DISCUSSION THREAD -- 300 Word Writing Challenge #51 (October 2023)

Peter V: Insight into adolescent psychology is one of the factors that bring this cautionary tale to life.

Bren G: The poetic intensity of this dream-like narrative adds to the impact of its unexpected conclusion.

Yozh: This amusingly wry look at mythology also offers sly satire of modern technology.
 
Last edited:
@Bren G .... The Odyssey .... Bren writes us an engrossing story that slaps us upside the head with its ending.

@Yozh .... Historic Farmstay at Yggdrasil .... Yozh takes "Alice's Restaurant" where you can get anything you want into a Norwegian "No Way at the Farmstay" do you get exactly what you want.

@Jo Zebedee .... THE GIFT .... Jo reminds us that there are things in this world that aren't explained but are true anyway.

@Christine Wheelwright .... The Forest .... A story which is as unique as unique can be. The kind of a story which could be a nugget for a novel.

@Starbeast .... MALUS - The Tree That Came From the Backyard .... This is a light hearted romp through the improbable which can't help but make you smile.
 
It must be the end of the month. Another 300 worder has appeared.

@M. Robert Gibson .... The Bois De Mort .... A story reminding us that sometimes warnings are meant to actually be warnings.
 
I'm in. Again, the muse sent just a snippet of wording to me and expected me to do the rest, in this case what seemed to be the beginning of a song. Then it turned out not to be a song at all, and ended up being changed anyway. I really don't know why I stick with this muse when she's so flaming useless!
 
So, now the challenge is closed I can say:

The picture is my sister Victoria. In the summer we went back to our childhood home — Oatlands Park in Weybridge, Surrey.

The mini roundabout and silver birch were just outside our old house in a cul-de-sac. I’m 51 now but the base of that tree has been Endor for my Star Wars figures as a 7-10 year old, and base for my Lego Space. It wasn’t ‘our’ tree but it felt like part of the family to the 3 Bean kids.

It’s been the start and finish post for many of the games we and the neighbourhood kids played in the 70s and 80s and is very special.

I took the pic on a midnight walk round Oatlands, which was Henry VIII’s hunting chase, and at one point his palace, and has countless local folktales about ghosts. The three of us experienced some odd stuff as kids there — some ghostly, others more Fortean and the midnight walk with Victoria was very special and we did a bit of crying. (I never wanted to move).

I say all this because without Oatlands I wouldn’t have developed the writing tastes I have; I spent my youth on the banks of Broadwater which is round the corner where I developed a love of Nature; particularly fish, birds and trees. In our back garden was a Boundary Stone and on Rogationtide the village would come to the house, through the garden to the back where the boundary stone was, and beat it with a stick. Called Beating the Boundary it’s an old old tradition that was aimed at setting the parish boundaries to ‘remind’ people where they were. In folklore, children were said to be held and banged on the stone (it looked like a miniature gravestone, just like those old milestones) but of course that never caught on.

The tradition had stopped due to earlier owners of the property but when we moved in in 1975, the church minister approached my parents and asked if they could resume the tradition. Which of course they did.

Some rambling musings for you.

Anyway; I’ve been sending your stories to my sister as they’ve been posted. When @The Judge told me they’d chosen that particular picture of the ones I’d sent, she was delighted. And she’s really been touched by them. She was diagnosed with several forms of cancer and has been feeling low for the past two years ago so it’s been lovely for her to read these.

You wouldn’t think she’s ill. We went to the opening night of Madonna’s concert and we dressed up (duh, obvs) — this is her on tube (bewigged—she’s blonde really).

Anyway she wanted me to say thank you.

IMG_5969.jpeg
8485CBE7-8CB2-4467-92A8-B92BED2AD109.jpeg
 
Jo Zebedee: This realistic tale of extrasensory perception provides both suspense and hope.

Christine Wheelwright: A touch of magic is the key to the appeal of this science fiction story.

Starbeast: The reader is unable to guess what might come next in this multifaceted farce.

M. Robert Gibson: The tension in this horror story grows slowly, strengthening its impact.

The Judge: The subtle message of this emotional fantasy is sure to touch the reader's heart.

paranoid marvin: In this cautionary tale we learn that small actions can have large consequences.

Ursa major: This deceptively calm account of a unique talent ends with a bang.

___________________________________________________________________________________________

Tough one to decide. Votes go to:

emrosenagel

johnnyjet

The Judge
 
Last edited:
It's a small thing, but my apologies for not entering this time... world events hit me harder than usual in October, and I just couldn't write.
@Phyrebrat, sorry I didn't enter in a month where you took the photo, especially since it's of your very cool-looking sibling. I had a story right away, but I couldn't get it down on paper.
I will vote this Challenge. Best of luck, all, CC
 
So, now the challenge is closed I can say:

The picture is my sister Victoria. In the summer we went back to our childhood home — Oatlands Park in Weybridge, Surrey.

The mini roundabout and silver birch were just outside our old house in a cul-de-sac. I’m 51 now but the base of that tree has been Endor for my Star Wars figures as a 7-10 year old, and base for my Lego Space. It wasn’t ‘our’ tree but it felt like part of the family to the 3 Bean kids.

It’s been the start and finish post for many of the games we and the neighbourhood kids played in the 70s and 80s and is very special.

I took the pic on a midnight walk round Oatlands, which was Henry VIII’s hunting chase, and at one point his palace, and has countless local folktales about ghosts. The three of us experienced some odd stuff as kids there — some ghostly, others more Fortean and the midnight walk with Victoria was very special and we did a bit of crying. (I never wanted to move).

I say all this because without Oatlands I wouldn’t have developed the writing tastes I have; I spent my youth on the banks of Broadwater which is round the corner where I developed a love of Nature; particularly fish, birds and trees. In our back garden was a Boundary Stone and on Rogationtide the village would come to the house, through the garden to the back where the boundary stone was, and beat it with a stick. Called Beating the Boundary it’s an old old tradition that was aimed at setting the parish boundaries to ‘remind’ people where they were. In folklore, children were said to be held and banged on the stone (it looked like a miniature gravestone, just like those old milestones) but of course that never caught on.

The tradition had stopped due to earlier owners of the property but when we moved in in 1975, the church minister approached my parents and asked if they could resume the tradition. Which of course they did.

Some rambling musings for you.

Anyway; I’ve been sending your stories to my sister as they’ve been posted. When @The Judge told me they’d chosen that particular picture of the ones I’d sent, she was delighted. And she’s really been touched by them. She was diagnosed with several forms of cancer and has been feeling low for the past two years ago so it’s been lovely for her to read these.

You wouldn’t think she’s ill. We went to the opening night of Madonna’s concert and we dressed up (duh, obvs) — this is her on tube (bewigged—she’s blonde really).

Anyway she wanted me to say thank you.

View attachment 111828View attachment 111829
You should have said you were sending them over. I would have written a more happy tale.
 
@Phyrebrat I love the backstory of the picture, but not the tragic bit about the cancer. I'm praying that she and the family stays on the winning side of the cancer battle.
 
You should have said you were sending them over. I would have written a more happy tale.

@Phyrebrat I love the backstory of the picture, but not the tragic bit about the cancer. I'm praying that she and the family stays on the winning side of the cancer battle.
Oh come on chronners! Don’t start censuring yourself or feel any kind of guilt just because it’s my sister and she has an illness. I kept silent whilst the contest was open because I definitely didn’t want anyone to restrict their entries.

To be honest one of the things that has been a great help to both me and my sister is our passion for horror and weird fiction. I’ve listened to a lot of academic podcasts and read academic papers/documentaries on horror and how important it is to existentialism and coping. Certainly when my bro was killed in 2011 it gave me a very different response than, say, my parents and other family members. His best friend is atheist and she really struggled.

I know that we a more than this body and we go on — a (perverse, I suppose) part of me is looking forward to my own death insofar as finding out what’s next! That might sound shocking but it’s a blessing to go through life with that faith.

Anyway, please don’t feel any kind of way about this. Honestly. She has been utterly enrapt and delighted to be the subject of so many stories. And I’ve felt October has been such a wonderful month; I got to read all your Cosmic Horror stories and now have all these inspired by my sis and favourite place on the planet :)

@Luiglin I’m particularly concerned about what you said because I know you give yourself such a hard time about your entries, so please, please don’t think about it another second :)
 
Apologies, Phyrebrat, I didn't read your whole post. I mirror Parson's prayers for your sister and your family, CC
 
@The Judge .... Waiting Under the Tree .... Her Honor has written a sweet story with a happy ending, but emphatically not the one I was expecting.

@paranoid marvin .... The Custodian .... This is a love story for sure, but exactly what kind is difficult to determine, but reading it is well worth the effort.

@Ursa major .... Such Stuff As Dreams Are Made On .... This is an interesting story which seems to ponder the border between information, knowledge. and the numinous.
 
The big question then is, which one does she like best? Fragile egos need to know :p
She hasn’t said her favourite— altho if it’s not mine I’ll disown her — but I will pass on some of the things she’s mentioned after voting.

Anyway I’ve made this bloody challenge all about me and my sister which it shouldn’t be so let’s move on ;)
 

Similar threads


Back
Top