The Flash Fiction Challenge: In Which I Procrastinate and Try to Write a Flash Fiction Piece on the Day I Post It

Today I’ll be participating in the Flash Fiction Challenge hosted by Rachelle @ The Ink Loft. Basically, I had to write a flash fiction piece in under 1000 words as a response to a prompt, which was assigned to me by Olivia @ Scribbles. I wrote this in about an hour or so, and I do like how it got my creative juices flowing for a bit. Yes, it’s a bit rough around the edges, but I love how this exercise allowed me to write a sketch without worrying about perfection. Enjoy!

Click Here to Go See My Prompt:

Mae pressed her face up against the glass. Through the scratched up glass, the world looked like a painting left in the rain for far too long.She wondered what she looked like to the outside world. Did she look to other people just like the outside world looked to her?  Not that anyone would come to see Mae anyway. No one ever ventured into the garden to see the jar that held a little girl. Mae knew because she never saw flashes of movement in the yard. She was alone, and she knew it surer than she knew the sun would rise everyday.

Mae had been stuck in this jar for a week now, but she had never made a concerted effort to get out. She kicked at the side of the jar, angry at herself for whiling away the week by crying tears that blurred the scene outside the glass even more than it was already blurred. But now, she seemed about drained of tears, and she was resolved to escape from the jar. Except she had absolutely no idea how to go about it. She had tried trying to twist the lid off, but that was impossible from the inside. She had tried punching through the glass and the lid, but it turns out that punching a solid object does nothing except make one’s knuckles sting.

There was only one other thing to do: roll through the grass in the jar and hope to crash into something. Then the glass would break and she would crawl out. She tried very hard not to think about the very likely possibility that shards of glass would end up lodged in her skin after this venture. She’d figure out how to deal with that…eventually. The first thing to do was to get the jar rolling. She’d probably reach something hard enough to shatter the glass soon.

Mae hurled herself against the glass. Seven times she did it, and she was about to give up after the sixth try because as much as she wanted to get out of this wretched jar, her side was probably one huge bruise by now. But she didn’t give up, and eventually the jar started rolling. Mae shrieked with delight, but not for long because she was knocked against the side of the jar, helpless as it rolled faster and faster. She screamed as the jar bumped down the slope. This falling sensation was familiar to her. When she was plopped into this jar, she remembered falling from pudgy fingers that released her into a stomach dropping, heart leaping plunge. And she had landed in the jar-hard. She was sensing a pattern here.

The jar kept rolling until all the colors blended into one mass of spirals, spinning and spinning and spinning. It lulled her into a dreamy sort of state as she realized that she had no idea how much time had passed since the jar began rolling.

It was a rather anticlimatic moment when Mae’s jar crashed into something. There was no sharp sound of glass shattering into a puddle of jagged pieces. There was no hard collision. There were no shards of glass stuck in Mae’s skin. It was all quite disappointing. Except for the shards of glass in her skin part. To be honest, Mae really was not looking forward to that.

Instead, there was a soft clink of glass upon glass. Mae looked up, and peered hard out through the glass. Somehow, all she saw was more-what was that? Glass? Chunks of glass with things in them. Mae peered closer at these things. What were they? And then, one moved. Mae screamed. The things all moved as one.

“Who’s there?” Mae heard this question coming from the glass. She paused.

“Me,” she shouted back nervously. “Who are you?”

“We’re just like you. We’re in jars, too,” the person said. “Some kid plucked us from our flowers-I had a home in a rose-and plopped us right into these jars.”

“You too?” Mae asked.

“Yep. Look over yonder. Sometimes you can see the kid’s foot in the distance. She’s there right now, picking up all the flowers like some dumb tornado.”

“Dumb tornado…Well, I can’t see a thing.”

“Because your jar is all dirty. Just spit on it and shine it up a bit.”

“SPIT ON IT? No. That’s revolting.”

“Don’t be a sissy.”

Mae grumbled and did as the girl in the other jar said. Before long, a clear window appeared in the glass of her jar. She peered out and sure enough, there were the two feet of a little girl traipsing through the sea of grass and flowers. Her home, the flowers. How she missed the flowers. But she was alone then, too, for all the fairies lived alone among their own flowers. They whiled the days away tidying up their flowers and minding their own business. Mae hadn’t felt any less alone when she got plopped down into the jar. Just empty, because she no longer had any flowers to attend to.

Mae looked towards the source of the voices. She saw many little jars, all gathered together in one spot under a bush. And in those jars were other fairies. She waved shyly, and they waved back. “Have you ever tried to escape?” she shouted.

“Yes,” one of them said. “Many times. But we’ve failed each time. Maybe we’ll make it someday, but I don’t know if I want to escape anymore. Because then we’ll all go off to our individual flowers and be alone again, and I won’t know anyone.”

“Or we could still be friends when we escape,” said Mae.

“Maybe,” the girl said. “Or maybe it’s better this way.”

Maybe it is better this way, thought Mae. She didn’t know if she would ever know for sure.



12 thoughts on “The Flash Fiction Challenge: In Which I Procrastinate and Try to Write a Flash Fiction Piece on the Day I Post It

  1. I love that you said you wrote it last minute. The fact that you didn’t edit it makes it a lot more interesting, in my opinion. Sure, it isn’t as polished as it could be but there’s something interesting about the way things are written before they get edited. You’ve got such awesome, natural talent too!


  2. This is awesome! I love fairies, and these are adorable. The only thing was how she stayed alive in a jar for a week but fairies… are well fairies right? 🙂
    ’tis a lovely piece!! 😀


  3. Cute! I like the chipper tone of Mae’s narration. She’s definitely a character I would like to read more about.

    Since this is supposed to be a critique, I’ll try to say some constructive things as well. 😉

    A few times, I felt like the words you used were stronger than intended. “Crashed” for example, made me immediately think the bottle had broken, when in fact, it had only stopped rolling. Otherwise, I thought your choices were descriptive.

    I was also left most curious about 1) the circumstances of Mae’s getting into the jar in the first place, and 2) what her future generally looks like. It seems like the child, AKA Dumb Tornado, 🙂 is collecting all the fairies in one place. Do Mae’s new found friends have an idea of what the girl is like or what she’s up to?

    Obviously you can only cover so much in 1000 words, and I certainly think you have an intriguing premise and a good protagonist!


  4. I have to admit, that I only read this, because the image was so eye-catching. It really is.

    But your text sounds cool too and flash fiction like something I want to try too 🙂


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