My piece, I Watch Them, short-listed for the December Furious Fiction Contest hosted by the Australian Writers' Centre. I've long-listed three times this year (Jun/Oct/Nov), and not placed at all several times (Jul/Aug/Apr). The June piece, Her Mother's Smile, will be published in February by Trembling With Fear. The April piece, When the Swell Breaks, was published this year by Rue Scribe.
You can read I Watch Them, the other short-listers, and the winner HERE. I only wish the last line read differently, perhaps only having the first two words then a dash (you'll get it if you read the story), but part of the criteria was that the final sentence contains exactly three words.
The criteria for this month:
1. Each story had to include something either being sent or received in the mail.
2. Each story had to include the following words: JINGLE, CLICK, BUMP, SIZZLE (plurals or -ing variants were allowed).
3. Each story's final sentence had to contain exactly three words.
It's always a fun event since several members of my writer's group participate, often beta reading for each other. I didn't utilize a beta reader this time, but I still enjoyed the group excitement and camaraderie during this contest. The neat thing about short-listing is that the judges leave feedback for each piece. This is what they had to say about mine:
What we liked: With a stanza-like approach to the narrative, this voyeuristic story delivers us a handful of mostly unrelated moments. At first, we try and find the meaning – hoping to be illuminated by a link, clues or the motive to this watcher with unknown intentions. It’s only once its inanimate identity is revealed that we simply see it as a snapshot of high-”lights” across this night. The simple repetition and realistic descriptions throughout made this a curiously compelling slice of everyday life.