DISCUSSION -- JANUARY 2019 300-word Writing Challenge (#32)

Heather Myst

Well-Known Member
Dec 5, 2009
There were so many good ones to choose from but my votes went to:

Victoria Silverwolf

There are so many talented members here. Bravo everyone.


by day Stuart Orford by night Dark Lord's scribe
Mar 22, 2012
Mercia, UK
Top three for me...
  • The Travels of Sir Reginald Rigmarole, Part 94 by @Dan Jones - a dash of derring-do is the cat's pyjamas
  • The Test by @Peter V - all smoke and mirrors for the easy life
  • Captain Starshine Invites You On A Trip In His Astrocharabanc by @M. Robert Gibson - a quite poetic groan of laughter
Thanks for the votes @chrispenycate and @Rafellin plus cheers for mentions. I so wanted to do a Flash Gordon rip-off but, while not exactly in the same genre, @Dan Jones pipped me with his ripping yarn. Possibly, a good result in the end as no doubt I would have added far too many bad puns for and any 300 worder to contain.


This world is not my home
Oct 11, 2006
Well, voting was a struggle. Here's the best I could do:

Short list:
@scarpelius -- Clean Bill of Health -- For giving a whole new meaning to "brass balls."
@Cathbad -- If one One Does Not Know History -- For a counterpoint to the Industrial Revolution.
@Ian Fortytwo -- The RED BUTTON -- For Poking fun at a nonsensical regulation
@Phyrebrat -- Dead on Seven -- For the most surprising ending that actually made sense.
@mosaix -- Don't Think About It -- For an interesting take on time travel.
@LittleStar -- Rocinante -- For a fascinating genre combo.
@The Judge -- The Story of Rumple Still-Gin -- For a grin worthy story.

voted for:
@dannymcg -- When Is a Door Not a Door -- For a truly original tale which puts me in mind of classic Science Fiction.
@Perpetual Man -- A Game of Fatal Chance -- For a story of Russian Roulette with a possibility of a truly good end for playing.
@Peter V -- The Test -- For a story which put me in mind of a real world situation, or two, or so.


I received a stealth vote from @Karn's Return. Thanks much!

Danny McG

Nuke the entire site from orbit
Sep 9, 2016
Cumbria UK
Thanks Parson, always glad when I earn a vote from you, you've got such a wide ranging knowledge of sci fi :)

Peter V

Well-Known Member
Nov 1, 2016
I think this latest 300 has produced some outstanding entries and it has been extremely difficulty narrowing it down to three.

@Victoria Silverwolf
@M. Robert Gibson
@Ursa major

@Phyrebrat - Expertly crafted tale leading to an unexpected ending which made sense of the whole. Excellent.
@Heijan Xavier - An original and entertaining tale which introduces a new device to the world. I am not sure of the legality of owning a humincer!
@mosaix - Sometimes a conversation is all that is needed to paint a picture. Great ending nudged this ahead of a couple on my shortlist.

And a special mention for The Judge for a wonderfully unique and amusing, not to mention clever, take on a fairy story.

Thank you elvet, Parson, Luiglin and Heijan Xavier for the votes. As ever appreciated and quite humbling when I look at the quality on show this month. Thank you also to scarpelius and Deathwalker for the mentions.

Now to see if I can improve on last months dire showing in the 75!

Dan Jones

Free Omar!
Nov 14, 2014
Here, Now
Morning, dreamboats!

Toughie this month, but a few definitely did stick out from the crowd. The runners-up were Victoria and Dannymcg, but I decided to cast my votes to:

- Phyrebrat. As your usual lyrical style was employed in the body of the text I thought there was nothing there to frighten the horses, but your ending was surprisingly puckish for you. Rather than shocking, I thought it very amusing. But I love death, me.
- Luiglin - gently touching without being overly sentimental, this was written with a lot of restraint and all the better for it (a bit like my entry).
- Chrisp - if ever someone's prose style was tailor-made for steampunk, then it's yours, Chris. The polar opposite of Luiglin's entry, this is stuffed to the gills with weird contraptions and repurposed bits of grunge. I imagine this is what the inside of your brain would look like.

Now, don't forget to keep voting, or I'll send round Ballsmasher Mcadams to sort you out.


Western PA High Tech Country Boy
Nov 11, 2011
My "Short" List and Favorites:

Looking Forward – Rafellin
A House Divided – drmatteri
The Clockmaker's Daughter - Victoria Silverwolf

Ryerson's Reliable Robots - Cat's Cradle
Want Everything – Luiglin
It Has Your Eyes … - D3athw4lker
Dead on Seven – Phyrebrat
When is a door not a door? – dannymcq
Don't Think About It – mosaix
A Game of Fatal Chance - Perpetual Man
Uisce Beatha – Shyrka
Those magnificent apes (in their flying machines) – chrispenycate
Rocinante – LittleStar

Lots of interesting and unique entries. Well done, everyone!


Feb 13, 2011
In your bedroom wardrobe...
A list of my favourites and some of my thoughts on this quarter's entries.

@Rafellin for optimism and character.

@elvet for such a sad take on gaming and the world moving on whilst we gamers don’t.

@Victoria Silverwolf - Can you please stop writing about The Most Serene, please! You know I’m presold on anything about beautiful Venezia la Serenissima, and your words do the title great justice. The final paragraph nailed this for me. VOTE

@Dan Jones - How could I not vote for this? Some of the turns of phrases and names had me belly-laughing in Costa whilst I was reading it. That’s got to have some kind of recognition. Also, this tale has proof of his obsession with regional accents. Lamentable. VOTE.

@dannymcg for the great sense of place and occasion. We often talk about world-building and the struggles against boring the reader with backstory etc, but here is a great example of how to give a deep sense of history and geography with a few choice words here and there.

@johnnyjet because gremlins! Actually this story was one that I thought connected to the breeziness or humour of the stimulation picture. There’s something about the naïvté of the picture that's borne out in your story and I loved the simple pleasantness of this tale.

@mosaix - I feel like I don’t want to like this slice of nihilistic existentialism but it’s the kind of black mirror the nihilist in me loves.

@chrispenycate for a dense - incredibly dense - tale of the - er - not-human human spirit and tenacity. I suppose it’s to be expected - we probably learnt it from our ancestors. And, any story that manages to get fresnels in the prose, must get a mention.

@Peter V - Kind of messed up until you realise how allegorical it is to what is happening today. Can’t say more as political discussions are banned here but I see parallels to Europe, USA not to mention climate change. Here's the tail wagging the dog…

@The Judge. Ouch, those puns! I think Johnny Walkabout was my personal favourite but I’m partial to whisky(even if it is Irish Jameson and nothing else!!). I will swear an affidavit that this story came to you fully-formed like a Coleridge reverie. The links between each part of the tale are so smart. It’s odd or me to vote for this because as a kid I hated Rumpel, in fact I was probably as scared of him as I was of the Wolf and the Seven Little Kids (but that was chiefly down to the artwork on each page thoe Ladybird books are fmous for), so when I saw the title I prepared to not like your story. But it’s just too smart to leave unacknowledged. VOTE

Edit: Thank you for all the mentions and votes. I see I just shot myself in the foot. :D



Easily amused
Feb 21, 2006
Ontario, Canada
@Phyrebrat Thank you for the mention and your comment. I know I have spent many weekends in a darkened room with my PC, solving another world's problems and perhaps escaping a few of my own. It is hard to explain to someone who doesn't have this hobby.


Level 30 Geek Master
Dec 9, 2015
What a nice "Welcome Back", after my longest time away from the Chrons!

Thanks for all the short listings, mentions! And a vote from @Calliopenjo !! Much appreciated!


Well-Known Member
Jun 30, 2011
There was one standout story for me this month, but I had two more votes to cast. Though two votes naturally comes three entries I felt we’re deserving of a nodo_O

Shyrka took them to the wire and narrowly missed out this time around.

My votes went to:-


Friend of Ulysses
Jan 11, 2016
Lots of stories made my shortlist this month. I enjoyed all of the following:

If One Does Not Know History, @Cathbad
Looking Forward, @Rafellin
The Travels of Sir Reginald Rigmarole, Part 94, @Dan Jones
The Clockmaker's Daughter, @Victoria Silverwolf
Phobia’s Pathway, @Karn’s Return
Useless Macinations, @Cory Swanson
Want Everything, @Luiglin
Second Hand, @Daysman
It Has Your Eyes, @D3athw4lker
An Explosion of Clocks, @johnnyjet
The Test, @Peter V

As far as votes go, they were stolen by these three:

Ex Husband Machina, @Heijan Xavier
Rocinante, @LittleStar
Dead on Seven, @Phyrebrat