Osiris Likes This is now available, and can be found in any format you’d like, DRM-free, right here for just $0.99.
Thanks to the (admittedly brief) preorder period, it should soon be appearing at your favourite retailers as well. I’ll also be taking this opportunity to make all the previous books available through Amazon’s Kindle store, though unfortunately Amazon won’t allow me to give them away free as I do elsewhere. If you want free copies of my first three anthologies for Kindle, your best bet is to download the .mobi (Kindle) version over on Smashwords.
If you’d like to have a look at the stories without buying the book, you can read online right here on my blog and also on deviantART (the home of Flash Fiction Month). This anthology is mostly for readers who want them collected up neatly to read on the go, or who’d like to support me by chucking a little money my way.
If you’d like to support me but wouldn’t like to spend any money, you can do so for free by reviewing or sharing any of my books. Email them to your friends! Throw them at your enemies! Also throw them at your frenemies (but gift-wrap them first, to show that you care)!
But if you would like a copy of Osiris Likes This, here’s that link again.
It’s been a fun (if very, very busy) month: 31 stories in 31 days. Having now finished four rounds of Flash Fiction Month, I’m starting to think less about how my writing changes as the days or weeks go by during each event, and more about how it’s changed as a result of the events as a whole.
Participating in Flash Fiction Month just once requires that you write more stories in that month than you ordinarily would write in the entire rest of the year (unless you’re particularly prolific or tackle something like Flash Fiction Day). Participating in multiple years, you accumulate quite a catalogue of work: my FFM pieces have now reached triple figures, meaning that I’ve actually got more stories now than many of those stories have words. Continue reading
Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 31
Challenge #14: Write a story with a word count divisible by 31, featuring a multi-headed entity. It must include all 31 one-word prompts from this year’s event: Celery, Moon, Forgiveness, Excelsior!, Judgment, Dauntless, Terminus, Amorphous, Barbarian, Flabbergasted, Pulchritudinous, Twinkle, Ennui, Anagnorisis, Ethanol, Skank, Defenestrate, Moist, Summoned, Chiaroscuro, Legend, Elemental, Eldritch, Unfurling, Ending, Cicatrize, Catalyst, Codpiece, Facetious, Carrot, Google.
Girth Loinhammer was not a fan of this new-fangled internet thing. Everywhere he looked, people were gawping at tablets and squinting at phones. Very slyly, he leaned over to check what the barfly next to his left was looking at. “Super Cute Duckling Thinks Carrot is Best Friend,” read the massive headline on the tiny screen. Girth peered over the shoulder of the drunk to his right. It was a YouTube video about cats with boobs.
Girth settled back into his seat at the bar, adjusting the spiked leather straps of his torturer’s uniform. He’d sure like to find out where the internet lived and give it a piece of his mind, whip, and poker. Then again, knowing the internet, it would probably enjoy it. Just like all the other perverts he’d encountered during his not particularly long or distinguished career. There was no place for non-kinky torturers anymore.
He propped his elbows on the bar and lowered his head into his hands. “Another mead, barkeep.”
“The answer to your problems isn’t at the bottom of a mead horn,” said the barbarian barfly to his left.
“Of course not.” Girth angled the vessel over the faceplate of his helmet and tried to tip the drink through into his mouth. A lot of it missed and splashed onto his codpiece, making it look as though he’d wet himself. “The answer’s in all the lovely ethanol floating about in the middle.”
“Cats with boobs!” shouted the drunk, pointing at something just outside Girth’s field of vision. “Cats with boobs!”
A pulchritudinous woman with the head of a lioness marched swiftly over to the bar and roundhouse kicked the drunk in the face, managing to defenestrate him in the process. Continue reading
Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 30
Challenge #13: Write a fantistorical story utilizing elements of satire. It must feature four elephants and a turtle.
“No more roadworks, no not nada! No more roadworks, this is Sparta!”
“Ugh.” Xerxes slapped his royal palm to his royal forehead. “Seven hundred Thespians. You’ve got seven hundred Thespians with you and that’s the best chant you can come up with.”
“What do we want?” shouted Leonidas.
“No highway through Thermopylae!” came the crowd’s response.
“When do we want it?”
Xerxes turned to the head secretary of the Department for Whipping People. “Did you tell them that the construction of ‘Hoplite Speedway 2’ would create 300 jobs?” Continue reading
Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 29
“Did you remember to pack the vorpal cheeseknife?” enquired the March Hare.
“I thought you had it,” yawned the Dormouse.
“Brillig,” grumped the Hare. “Just brillig. How are we supposed to cut the manxome cheddar now?”
The Dormouse had no answer to this.
“We can’t possibly do without cheese,” put in the Hatter, “when we’re all crackers.”
Everyone groaned, except the Dormouse, who instead began to snore.
“I say,” began the Hare. “Jubjub Bird? Could you be a dear and fetch the vorpal cheeseknife?”
“Fetch it yourself,” snapped the Jubjub Bird, from atop a nearby Tumtum tree. “I’m not gallumphing back all the way through the mimsy borogoves.”
“My, you’re in an uffish mood today.” The Hare folded his arms. “Without that vorpal cheeseknife, none of us can have so much as a snicker-snack.”
Just then, the Bandersnatch emerged from the slithy toves.
“Ah!” The Hare waved. Even the most mature manxome cheddar couldn’t withstand the claws of the Bandersnatch. “Little help over here?”
But the Bandersnatch ignored him, whiffling on its way.
“I think he’s upset that we shunned him,” remarked the Hatter.
“Upset?” cried the Bandersnatch. “I’m frumious!”
If you’ve enjoyed this story, you can find my work from previous Flash Fiction Months collected in these books:
Click any cover to download that book in your choice of format.
Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 28
Challenge #12: DAVID BOWIE DAY. Score at least 150 Bowie points under the following system:
Score one point for every letter “Z” in your story.
Score 10 points for each:
- …David Bowie song title
- …quote of more than three words from any David Bowie song
- …character called Ziggy, Major Tom, Aladdin, Jareth or Jean
- …made up word
Score 20 points for including a:
- …magic dance
- …goblin king
- …spaceman or raygun
- …spider from mars
Score 50 points if:
- Your piece is 565 words long (“David Robert Jones”)
- Your story features an androgynous character, or a character who changes gender or sex
- Your story features a man who fell to earth
- Your story features a man who sold the world.
“You call that a knife?” growled Jareth. “This is a knife!”
“I think you’re in the wrong Bowie fanclub,” said Jean, slicing lemons at the bar.
“ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz” snored Ziggy.
“Ah, nuts.” Jareth plonked his knife down on the bar and looked around. There certainly were rather more spacemen, goblin kings, and spiders from Mars than he’d been expecting. “When’s the next bus to Crocodile, Dundee?”
Jean pulled a face. “I think it’s gonna be a long, long time.
“Ah, nuts.” Jareth gave the corks dangling from his hat a frustrated slap. “I was supposed to meet Major Tom there half an hour ago. These military types expect you to be punctual, you know.”
“Excuse me?” A man or woman in a very impressive lifeguard tower costume tapped Jean on the shoulder with one of his or her long wooden legs. “Will the Hoff be available to sign my lifebuoy today?”
“I think you’re in the wrong David fanclub,” said Jean. “Now if you can hold on for just a minute, I’ve got to move Ziggy along. There’s a starman waiting in the sky, and—uh-oh.” Continue reading
Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 27
Thrug held aloft his creation, so that the whole tribe might see. “Thrug make sharp rock!” he proclaimed. “Sharp rock must-have! One every hovel!”
There were impressed murmurs from the tribe as a whole. Fruh, in awe of this new development, leapt forward, brandishing a handful of precious shells. “Shut up and take Fruh money!”
Thrug gleefully made the exchange. “Thrug entrepreneur! Reinvest Fruh money! Make economies scale!”
“Thrug fool!” cried Ludd, from the back of the tribe. “Thrug rock anger gods! Affront rock essential bluntness! Doom all!”
“Thrug make sharper rock while Ludd talking!” bellowed Thrug. Continue reading
Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 26
“I think you know why I’m here.”
The merchant stared at the figure in his doorway. In a way, he’d been expecting this visit for many years. However, it was not exactly as he had anticipated. “Shouldn’t you be speaking in all caps or something?” he asked.
The robed skeleton stared blankly at him. “Meh,” it shrugged. “It’s been done.”
“It’s just that caps would be a lot easier to…”
“Silence, mortal,” interjected Death, very quietly. “I have come to claim what you owe. It is…inevitable.”
The merchant shrank back into his hallway as the skeleton stepped inside, the lamps on the wall flickering at its approach. Death drew closer, closer, then paused to peer into the study to its left.
“Is this where you keep your receipts?” it asked.
“What?” The merchant was understandably surprised.
“Your receipts,” explained Death, popping on a pair of reading glasses. It didn’t have the ears or nose necessary to support them, so it simply stuck the ends of the frames into its eye sockets. “I’ll need to see your expenses for the current fiscal year.” Continue reading
Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 25
Challenge #11: Joe Wright challenged me to write a story with a sequentially numbered word count (123, 234, 345, etc.) set under an object and starring a divorcee. It must also feature three different smells, an indescribably loud noise, and a red herring.
The frosted glass door creaked as Rick Rottweiler pushed it open. “Oh,” he said. “Is Mr. Haddock in?”
“You’re looking at him, kid.” Jack Haddock ashed his cigarette, adjusted his fedora, then poured out two glasses of whiskey. It was a trifecta of Private Eye clichés. Also the neon sign hanging over the building cast artsy shadows through the half-closed window blinds.
“Sorry.” Rick sat down in the proffered chair. “For a minute there I thought you were a herring, rather than a haddock.” Even to Rick’s sensitive nose, most fish tended to smell the same: fishy.
“I am a herring.” Jack Haddock tossed back his whiskey in one gulp. Naturally he drank like a fish. “A red herring. The ‘Haddock’ name was my ex-wife’s.” He sighed. “She insisted I take hers when we got married, and it was all she left me with after the divorce.” Continue reading
Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 24
Banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana ANGRY IMPORTED SPIDER!!! banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana banana.