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Look, I Just Want My Sandwich · Original Minific ·
Organised by RogerDodger
Word limit 400–750
#1 · 8
· · >>bloons3
Welcome to this new WriteOff round, sponsored this month by Quill Scratch dictionaries ltd. and the Cold in Gardez printing group inc. This time, our beloved tyrant RogerDoger (please all kowtow) proposes us a Original Minific Round (OMR). In other words, this means:

1. That you can choose any backdrop world you like. Ponies are tolerated, but you should refrain to write any MLP-based fiction, otherwise Mr. Numbers risks lashing you, and nobody would want being lashed by Mr. Numbers. Some even most unsavoury mishaps may happen to you should you persist (for instance, Oblomov might decide to give you a personalised training in applied communism);

2. Minific means your story must tally no less than 400 (FOUR HUNDRED), but no more than 750 (SEVEN HUNDRED AND FIFTY) words. So mind your adverbs!

3. Writing period starts Saturday 12:00 (TWELVE) GMT and ends 24 (TWENTY-FOUR) hours later. A five minute gracious extension is given to make sure you correct every typo you might have left. Failure to submit before the deadline means that you won’t be allowed to compete and will watch your buddies have fun in the merry-go-round while you’ll remain seated on the bench outside.

You are naturally allowed to submit more than one entry. However, “interlinked” entries (a story and its sequel, for example) are forbidden on pain of disqualification, and we will mission Dubs Rewatcher to kick your butt should you flout this rule.

Rating is “T”, meaning while you can pander to some of your basest instincts, you’re not allowed to indulge in them.

Finally, remember that you should refrain from saying anything that might compromise your anonymity. Doing so is grounds for disqualification. It's recommended you do dummy reviews of your own stories should it otherwise be easy to deduce which you wrote.

And now, good luck to all, may the best pet writer win!
#2 · 3
· · >>georg
Sweet. It's been a while since the non-pony part of my brain engaged in some actual word-writing, as oppose to daydreaming. I have a BBQ party to go to on Saturday, so expect some alcohol-fuelled ramblings on why you shouldn't grill chicken on the same surface as pancakes, or an essay on the colour-scale of healthiness for barbecued sausages.

Maybe it'll even meet the prompt.
#3 · 8
· · >>georg >>Oroboro
Anyone who listens to the Writing Excuses podcast is probably familiar with Brandon Sanderson, who wrote Elantris, Mistborn and finished the Wheel of Time series. He also gives a series of writing lectures at BYU, and I just went back and watched the course intro. I'd recommend watching the lecture (and the series) in its entirety, but I found his comments on workshoping particularly relevant for this forum:

Brandon Sanderson - 318R #1 (Course Overview)

I know the writeoffs are not a workshop, but I feel like there are still some strong parallels, especially in how we approach reviews.

Also, I can't help but wonder, are any writers here are working on longer pieces and thought of forming a writing group?
#4 · 1
(Looks at the collection of videos) Ouch. That'll kill my chance of binge watching Game of Thrones to catch up. (only five seasons behind)

All of us are working on larger pieces, but so far it seems like any writing group is mostly ad hoc. (or would that be Ad Hock in pony terms?)

>>Ceffyl_Dwr BBQ sausages (in my experience) should be carbon-black, or at least that's how mine turn out and I make excuses for them.
#5 · 2
Oh boy, time to write that crazy idea I've had kicking around for a while.
#6 · 4
Many of you probably know me by my stories. Oh wait. Actually you know me because I'm a convoluted psycho! Oh.... not even by that? Sooo....maybe you don't know me?! Either way it's nice to meet cha! Remedy is on the scene and I hope we can get along. I just wanna make some memories you won't forget anytime soon.
#7 ·
Heh, someone put a prompt in for MISO... Makes me want to "pin" another prompt for Serial Clock or Slave Select to nerd out. But I won't. I2C is better anyway.
#8 · 8
· · >>Posh
#9 ·


#10 ·
Those are interesting prompts.
#11 · 1
Writeoff, begin. *scrunched-up face of determination*
#12 · 10
What... the hell.
#13 · 1
"Look, I just want my sandwich" actually won? Wha... What have we wrought?? O.o
#14 · 3
Oh, this is the first prompt that won that I really dislike.

Ah well, time to crank something out.
#15 · 5
Lol. The Brexit of write-off prompts. Not my cup of tea, either, but at least it's just for a few weeks.
#16 ·
· · >>RogerDodger
If two prompts have the same number of votes, how does one beat the other?
#17 ·
If there's a tie, one is selected at random.
#18 · 1
Is this prompt some kind of joke that I haven't been privy to?

No, seriously, WTF?!
#19 · 4
Wooooooooow..... wow....... just....... wooooooooow by Lunas mane why?! Just WHY!!!!?
#20 · 6
*looks at prompt*

#21 · 2

Pretty sure I'm out again this round...

#22 · 3
Anyone who listens to the Writing Excuses podcast is probably familiar with Brandon Sanderson, who wrote Elantris, Mistborn and finished the Wheel of Time series. He also gives a series of writing lectures at BYU, and I just went back and watched the course intro. I'd recommend watching the lecture (and the series) in its entirety, but I found his comments on workshoping particularly relevant for this forum:

Brandon Sanderson - 318R #1 (Course Overview)

This is some really solid advice.

I dunno about this prompt though. I'm not all that keen on original minfics anyway. I've got the free time to write, but eh. We'll see.
#23 · 3

Momma said there'd be prompts like this.
There'd be prompts like this, my momma said.

I do wonder about everyone kvetching about this, though. After all, enough of a majority voted for this prompt that it ultimately turned out to be the winner, so at least some of the folken around these parts have some semblance of an idea of what to do.

As for myself, well, it took a few hours of grumbling and grousing brainstorming, but I actually have some ideas. It is now time to see what can be done with them.

For everyone participating today, I wish you all an extra scoop of joyful inspiration and good vibrations, because, Christ on a fudge stripe, y'all are going to need it.

(If anyone out there wishes to send some of the same my way, I'll happily accept!)
#24 · 2
· · >>Haze
Genuinely surprised that I came up with an idea for this prompt so quickly. In the time honoured Ceffy way though, said idea has run away from me and will need considerable pruning.

Good luck everyone with your own entries. I hope you all succeed in getting something in.
#25 · 2
· · >>Ceffyl_Dwr
no fair, you had a BBQ party for inspiration.
#26 · 1
One day, one of the prompts for which I voted will win.

One day.
#27 · 1
There's no inspiration quite like a BBQ party inspiration.

Well, maybe food poisoning induced inspiration.
#28 · 4

I think I might've come up with something...

Mike Again
#29 ·
Hoe could this happen to me! I made my mistakes! And yet the night goes on. Well. I did it. Woooooooooooow......
#30 · 2
· · >>ZaidValRoa
I guess I can make this work.
#31 · 2
That's the spirit.
#32 · 1
I've got nothing.

Well, nothing GOOD... :/
#33 · 1
Well, I've managed to excrete SOMETHING. I'll edit and polish it a bit more later... And hope a better idea springs up in the meantime. :/ Still, at least I'll have something to submit.
#34 · 2
· · >>ZaidValRoa >>horizon
Think I'll sit this one out. Enjoy, folks.
#35 ·
>>Cold in Gardez
A pity. Would've loved to see what you could whip out.
Maybe next time.
#36 ·
· · >>ZaidValRoa >>The_Letter_J
Am I the only one who instantly came up with an idea for it?
Oh, and since this is my first time, all fandoms are fair game, right?
#37 · 1
· · >>The_Letter_J
1. That you can choose any backdrop world you like. Ponies are tolerated, but you should refrain to write any MLP-based fiction, [...];

It's within the boundaries.
#38 ·
There we go. This one isn't too bad. (At least now. When I look back at it tomorrow, I'll think it's a steaming pile like I always do.)
#39 · 1
>that prompt

I'm just not enjoying writing for this one. Guess I'll see what happens next time.
#40 · 1
· · >>Chryssi
Like >>ZaidValRoa said, you can write for any fandom you want. But keep in mind that if you write about something that people here aren't familiar with, your story will basically be handicapped.
#41 · 1
Despite a busy day, I still managed to get one in. I suspect it's going to be an interesting round.
#42 · 1
· · >>The_Letter_J
I got one in (woot). Couldn’t think of any other ideas, so it’ll just be that.

>>The_Letter_J Huh, so the ‘Fiction not dependent on work under U.S. copyright’ tooltip at the top of the page would actually be misleading, then.
#43 · 7
· · >>georg
I'm out. I wanted to join the club and be a hero, but the prompt was too much of a grinder.

#44 · 1
Yeah, sadly, I won't be in this one either. Between IRL obligations and my other big project that I'm working on, I won't really have time to squeeze in a submission.

I'll happily read other people's, though.
#45 · 2
Got something in. Not sure if it's any good at all, but it beats nothing.


#46 · 1
Yeah, this is a discussion that has been had several times. Basically, the "original" rounds are really "general" rounds, but they're called "original" to still encourage people to write original stories so that they don't accidentally handicap themselves.
#47 · 6
Please, mayo we have no more sub-par puns. Some turkeys relish the chance to catsup with their lower senses of humor.
#48 · 3
Heyla, everyone. Great news!

. . . or not.

I've got nothing. I concede defeat. The ideas I had related to the prompt turned out stillborn, and the only other piece I made any headway on at all is (a.) not related, and (b.) much longer than 750 words. I really feel a twist ashamed to sit this one out, but, given how many other notable folken have also done so, I can at least count myself in august company.

To those of you who managed to finish and submit something already (and I mean anything at all, no matter how sucky you believe it to be), you have this particular internet stranger's congratulations on being able to wring fiction out of a turnip. I eagerly await the chance to taste the fruits of your labor.

For those who are still laboring to finish and submit, I wish you success with all the chambers of my heart.

Good night, and good luck.
#49 ·
· · >>MonarchDodora
Well, I've now got two stories in (one for myself and one as an honorary >>Cold in Gardez submission) and I'm contemplating a third with my remaining couple of hours.

I wish I could explain why trash prompts seem to spark my inspiration so much.
#50 ·
Let's do this, kids.
#51 ·
Ugh. Ended up one minute late on my submission. :| Guess that's what I get for not having any ideas until the last minute.

Oh well. Good luck folks!
#52 ·
Well, that's quite a bunch of stories.
Good on you, everyone.
#53 · 3
· on Look, I Just Want My Sandwich
To start off, this story is way too fast-paced. In one sentence, she’s being attacked in an alley, but skip a few sentences and she’s suddenly time travelling. Barely any details are given for any of the events; ten words is far from enough to adequately describe an event of Christie’s life.

The plot doesn’t make any sense either. It doesn’t have any coherency to it—it flips from one thing to another with nary a reason or aim. Looking back at the example above, how is time travel, from a jail cell to boot, in any way related to thugs in a alley? And sentient sandwiches? Without any attempt at an in-universe explanation or linking the events together somehow, I’m left hopelessly confused.

Finally, about half the sentences start the same way: Christie did this, Christie did that. It makes the story a bit bland and unfortunately boring to read. However, I think it’s more a symptom of the fast-pacedness and the lack of coherency than a cause in itself.

All in all, I have no idea what’s going on in this story. It’s almost as if this is a rushed crack f—

Oh hey I hit 400 words.

#54 · 1
· on Housewife · >>ZaidValRoa
Okay, first one up. Let's do this.

My first thoughts were that this was a pretty original slant on the prompt, and one that successfully nurtured its theme throughout the narrative. There's a nice slow building up of tension, which is handled well, and some clever repetition and book-ending, which is like [i]the[i/] best thing for me in works of fiction. I did feel the tension was undermined a little by the story's predictability, but I do think in a fic this size, and wrestling with the particular subject matter it addresses, there's no great harm or shame in that.

Where it falls down though, for me, is in the way it handles said subject matter. It felt as though it was running through some kind of domestic abuse checklist, with the overall result feeling somewhat overly melodramatic for my tastes. I've worked with survivors and perpetrators of abuse for a decent period of time, and some more subtle, non-physical aspects (the isolationism, the guilt, the controlling behaviour) would have made the plot feel a little more real to me, rather than just "What a violent bastard this guy is". Not that I believe people won't have had this kind of experience, but I can only compare with what I've absorbed, second-hand, and it made the fic feel a little cliché. Also:

The scene was so surreal, so unnatural, that it took his muddled mind a few moments to process it.

From this point I felt momentarily confused as to which character's PoV I was experiencing the scene through, and it kind of broke the spell for me.

All that being said, this was a pretty strong fic to start out on, and even if it didn't completely succeed in drawing me in emotionally, the skillful manner in which it was written kept my attention nicely. I expect this to feature in the top quarter of my list.

Nice work, thanks for sharing!
#55 · 1
Damnit, I should've anticipated this. Two stories in, and I'm already hungry.
#56 ·
· on Attack of the Fifty Foot Doughnut
I like limericks. If I was a tad more creative, and perhaps a little less tired, I'd be tempted to reply in equal fashion.

Anyway, I really enjoyed it. Though I have to wonder if the use of "Foot" was intentional, because if that's the case, then that'd be one odd shaped doughnut.
#57 ·
· on Nobody Move · >>georg
And there was me thinking this round was going to be full of crackfics and comedic nonsense about sandwiches. Two down, and both a little more darker in tone than I was imagining.

This one is also very well written, though it did perhaps feel like a scene from something bigger, rather than a complete story. I felt it needed something more in relation to the protagonist, although I think you almost got there with the memories of the shooting range. The little observations and fragments of memories do a really good job of evoking the numb shock someone might feel being faced suddenly with this type of situation however, and as such the scene never once comes across as anything other than believable. I like that.

The closing lines would have worked more effectively for me if they were framed by a little more post-event action. It's the type of response I could imagine happening a little later on, once the adrenaline had worn off and the protagonist takes stock of what has truly happened, but I appreciate that the word count is working against you here.

Nice job, this. Thanks for sharing.
#58 ·
Subs are srs bussines.

For a story with a comedic take, I feel it was effective. It's very self-contained and tells an interesting tale in one go. Well done.
#59 ·
· on Exactly What You'd Expect
I hope I, too, can one day become a bitter elder out to mess with people just for the sake of it.

The story, much like a store-bought éclair, left me wanting more. There is no real payoff at the end regarding the old man. We never find out why he wanted to stir trouble, there's no confrontation with the clerk afterwards, and I feel the story could have been richer had you gone further.
#60 ·
· on Cooking with Wheeljack
So, I probably don't connect with this franchise anywhere near enough as I used to (but we're talking the 80's, here), but I either remember enough, or this fic does a good enough job of not alienating me, to get through it intact. So that's a plus. As it is, the story uses the prompt to tell a quick SoL story that I feel succeeds when you know it's part of a wider universe, but perhaps not as much when considered as a standalone piece. I don't know if I'm being unfair in saying that; perhaps I am...

Anyway, it works enough. You might want to consider revising some of the more descriptive aspects of Wheeljack, however. It's referenced about how the only way he portrays emotions is via body language and lights, but then we get phrases like "sounding fearful" and "gushed". It would have made the piece more realistic/composed by establishing certain gestures/light colours and having the protagonist interpret them. As it is, some parts became a little tell-y.

Still, that last line did make me smile, as did the Firefly reference. Not a bad effort, this. Thanks for sharing.
#61 · 3
· · >>billymorph
So, I'm curious. Seventeen people voted for this prompt.

If you were one of them, would you mind posting your reason for doing so?
#62 · 2
· on Nuestra Señora · >>horizon
Top stuff, this. A richness underpinning the narrative; sparse, but defining characterisation; evocative imparting of culture without alienating or being too abstract; a simple message, supported by a delightfully real portrayal of family life.

Skirts round the prompt, rather than embracing it, a little too much for my liking, but this is nevertheless very very well written.

Great work, thanks for sharing.
#63 ·
· on A Little Piece
Having tenure must be great.

I remember the story of the Duke of Sandwich, though unless my memory ails me, he coined the confection while he was playing a game of cards and didn't want to divert his attention from the game.

Still, as enjoyable as the history lesson was I don't feel there was much in terms of story. I like the professor, he seems like an interesting fellow, and I'd love to read more about him. I just don't feel this story explores him as much as it could have.
#64 ·
· on Academy of Junior Gods
This sounds like the first scene of a young adult novel. Not bad, but it leaves too many questions unanswered for my taste.
#65 · 1
· on The Mission of a Lifetime
Hmm... I'm not sure this one works for me. Even given the comedic potential of the prompt, there's just something in the juxtaposition between the set-up and the reveal that fails. It's not that the reveal is so ridiculous, as I'm guessing that was the whole point, it's more that the set-up just doesn't do a good enough job of framing it for it to sufficiently stand out. It's making fair attempts to be realistic, which I guess is the point, right? That the humour is in the contrast. But it needs something more. Like, I think it would almost work better if the reveal wasn't a reveal, but was used throughout the scene, which could become even more OTT/almost satirical as a result. I'm sure parallels could be drawn from that.

Unless I'm really missing the point, which happens more often than not.

Couple of typos in there, but nothing a deadline-free eye wouldn't pick out. Thanks for sharing your work.
#66 ·
· on Academy of Junior Gods
That first line could use a bit of work.

Interesting concept, this, and the elements of world-building that didn't leave me scratching my head (relax, there weren't many) were both intriguing and original. As has already been said, however, this feels like a scene from a larger body of work, so I wasn't left with the sense of satisfaction I would normally expect on reaching the end of the piece.

The lack of anything other than bad-ass attributes in the protagonist kind of left her pretty shallow and unrelatable, and I think this was made more extreme by the casual approach the fic has in describing the acts of violence within. Not that I have anything against more dark, troubled characters, but if I'm going to relate I'm going to need something lighter to work with, no matter how small. That may come down to personal tastes, but I'd like to think the point is relevant regardless. She didn't feel well-rounded.

I'd be intrigued to see where you take this, should you choose to do so. As a minific it doesn't really work for me, but I'm at the very least interested in what concepts you present here. Thanks for sharing your work.
#67 ·
· on The Perfect Crime
First story on my slate, and I have a sneaking suspicion it's going to end up the best.
#68 · 4
· · >>Winston
>>Cold in Gardez Don't blame me, I voted for Lesbian Horse Escapades.
#69 · 1
· on Reuben Night · >>billymorph
“Force equals mass times acceleration, so if we want to maintain a comfortable cruising speed of half a G while adding three-oh-oh kilos to the load, we gotta increase force outputted by the engines by thirteen and a half hundred Newtons. Over a conservative journey of a million kilometers, that’s one point three five million megajoules of energy. And that’s only for about half the distance between Earth and Washington Station.”

I'll leave it to more mathematically-minded people to discuss whether the above is accurate or not. I'm just going to stick with my social sciences background and say that it worked for me.

I quite enjoyed this fic. It frames the prompt in an environment that's a little different to cafes and deli bars, and that made it automatically refreshing. The fact that the fic manages to form some nice character sketches, with believable attitudes and motivations, made it all the better for me. I got a sense of a wider world beyond this scene, and yet it just about pulls off a sense of being a standalone piece, rather than something connected to a larger story. A stronger ending would have helped that sense of independence; the last lines kind of tail the story off, rather than end it in a satisfying way (for me personally). A quibble then, but a relatively minor one.

Couple of typos too, but nothing major.

Good stuff, thanks for sharing your work.
#70 ·
· on Reuben Night
Really, really interesting interpretation of the prompt, and the execution helped make this story excellent. Had no problems with the ending, and you did a lot with a tiny amount of words.
#71 · 1
· on Just a Sandwich
The scene is well painted; I never had any trouble visualizing the action. You also do a good job conveying nuance and emotion, which actually ends up making me a little confused about his relationship with Aidan. He sounds like some sort of secret service agent, but then it seems odd to me that they'd override the Prime Minister's stated preference.

Also, there's the line "Could we stop for something to eat?" which is phrased deferentially.

Between those and some of the body language, I end up getting the feel that John has a surprising lack of agency for a leader.

Still, it makes for a novel, if understated conflict. It ends up feeling muted, perhaps like the prime minister views the world, from behind his tinted windows.
#72 ·
· on Just Another Shift · >>Orbiting_kettle
I very much liked sitting in that fast food worker's head and looking out through the foggy windows that are their eyes.
It had some atmosphere. Most of it felt distant rather than hellish, but I believe that's what you were going for.

Also where'd you come across the "risible idea" idea? I've never ever seen that word before.
#73 ·
· on Nobody Move · >>georg
One of the darker stories to come out from such an odd prompt.
#74 · 1
· on You'd Think She'd Have Seen This Coming
Aesop's Fables this ain't, but a funny piece all the same.
#75 ·
· on ...
Interesting medium, using the line breaks and the block quotes with left and right justifications to convey a back and forth text-message style.

You captured a failing relationship pretty well.
#76 ·
· on A New Transaction
So much is left unexplained in this story, but it really adds to the drama. I'd kill to know what exactly happened in this story for it to come to a head like this.
#77 · 1
· on Where's My Sand, Witch? · >>Ceffyl_Dwr
A delightful subversion of the prompt. Great characterization in a very short period of time.
#78 ·
I'd kill for some line breaks in here.
Dialogue is a bit iffy, and we don't even know what the cashier looks like, or the robber.
It might be your style, but it isn't my cup of tea.
#79 ·
· on Look, I Just Want My Sandwich · >>Ceffyl_Dwr
Stuck at home, Christie found an overpowered sentient sandwich in a cardboard box. She adopted the poor little creature.

I get the feeling that this relates to MLD...


The pacing was crack and the plot was wack. I know that you weren't trying to write a serious story, but this is plain off the wall.
#80 · 1
· on And Perhaps Coffee, Too · >>ZaidValRoa
Good imagery and mood, particularly the body language throughout; it was detailed without being overwrought. It was too subtle for me at times; her reaction at the end was a little surprising.

Given the detail of the body language, the description of the surroundings was sparse. Possibly intentionally. You might consider using the other senses more.

Prose was generally solid. There were a couple times where the pronouns were confusing, the 'he knew I hated avocados' line comes to mind. I can see why you did it, though. Also, I personally would use 'replied' instead of 'said back'.

A few minor flaws, but overall I found this another nice, understated story that improves on the second read.
#81 ·
Great concept but, as Bloons said above, weird formatting, and the flow of it wasn't super great. It felt very choppy.

Better formatting, more emphasis on descriptions after the reveal -- maybe around the Manager mark -- and a more pronounced and defined protagonist might have helped this story a lot.
#82 ·
· on Reuben Night
Prose was good, the characterization was solid, given the space restraints, and the interactions were fluid. Description was minimalist, but well-targeted. The premise was novel, though the engineer in me will gnaw at it.

Hmm. I haven't done the math, but Church's logic seems to be that the Reuben would simply add to their mass, instead of substitute for other foods. If weight is so important, than it'd make sense to get dehydrated foods and then use recycled water for re-hydration. Maybe that's what they're doing with potatoes and meatloaf, but it isn't clear.

Meat stores well; at least they're already doing it with the meatloaf. If you have a crew of three hundred, theoretically you could bake the bread (since they have gravity - they don't use it on real spacecraft due to crumbs). Cheese is a little of a stickler; I don't know that it re-hydrates particularly well. Also, whoever is making these choices seems to be discounting the importance of morale, and the impact of food on it. The ISS actually has quite varied meals.

Dear author, I hope you haven't been too put off by my nitpicks; I enjoyed reading this, even if I can't help dissecting it.
#83 ·
· on A Case of Sandwiches
That was clever, and it plays nicely into the "Trickster Genie" trope. (I blame their inflection)

I do wish we could have learned a bit more about the genie, or why the protagonist just wanted a sandwich. However, I understand these admittedly minor points were sacrificed in favour of the narrative. I still wish we could have seen more of the "witch" side of the sand witch instead of keeping it relegated to an off-hand joke

Still, it was a thoroughly enjoyable read. Good job.
#84 ·
· on Seven O'Clock Sharper
Setting and concept was really clever: nice and evocative, and successfully hinting at something greater existing beyond the scene itself. I'm not convinced that the narrative itself went anywhere strongly enough for me, though that might be just personal tastes and preferences. I certainly appreciated the descriptive elements, particularly in the first paragraph.

Really nicely written, even if it isn't exactly my cup of coffee. Thanks very much for sharing.
#85 ·
· on Paradise City
This is fun:

There's not what you'd call a story, but it left me grinning and rememembering this webcomic from the 1990s that Brian and Stu Burke, a.k.a The Brothers Grin, used to do called Supermegatopia, alas long since vanished from the web...

#86 ·
· on Exactly What You'd Expect
Description was sparse, but the setting is familiar enough that I filled it in. Does a good job with the voicing; the exchanges felt authentic enough that I was completely onboard with the protagonist and his view of the 'crazy old man'. I'm going to have to echo Zaid on the ending, though.

The twist comes out of left field, but then the story just ends and doesn't do anything with it. Though I praise the body language, if there was any foreshadowing or hints of the old guy's intent, I didn't get them. As a result, it leaves me about as baffled as the protagonist.

I feel like this would've been a great setup for a longer piece, be it a 'later meeting between the old man and the protagonist that fills in a bigger story' or 'bad stuff keeps happening because people are dicks' or whatever. As is, it paints a vivid and consistent picture, but one that feels incomplete.
#87 · 2
· on Magnificent
Man, I'm hungry.

I'm constantly second guessing myself as to whether there are any hidden meanings behind the fics of this round. I'm just going to take this one at face value. It was evocative enough for me to want to eat something, so that was a success, and there's a nice attempt at creating a distinct voice throughout. I'm not sure it did much else for me, but my imagination thanks you!

Thanks for sharing your work.
#88 ·
· on Deliberate Act
I appreciate that you didn't restrain yourself with the prompt, but went 20,000 feet above and beyond it.

Perhaps you could have done a bit more to sell the tension and terror, in particular when the pilot discovers the creature.

Also, for a second there I believed he intended to crash the plane with no survivors. What he did was clever enough.
#89 ·
· on Scratch · >>Ratlab
I don't like sass from my cookbooks.

I'm not a fan of second person, but it's done with purpose here. I wished there was more to the story than just instructions with hints of a story in the background, though.
#90 · 1
· on Where's My Sand, Witch? · >>bloons3 >>Ceffyl_Dwr
There were lots of offhand details that made this feel like a deeper world, without introducing confusion.

Generally good description, I liked 'voice crashed against the tide'. How do eye sockets narrow, though?

I'll second bloons3's comment of good characterization; Lul was relatable, and her interactions gave it a strong arc, for such a short piece.

The scenes were very short, but that's to be expected with this format. They got the point across; you used your words effectively

I had few nitpicks and quite liked it overall.
#91 ·
· on Look, I Just Want My Sandwich
I have to say I'm surprised there aren't too many crackfics, all things considered. This is the first one I've read.

But yeah, crack is whack and other Reagan era anti-drug slogans.
#92 ·
· on Paradise City
I don't have a whole lot to say on this one. There were parts of it that made me smile (the freeze rays in particular), and parts that were quite immersive/interesting. It was deftly handled on the whole, but I guess I just personally need a little more story for me to invest in.
#93 · 3
· · >>Chryssi >>CoffeeMinion
Don't blame me, I voted for Kodos.
#94 · 2
· on Rain · >>ZaidValRoa
You've got some nice descriptions hidden within the narrative. I particularly liked:

A small, two storey mishap of wood and stone held together by sheer stubbornness

The sense of the storm drawing closer was quite evocative, along with all the cold and wet that comes with it, and you manage to invoke a degree of rising tension within the short word count, so good work there.

I guess, ultimately, I was left feeling unsure as to what the conclusion was trying to say, or where it was intended on heading. If it was literally a case of the protagonist wanting a sandwich, and the storm preventing that, then perhaps it needed a few more references, or him/her being frustrated, at an earlier point. If it was meant to have some other meaning that I failed to pick up on, then I can only apologise, but nothing else was overly clear...

“Blast it all!” I scream as I leaned on the fourth wall, “I just wanted a sandwich!”
Heh. Fair enough.

Thanks for sharing your work.
#95 ·
· on Nobody Move · >>georg
Sometimes, I feel the wordcount is a restrain. I'm glad to see that wasn't the case here.

Yes, the story could have benefitted from exploring the protagonist's feelings a bit more, but the relative simplicity adds to the feel of the story.

Echoing some of the thoughts above, I feel the ending wasn't as strong as it could have been. As I understand it, the protagonist is going into shock after decreasing the number of criminals in town, but I believe you could have crafted a much stronger ending there.

Still, it doesn't change that it was very well written.
#96 ·
>>Winston Don't blame me—I voted for Somnivore.
#97 ·
· on Parmesan
Off to a bit of a rocky start here. I don't know if you intended 'Alice smiled' in the first line as an action tag or a saidism, but it reads like a saidism, which I dislike.

Second paragraph, you have actor confusion; it starts out as Frank's paragraph, but then moves to what Alice is doing, which makes things a bit confusing.

The ending felt like something of a subversion, which I liked. This story could, perhaps, be better if it was a little more information-dense; you have lines like "His accent was showing. Definitely Austrian. Or maybe German?" which work just fine, but also don't do a whole lot to advance your plot. The more meaning you can cram into fewer words, the more room you'll have to work with in short wordcount pieces.
#98 ·
· on Sit-In · >>Not_A_Hat
Impending doom has a way of bringing people together, doesn't it?

I have to say, this is one of the best stories I"ve read so far. The catastrophe plays nicely as a backdrop to the conversation between the characters.

I was a bit confused at the end, when Billy mentions the shadow he believes to have seen. I'm not sure how that relates to the rest of the story, but it's a minor complaint against an otherwise great entry.
#99 ·
· on The Call of the Kitchen · >>Ceffyl_Dwr >>Crimmar
Eh, it's cute, but it's not much of a story. This is probably meant as a joke, but I didn't really laugh much since the idea's fairly obvious; I had a decent idea of where this was going after the first paragraph, and I wasn't really surprised by the ending. The fact that this appears to be an overreaction helps a little, with the over-wrought contrasting against the blase, but not enough to really elevate it above slight-mouth-quirk funny.
#100 · 1
· on Shan'wuy.ch · >>Garnot
Ia! Ia! Sandwich fhtagn!

This is a brilliant execution of the traveler-among-Lovecraftian-things genre. It's also funny and a fairly complete story.

Tier: Top Contender