Dancers and Instructors at Harvey Zumbathon in Round Rock, TX

The Zumbathon for Harvey

I wrote this Pantoum-mime poem in honor of the many people inside and outside of Texas who have given any aid to the victims of Hurricane Harvey. by R. L. Copple - 9/4/2017 The call goes...

R. L. Copple's Blog

Micro-Fiction: Slimdown Tantrum

Decided to write a “micro-fiction” story.  While there’s no set definition for the term, in my experience it is a story of around 300 words or less. I’ve done a 100 word micro-fiction back in 2008, still on the web at the Resident Aliens blog, called, “The Battle.” Flash fiction is usually defined as being 1000 words or less, by comparison.

To title my micro-fiction and use it as a prompt, I visited Foxnews.com again to find the words of the title, “Slimdown Tantrum.” As I write these words, I’ve not even started thinking much about what the story is about. No idea at this point. The trick is to tell a whole story with scene setting, character development, and a beginning, middle, and end plot within 300 words. What follows is my attempt. We’ll see how I fared. At the end, I’ll relate any relevant info about the process once done.

———————–

“Thank you for flying Angel Flights.” The perky stewardess tugged her miniskirt uniform down. “We handle the space race so you don’t have to.” She plastered on a smile. “We’ll arrive at Moonbase Gama in five hours. ”

Her smile morphed into a sympathetic frown. “Unfortunately, slimdown is in effect to escape Earth’s gravity. Did anyone bring any unchecked luggage?”

The nine passengers glanced at each other. No one spoke up.

The stewardess bit her lip. “If not, someone will have to take another flight.  Who will volunteer?”

Several stared at a man in a black business suit and dark glasses. His frowned. “I’ll lose millions if I miss my meeting.”

A lady in a knee-length skirt held her daughter’s hand. “We’re attending a funeral.”

Each passenger gave excuses to stay.

“What about you, sir?” The stewardess pointed at a man in the back.

His eyebrow twitched. “I need to go. Meeting someone.”

“We’ll throw in first-class treatment if you wait.”

He jumped from his seat, whipping out a small pistol. “I’m not getting off.” He pointed the gun at the lady and her daughter. “You two, bye bye.”

They stared at him a moment before sliding into the walkway.

A shot rang through the cabin. The attacker collapsed to the floor.

The business-suited man, a gun in his hand, flipped out a badge. “Space Marshall. Sorry, but we had to flush him out. He’s wanted for treason.”

The stewardess sucked in a deep breath. “Against Earth?”

“No.” He pulled a necklace off the corpse. The human image faded into a cross between an octopus and a hamster. “Mars.” He replaced the necklace and pulled out a pen. “I need you to all look this way.”

—————————-

Spent about 10 minutes figuring out what to write. Another 50 minutes writing it. Ended up around 360 words. I then spent 25 minutes editing it until I got it down to 296 words, an 18% reduction. Not the greatest story in the world, but fun. Hope you enjoyed it as well as taking a peak into my process writing it.

Final score: 296 word micro-fiction written and edited in 1.5 hours.

About R. L. Copple
R. L. Copple enjoys a good cup of coffee and a fun story. These two realities and inspiration from the likes of Lester Del Ray, J. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, among others, caused him to write his own science fiction and fantasy stories to increase the fun in the world and to share his fresh perspective.
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