100 Words 100 Books competition

I am delighted to be included in “100 Words 100 Books” the book published by O’Brien Press following the competition, run by the Book Show on RTE Radio. The book contains 100 entries from the many hundreds received.

In the short space given – between one hundred and two hundred words – listeners were challenged to write stories that worked structurally, could communicate a clear vision, examine human truths and offer a distinct narrative voice.
To quote the judges: “The subject matter in these stories is not trivial or small just because the stories are short, in fact they are compelling, insightful and prove that less can often mean significantly more.”

The radio show, the Book Show Live presented by Sinead Gleeson in which the winners, and entries that made the book were revealed was broadcast live from Twisted Pepper. I was delighted to attend and really enjoyed the show. Got to hear Anne Enright & Paul Murray read new work that won’t be published until 2015.

Here’s the audio of live  the Book Show RTE with Anne Enright and Paul Murray http://bit.ly/1G2QFts

http://t.co/fqoTF4W4ZX

The book can be purchased from http://www.obrien.ie/100-words-100-books
Here’s my story;

Gone

Plunged into sudden blackness. Electricity gone. Heart pounded and pumped with panic until you’d appear. Your shake was the rattle of a matchbox.

Us, soothed by the first spark of your strike and the whispery hiss of ignition. Shhh it’s ok. You flitted from room to room, impervious to the darkness, a floating face illuminated by the orange glow.

The candle flickered indistinct shapes over the room. Your shadow danced behind you as you’d stand still, staring at the flame, delicately pinching the burnt up shrivel until the flare dwindled away.

Now, you are gone.

I burned my fingertips and dropped it all.

The box is upended, contents discarded on the floor, a tangle of matches. All unlit except for one.

There’s a sharp smell of sulphur. The stalk of the burning head is knotted in amongst the rest, leaning on some, holding up others. As the fire sizzles to life it begins the slow crawl. It is only a matter of time before the rest catch light. The whole little bundle will burn and then blaze with fury until it resigns itself to a crumbling pile of charcoal twigs.

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