Six-Word Story Writing Contest Winners!

Keep it short imageWe were thrilled to receive so many creative entries to our Six-Word Story contest! Perhaps the age of Twitter has honed your skills in the brevity department.

Our number-one criterion was for the entries to tell a complete story in just six words, not needing a title or the prompt to set the scene. Still it was tough to choose just six winners out of nearly 300 stories…so we didn’t! We cheated on our own rules and picked seven, plus some honorable mentions. ‘Hope you don’t mind too much. 


Spilled white out erased his life. by KRHolbrook
A  vivid reminder that characters depend on the writer for their existence, which could be very tenuous in the pre-digital era. (What’s the modern equivalent?)  

Into the wedding dress, he wept. by tk_omalley
Love how this one makes a single, heartbreaking scene so vivid, like snapping a picture.

Batman: flying rodent exterminator. Call now! by Cazza3000
Made us chuckle – who would Batman think he was if all he had was a name?

Fixed machine. Goodbye cellphones, hello dinosaurs. by ChelseaHaynes
We applaud this one for being complete, yet ambiguous - with the prompt off the page, the meaning of “machine” expands.

I kissed Anna, and whispered, "Jane." by jwryt
Endlessly intriguing. Mistake or mourning? Jane Doe or Jane Eyre? We’d love to read a Six-Word Sequel… 

Loving stagnation, Erica jumps into pictures by JudahSpecal
Not quite sure which prompt sparked this one—is Erica an author? A character? A superhero? A lovelorn lady with a weakness for boring relationships? Who knows, but who needs to know. This one is so engaging that it wins a copy of Not Quite What I Was Planning: Six Word Memoirs by Writers Famous and Obscure, edited by Rachel Fershleiser and Larry Smith.

And, because we loved its dark humor that much, we decided to give away a bonus copy to this edgy riff on Hemingway’s original:
New baby for sale. Needs shoes.
by Waxwing

Congratulations, winners! You’ll be hearing from us with details on claiming your prizes. In the meantime, here’s a list of ten honorable mentions that win fame and glory.

Mayan deadline's here. Sun won't set. by emergen

My underpants on the outside. Why? by Riis_Marshall

Fractured phalange; manuscript overdue. Help wanted. by Southerner

Control my characters? That is fantasy. by Peetz

I got used to wearing togas. by May_Winner

Breasts of plastic, heart of gold. by NobodysHorse

Went back. Killed Mother. Return impossible. by Leo1

Writer's block? Hit head here. rf98ifeoghiodkifg8ty9ihu by M_Farris

Sorry, my dog always comes first. by Jvd9

Types last word. Pause. Ctrl-A, delete. by AreannaLuckett

Need still more six-word fun? Leave a comment – tell us which one was YOUR favorite, or write a new one of your own. And if you’re feeling long-winded, enter our new contest: write a 6+294-word story inspired by the Titanic’s 100th anniversary.


All Aboard! Writing Contest

TitanicTitanic – it’s coming back to theatres in irresistible 3D, meaning we’re all going to drown once more in Rose and Leo’s doomed love, not to mention Celine Dion’s unavoidable ballad.  And what oddly perfect timing, after recent cruise disasters like the Costa Allegra, which was stranded in the Indian Ocean after catching fire, and the Costa Concordia's tragic grounding and capsizing off Italy's Tuscan coast.

So we’re thinking, there’s got to be more stories than just an Irish immigrant and a privileged young lady. It’s time to tell them!

For our next challenge, write a 300-word story set on a cruise ship. Tragedy on the RMS Titanic? Culinary adventure on a lush Caribbean vacation? Sunburn? Man overboard? Let your imagination set sail! Break a bottle over the prow of inspiration. Launch your sentences boldly out to sea…ok, we’ll stop with the naval puns, it’s time to WRITE! 

Back to the usual 300-word limit on this one, and the deadline is 10 PM EST on April 15, 2012—in Titanic terms, that’s one week after the movie re-premieres, and one day after the 100th anniversary of the sinking. WEbook will choose our six favorite winners and award them free entry to PageToFame, our flagship writing contest, and one exceptional entry will receive a copy of Self-Editing for Fiction Writers: How to Edit Yourself Into Print.

To enter, start a new chapter in this writing project. All aboard!

THE FINE PRINT: Contest ends at 10 pm on April 15, 2012. WEbook does not take into account the user ratings when deciding who will win the challenge. We read each submission carefully, and decide the winners based on our own judgment. One  submission per person ( you can revise your entries up until the deadline).

The Building Description Writing Contest Winners

20100216writingchallengeblogReading through these was an awesome experience. So many buildings, so many worlds, and so many people moving around inside them!

If we were artists, we would  have drawn each building and made a massive collage of amazing structures.Alas, we are not, so we'll be picking winners and awarding prizes! 

#1 winner who will be getting a copy of Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley:

Dispatch to King Racc by simonmabee
This is straight up badass writing. Crisp descriptions, imaginative perspective, and all of it grounded with an image of a house you will never forget. All hail King Racc!

Winners who will receive free entry to PageToFame!

The Pit of Despair by J_Hucke 
This was written with a stunningly realistic adolescent voice. It also incorporated a large amount of complicated socioeconomic issues without ever addressing them head-on. Really great. Plus, we want to know what happens when he opens the door!

Bellmore by Michelle4Laughs
This entry had two great assets: solid research of castle structure and a larger, engaging story tying the scene together. Murder holes, a portcullis, and a quest to save a sister. Hell yes. 

House in the Woods by TheChemist
More than any other entry, this one gave us a sense of color. Color you can see and taste and feel and remember. Moreover, the last line is as enthralling as it gets when you're describing inanimate objects.

The Biffy by Atrees 
Vivid, irresistible, well-done borrowing rhythm from poetry without losing the strong prose.

The Event by SamTaylor
Here's a guy that knows how to pick adjectives. Putrid, decay, tormented, blackened. This is dark stuff, but also engaging. Nice.

Congratulations to the winners, you'll receive your prizes soon. 

Be on the lookout for the next writing contest on Monday. Let's just say, this will be an unsinkable challenge.

If you need something to do right this instant, check out the entries to the Six-word Story writing contest. They're really good.

Have a great weekend!

Six-Word Story Writing Contest

Keep it short imageIn their famous book of guidance for great writing, William Strunk and E.B. White (yes, THAT E.B. White!) offered writers the following great advice: Omit needless words.

Well, who are we to argue? So our next writing contest is meant to challenge your powers of concise expression. Concise expression. Six words, to be exact.

We’ve all heard Ernest Hemingway’s well-known six-word memoir: For sale: baby shoes, never worn. Now it’s your turn. Choose one of the prompts below and, in six words—no more, no fewer—tell us a story. (Don't worry, Ernest won't be your competition.)

  • Your time machine is finally working.

  • A writer’s life is never simple.

  • Superhero with amnesia looks for work.

  • Why am I always getting dumped?

We'll be tweeting entries during the contest, so include your Twitter handle with your entry! Our six favorites will earn free entry to PageToFame, our flagship writing contest, and one lucky winner will receive Not Quite What I Was Planning: Six-Word Memoirs by Writers Famous and Obscure, a collection edited by Rachel Fershleiser.

To enter the contest, create a new chapter in the Six-Word Story Writing Contest. Good luck!

THE FINE PRINT: Contest ends at 10 pm on March 18, 2012. WEbook does not take into account the user ratings when deciding who will win the challenge. We read each submission carefully, and decide the winners based on our own judgment. Just in case you love all our prompts, we’ll allow two submissions per person for this contest only (as usual, you can revise your entries up until the deadline).

 P.S. Don’t forget to check us out on Pinterest for Writing Contest Inspiration!

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