Sunday, January 11, 2015


I read The Bishop's Wife over the break and loved it. I think it's a sterling example of how close observation of a community can be fodder for a tense, well-plotted crime novel. You don't need shadowy billionaires, vast conspiracies, or blonde bombshell nuclear physicists when you've got husbands, wives, community standards and intense feelings. Of course, this calls for a contest given no one writes scarier short form pieces than the murderous bunch who read this blog (and how I love you for that!) 

 The usual rules apply: 
 1. Write a story using 100 words or fewer. 
 2. Use these words in the story: bishop   wife   secret   hammer   repent 
 3. You must use the whole word, but that whole word can be part of a larger word. Example: wife/midwife is ok but not bishop/bible-shopping 
 4. Post the entry in the comment column of THIS blog post. 
 5. One entry per person. If you need a mulligan (a do-over) erase your entry and post again) It helps to work out your entry first and then post. 
 5. [sic] International entries are allowed, but prizes may vary for international addresses. 
 6. Titles count as part of the word count (you don't need a title) 
 Prize is a copy of The Bishop's Wife
 Contest opens: Saturday 1/10/15 at 10am Contest closes: Sunday 1/11/15 at 10am

I'd stopped at Rusty's Bar in Bishop, CA. Minutes later the sheriff sat down next to me and spotted my wedding ring.
"Are ya someone else's wife now?"
"Eleven years a widow, Sheriff. You know that."
"Just passin' through?"
"Like I do every year."
"Tell me again what happened."
"We stopped here at Rusty's, got hammered and spent the night. When I awoke, he was dead. Doc said he'd just stopped breathing. Cause unknown."

The sheriff waited back at his car while I knelt at the grave.
"Until I repent, the secret's safe with you. Burn in hell, you bastard."


UPDATE: I didn't win. I didn't make the finalist list. I didn't get special recognition. I didn't get mentioned at all.  But I love the challenge, and I can't wait for the next contest!


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