Each year at this time, my friend Loren Eaton organizes Advent Ghosts. It’s simply an opportunity for writers to have a little fun and continue the very old tradition of telling “scary ghost stories” around the yule log during the Christmas season.
There are no prizes, and it isn’t a contest. The catch is this is flash fiction. As Loren says, “100 words, no more, no less.” The challenge is telling a complete story using a word count novelists would consider their opening paragraph.
On the free short fiction page on my website, you can read previous efforts. (I took a couple years off during COVID.) Below are my stories from this year.
“I’m dreaming of a white Christmas…” plays on the radio.
“I don’t know why they play that silly song here. It’s not like it’s ever going to snow.”
Announcer interrupts the music.
“The first nuclear missiles have already exploded in the now white-hot war between nuclear powers India and Pakistan. It’s unknown if other countries will get involved, but fallout from the blasts is expected to cover the globe.”
“That’s on the other side of the world. It doesn’t matter to us,” Momma says.
Momma come to the window! It’s snowing outside!
How can that be? We live in Miami!
Krampus goes up town
Ted sat at the bar dejected. All of his investments and real estate deals collapsed. He lost everything.
They wouldn’t stop playing Christmas music.
“Who cares if it’s Christmas eve? The markets are closed and I can’t fix things,” he slurred at the bar.
A distinguished man entered and sat beside Ted.
“Why so glum?”
Ted laid out his tale of woe.
“Ted, were you honest in your dealings?”
“I might have cut corners. Everything was only going up and then it just collapsed today!”
“Have you ever heard of Krampus?” The man’s smile didn’t reach his dark, cold eyes.