The Escape (A Flash Fiction Challenge)

While hunting for an old draft of a story, I happened across a ten sentence story a student had challenged me to write. Since it was a couple of years ago now, I don’t remember the exact challenge. All I remember is his smirk as he outlined the now forgotten parameters and my amusement as I accepted and set to work.

And, just for fun, here’s the final product.

(Note: If this had been originally written for an older audience, I would allow the last sentence to be more subtle, but middle schoolers need things spelled out sometimes. :) )

“The Escape”

Ripped from the water, I lay on the hard hull of the boat under the dazzling light. Warm hands manhandle my mouth and neck, pinning me down, while pain radiates through my entire body. I can’t decide whether my limbs are useless from exhaustion or suffocation, but I know I must escape now. Suddenly, the fingers loosen. This is my chance. Wriggling desperately, I flip and flounder. Then I find the edge. With the last of my strength, I roll and splash back into the water. This fish lives to swim another day.

If you wrote a ten sentence story right now, what would it be? (And it doesn’t have to be geared for middle schoolers. :) )

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3 responses to “The Escape (A Flash Fiction Challenge)

  • Anthony Lee Collins

    I’ve never been much interested in (meaning: never been any good at) the whole brevity thing, The shortest thing I’ve ever written, as far as I can remember, was also about nature. I wonder if that helps make it short — because you’re building on something people already know.

    I like your story, particularly for school. I’ve known some kids who obviously never consider that animals have feelings also.

  • Anthony Lee Collins

    Well, much to my surprise, I just wrote a ten-sentence short story:
    http://u-town.com/collins/?p=5422

    • S.B. Roberts

      It’s not my strong suit either. Growing up, a “short story” assignment often turned into something more akin to a novella. Fortunately, homeschooling allowed some freedom on that front… though my mom was careful to teach me the value of deadlines in writing too. :)

      Looking forward to seeing what you’ve conjured up! :)

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