From perspiration to creation

Hands strain, bone on blank wood. Limbering the lines demands a gymnast agile to what waits. To satisfy any critic is a balance; words, an avoirdupois. Writing is a willingness to be bruised.


Gymnast Dorina Böczögő performs a one-arm press hold on the balance beam mount. From Wikimedia Commons, by user Alby.1412. Please consider purchasing some of his amazing sports photography, which includes winter sports.

Flash fiction written for the last one-word Trifecta Challenge, week 114.

Gnawing Worries on a Ribbon of Time

Gu-en’s ship was uffed. Threading their way to Calabi-Yau Base of 3.5 months ago wasn’t easy. And today was about to get exponentially worse, but at least they’d trap their shadowers: star rats.

Physics-Theories-from WiredCosmos

A computer-generated illustration of string theory from Wired Cosmos.

This 33-word flash-fiction sci-fi story was written for the weekly Trifecta challenge, Trifextra 104. Writers are to craft a 33-word piece using a palindrome (as “star rats” above). Sadly, the Trifecta challenges are coming to an end this month. At last I fully understand the meaning of T.S. Eliot’s line, “April is the cruellest month.”

Camera Lucida: A Micro-Flash for The Trifextra Challenge

Hello, all. This week I fortuitously stumbled on a new writing Web site called The Trifecta Writing Challenge. Basically, every week they have a different three-themed challenge, toggling between a 33-word microfiction challenge (called the Trifextra challenge) and one that sends writers to the dictionary for the third definition of a certain word (the Trifecta challenge). I first read about the challenge while cruising through the Polysyllabic Profundities blog; please do peruse Susan’s site for some creative inspiration and impassioned prose as well.

This week’s Trifextra is based upon the amaztastic art of Thomas Leuthard. He dubs it “street photography,” and it is stunningly masterful in black-and-white. For the purpose of this writing challenge, the particular photograph we must focus on, as used above, is “Studying in Starbucks,” which is viewable in Mr. Leuthard’s portfolio on his Web site or on flickr.

Finally, I enjoy, and have enjoyed, the obstacle that is flash fiction or microfiction, because it forces condensation. It begs succinct-ion. And as brevity is the soul of wit, I humbly submit my first short fiction (a.k.a., micro-flash or micro-micro flash?) for the Trifextra challenge and await the feedback therefrom. Check out the other writers on this challenge when you visit the Trifecta site; it’s well worth your time.


Camera Lucida: Time in Focus

©Leigh Ward-Smith, 2014

In the darkroom’s womb, Zabe first realized the contraption had worked.

Foreground: The student, her femaleness fogged.

Background: The flash rolling-pins time into a flatline, exposing links to his mother, had she survived.