Friday, 9 September 2011

First Campaign Challenge

The first campaign challenge called us to write a 200 word flash fiction piece,
starting with "The door swung open".
To add even more challenge,
you could end with "The door swung shut",
and also try to have exactly 200 words.
Here is my piece which meets all the criteria. :)

Heavenly Bodies

The door swung open letting in a whiff of antiseptic which she could taste at the back of her throat. She shifted on the cold metal table, her paper gown crinkling as the taller doctor cleared his throat. She looked at the floor as the red haired one put the film up on the glowing wall. The taller one spoke now in a monotonous tone, she watched his worn loafers carefully as he swayed back and forth. She didn’t need to listen to his words; she’d seen in the way he had held the clipboard like a shield against his chest as if she was contagious. It was back. She would need the toque that Nona had made her when the hair began to fall out. In the silence following the proclamation she found the courage to look at the pictures of her body stripped of skin. It surprised her to see how beautiful the cancer was, like heavenly bodies hanging in the dark night. The red haired one cleared his throat waiting for a response. She couldn’t break the silence. The picture looked benign and yet wasn’t. She could not tear herself away. Even as the door swung shut.

27 comments:

  1. Really enjoyed this! Loved the imagery, especially the worn loafers!

    Mine is #346. I'm a new follower! Good luck with the campaign.

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  2. "It surprised her to see how beautiful the cancer was, like heavenly bodies hanging in the dark night." This is stunning! Beautiful job!

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  3. Nice imagery. I have such a clear picture of the doctor. Mine is #72

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  4. Wow this is powerful stuff. The imagery is great too and original. Good luck with the challenge Karen.

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  5. Loved the imagery! It was evocative yet I wanted to think this is about something sad; nicely written. :)

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  6. Nice to meet you, Karen. This flash made me sad and sympathetic. Yes, it's amazing that we can find beauty even in the most destructive things. Really like your style.

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  7. I could see her lying there on the bed so perfectly. Wonderfully written! It's amazing how powerful 200 words can be...

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  8. "She didn’t need to listen to his words; she’d seen in the way he had held the clipboard like a shield against his chest as if she was contagious."

    Great line! It gives me a sense of how she must feel. I also loved the bit about her cancer being beautiful and how it speaks to her acceptance while the others in the room are awkward about it. Nice contrast.

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  9. The imagery is very clear, you have written this well.;-)

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  10. really beautiful. a lovely kind of refuge against the disease.

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  11. "The picture looked benign and yet wasn’t." Awesome line.

    stobby

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  12. Loved it! Loved the imagery! Esp. the loafers and how beautiful the cancer was.

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  13. I love how she reads so much from simple observation. No dialogue at all, but she just knows. Very powerful.

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  14. Hi,

    I just wanted to let you know I am one of the judges for the campaign & your entry is moving on to the next round of judging. Congrats!

    - Ru

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  15. Thank you all for reading my piece and thank you Ru for the wonderful news. It is so nice to have people give such affirmation to my writing. It made me smile. :)

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  16. Nicely done fellow campaigner and Fantasy writer. Flesh stripped of skin and beautiful cancer...different definitely. I am following you.

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  17. Oh, this one really touched me. Cancer has affected me and my family in a deep way. Your character is so courageous. Well done!

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  18. This is so well done. It was easy to imagine what she was seeing. Great job and congrats on going to the next round!

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  19. "...heavenly bodies hanging in the dark night." I LOVED this line.

    Not a fantasy campaigner, but please consider me a new follower. I love your voice!

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  20. Very compelling and beautiful, yet sad.

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  21. Echoing the others on the powerful imagery. Well done!

    (Mine is #253)

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  22. This is poignant. All four of my grandparents have had cancer (2 passed on, one is in remission, and one just finished radiation treatments), so this story really touched my heartstrings, as I think you captured what it's like to hear those words.

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  23. I too loved the loafers and how it was the fear of the doctor she focused on more than her. I'm #232

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  24. Beautifully written and eye opening. A "like" from me!

    Mine is number 291: http://thewarriormuse.blogspot.com/2011/09/first-campaign-challenge-flash-fiction.html

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  25. Benign, or not. What a way to keep us on the edge of our seats! I could totally see your scene.

    Great job, Karen! :)

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  26. This a beautiful piece of irony. Very spiritual as well.

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