Inspired by Hemmingway’s 6 word short story:
“For sale, baby shoes. Never used.”
I challenged myself to ApostropheGallery’s 16 word short story writing contest. Top 6 winners get sent on an all-expenses paid trip to Bali for a writer’s festival. How cool is that.
(This is an excellent initiative by DiGi, which earns my respect for creative marketing.)
This Is My Strategy To Win This…
Firstly, I tried to understand how they would judge a winning entry. Since there are no details on the site, I made some simple assumptions on the winning criteria.
A winning short story…
- Should affect me emotionally
- Should be able to tell itself beyond the 16 words
Based on these two criteria alone, I hope my entires can stand out.
To meet the criteria of stirring up emotions, I decided to choose some extreme, vivid emotions. Preferably take them where they don’t normally go…. I went for either
- Disgust, Anger, Shock… tackling morbid themes like death, obsession, perversion, and subjects like cannibalism, gay hate crimes, and tragedy.
- Unexpectedness… a plot twist in 16 words? haha
- Laughs, giggles… using ticklish puns, irony, and some lame jokes.
I ended up with 9 short stories. Some leave more to interpretation than others. Some are not direct.
Some of these might be real crap. But smile politely and give me the thumbs up of good intentions anyway 🙂
I really want to win!
Would love to go to Bali and meet all sorts of new people. Especially if they’re writers, they must be quite interesting.
I confess to hidden passions to write haunting short stories, a la Edgar Allen Poe, or at least children’s short stories. I wrote a children’s story once, about a Hippo who chased ranbows. Will share that with you one day…
For now I may have exceeded my word count ;P