Introducing Microfiction

I haven’t talked about this here because, frankly, I didn’t know how far it would go. In fact, I’m still not sure how far it will, although it seems to be taking me in a rather desirable direction.

A few weeks ago I finally started using Twitter, a Web 2.0 application which allows users to send out messages to which no one can really reply. Think of them as status reports you put out for your friends. The thing is, these little messages must be under 140 characters. Not exactly a lot of room.

After the excitement over Pownce died down, a large number of ex-Twitter users became ex-Pownce users, and returned to their Twitter roots. I decided to follow the pack and open up a Twitter account, just so I could keep in touch with people. (I didn’t drop Pownce, mind you, since I still use it on this site. Notice the short blurbs on the sidebar? Yep, that’s all on Pownce.)

Well, as it turns out, Twitter doesn’t exactly have the features I like, mostly features which Pownce has, like comments to posts. What it did have, however, was opportunity. See, with a 140 limit, there wasn’t much I could do, and as I mentioned there, I wasn’t exactly crazy about holding a terse, one-way conversation with the ether to which I would deny it the dignity of a response. I was, however, looking for a new writing challenge, and after a while, I figured I could use this to meet that need.

Welcome to the scene “Microfiction”, the art of creating complete, self contained stories within 140 characters.

I started a few days ago writing these microfiction stories, and frankly, I love them! I’ve also received a number of comments about them from various people, so I guess I’m onto something good here.

Anyway, since I hadn’t before mentioned by Twitter account, I figured I’d go ahead and post the Microfiction stories here. Enjoy:

  • Once, in a little house, there lived a boy and his dog. And like all stories that begin with a boy and a dog, you know this won’t end well. (To this one I got replies indicating that Lassie usually ended well. I guess they missed that last episode, where Timmy died in the well and Lassie got rabies and had to be put down.)
  • In the spring I met her. By fall I’d lost her. We laughed and loved and lived. But she matured. And I didn’t. Never even got the chance.
  • In space no one can hear you scream? Wrong. When the Vong attacked our ships, everyone heard the screams. Their screams. We won the battle.
  • He waited alone on the icy shelf for the rescue ship to appear. As it did, he shed a tear. His seven years of solitude would soon conclude.
  • The end of the world wasn’t at all what anyone expected. Indeed, those who even bothered to notice it found that it was akin to birth.
  • Last week: zombies. This week: More zombies, though that second wave took out the reanimation machine’s inventor. Now we can’t turn it off.
  • An antediluvian apocalypse attracted Artemis’s attention. Amazingly, as Artemis attested afterward, alien apocalypses always annihilate all. (Someone tried to reply to this using all A’s, but couldn’t, so I replied to him as such: “*acknowledging acclamation* Attempting an artful answer at an alliterative anomaly acts as an allegorical applause at an author.”
  • Cow tipping was always fun, ’til last time. The field empty, all we heard was “Y’all boys done tip’d your last cow,” then mooing laughs.
  • “So,you came to Key West, fought a ninja army, cloned Jimmy Buffet, and transferred his soul into the new body? You’re our contest winners!”
  • We called him the Gray Man. He wasn’t with the captors, but he wasn’t one of us. And he took everything away. Starting with our shackles.
  • He waited anxiously for the sunshine, a once-a-life event in the planet Rain. He napped, dreamed of seeing it, and awoke in time to miss it.

By the way, feel free to friend me on Twitter if you want to keep reading more of these. I try to update them at least once a day. And if you feel like doing some of your own, even better!

7 thoughts on “Introducing Microfiction

  1. Hey, Ben: Yeah, I’ll be posting these here. Actually, I was thinking of adding a section to the front page called “Microfiction” for that specific purpose. Very happy you like them!

  2. These are amazing indeed. I’m glad you posted them here as well, because I seem to have missed them. One can’t, it seems, be online every one of the 27 hours that make up a day.

  3. Hi !
    I want to share all my own microfiction, plz tell me ur opinion plz at my email :


    The clock struck hard and all rushed to work, but that miserable old man who sat on the gray pavement waiting and gazing at the faraway lawns, he used to have a home.

Share your thoughts