POETIC BLOOMINGS is a Phoenix Rising Poetry Guild site established in May 2011 to nurture and inspire the creative spirit.


Sgt. Joe Friday of Dragnet concerned himself with “Just the Facts”. So in this ongoing feature on FLASHY FICTION FRIDAY’S, you will be given a topic on which to write, a main character, a key object and a setting. And then you will be asked use all the facts to improvise your flash fiction. You dictate the direction the story takes. Go to CREATIVE BLOOMINGS FLASHY FICTION FRIDAY’S to tell your little story. Every one has one to tell!


TOPIC:     Desperartion

MAIN CHARACTER:     an Evangelist

KEY OBJECT:     a memo

SETTING:     a Ghost town

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7 thoughts on “IT’S FLASHY FICTION FRIDAY – 7 FEB 2014

  1. flashpoetguy on said:

    What is the word limit for Flashy Friday flashes?

  2. It’s just over 4,000 characters. I don’t know the word count, because the character count comes up. I had to shave off 3,000 characters from my first post two weeks ago.

  3. If you run into problems with the character count, post your FLASHY FICTION here in the comment box. A story I had to post in two parts there fit in its entirety here.c Walt.

  4. William Preston on said:

    copyright 2014, William Preston

    “That’s a wrap.”

    Reverend Walter Wanderling looked up from his lectern. He had just finished his weekly television show with a prayer; he stood for a moment on the set that was outfitted to look like a church. In front of him, empty seats filled the hall; there was no one in the studio except him, the cameramen, and the director.

    “I say, we’re done, Reverend,” the director said again. “That was a good show; you ought to get lots of donations with that appeal.”

    “Yeah,” Walter said. He frowned. All the while he had been appealing and praying, he had been looking at a memo on the lectern. It preyed on his mind. It was a short note: “Meet me after the show in the green room,” it said. It was signed, “Boss.”

    Walter began to walk off the set, holding the memo. “Is that the prayer you were reading, Rev?” the director asked. “You sure gave a powerful prayer this time.”

    Walter didn’t reply. He continued off the set, behind the faux altar. The green room was just beyond. Walter opened the green door and stepped in. He had been staring at the memo as he came through the door; when he looked up, he gasped. The familiar couch and chairs and monitor were gone; in their place he saw the neighborhood where he had grown up, in tidewater Virginia. It was all there: the house where he had lived; Reynolds’s grocery; Taylor’s gas station; Maude’s millinery shop; the dusty, unpaved street. But no one was there except a lone figure in the distance; it all seemed like a ghost town. Even the colors were wrong: they were muted, and the figure in the distance, now walking toward him, was grey.

    Sweat broke out on Walter’s forehead; he suddenly felt hot. He tuned to go back to the set and studio, but the door was locked. He began shaking as the figure came near him and stopped. The man was tall and graceful, quite handsome in the way movie stars had looked when Walter was a boy. But he had no color: his hair was black; his suit was grey; his face was a paler grey. He looked, in fact, like Cary Grant.

    “Hello, Walter,” he said. “You got the memo?”

    Walter was shaking, and the memo made an swishing noise in his hand. It suddenly felt hot, and he dropped it. “Wh-who-who are you?” he asked.

    “My name is Dudley,” the figure said.

    Walter, startled, shopped shaking. Dudley? He recalled a movie his mother had loved to watch at Christmastime, The Bishop’s Wife. It was a story of an angel who had come to assist a bishop who thought he wanted to build a grand church, but who learned, though the angel, more important things in life. The angel had been played by Cary Grant.

    Dudley smiled. “I know what you’re thinking, Walter. I’m an angel, and we try to appear to people in ways they recognize. The Boss thought my Cary Grant disguise would work with you.”

    “You’re an angel?” Walter asked. He began shaking again.

    “Yes,” the figure smiled. “And my name really is Dudley. It always amused me that they used my real name in that movie.”

    Walter blinked several times. He turned again to try the door, but now, even the door was gone. Instead, stretching in the distance over the railroad tracks, was the rest of his old neighborhood. He turned again, hoping it was all a dream, but Dudley still stood in front of him.

    “Wh-wh-what do you want?” he asked.

    “Walter, the Boss is annoyed with you. In fact, he’s angry. He’s had enough.”

    Walter was shaking uncontrollably now. He tried to speak but couldn’t.

    Dudley went on, “He doesn’t like your constant appeals for money, and he knows where most of it goes after you get it. He is disgusted with the big house and the stables and the vintage cars you bought with it all, to say nothing of your taste; the Boss does not like red, you know.”

    “But-but I preached the Bible,” Walter stammered.

    Dudley snorted derisively. “That was no preaching, and you know it. You rarely spoke of love; all the time it was about punishment and justice and all that malarkey, and all the time it was about giving back. But Walter, you never gave. That’s what really got the Boss’s dander up.”

    Walter’s voice quavered. “What are you going to do?”

    Dudley frowned. “Well, I’m a messenger here. You’re going to be transferred to another angel, but the Boss figured you wouldn’t listen to him unless I showed up first. The Boss really likes The Bishop’s Wife too, you know.”

    “Another angel?” Walter’s shaking began to subside.

    “Yes, Walter. He’s waiting in the gas station. I’ll get him”

    Dudley walked to Taylor’s and opened the door. Beyond, shimmering, was a reddish glow. “Oh, Lucifer,” Dudley called out. “He’s all yours.”

  5. Well, that’s a treat, William. Love it. The good, the bad, and the quivering. I wasn’t sure where you were headed when it started, but I enjoyed where you went with it. Excellent use of your words.

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