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We like short shorts…

Experiments are usually done in laboratories behind closed doors as they have the propensity to explode. In your face. So, stand back, here’s an exploding experiment in Flash Fiction. It’s short and it’s sweet. It can be read in about 5 minute or less. I may walk away with my face all sooty, my hair blown backwards and my glasses on wonky, but hey.

This post doesn’t come to you empty-handed though. Oh no. Here are two links to some people who have more time on their hands to collate a list of short story competitions

First off the writing calendar  have a neat line up of short story competitions to keep you going.

Here Christopher Fielden has a nice list of short story competitions and short story magazines.

Good luck!


The ladies at the factory had all chipped in, but it was Doreen who said she would pop into Smiths over the weekend to buy something for him. To keep the money separate from her own money, she placed it in a plastic money bag she had got from the post office. She entered the shop, feeling the weight of the bag of money in her hand, looking for the travel department.

Just past the calculators she found what she was looking for. She could get a money belt, universal plug, pocket phrasebook, ear plugs, passport cover and if she put a little more extra money of her own she could get an inflatable aeroplane pillow too.

When Monday morning came the women gathered together around Doreen as she showed them what she had bought. They all said they thought they gifts were perfect, but Jackie turned the inflatable aeroplane pillow over in her hands and said they ought to have got some wrapping paper.

They went to their separate work stations ready to start work. Doreen smiled when she watched him walk in. He was carrying a rucksack and when sat down opposite him at the packing machine she said “Morning.”

“Morning.” He replied putting the rucksack carefully on the floor next to his chair.

She couldn’t contain herself any more.

“ Here,” She said. “We’ve bought you some presents. You know, good luck present for your trip.”

“Really?” he was genuinely surprised. He looked around and the others were all looking at him, waiting to see his reaction. He took the plastic WH Smiths bag and slowly brought out the contents. He looked over each one saying things like “That’s great!” and “Look at that! That’ll come in handy.” and “Ha! I really need one of those.” When he had finished taking everything out he carefully put everything back into the plastic bag and holding up the plastic bag said “Thank you so much. It’s really kind of you all.”

Everyone then settled into their work. The factory filled with the smell of hot glue and fresh plastic. Doreen looked at him through the perspex shield on the machine. She pulled the handle down, sealing the screws inside the little packets with a hiss.

After a while he spoke.


“Yes love?”

He carefully chose his words. “Would you look after something for me.”

She pulled the handle down. “Of course love.”

He stopped what he was doing, looked around to make sure the shop floor manager wasn’t around, and came over to her side of the machine with his rucksack.

“Would you look after this pot for me?”

Doreen peered into the rucksack and saw a blue plant pot. The glazing was cracked and faded and it looked as though it had seen better days.

She looked back at him. His face was sincere and she noticed for the first time a small shaving scar on his jaw line.

“Sure love,” she said. “Sure I can.”

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