tues – 1198

Wed – 546

Total of 5641 words for the week. YAY!

Hope you all had a good week!

Jody Moller

Wednesday’s Rambling Writer – Why We Write What We Write + ROW80

Last week I wrote a post on Why We Write (don’t worry if you missed it you can find it here). I thought this week I would extend this even further and look at Why We Write What We Write (whoa that’s a mouthful). If the meaning was lost among all that alliteration what I mean by that is how we select a genre for our novels.

For most people (and I stress most not everyone will fit into these categories) the what we write fits into one of two categories:

1. We write what we like

2. We write what we know

For some lucky souls they will write what they like and what they know.

Okay so I guess we should look at each of these individually:

1. We Write What We Like

How do you know what you like? You like what you read. If you walk into a book store (if you are lucky enough to find one that is still open) what section to you gravitate towards? Does the romance section lure your affection? Do you find yourself hunting for the latest mystery? Who are your favourite Authors? No doubt they are the ones you are aspiring to be like.

Of course you could always be like me and not really have a favourite genre. I am an eclectic reader. Thriller, Horror, Paranormal Romance I like to spread my affections around :). So does that mean that I should try my hand at writing multiple genres? Not at all, but I will get to that in a bit.

2. We Write What We Know

Ever wondered why the main characters in virtually all of John Grisham’s books are lawyers? Yes that’s right – John Grisham was a lawyer before he decided to try his hand at writing. Often writers of historical fiction have degrees in history. It is pretty simple if there is an area you know lots about, no matter how insignificant it might seem, not only will you  be able to write realistically in those areas without requiring months of research, but odds are you will enjoy it as well. I am a scientist and even when it isn’t intentional, tidbits of scientific knowledge filter their way into my books.

Okay, so we are writing what we like and what we know. So now you probably have a list of about 3-4 genres that you could write in (and that doesn’t include the hundreds of subgenres available). Here is the bad news – you need to pick one. WHAT?!? Yes, that’s right. You need to pick a single genre, your own niche in the market and concentrate on that. Why? Because if you are going to have a ‘brand’ as an author, readers need to be able to associate your name with your genre. Think back to my John  Grisham example, I can guarantee if you see his name on a novel you automatically know that it is going to be a legal thriller. Am I right? He has a brand.

Now, before you come back at me with the ‘I am never going to be a best selling author like John Grisham, I’m sure people won’t mind if I switch around between genres’. Are you sure? How would you feel if you read three thrillers from a particular author – that of course you loved because you have just picked up that author’s newly released fourth book – but hang on, it’s a romance!! Blech… And guess what? Now you are probably not going to buy book five even if the author has gone back to the thriller genre.

How do you pick a single genre out of the 3-4 you have narrowed it down to? Get ready for me to contradict myself. There may be better ways to acheive this but I would say – try writing all of them. Now maybe it isn’t the best idea to write an entire novel in 4 different genres, but perhaps try your hand at short stories in a range of genres and see what feels right. What do you enjoy writing? In what genre to the words literally flow onto the paper without you even having to think about it? And that, my friends, is what you are meant to right..oops… I mean write.

Do you write in one genre or multiple? Do you agree with my advice or would you like to meet me behind the bikeshed after school? (Just kidding I have a pathetic right-hook and I’m a bit of a fraidy-cat). What do you like to read? Do you write in the same genre? I would love to hear from you.

Okay, so now I am off to follow my own advice.

Oh… no wait. Almost forgot my ROW80 check in. My Round of Words in 80 Days campaign (refer here if you have no idea what I am talking about) is going great guns. Well sort of. My main goal to write a minimum of 500 words a day for 80 days is still going great. And this week I added in the additional goal that for the next few weeks (we only have just over 3 weeks to go!) I want to write 5000+ words for the week too. This week I didn’t comment on as many blogs as I would have liked and I still have finished reading We Are Not Alone but for the most part I think I did okay!

Word Counts for the week:

Thurs – 583

Fri – 606

Sat – 711

Sun – 1073

Mon – 539

Tues – 568

Wed – 1011

Total for the week = 5091

I hope you are doing well with your ROW80 goals as well. See you all next week.

Jody Moller

Wednesday’s Rambling Writer – Why do we write?

Is there a simple answer to this question? Do we write for money or fame? Do we write because it satiates our artistic vein? Do we write simply because we enjoy it? Or is it an undefinable combination of all of these reasons?

Researching this topic I found lots of catch-phrases like ‘Why do fish swim?’ But is it that simple? Do writers write because it is imprinted upon our genes? Do we write because we need an outlet to express ourselves?

Okay, so you’ve probably noticed that I have gone a bit overboard with the questions. But that is because I don’t believe there is a definable answer to this question, how can I possibly know the motivation behind thousands (perhaps millions) of writers around the globe. The one question I can answer, however, is why I write.

The answer to this question has changed over the past few years.

Just over two years ago when I first started writing (see here for a post on the reasons I sat down and wrote my first novel) I did it because I thought it could be a career path for me (feel free to translate this into MONEY & FAME!). Now, you need to give me the benefit of the doubt, I was green, I had no idea of how the publishing industry worked. I was of the foolish belief that you wrote a book, sent it off to publishing companies and badda-bing-badda-boom you had a contract to publish not only the manuscript you had already completed but the two sequels that you were planning as well. (Hey, stop laughing at me, I told you I was naive). Now obviously I know better, but guess what? I am still writing.

Perhaps I write because I am a little bit crazy. I mean this in the nicest possible way. But the fact remains that I have little voices in my head. For as long as I can remember I have plotted out scenes in my mind. I would see a hot guy walking down the street and within seconds I would have constructed a way for a plain looking brunette girl to insert herself into his path, within minutes I have plotted out their entire relationship all the way through to their heartbreaking divorce. My husand is running 5 minutes late from work and my little voices decide that he has gotten into a car accident. Within minutes I am writing a eulogy (morbid I know, but my brain can’t stop plotting out possibilities). Since I started writing my crazy plotting has more focus. Instead of planning my husbands funeral I now can plot out where my characters are going to go next in there stories, all around it seems a much more healthy passtime. So I guess in some ways you could say that I write to maintain my sanity.

But most of all I write because it makes me happy. Noone could sit at the computer night after night, day after day, typing away if they didn’t enjoy it. This doesn’t mean that I still don’t hope that I will one day be able to have my books published and be able to make a living as an author (of course I do) but it doesn’t define me and I know I will keep writing no matter what.

Why do you think writers write? Are you a writer? Why do you write? What inspires you?

This is also a check-in for ROW80. You may have noticed that I am now only checking-in weekly for ROW80 this is only because it fits in better with my blogging schedule. Good news is I have had a good week. Word counts for the week were:

Thurs – 775

Fri – 1536

Sat – 2034

Sun – 806

Mon – 641

Tues – 518

Wed – 566

Which gives me a total for the week of 6876 and a total of 34605 for ROW80 so far. Not too shabby, if I may say so myself. I completed the critiquing I needed to do and I shared the love with my fellow ROW80’s, but I didn’t finish reading ‘We Are Not Alone’ motivation was down following my MySpace debarcle that you can read about here.

Goals for this week are:

  1. Continue with 500+ words a day on Soul Hunter
  2. Comment on at least 10 ROW80 blogs
  3. Finish reading We Are Not Alone
  4. Finish reading the novel sitting on my bedside table

Hope you are all going well with your ROW80 goals. See you all next week.

Jody Moller

Wednesday’s Rambling Writer – I Just Had The Weirdest Dream + ROW80

I have been wanting to write another flash fiction piece for a while now and as I didn’t have anything in particular planned for today’s Wednesday’s Rambling Writer post, I thought that a flash piece might just be on the cards. I had a niggling feeling that Haley Whitehall had posted a challenge for this month so I went searching and sure enough she had…

The theme this month was Dreams. More specifically, you are to write a piece revolving around a dream. The rules are listed here:

  • Genre: Anything goes. Mystery, romance, historical fiction, science fiction, horror, fantasy, slip-stream, or whatever. Warning if it horror I’ll be reading through my fingers.
  • Word count: It should be 500 words or less (go ahead and write some more if you really must ).
  • How to share: You can put it up on your blog and link here or (if you don’t have a blog) you can email it to me and I’ll put it in a post for you.
  • Time limit: From now until the next challenge is posted.

Now, just by coincidence my husband had a weird dream a few nights ago, when he recounted it to me I thought  it might make a cool story. So I quickly (like really quickly, so excuse any errors) typed up a flash piece. Only problem is I couldn’t get it down to 500 words (honestly I didn’t even try to, it is 728 words and it is almost bedtime so editing just seems to difficult).

Anyway, here it is. I hope you like it. As always let me know what you think. (Oh and BTW some ROW80 stuff is at the bottom!)

I Just Had The Weirdest Dream

He was trying to avoid looking at it, to avoid thinking about it, but it was huge – how could you possibly avoid it? Instead he focused on his daughter’s face.

“Daddy, I’m scared.” Her words sharpened his senses. “What is it?”

“It’s just a cloud, don’t look at it.”

They had first heard about it on the news less than 2 hours ago. The news broadcast had been a warning sent out to all residents in The Valley, they had received text messages too – one of those new emergency-mass-transmission ones. The message had been simple.

‘The viral cloud is coming. It will hit The Valley within the hour. Do not inhale the fog. People with purple discolouration in their eyes should be avoided.’

The interviewers were talking about how violent the infected people were. There were fresh warnings to trust no one – not even your neighbours.

About that time he had turned off the news and returned it to the kid’s channel – his son and daughter sat together holding hands.

That was when the screaming had started – as if the enormous black haze that was floating down the main street of town was not terrifying enough, now they also had to contend with a mass of rioters and who knew how many of them were infected. He could hear their screams, the loud falls of their feet against the pavement as they progressed past his house.

When a brick careened through the front window he realised that their current location wasn’t safe – they needed to leave The Valley.

“We have to get out of here.” He saw his kid’s eyes open wide as he spoke; he knew the thought of leaving the house was terrifying; I mean it was scary for him, he couldn’t imagine how daunting it would be for a 5 and 7 yr old. “I need you to stay close to me at all times. Keep these on,” he said, fitting thin paper masks over the kid’s faces. “And keep moving forward.”

He knew from watching the news that the authorities had set up a barricade around the borders of town, if he could make it there, away from the rioters and infected people, he knew everything would be alright.

As a precaution he slipped his Smith and Wesson handgun into his pocket before they left.

The first assault occurred as they reversed their car of the driveway. The woman came out of nowhere, screaming at him to stop. She was hysterical, her tears smearing mascara all over her face. He didn’t look into her eyes; he didn’t want to see the evidence of infection. He told his kids to close their eyes as he kept on driving – her body felt like nothing more than a speed bump.

He drove in the opposite direction to the cloud. They made it four of the required six blocks before they were forced to get out of the car and walk, the road was filled with abandoned cars. The second assault occurred only a block from the barricade – they could already see the gates when a man with grey hair ran at them, his arms flailing wildly, his words running together into an unintelligible mess.

He couldn’t risk the man getting too close – he removed his gun from his pocket and fired a single round. The man’s head exploded.

A tall police officer loomed over the gate; he pushed his kids towards him. In the background he could hear a voice, crackling through the static on the man’s radio.

“The virus causes severe hallucinations. There is no cure. Eradication is the only option. You are green-lighted to kill on sight.”

As the officer took a step towards him he caught a glimpse of his own reflection in the man’s badge. He looked manic, his hair dishevelled, his face splattered with blood, the whites of his eyes a deep shade of purple.

He lifted his gaze and came face to face with the police officers gun. Two images flashed before his eyes – the woman with the mascara smeared face and the grey haired man. With a sickening twist in his gut he realised he knew them both – his wife, his father. The crack of the gun was deafening.

I sat up in bed, heart pounding, covered in sweat. I turned to my wife.

“I just had the weirdest dream…”

Okay so onto ROW80. Straight into it! Here are my word counts for the week:

Thurs – 749

Fri – 761

Sat – 562

Sun – 1020

Mon – 745

Tues – 556

Wed – 528

Which gives me a total for the week of 4921 and a total so far for ROW80 of 27732. Which I am pretty happy with. I managed to hit my 500 everyday and I read more than half of Kristen Lamb’s We Are Not Alone, which was my other main aim for the week.

So goals for the coming week include:

  1. 500 words a day on Soul Hunter
  2. Comment on at least 10 ROW80 blogs
  3. Finish Kristen’s book
  4. Finish critiquing a short story for a friend

I hope you are all going well with your goals and that you liked my story.

Jody Moller

Wednesday’s Rambling Writer – Short Story Contests Aug/Sept

I spent some time today sifting through the mulitude of short story competitions available online. I was looking for something that was relatively cheap to enter (none of this $25 to submit a 500 word story stuff!), that had a deadline relatively soon (Aug/Sept), had a word count somewhere below 5000 words (preferably even lower than that) and most importantly caught my interest (good topics, genres, bizzare word counts – whatever).

As I collated the best of these short story contests I thought that some of my online writer friends may also be interested so I thought I would list them here for you all to check out. I have listed my favourite 5 contests below. This list is not definitive but I think the contests sound great. I will not be entering them all (if only I had that much time on my hands!) but hopefully I will get to enter a couple.

I hope you find it useful.

Past Loves Day Story Contest, 2011.
Deadline: August 17, 2011
Word Count: 700 word or less
Entry Fee: free
Prize: $100, $75, $50, + Honorable Mention(s) – winning stories will be published in an Anthology
Theme: True story of a former sweetheart.
Fiction International’s Writing Contest 
Deadline: August 31, 2011
Word Count: 2000 words or less
Entry Fee: $15
Prize: $1000 + publication in Fiction International
Theme: Blackness
Eligibility: Must have published no more than 2 books.
Gemini Magazine Flash Fiction Contest
Deadline: August 31, 2011
Word Count: 1000 words or less
Entry Fee: $4
Prize: $1000 + publication in Gemini Magazine
Theme: Open
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley Prize For Imaginative Fiction
Deadline: September 1, 2011
Word Count: 4000 words or less
Entry Fee: $10
Prize: Grand prize: $1,000, 4 runners-up receive $100 + winners published in Rosebud.
Theme: Original works of fantasy, science fiction, mystery, or horror
100 Words or Fewer Writing Contest
Deadline: September 18, 2011
Word Count: 100 words or less
Entry Fee: $15
Prize: Grand prize: $500, $150, $100, $50.
Theme: Open (no porn or gore)

This is also a check-in for ROW80 – I’ll make it short and sweet!

My word counts the last few days are below (I have lost count of what day we are up to so from now on I will have to use the day of the week!) 🙂

Mon – 568 (total 21728)

Tues – 554 (total 22282)

Wed – 534 (total 22816)

 So I have hit my goals (but only just!)

I have been a bit slack on commenting on other blogs (in fact in reading other peoples blogs all together) but the first few days of the week are always busy so I should have some more time over the next few days!

Hope you are all doing well with your goals.

Jody Moller