April: Theme - The Package

Winning Entry:

I sit in the circle. A tune is punctuated by hope then dismay. The parcel shrinks. Excitement grows. The music stops, I rip the paper. The prize is mine.

By Gail Warrick Cox   


Gail Warrick Cox wins our April competition, the for which was "The Package". Gail, who lives in  Winner Gail Warrick Cox Bournemouth with her husband is semi-retired from her global banking job, allowing her more time to pursue her writing dream. Previously a runner-up in a Txtlit competition, Gail tells us she is thrilled to have gone one better this time. She enjoys the specific challenge that writing flash fiction brings, of forming a pleasing story with very few words. Although something of a novice, Gail has entered a few other flash fiction competitions and was short listed in last years Mere Literary Festival timed flash fiction competition. 

Entries for the April Txtlit competition were wild and varied. The theme of "the Package" clearly had the grey matter working overtime, as demonstrated by the wide range of packages that were involved in your stories. From drugs, to condoms to body parts, we were treated to an array of wrapped items. Gail Warrick Cox kept the package in her story exactly to that; a package. Rather than concentrating on what was inside, Gail made the package the story. She has also gained an advantage by using something we all know and can relate to in order to tell part of the story. Although she doesn't actually use the phrase "pass the parcel", by the time we get to the end, we know exactly what the story is about. Gail uses short, punchy sentences to build tension, each time giving a tiny clue as to what is going on. Each phrase tells us a little more and then finally, when we understand there is a prize, everything makes sense. At 153 characters it's just about optimum length too.


Other shortlisted entries:

She stared at the package. A small, unassuming, box. "Now he's yours forever" the tag said. Lucy's chest tightened, as the blood dripped onto the table.

By Lu Thompson    

With beating heart, he began to doubt if he would make it . Finally the traffic eased and he made the drop in the nick of time.  Another  life saved.

By Val Fish  

The blood soaked bundle was finally handed over. The journey had been long and painful. Trembling, she carefully unwrapped it. 'It's a girl!' she cried.

By Emma Hodges

Travelling from the east he arrived after dark. Sneaking into the building he placed the package for biggest impact. He left silently. Fly rudolf fly.

By Chris Tattersall  




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