Second Writing Campaign Challenge

Thursdays Bite

Second Challenge of the Third Writing Campaign

If you haven’t been following my blog, I’ve joined Rach Harrie’s Third Writers Platform Building Campaign. This has been incredible fun and an immense challenge for me. The first challenge was to write a piece of flash fiction (200 words or less and you can see mine HERE). And for someone who thinks 30,000 words is short, believe me, this was a challenge. Now the second challenge is here, and it is even tougher than the first!

The Challenge is:

Write a blog post in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be in any format, whether flash fiction, non-fiction, humorous blog musings, poem, etc. The blog post should:

  • include the word “imago” in the title
  • include the following 4 random words: “miasma,” “lacuna,” “oscitate,” “synchronicity,”

If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional and included in the word count), make reference to a mirror in your post.

For those who want an even greater challenge (optional), make your post 200 words EXACTLY!

 The Ultimate Imago

“Don’t oscitate,” were my aunt’s final words to me before she died.

My mouth gaped wide. This woman I loved, idolized, had even copied my life after so that there was a certain synchronicity between her life and mine, this was all she had to say to me?

Her body began to shake and tremble. Fierce heat rose from her skin that crackled and peeled like a roasted marshmallow. My idol burst into flames. A dark oily miasma of black smoke poured from her body, forming into a snaky column that sinuously twined through the room.

I ran.

The smoke chased me, blocking me from the exit, pushing at my face till I couldn’t help myself. I gasped for breath. It burned into my lungs. I choked and slobbered and wheezed.

The room went black.

When I woke up, I struggled to my feet. The body was a small burnt pile of ash. I turned and caught a glimpse of my face in the mirror. My aunt’s face reflected back at me. I stroked the smooth skin, the sultry lips that were now mine.

Deep in my lacuna I felt a presence. It took massive drugs to stop the screaming.

You can vote for my entry on Rach Harrie Writes. I’m number 174.

And don’t forget to visit tomorrow for the kick-off of my Halloween Treats Giveaway Contest and my end of month book review of Kimberly Frost’s latest Southern Witch novel Halfway Hexed.


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53 responses to “Second Writing Campaign Challenge

  1. Wow, Jessica. Thanks for the morning creepiness. I don’t know how you crammed so much horror into 200 words. Kudos!

  2. When I looked at the words, I thought OMG! And then you did it! Very cool. I didn’t actually make it to the class this time even though I did everything required to get in. Just as well as my life is really insane and I think my inner person was just telling me to back off and live a couple of hours a day.
    Anyhow good for you, Jessica! This pushing the brain is definitely paying off.

    • Thanks Elaine! Of course I posted this and then a Trojan ate my laptop so my links aren’t there. I’ll see if I can get the linkies done so people can vote. And yes, this has turned out to be a bigger time commitment than I thought it would be, but I’m struggling on!

  3. Very scary story in a cool way. The aunt’s warning not to oscitate turned out to be good advice. I take it as some sort of possession. Whatever it was, it got a nice young body. Great last line. No lacuna, but no rules against editing.

    • thanks Sher! I fixed it. Too many really weird words, I guess my brain just skipped lacuna. And I hadn’t actually entered it in the linky till just now. Guess that turned out to be a good thing!

  4. Anna

    Great work!
    What number are you on the linky so I can ‘like’ I there?

  5. Jessica,

    You did a great job, my friend. All those words gave me hives until you used them.

    Well, besides synchronicity…cuz, hello? Police/Sting song AND all the thing all us blogging gals have. I’m glad you’re having fun with the Platform building!!

  6. Thanks Jenny,
    I have to admit the words were a little scary at first. Especially “oscitate” ! but it’s done now! Whew!

  7. Creepyness – the best way to start a morning. Be careful, Oscitate is a word that seeps under your skin. I almost used it the other day.

  8. Oooh very creepy. I really liked this take on the competition. Great use of all those horrible words.

  9. Nicely done! A very creepy feeling to this story. It’s been interesting to see what everyone has come up with based on these prompts.

    If you’re interested in checking mine out, it’s #42.

  10. I liked the opening and closing lines (and everything in between). Excellent writing.

  11. Wow, nice little creepy flash! ; )

  12. Nicely chilling. I did not expect her to burst into flames and the end had a great twist.

  13. Oh my . This was very very creepy. I love how it ended! Great work!

  14. That was very creepy, but I loved to read it, too 😉

    I finally wrote mine, too, I’m number 180.

    • Thanks Nicole! Monday is my day to cruise by as many as I can. I will be sure to get to yours! I thought this was very tough. I’d never written flash fiction before and I’m glad we had the practice of the first one before trying this one!

  15. Pingback: HALLOWEEN TREATS GIVEAWAY! | JessicaAspenWrites

  16. Bravo, I’m creeped out but still want more! Great job with the challenge.

  17. Jen

    Wow, that’s amazing! What a great story, and I didn’t even notice the challenge words!

    Mine is #3.

  18. Jessica,

    Well done. I have those words in my head, a story brewing, but too busy in Atlanta networking and learning and pitching and having fun and shaking my booty at Moonlight & Magnolias. Wish you were here!

    • Hope you’re all having a blast in Atlanta! Maybe we’ll all be there at Nationals. That’s my next big one on my list, Rom Con too! I’ll have to wait till next summer though. Thanks for dropping by out of your busy schedule!

  19. Ditto on Sherry’s comment, Jessica. Great story! Gave me a shiver. We’re all busy here in Atlanta and I didn’t get to the challenge this time. Next time!

  20. This is creepy and full of energy … not a dull moment for sure … gripping stuff !
    My entry at no.#185

  21. That was excellent!
    The beginning had an awesome hook and you kept the tension alive through the end. If there was more to this story, I’d read on.

    Great job, Jessica! 🙂

  22. When I read the first couple of sentences I was like, “Oh yeah. I’ve been there before.” Then I was like, “Oh my god! Freaky! I’ve NEVER been there before!”

    You got me. That was good. 🙂

    I’m #53 if you’re interested.

  23. That was really really creepy. Nice job. I especially liked “I stroked the smooth skin, the sultry lips that were now mine”. How freaky that would be!

    The Write Soil

    Mine is #50.

  24. AHHHH! Chilling. It’s amazing what kind of story those words can inspire! Christy #158

  25. I call this WOW writing, brilliant mystery, excellent word usage, readable, a bit scary and I liked it.

    Fun read. I’d like the “rest of the story”, I think everyone would.

  26. Christy Farmer

    Great Job Jessica and your blog looks fantastic! 🙂

  27. Eek! How delightfully creepy. Great job! 🙂

  28. Super fun! Another winner in my book! 🙂

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