Spookymilk Play With The Prose — Challenge #14: Formerly An Animal

The challenge was to write a story about a character who used to be an animal, in 200 words or fewer. I took that to its extreme and decided on the 59-word limit, as an exercise.

I Sit

   I sit, unmoving, in the front hallway, glass eyes staring out of a body stretched over a wire and foam core, my mouth stitched closed and unable to warn of noises and intruders.
   How could they do this? I wish they could hear my whimpers. I thought they loved me! I itch all over. Oh God, how I itch!

Do I get away with it? RESULTS

The judges’ comments:
K: Wow, did I really not say that the character has to be human now? It would seem not, so “former animal” is fair game here. This is a little slice of Alfred Hitchcock or something, right here. SILVER

P: 59, eh? I thought as much the first time I read it. WHat this one lacks on the “spirit of the law” side of things, it certainly makes up in the “letter of the law” department”. Saying that is kind of shortchanging the story itself, though. It’s the old “no mouth, must scream” business. Awful stuff. Nicely done. SILVER

Where’s Waldo? STANDINGS

  • Yeah, the challenge probably intended the lead character to be human, but that’s not what the challenge specifically said. It’s nice that we’re given (some) leeway to stretch the limits a bit.
  • I came up with this idea rather early, but I didn’t have much meat to it, so I decided to distill it to its essence by making it a Fiction 59 format, which is much better suited to its dark theme.

Next week, a challenge that doesn’t quite hit the mark…

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