Happy Pride! Today is the first Monday of the month, so it’s time to dig out my Geek & Sundry playing cards and do the draw for June. What am I talking about? Well, if you’ve not seen one of these monthly draws so far, the background is this: as a kind of challenge to myself (and anyone else who wanted to try), last January I started a year-long monthly Flash Fiction Draw Challenge. I made three piles of suits from a deck of cards, and then assigned a genre to each club, an item to each diamond, and a location to each heart. Once a month, drawing three cards creates the challenge. No more than 1,000 words, and no longer than a week to work on it, and… ta-da. Stretched writerly muscles, fun, and zero stress. (And that last rule is paramount: if it gets stressful or stops being fun? Eject. There’ll be another challenge next month.)
The first draw (which was a Fairy Tale involving a Tattoo Machine set in a Prison!) and the results were fantastic in January, and February’s draw (Crime Caper, Compass, Soup Kitchen) was a challenge (though with awesome results). March‘s Romance, involving a VHS Cassette, set in a Firewatch Tower led to a great range of results. April gave us Historical Fictions set on Dirt Roads dealing with Rat Poison, and the timelines involved in those results were all over the place. Or time. You get it. May dropped some science fiction in our lap, taking place above the clouds and involving a dog whistle.
I made a video of this month’s draw, which included my favourite rainbow unicorn t-shirt.
The chart from which the draws were made was this (minus the cards from previous draws, greyed out):
And the result for June? Eight of clubs, seven of diamonds, and king of hearts. Which means anyone who wants to play along is going to write a flash fiction piece of 1,000 words within the following guidelines: a fantasy story, set in a junkyard or scrapyard, and including hot chocolate.
If you do participate, please pop a link to this post, or to the Facebook video above so I can gather all the stories again for a round-up post next week.
But the most important thing? This is supposed to be fun and inspiring. If it’s not working for you, take a pass. There’ll be another challenge on the first Monday of July (that’s July 2nd), from the remaining nine items on the list. The “rules” such as they are are pretty limited: You have to use the genre, the item, and the setting (though you can play a bit fast and loose within those guidelines), no more than 1,000 words, and the piece needs to be finished by next Monday (June 11th). That’s it.