It’s results time! But first a huge thanks to judge Ed Broom for sorting it all out. Here’s what he thought:
I didn’t envy you lot this week. Not too bad an opening word but a troublesome final word and a tough photo. So many brothers and so many lists. Finding an original angle was going to be tricky.
Still, much good writing as ever (how do you manage to string those words together in so short a time?) and a whole range of settings from space to supermarkets to the supernatural. In an awful lot of these, we lost and mourned for an awful lot of our male siblings. None of you fancied penning a piece about a misbehaving Brother printer?
Enough of my yakkity-yakking. Let’s select stories and name names.
Lupine by @dazmb
This made me hungry like the wolf with its hamper of luscious language. Admire the work done by compound words such as “bonedeep” and “fingersight”. The structure of this prose is something to behold on the snowwhite page. Classy.
Seconds, Please by Emily Clayton
I’m not familiar with bumbleberry pie but I want a large slice right now. Baked goodness, indeed. Janelle’s dined out at this fine establishment once or twice before. With a few choice phrases such as “push-up bra on overdrive” and “poke a hairy thigh”, we see how a handful of words can tell us heaps about the people on the page. Protagonist, conflict, obstacle and resolution, all in 100 words. Look & learn.
Ed by Adam Houlding
Automatic honourable mention for anyone who has my name in the title. Is that so wrong? But seriously, folks, this is a timely piece from the viewpoint of our man back in the USSR, one Ed*ard Sno*den, especially with the 1984 connection this week. He had a whistle and boy, did he blow it. I liked “symphony of silence” and “smudged my scripture” plus the effort to correctly spell that airport name. That unease is palpable. Hero? Villain? Just because you’re paranoid…
The Wish List by Firdaus Parvez
Maybe it’s that sweet tooth of mine talking but I loved this affecting tale of a caring older brother, perhaps now the head of the family though still only a boy. Frock, ribbons and slippers I can understand, but she also wants a pigeon? Tell me more! As is often the case with tales like these, I’d also like some sort of guarantee, please, that the pair of them will be okay. I’ll also be adding jalebi to my list of foods to seek out and try. Lovely stuff.
Big Sur by Iskandar H.
This grabbed my attention straight away with mention of that exotically named stretch of Californian coast and that well-handled scene of fraternal disharmony. Can’t choose your family, as they say. Who knows why these two people drifted apart or even what’s brought them back together right now, but I get the impression that it’ll be a few years before they hook up again. Liked that black eye patch detail very much. Excellently crafted story telling.
Wish Lists by Foy S. Iver
Big on concept. Long on the page. Straight down that left hand margin. No sentence more than three words long. Skinny until she isn’t skinny any more. What could so easily have been a gimmicky and experimental entry with its bold and relentless repetition turns out to be a thing of beauty that demands our attention. Your mileage may vary but this bravura performance built, launched and very much floated my boat. Top marks.
Foy S. Iver
No Bio Chem.
No stretch marks.
No take backs.