Today’s OctPoWriMo theme is Finding peace. There were a couple of new-to-me forms this OctPoWriMo that I really enjoyed. On this final day and with the theme Finding Peace, I decided to revisit the Clarity Pyramid.
not searching anymore
no need or want while writing
“Stay in the moment and find joy.”
left alone to my thoughts
Creating new images
“I imagine a playful world.”
accepting each bump
is but chemical exchange
“I try to be true to myself.”
As a Halloween treat, here are a couple of my favorite Halloween themed poems I’ve written during past OctPoWriMos:
It’s our last day! Did you write a bunch of short, scary stories? I hope so. If not, you have a ton of prompts for when you do want to sit down and write a creepy story. And you still have today to catch up. What could be better than writing some creepy flash while waiting for trick-or-treaters?
As a treat, here’s my creepy contest-winning flash story The Wilson’s Old Place.
The image for Day 31 on the Pinterest board shows a lit jack-o-lantern in a glowing forest.
My take: Though at first this looks like a serene autumn scene, at closer look it is quite sinister. How did this jack-o-lantern get deep in the forest? Who lit it? What is that ominous orange glow in the distance? And why are we here, deep in a dark forest, stumbling upon a lit jack-o-lantern?
Micro-fiction: When I couldn’t run anymore, my breaths burning, my heart pounding so my head would burst, I found myself deep in the forest. I listened and only heard the small brook gurgling. I had escaped. But then I saw the lit jack-lantern and knew that there was no escape.
Writing Process and Tools
I have enjoyed that during the course of the month, through writing these stories, I’ve discovered some new tools to incorporate into my approach to drafting flash.
Creepy verbs: slink, lurk, prowl, skitter, skulk, slither, undulate
Story Cubes Symbols: castle, clock (1:45), apple, cane, magic wand, drama masks, die, magnet, tepee
Woodland creature: cicada
Collective noun: a drunkenship of cobblers, a load of cobblers
Horror trope: Psychokinesis
Oblique Strategies: Decorate, decorate
All of these prompts and exercises are to inspire better writing and I feel like flash is a great way to sharpen our skills. There are many literary magazines that are looking for experimental writing. Flash fiction is a great place to dance along the line between prose poetry and prose, to discover new plot forms and inventive story techniques. Now that you have so many story ideas to explore, play with how you want to tell that story to readers.
If you are interested in submitting your stories to literary magazines, get your free November Daily Planner. Each day features one literary magazine to help you explore and find the best fit for your work.