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Old 06-30-2010, 02:31 PM   #1
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Drabble, Drabble, Drabble...

A drabble is an extremely short work of fiction exactly 100 words in length. The purpose of the drabble is brevity and to test the author's ability to express interesting and meaningful ideas in an extremely confined space. (wikipedia definition)

Ok, so I have never actually started a new thread on Mobileread. I hope I don't get yelled at.

I was thinking it would be fun and challenging to have a drabble thread. And it's something I can do in my lunch hour.

As a wannabe writer, I've found out that it's a good exercise for me to write a daily drabble. It makes me write every day, so that I can feel like a writer even if I don't have the time to finish that important novel! It can be very challenging to tell an entire story in only 100 words. It makes me work at picking the right phrase.

I thought it might be neat if we had a drabble thread where people could post their mini-stories. I've actually written ones that I enjoyed so much that they expanded into bigger stories. It's a really great brainstorming trick.

So I will go first. Just know that if no one writes their own drabbles for this thread, then I will just fill up the entire thread with my own stuff and I'll lie to myself and say that I'm so important and smart that I have no drabble friends that can keep up with me. So consider yourself warned!

Oh and if there is another thread like this, then let me know. I looked but couldn't find one.

My first drabble is 'Lost at Sea':

-----------------
The men of the Oeno watched in horror as Captain George Worth lost his battle with the creature. Ribbons of bloody gore splashed onto the deck.

Vulgar pieces of man and slime mixed with bits of cloth.

“Pass the whiskey ‘round boys,” First Mate Bill Cary said. “We’ll not make it home this time. If you’re gonna die, may as well die fightin’ a beast that few men have seen. Aye?”

No one agreed.

The ship leaned as it took on more water. The sea serpent lifted its head out of the sea. It wouldn’t have to wait much longer.

END
-----------------

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Old 06-30-2010, 04:09 PM   #2
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This is an excellent idea. Drabbles" (as you call them - I like the name) are also recognized as "Flash Fiction," "sudden fiction," and "postcard fiction," to name three.

Again, an excellent idea.

Did you say you hoped no one would yell at you? Sorry, bub, you've crossed the line:

This is an excellent idea!



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Old 06-30-2010, 04:17 PM   #3
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Thank you Don! I have no idea how they came up with the name 'drabble' but it does kind of stick. Even though 'postcard fiction' is a pretty good description.

'Sudden fiction' is a great name, but it takes a lot of editing (for me anyway) to get to exactly 100 words, so not really much 'sudden' in it.
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Old 06-30-2010, 04:21 PM   #4
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Here is another one I wrote, called 'Free Men':

-----------------
The young boy struggled with the lock. He twisted the key hard. It finally turned and the door swung open.

Several men burst out in a blur of arms, legs, and bright smiles. One of them stopped. He bent down and placed his calloused hands on the boy’s shoulders.

“You did right by God,” the man said. His dark face was difficult to see. “You done did right.”

He turned and disappeared into the summer night.

The boy ran across the yard to the back porch. He climbed through his bedroom window. There’d be trouble tomorrow. He fell asleep smiling.

END
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Old 06-30-2010, 10:31 PM   #5
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Hey, I enjoyed those -- thanks for taking the time to post them.
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Old 07-01-2010, 06:06 PM   #6
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Thank you! I was hoping others would add as well. But as promised, I will keep adding until someone else does too.

Here is another one I wrote, called 'The Cold Hill':

-----------------
In 1864, on an unnamed hill, a man fell down. He looked up to see the moon trying to hide behind dark clouds. It was so quiet that he could hear the dark red snow around him shifting and falling apart as it melted.

He thought of his grandmother reading the Bible. In moments, he’d find out the truth.

They found his frozen body the next morning. He was holding a letter addressed to his wife.

“Move along men,” said the captain. “I know this man to be a coward. Take his gun and let the animals have at him.”

END
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Old 07-02-2010, 05:06 AM   #7
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The idea of microfiction goes back to Aesop, I guess. But under various names (most famously 'flash fiction'), it's become hugely popular over the last decade or so. Folks think it's easy ... same way they think poetry is easy. Think again.

My favourite piece of microfiction -- attributed to Hemingway, but nobody really knows -- runs to only half a dozen words and tells a full and tragic story.

For sale. Baby Clothes. $5. Unused.

Cheers. Neil
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Old 07-02-2010, 07:56 AM   #8
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Don't forget Fredric Brown's excellent story, which goes something like this:


The last man on earth sat alone in his room. There was a knock on the door.



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Old 07-02-2010, 09:25 AM   #9
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Brilliant, Don.

And devout unbeliever that I am, I can't help admiring some biblical prose. The shortest verse in the New Testament tells the entire story and conveys the whole message:

Jesus Wept.


John. Chap 11, verse 35.

Neil

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