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10 X 10

Small Stories

Published: 2009 Tag(s): nanofiction twitter tweets twiction "140 fiction" "Creative Commons" #vss vss "very short stories"


10 X 10
1 'You think you are so clever,' my reflection said to me. 'Not as clever as you,' I replied. 2 As I sank into the murky water I remembered her sweet smile. 'I promise I'll return,' she'd lied. Bach played me into unconsciousness. 3 Every game he plays. Never enjoying it. Always wanting to get to the end. Searching for something else. 4 'Splendid,' the Professor says. Always splendid. He asks how I am. 'I feel like death,' I tell him. 'Splendid,' he replies. 5 So much unsaid. And yet all has moved on. Damp leaves and winter bonfires. Smoke rising through trees. Letters in a shoebox. 6 'And what's behind there?' She pointed to the curtain. 'Ah,' I replied. 'A piano of stupidity that plays to the tunes of the damned.' 7


Reciprocity. 14 3 . Okay psycho.*knock knock* Police. I don't care what you do. I said. Everyone was smiling except me. ‘If only it disappeared and I could pull a new one from a hat. I threw my shoe at him. it kept repeating. "We have moral standards. He bit my leg. Just don't freak me out. 9 Tiny little people were living in my house. Hoping for better. 12 I got a talking dog for my birthday. pondering his next visit to the brothel. one of them said. 'Why aren't you smiling?' they asked. 'I'm smiling on the inside.' 8 She lay in bed some mornings thinking of what could have been. 10 Lolita light of my .‘The world is full of cheap tricks. thinking of what never happened." he said.’ the magician said. open up! 11 Smiles all around. 13 He fired a stoner chef and a flirty chamber maid.' I replied.

a notebook and a photograph.I buried the letter in the woods. not knowing that I am the harbinger of doom. But the budget didn't stretch. Such innocent eyes. there's always tomorrow. At dawn you will vanish into the morning mist. Now there's a lot of water under the bridge. At the end of the day. 18 I took my coffee press. 15 Snow everywhere. And I will be alone. I thought . Our monkey is sick. They keep me alive. 20 This was to be a tale of two cities. bit the other on the leg and ran off. unable to speak. under a stone. I'm a foreigner here.Isn't this enough? 19 At the circus two men came over. I stare at you. The woman at check-in asked if I had other luggage. Now it's a tale of two housemates and a cheese sandwich. 17 I hear your voice. 21 4 . Can you be our monkey? I scratched his eye out. I measure their land. 16 It was a dream. Then I smelt the coffee. A deer stood at the clearing. Then it vanished.

I see you sitting on the bench but you are not there. Even the middle aged business men on the train are wearing her head. Yes you. In hospital they amputated the wrong plot. Walking through woods. I was enchanted. Now he's a professional gymnast. 22 The plane crashed and then the ambulance broke down. at French Maid Cleaning we only do your house. A cuckoo calls. 23 A winter evening. "Because you're no angel.Rain drips from trees. I said angrily." she said. smiling at me like they know 26 I woke in hell. she said. The air smells of damp earth. The crows call to their echoes. Him? I replied. 24 She wore spikes and a French maid outfit. Why am I here? The devil walked past in high heels and fishnet stockings. Smoke rises from a bonfire. 25 I see her face everywhere. Cool it sweetie. Thunder in the distance. 5 . 27 The homicide detective said it had been me all along.

Johnson. The Love Terminator.' she demanded. 29 I was crazy about him. I'll take the latter. I love you! I want to make love to you! He sighed quietly. 6 . 34 He took a bus into the jungle. 32 "I'm done for.' I replied. After their love making she said she loved him. Does not compute. He replied. 'Make me tell crappy jokes. Wrote a postcard with a Pencil. "You'll find a way. Captain!" I looked at him.28 He was a human sex machine. Drank a beer in a brothel. #sex #hotgirls #bigboobs 31 'Make me laugh. Uh-huh. And she laughed. "Listen in. You're the sacrifice we make in Chapter 3 to fuel our motivation." 33 On hot summer nights women find men and leave their shoes behind. and said. 30 My agent said my nanofiction needed be 'sexed up'. he said." he said. I wasn't convinced.

Snow comes down on my face. Unpredictable. 37 Once upon a time it wasn't like this. Which cold moon did you fall from. It was like … Something else. Leaving disaster in my wake. which dark star? And yet you think your traumatic winter is beautiful. 36 I hid Dad's shoe polish. I just wanted him to play with me. 38 1:47am.35 You said harsh words. Water drips from leaking pipes. Then he had a fight with Mum and left. If only she could remember. Devastating. I had to walk home early when I saw you. 39 He wanted his son to be a tall footballer but was attracted to 4 foot women and he was only two foot tall himself. 40 I am like lightening. The sound of laughter. 41 7 . I cut holes in his shirts.

he thought. 43 She treated her husband like an employee. What have I become? 8 . I grinned. 46 The difference between me and them is clear . "Do you remember that holiday in Mexico?" 45 He sat on the pavement with his head in his hands. You lost your necklace. 47 Robin searched the trash for edible food. She waited by the bus stop. What have I turned into. When he asked for overtime pay she refused. I found it the following spring along with a letter from your lover.We ran through the snow laughing and screaming. When I was completely lost I pulled out my GPS. She didn't love him anymore.he hoped . 42 I drove into the desert to find myself. So he handed in his resignation. 44 As she levelled the gun to my head I knew I had run out of excuses.more than a matter of opinion.

He replied.48 Lilies and tears. I constructed a nuclear bunker. 50 "What's the password?" I said. You dreamed of antique furnature and I went to Ikea 52 What's it with you and Spider-man? He's cool. 54 9 . I replied. Chuck said. Spiderman never speaks much. "The year of your death. Chuck was silent 53 On this beautiful summer's afternoon I'm reminded of that day we spent together here. While I remain in this darkened room comforted by angels." 51 You wanted a mysterious fortress. as we approached the safe. Mr McMukmuk forgives everything. He breathed in the salty air and laughed. Before I cheated on you. All that I cherish and love is gone. 49 The sea was quiet that morning as he strolled down to the beach. Before you dumped me.

Actually. A touch. My rule was merciless but I lived happily ever after. He would spend the rest of his life contemplating what it meant. Your giving. I killed the King and married the princess. All folded in time 59 I wrote myself into my story. 61 10 . 57 In the infinity of time all this would become insignificant. 58 Of all the things remembered.Like all men his ego was glued together by character flaws. a kiss. Before that moment came Mark Staunton was determined to have his revenge. And now my heavy heart. 55 She probably likes to think I remember her every day. Your tenderness. That's why it's in your dreams. the truth is I forget her a lot more often 56 There's a place in your dreams where you aren't betrayed and you don't get sold short every time. 60 Luke Wellman saw the evening sunlight skim across the tree tops. flaws which he mistakenly believed were the root cause of his talent.

The prince married a wombat. I flew through the clouds looking for her. 11 . On Monday we'd be back at work selling office space. We kissed by the burger tent. 67 She despised men who strutted about all arrogant. The rules were changed forever. 62 The wrongs and rights . 64 My ex-girlfriend came out of the bathroom with my best friend. A grand mansion with an overgrown garden. It came back as a diamond ring."' she sang. like a goddess. And yet she was destined to play the role of a woman who ran after them. They led to the same place. 65 I'm entranced. smoking weed and dancing. 63 I pulled a wheel off a pram and threw it into the sun.Once upon a time there was a frog. I bet she floats on clouds until she picks her nose and lights up a cigarette 66 We met at a music festival. It turned into a prince. '"You can't always get what you want. She saw me and laughed.what does it matter now? Walls and bridges. She's perfect.

68 He stared at his coffee feigning deep psychological hurt. before they got to the beginning of this story. he said. 72 I got a message on my phone saying that I was a liar. she imagined a life without him. Now I can go back and repeat the same mistakes. I'd rather not talk about my divorce. he forced himself up from the wheelchair. 70 He could predict the future. He stood for a second and fell back exhausted. But I was given a second chance. his voice trembling slightly. 74 Judgement day came. 73 They had a mountain to climb before they swam an ocean. he said. 'We are going to fall in love and then you will break my heart. When he saw her in the bar. 12 . 69 Slowly. I sent a text back saying they had the wrong number. I was found wanting. more painfully than he imagined.' 71 Sometimes. before they walked a desert. before he returned from work.

loves talking big about how he's going to change the world.75 He never listened to her complaints. She noticed his green eyes. 76 My girlfriend looks so beautiful in that blue dress. Or is it red. That's always my excuse. "It's sleeping. 81 13 ." I tell her. 78 They ate figs under the tree. 80 "Fly little bird!" the girl says. The feathered body drops to the ground. 77 Deacon is drunk most of the time. He was too busy formulating his own. But the world is still waiting. It was too early to walk home 79 As he stared into the lawn he thought he saw ant-sized Roman legionaries marching through the grass blades. She doesn't understand. I can't quite tell. I'm colour blind.

"I pity you. 87 The next one was going to be love … He'd been saying this to himself all his life. 86 I missed my flight connection. 84 The gladiator put his sword to the frogman's throat. reptile.My ex dated my neighbour. I am walking nowhere in the hope it will take me somewhere. 88 14 . I said. I ran him over. I heard them. drinking duty free whisky and smiling at the flight attendants. That's so cheap. And now his porridge was cold. A mystic appeared shouting about redemption." I said. "I want to tell a joke. 85 I was travelling across the desert. Why do you think I dated you in the first place." But to his horror he could not finish the amphibian. "You've just had it. They laughed. Now I'm waiting on this bench. A bird circles in the sky. 82 I had one last wish before the firing squad." 83 Silence. She replied.

as the door banged shut. The rest is as grey as an elephant's ear. Half coffee.I woke up in the land of lost cliché expressions. She wanted to live in a Lego house with plastic pets a plastic baby and a plastic husband. Instead. "This is the bus to nowhere. 93 "I'm here to be with you.cofftea. 90 Hector loved uncomfortable situations like traffic jams and broken escalators because everyone else felt uncomfortable. never stops. he wanted to hang out with girls. 91 "Welcome aboard. Goes nowhere. half tea. He rested back thinking he was the luckiest man in the world. 89 He felt like a prop in her life. In a flash of genius he had an amazing idea . 94 Something strange was happening to my brother. 15 ." she said for the second time that night. He didn't want to play games with me." 92 James woke and made breakfast." said the driver.

98 After twelve years of marriage. 97 I swam the moat. I said. I muttered. Now the drains were blocked and the roof leaked and everything new was old.95 There was a time when everything she owned was new. There are no fish in these waters. I climbed the walls. my husband said he wanted us to get into S&M. 96 Kind words on a cold Monday comfort me through the arctic dark. 100 As I skydived towards Paradise Island. Isn't that what we've been doing all along? 99 I sat in the hotel room with a bottle of Bushmills and my old fishing rod. When I got to her room at the top of the tower she said I smelt of ditch water and sweat. The mysterious heart is out of kilter. 16 .I realised I'd forgotten to pack my parachute. All I see is you. to spend the rest of my life in blissful luxury .

What is Twitter Fiction? There are many literary formats out there and when Twitter came along. Although not the only microblogging service out there or the first communication platform to be used for nanofiction it soon became synonymous with ultra short While some Twitter fiction is created using one tweet to make the whole 'story' (or at least the essence of one) other writers create Twitter novels (Tovels or Twovels) so that the story is carried through multiple tweets. (Posts are listed against the narrative order. 17 .and I think they're a great opportunity to think afresh for any writer. cheekily turning the status update into a blog post. Twitter fiction or Twiction can be shared through a Twitter page with anyone. who can get writer's block with just 140 characters to kill? There are obvious dangers.) To get around this. This is the problem with fiction on Twitter . It provides a ready-made template to reduce the dreaded 'white page syndrome'. blog or just create an eBook at the end. While text messages can only be read by the recipients of the message. such as over-tweeting and not having the discipline to maintain the quality! I've experimented with both Twitter 'formats' . microblogging was born along with a new nanofiction format. Twitter is great for writing because it's so easy. Some writers. hence the name '140 Fiction' that some people use. After all. Unlike the SMS text message which has a 160 character limit Twitter only allows 140 characters.for Twitter novels it’s a better writing tool than a reading one.nanofiction and the micronovel . Twitter writers often tag their work with hashtags such as #vss for very short story so that other Twitter users can find their work. Having said this. The problem with Twitter fiction is that the most recent tweets are at the top of the web page so readers have to follow every tweet to keep up with the story or face having to search back to the start or where they left off. such as Nick Name even made hashtag stories out of these search terms http://feedbooks. many writers use Twitter as a production and promotion tool and copy the contents of the story to their website.

As a good working rule: .The first line is the set-up .Here are three Twitter fictions I've written: Eating Grass a science fiction micronovel http://www. The problem is that each tiny story needs a viable working idea. Tweeting 10 X 10 The 100 nanofictions from 10 x 10 originate from my Twitter page @10_x_10. a reversal. a comic element (or some form of context) Probably two of the most popular Twitter nanofiction writers of 2009 were @arjunbasu (writing about relationships through the comedy of the unexpected) and @veryshortstories (writing Gothic horrors with macabre twists). The classic three act plot works well but in this case it's likely to be one sentence per act. It can becomes 10 x 10 – is the best of my Twitter nanofiction.feedbooks. an observation.The second develops the setup by providing conflict . 18 . written from the viewpoint of a teenager using a distinctive tweet / text message style http://feedbooks. I believe nanofiction is a justifiable literary form with parallels to the haiku. The beauty of Twitter nanofiction is that the writer can parody.The third sentence reveals something: a twist. It's not as easy a format to work in as one might imagine. It poses the challenge of working within the 140 character limit (often less when taking into account a hastag). More about Twitter nanofiction Twitter nanofiction is exhilarating to write. I employed a variety of genres and styles to write them. Most practitioners dabble with it briefly and move on. spoof or mimic any style without having to worry about having to sustain it for long.creating fresh content can become What it Means – is a micronovel. pun or word play .

why not have a go and try it for yourself? It's incredibly satisfying to tweet fiction directly from your mobile phone and get an almost instant response. There's no chance of editing the work (tweets can't be edited later) and the writer can't delete tweets without creating holes in the story. 19 . If you write. I hope some of the fun and exhilaration I had writing this collection shines through. seeing it re-tweeted and commented on.Twitter novels are more tricky than they look as well.

always perfect for mobile reading. Uncollected Stories (2009) The second collection from the popular Feedbooks download author.sometimes funny. sometimes disturbing.) Herman Marmaduke (2009) No one has seen the reclusive. Great for reading on any mobile device. Going to a place called Apple Pie with Uncle Zak. some comic. Until now that is. some dark . Herman Marmaduke for many years.From the same author on Feedbooks Small Stories (2008) 101 very short stories. Eating Grass (2009) What if people visit you in your sleep and you realise that you possess extraordinary powers? Eating Grass was written entirely on Twitter and is a story about love and alienation.each one written to provide a quick entertaining read. Who is the woman on the phone and why does a chatty 'Fisherman' keep appearing? This science fiction micro novel is a collaborative Google Wave fiction written with a realtime audience who decided how the story would play out. 50 microfictions . Won't be in London for a while. ex-TV celebrity. Apple Pie (2009) Status update: Went to Dad's funeral today. Wharfdean (2009) 20 . (Bonus content: 'Author's Commentary') Bathrobe Guru (2009) Dave wakes up with a body in his bed that looks identical to him. (Bonus content: 'The making of Small Stories' & 'Author's Commentary'.

"My father. ever the social climber. text message / tweet style. 21 . determined his son would have all the advantages he did not." What It Means (2009) A teenager tries to keep it together in a messed up world. He sent me to a school in Dublin and then on to England. coming from a farming family in Cork. Completely written on Twitter using a gripping first person view point. to Wharfdean. Food for the mind 22 .www.