Here Cometh the Horde


Here Cometh the Horde

by Gavin Biddlecombe

Catching the white Oval was a poorly made decision no matter whether the choice to live dangerously ranked highly on the coveted list.

Eyes darted worriedly.

Arm raised hopefully.

Legs charged on speedily as bruises appeared rapidly.

Yet, the Horde swarmed in relentlessly.

My likely doom approached. But wait.

A glimmer of hope as an unlikely ally bellowed alongside. Offloading the Oval wisely before the moment of impact, the recipient received it ungraciously. I shut my eyes tightly.

Silence.

A peek.

The dust settled.

Both Oval and ally gone.

The Horde enthusiastically rampaged on. Could I last another 70 minutes?

 


 

Adverb writing challenge – Volume 5. (Max 100 words)

Volume 4 now available here.

Leave No Reindeer Behind

Leave No Reindeer Behind

by Gavin Biddlecombe

 

Santa’s muscles tensed, fighting the freezing gale biting its way to bare skin through the holes of his heavy red jacket.

“Keep going,” he screamed. Tired hands gripped the reigns, steering what was left of his reindeer into the oncoming blizzard. He glanced over his shoulder and, seeing nothing behind, eased his grip on the reigns as they crossed over into the Arctic Circle. He took his seat for the first time in hours as Dancer, Prancer and Vixen slowed to a steady pace.

Inspecting his torn clothing, it was then he realized his gloves were gone and had no idea when or where they’d been lost. The how on the other hand… Maybe if he could remember where, he could return tomorrow when the chaos had settled.

As he ran a chilly hand through his hair, he jerked upright, then tapped the top of his head just to make sure.

“No, no, no.” he said, spinning round and searching the back of the sleigh. His wife had advised him against wearing it and now his favourite red hat had been lost as well. He slumped down and urged the tired reindeer on. It wouldn’t be long now. Home. The dog-house most likely.

He racked his brain. If he could handle the whole world in one night, then a Black Friday sale should’ve been a piece of cake. He tugged at the reigns and steered the reindeer back South. “We’re going back,” he said as they cast worried glances. “We’re getting everyone home.”

With renewed vigor, Dancer, Prancer and Vixen charged out of the blizzard and into the fray.

 


 

Locked Out

Locked Out

By Gavin Biddlecombe

 

“Come on guys, open up.” Neil stood on the platform outside of the sealed door, speaking to the inhabitants through his radio. “This isn’t funny anymore.”

“What’s the password?” said one voice, distorted by the electronic hardware.

“I’m not playing this game again. Let me in or I’m telling.”

“Ooh, scary.”

“Is this because I ate the last chocolate pudding?”

Silence.

Neil stopped pounding on the door and pressed himself up against it, hearing the muffled laughter within. Leaving them to it, he climbed back down the ladder and jumped off at the last rung, the dusty ground crunching under his boots as he landed.

He moved away, ignoring the deep boot-prints left behind and sat on a nearby rock, surveying the dark, empty landscape ahead of him. Fiddling with the radio settings on his suit, he looked back at the sealed door and began his next transmission in the hope someone would hear.

“Houston,” he said, “we have a problem…”

 


 

Seasons at Play

 

Seasons at Play was submitted to Christopher Fielden’s latest volume of Nonsensically Challenged (Vol. 3), with a 200 word limit.

 


 

Seasons at Play

By Gavin Biddlecombe

 

“It doesn’t matter what happens beyond this point,” said Summer, admiring the line he had drawn across the sand. “The minute it’s crossed, that’s it.”

“That can’t be it,” replied Autumn. “I’m enjoying myself too much. What with the red and gold and—”

“And so you keep saying. Nevertheless, I’ve suffered for three months.”

“But it’s too cold to do much else.”

Summer didn’t reply. Checking the coast was clear, he nudged Autumn square in the back and looked on as Autumn, arms wind-milling like crazy, tried to regain his balance.

Autumn just about managed an I’ll-get-you-back look, before collapsing in a heap across the line. The line vanished altogether, completing the transition. As Summer stood back, Autumn raced towards him, colliding into a solid invisible barrier.

“You know what’s next?”

Autumn’s resigned look was answer enough, as a snowball splattered freezing slush down his back.

“Hey, Winter,” said Summer, indicating the shivering individual in front of him. “He’s all yours.”

“About time too,” she replied. Winter gave a whole-hearted wave, then focused her attention on Autumn, who was busy fishing melted snow out of his clothes.

“I’ve missed you,” she said, launching another snowball.

 

(195 words)


 

You can find out more about these challenges here.

You can find more short stories and flash fiction here.

 

 

Reading About Writing…

I get a bit of a ribbing from my wife at times that I’m a “How To” kind of person, where I have a habit of reading How To books when I try something new but then again it’s also my way of understanding and getting to know how a process works.

I mentioned in a previous page / post, I picked up a book or two to assist in writing and they are just that. Reference books I dip into every now and again when I’m unsure of something. There are lots of books, websites, blogs, etc. on how to write, when to write and so forth that can tie you up for hours. To be fair, I’ve taken note of this over the past year and a half, especially when it comes to writing. Hours spent reading about writing are hours lost not writing. Make sure the balance is right.

If you want to write, then write.

It doesn’t matter where you are and what format you’re using. Just write.

 

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I was on a flight to the U.K. recently and the hours literally flew by. I’d normally take a work of fiction by a well known author and while the time away that way. However, this time I carried my journal with me thereby giving me the option to write instead. It was enjoyable to say the least. No editing, no stopping. I ploughed on [plowed (U.S.)] thereby letting the story develop. The only downside was the two and a half hour flight wasn’t long enough.

 

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Time well spent and look forward to keeping it flowing.

How do you allocate your writing time?


 

You can view my website here.

 


 

Nonsensically Challenged Anthology Release

To complete a trilogy of latest releases, first Adverbially Challenged, Vol. 3 and Tritely Challenged, Vol.1 comes release of anthology Nonsensically Challenged, Vol. 2, which hosts 100 of the most nonsensical works of flash fiction by 100 authors.

This time, Trampoline makes an appearance in the second, of hopefully many, volumes containing witty and amusing nonsense riddled stories, and is also due for release on Saturday 28th April 2018.

NonsensicallyChallengedVolume2bookcover

(Nonsensically Challenged Volume 2 – cover artwork by David Fielden)

 

I don’t make any money from this book and neither does the publisher as the proceeds from book sales are donated to The Daisy Garland. You can find out more about what they do here.

All I receive is some exposure for submitting my flash fiction to the challenge, which will appear alongside 99 other authors whilst helping and providing awareness for The Daisy Garland.

If you fancy helping to raise LOTS more for good causes, take part by submitting your stories to the challenges or buying a copy of the book, which will be available as a Kindle eBook or in a printed format.

 

Kindle eBook Copy

The Kindle eBook version will be available on all Amazon websites by searching for either the:

(1) Book name Nonsensically Challenged, or

(2) Amazon Standard Identification Number (ASIN): B07CN6B75X

 

Printed Copy

The books will also available in printed paperback copies available from the Amazon websites.

The ISBNs of the book are:

  • ISBN: 1986418006
  • ISBN-13: 978-1986418003

 

To read some of my other work, see Short Stories or Flash Fiction, and to find out more about Nonesensically Challenged, check out the links on my site to guide you there. Why not submit your own short story?


 

Tritely Challenged Anthology Release

Hot on the heals of the release of anthology Adverbially Challenged Volume 3 comes Tritely Challenged Volume 1, which hosts 100 of the most cliched works of flash fiction by 100 authors.

This time, Every Cloud… makes an appearance in the first, of hopefully many, volumes containing witty and amusing cliche-riddled stories. It is due for release on Saturday 28th April 2018.

TritelyChallengedVolume1bookcover

 

(Tritely Challenged Volume 1 – cover artwork by David Fielden)

I don’t make any money from this book and neither does the publisher as the proceeds from book sales are donated to Book Aid International. You can find out more about what they do here.

All I receive is some exposure for submitting my flash fiction to the challenge, which will appear alongside 99 other authors whilst helping and providing awareness for Book Aid International.

If you fancy helping to raise LOTS more for good causes, take part by submitting your stories to the challenges or buying a copy of the book, which will be available as a Kindle eBook or in a printed format.

 

Kindle eBook Copy

The Kindle eBook version will be available on all Amazon websites by searching for either the:

(1) Book name Tritely Challenged, or

(2) Amazon Standard Identification Number (ASIN): B07CN9TNCF

 

Printed Copy

The books will also available in printed paperback copies available from the Amazon websites.

The ISBNs of the book are:

  • ISBN: 1986635619
  • ISBN-13: 978-1986635615

 

To read some of my other work, see Short Stories or Flash Fiction, and to find out more about Tritely Challenged, check out the links on my site to guide you there. Why not submit your own short story?


 

Mosey

Mosey

by Gavin Biddlecombe

Hank drew at Champion’s reigns, directing him to the boisterous saloon, dismounted and moseyed up to the swinging doors, spurs clinking with each step.

The din settled within as the punters paused to examine their newest guest, silhouetted at the entrance. Hank ignored the rank, stale smell of sweat as he stepped forward, motioning to the barman.

“A bottle of sarsaparilla,” he called.

The barman reached under the counter.

Hank gripped the handle of his Colt revolver.

The crowd held their breath.

The barman’s hand appeared with a dirty brown bottle which he then slid across towards Hank. He released his grip and reached for the bottle. A slight nod put the barman at ease.

A spittoon rang in the background as the folk began to settle, prompting the piano’s jovial melody to pick up where it had been interrupted.

 

(Cliché Writing Challenge “Mosey” – 140 words) – Max 150 words


 

Continuing with the theme of flash fiction submissions to nonsensical challenges, “Mosey” becomes my second for the Cliché Writing Challenge, or as the first volume being released later in the year is called Tritely Challenged [Volume 1] (further information closer to the date of release).

I find when I’m writing these, my original ideas don’t make the final cut. When I start typing away and the the words fill up the page (screen or paper), the flow of the story begins, characters develop their own personalities and the scene appears, taking shape in my mind on how I want the place to look, feel and possibly smell. This is the flow that dictates the final outcome.

When I focus too much on sticking with the original plan, the creativity tends to dry up and that’s when I come to a dead-end. When this happens, I review my original thoughts and draft up another.  I don’t think I’ve wasted my time in making such changes as these often make up the bone structure (in part) for another story.

Let’s get the nib twitching…

 

Anthology Book Launch – Adverbially Challenged Volume 3.

Wow. Decide to move and soon it’s been a couple of months since the last written piece appeared on this site. Okay, so I lie a little. I have been sneaking in a few short stories here and there but they’ll require a little more editing before I’ll submit.

On the whole it has been a hectic few months where time has been allocated to other important areas albeit for the short-term. People have been toiling away in the background with their own work projects, which has resulted in a flash fiction on this site appearing in an anthology. That’s right, Cinnamon has joined a whole load of other adverb-riddled stories.  It is due for launch this Saturday 17th March 2018, and I am grateful their effort has made this possible.

Adverbially_Challenged_Volume_3_front_cover

(Adverbially Challenged Volume 3 – cover artwork by David Fielden)

I don’t make any money from this book and neither does the publisher as the proceeds from book sales are donated to First Story, a UK charity that helps improve literacy in low-income communities.

All I receive is some exposure for submitting my flash fiction to the challenge, which will appear alongside 99 other authors whilst helping and providing awareness for First Story.

If you fancy helping to raise LOTS more for good causes, take part by submitting your stories to the challenges or buying a copy of the book, which will be available as a Kindle eBook or in a printed format.

 

Kindle eBook Copy

The Kindle eBook version will be available on all Amazon websites by searching for either the:

(1) Book name: Adverbially Challenged, or

(2) Amazon Standard Identification Number (ASIN): B07BGZZ6DL

 

Printed Copy

The books are also available in printed paperback copies available from the Amazon websites here.

The ISBNs of the book are:

  • ISBN: 198493760X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1984937605

 

To read some of my other work, see Short Stories or Flash Fiction, and to find out more about Adverbially Challenged, check out the links on my site to guide you there. Why not submit your own short story?


 

Leading Up To… (Update)

Leading Up To… was originally just meant to be a stand-alone short piece of fiction, that soon ended up with a Part 2. It was whilst working on the second segment that the ideas continued to blossom.

Off screen these have become Parts 3, 4, 5 and so forth (now their own separate chapters), with the original two being expanded to become much more than what you see now.  As the plot grew, the characters developed and the story line sprouted new routes as the world expanded. Due to this, the original two will remain as they are on this site with the new work becoming its own short story, with a different title and main character. Updates will be posted later on in the year.