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Word Vault Contest (As seen in WBQ 36)

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Old 02-01-2013, 11:52 PM
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Default Word Vault Contest (As seen in WBQ 36)

With the New Year our word miners bring forth new treasures from the depth of the abyss where unused words decay. Honour their bravery and give these words a new breath of life.

Good luck to all.



Members are allowed one entry in the Word Vault Flash Fiction Contest. You are required to use at least one of the words from the Word Vault, (duplicated for your convenience below). Entries should be submitted as posts to this thread. The competition is open to all members of Writer’s Beat, including staff.

Members are requested to refrain from commenting on entries in this posting thread. Please use the Winter Contest Comment thread instead. That thread will remain open throughout the posting period and afterwards, and members are encouraged to let entrants know what they thought of their entries.

Word Limits:

250 words maximum


Once an entry has been submitted, it cannot be altered. Any work that is edited after it has been entered will be disqualified. If you feel you need to make a small alteration (a misplaced comma, a spelling error), contact a member of staff. If we feel your request is reasonable, we will make the correction on your behalf.

Close Date:

30th of March 2013, 12 midnight GMT


After the closing date, we (the Staff) will select a winner to be published in the next issue of Writer’s Beat Quarterly, assuming permission is given when we contact the winner.

Skein (n.): 1. Collective term for geese and other fowl while in flight.
2. Collective term for thread or yarn after it has been removed from a reel.
3. Derived from the above, a weave or web.
From the Old English skeyne, probably of Celtic origin.

Tenebrous (adj.): Dark and gloomy.
From the Latin tenebrōsus from tenebrae (darkness or shadow).
Example: Gillian wished he had brought a torch to banish the tenebrous atmosphere.

Solipsism (n.): An unawareness of the views or needs of others, self-absorption.
From the Latin solus (alone) and ipse (self).

Declivity (n.): A downward bend or slope in a hill or in the path on a hill.
Example: The declivity of the road surprised Carter, it had looked straight and flat when he set out.

Patina (n.): 1. A green/grey colour of rusted or encrusted metal objects made from bronze or copper.
2. A superficial layer.
3. A paten, a flat type of dish used for mass by several branches of Christianity.
From the Latin patina (pan or dish).

Carrel (n.) A partially partitioned area in a library used for studying or reading.
Example: Johnny was trapped, as the carrel had no second exit, and Chase would find him now.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

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Old 02-10-2013, 02:41 AM
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Default The package


Vasily was enjoying his walk on a fine sunny day. He was an average looking guy, medium build, small scar on his left cheek and blonde spiky hair.

As he glanced down one of New York’s tiny winding streets, he saw a Courier carrying a package. On the spur of the moment Vasily followed him, and when there was no one around, took out his Glock Pistol and demanded the package, and, as the courier was too frightened to move, he handed it over without saying a word.

Vasily casually walked some distance away from the robbery, and started to unwrap the package.

The small statue had a brilliant light shining from its ancient patina.
It was a Goddess about 12 inches tall, with a large headdress which had spokes emanating from its centre, upon which heads were positioned.

Each arm of the goddess had a snake wound around it, as he examined it more closely, one of the snakes slowly began to writhe, and then the other snake started to writhe as well….Vasily dropped it and ran away as fast as he could.

The Courier, who had been following from a distance, saw the statue on the sidewalk.

On one of the spokes of the headdress, was a shiny new head, with a scar on its left cheek and blonde spiky hair.

Last edited by Elyzabeth; 02-10-2013 at 02:47 AM..
Old 02-14-2013, 05:20 PM
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Default That Was The Night

Amelia was happy in her solipsism, studying a book on skeins of geese and other fowl in the carrel of her grandfather’s library. A quiet young woman of sixteen, her days were spent in solitary silence instead of the long hours other ladies her age spent looking for suitable husbands.
“Daughter, come out of that tenebrous library at once!” her mother called, holding a teapot with a definite patina. “You should have come out hours ago! Your father arranged for a suitor to be here tonight, and you will look no more respectable than a maid!”
Amelia sighed. “Coming, dear mother!”
The suitor was as haughty as all the others, and Amelia wished, not for the first time, her parents would let her marry her love, Calvin. Alas, it must not be meant to be. She sighed heavily, and returned to her bedchambers.
That was the night she would never forget, the night she lost all her honor and any scrap of dignity a woman could hope to hold in the year 1802.
That was the night she found out she was pregnant.
Old 02-18-2013, 05:06 AM
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Default ~ Giving Piers Anthony a Wink ~

Long fingers, twisted and arthritic, reached up and pulled the skein from its rack. Black, tenebrous eyes strained to see in the deep gloom of the cellar, but his eyes failed him. With a curse, he slammed the skein onto the table, sending a rusted patina flying; the serving vessel crashed against a pillar with a clang. The eyeballs that had been so nicely arranged atop the dish were now smashed globs of gunge on the floor: they had rolled down the slight declivity and were crushed against the cinder block wall. The man cursed.

“All this work for naught!” he cried into the dark. “How can I weave the fate of men if I cannot see?

Ever the solipsist, ever the sophist! A voice grated in his mind. A woman’s voice.

“How dare you! How dare you destroy my work!”

You pathetic creature, the voice continued. He shivered, though a furnace blasted hot air into the tiny room. Will you ever understand?

He roared with frustration. The room shuddered, wobbled; his already weakened vision gave out and the faded colors went black. He reached out and threw the skein to the dirty floor. “No!” he sobbed. “No, why must it always be so?” Tears ran from blind eyes and puddled on the table.

So now you understand... he thought he could sense her chuckle. You must know that you cannot play with the skein of mankind. Fate must always be a woman.
Blood spiders!

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Old 02-25-2013, 10:19 AM
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One Good Turn Deserves Another

Kyra wants to do something for her neighbour Mrs Fenwick. Lifting her from her tenebrous mood after she had suffered redundancy deserves a show of appreciation. Thinking about what she could do while she wanders around their small supermarket it comes to Kyra. Mrs Fenwick was old and therefore felt the cold tremendously so she needed something like a quilt. Kyra shakes her head, it didn't seem personal enough, besides she didn't have the money to spare right now. Browsing the magazine racks , one in particular catches her attention. Quilt making 101 with three different coloured skeins attached to the cover. Reading the first few pages Kyra decides she can attempt to make a quilt that Mrs Fenwick could drape over her legs through the day while she knitted or watched television.

After purchasing the magazine she heads to the library and grabs some books to peruse behind the carrel in the reference section. Reading more about thread work and quilt making, Kyra realises she will need more skeins to complete her project. In hindsight she accepts that it would be less time consuming and cheaper if she just buys a quilt. Recognising how much more personal and appreciated her unique quilt will be makes Kyra feel warm inside. Plans inside her head she almost forgets the declivity of the path leading down to her road. Armed with all the required equipment, Kyra sits at her dining table and begins her work.

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Life is a journey, you hold the map
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Hope for the best, expect the worst, accept whatever happens
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A person's true strength is shown in how they handle failure, not success
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Old 03-07-2013, 08:08 AM
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Default Ever Young (240)

Joanne, comfortably seated in the carrel, turned her head, and looked out of the window. The tenebrous clouds had gathered overhead while she’d been working on her essay and were now breaking up. Her eyes followed a skein of geese flying low, making their way . . . where she wondered as she sat admiring the graceful creatures. She wished she could be as free, journey whenever, to wherever she wished, but no, her path, or should it be, the path chosen for her, was one of declivity. A path she was destined to follow, because it was the path he father had planned for her.

‘Work hard Joanne, become the girl I can be proud of.’ Her father’s repeated urging, always at the back of her mind, left Joanne, wondering if he even cared how she felt, if he had any idea what she wanted.

Joanne knew she only had to walk through the village, through the wooden gate into the open meadow and there he would be: the one person that made her life bearable.

Lost in solipsism, Joanne left the library and hurried to the meadow. She could see him even before she’d passed through the gate. She hip-hopped, her way to his side, her hair ruffled by the breeze that swept the green grass.

‘Robert Harris grinned, pulled his eight-year old frame up straight, looked at her with flushed cheeks and took her hand into his.

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