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WCT - The Writing Competition Thread [Short Story Results]


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Yes, they are much appreciated as always, Doulifee! And ubernym, you'll just have to try your best to earn yourself a partner to that thing this go around, won't you? :-D

Heh, I'll certainly give it the old college try. I've always struggled with the poetry thing, you know? There's a very thin line between art and pretentiousness, and I have a harder time knowing where it is with poetry. :?

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Heh, I'll certainly give it the old college try. I've always struggled with the poetry thing, you know? There's a very thin line between art and pretentiousness, and I have a harder time knowing where it is with poetry. :?

Sounds like you take it too seriously.

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Well, for some of us writing can be more of a craft or, hell, a job than a hobby. In such cases that line is a very important thing to consider. But who really knows where it is? I'm still convinced critics draw it between what isn't published (obviously too plebeian or too pretentious to be worth anything) and what is published (clearly the superior body of work, else who would have published it) just for simplicity's sake.

Here, I don't think there's much to worry about. We may be critics, but we're not necessarilythekind of critic who would be preoccupied with that distinction.

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Heh, maybe to some people I seem to take this writing stuff too seriously. Like Imagery, I view my writing as craft, and I'm very critical of my own writing. I've been paid to write (nonfiction), so it's not just a hobby for me, and I hope to someday be able to write full-time for a living.

So that line is important to me, especially because I think a lot of contemporary published poetry is bollocks. That's not a fair thing for me to say, since I don't read much contemporary poetry. My favorites are guys like John Dunne, Walt Whitman and Robert Frost, and maybe a little Shakespeare. Bukowski is pretty good, but damn he was one depressed mug.

Maybe my poetry standards are too high, and maybe I come off as a literary snob to some. I'm ok with that, because I don't enter these competitions to win or to be the best or to compete with others (how crude). I find in these competitions an excellent framework for challenging myself and forcing me to grow, sometimes in unexpected ways.

The last competition was a great example. I decided to enter at the very last minute. I didn't have anything written down, and I didn't have a single story idea. I was experiencing writer's block.

I decided I had to do the competition, no matter how bad my entry was. I started making up titles, stringing words together in my head. I came up with: The Phantom Poet of Zanzibar. I had no idea what it was about, but that was the title. I forced myself to write something based on that half-formed idea. It was revelatory, inspiring. I didn't care if I won or not, I didn't even vote for myself.

So on the one hand, I take my writing seriously and personally, I don't need to win against someone else. The competition is a great motivation, but it's not the end for me. The end is what I see for myself. When I talk about lines between art and pretense, it's a personal definition.

And for me, poetry has always been a weakness, where the line wavers and is translucent.

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My Entry is here :P I'm gonna start it off and hopefully we'll see some great stuff soon!

To You;

To you, possessed of such a tempting grace,

moving so sublimely through star-struck space;

Can I ask of you this quiet question-

Why do those sad tears frame that flawless face?

What’s the reason for that cultured lesson

that laces your well-controlled complexion?

Have you, through some finally-found fancy

been shown the harsh meaning of rejection?

Maybe, you dreamt of a light romancing

Under the moons bright, fatal faerie-fire

Its sight telling tales of your desire,

That sad love ethereal- transient?

No? I didn’t think that the murky mire

That we call “Love” would have you trapped today-

To make such stories of these fallen fae,

As an excuse to perform worn word-play

Or! Maybe, it’s some other telling tale

That led you into this unjust travail-

And left you with those shining streaks

Across a face falling pallid and pale-

Had your plans reached the goal, that high peak,

Then plunged; wasted - leaving you worn and weak

With no way out, no truly clear choices,

No way to gain the happiness you seek?

Did you want a house with joyful voices,

A backyard echoing lilting laughter?

Has some callous event foreclosed that chapter

And filled your soul with some private poison?

No, I don’t think that’s what I‘m after.

You’re not being held by some coarse constraint-

Nor your body filled with some tragic taint

that would end with you faltering, and faint.

Do you long for adventuresome release,

Your daily work having no such surcease-

And staring entranced-so at the stratus,

You dream of those mighty in name and deed?

Those stories, the ones that you always read-

Do they make you long for that single pleasure,

Proof of beauty and things unseen, proof of need-

Proof of some fantasy beyond measure?

Don’t lose faith in finding the forever,

The sacrosanct is in those clouds so rare.

And magic is there, suspended in air-

As long as you don’t consider never.

Maybe, I could help in your endeavor,

Together, a meeting of star-bright minds-

Rhyme after rhyme, perhaps we will find

Some tool to meld your fantasy with time.

So Lady, giving thought where it’s due, then

I can only tell you this Plight of Men

And be it my damning declaration,

I will never let you be hurt again!

You will never want for stone or station,

Nor need to seek some other relation.

If the dreary dusk deigned to mar your mood,

To make a Sun, I’d master creation!

To your beauty I would always allude,

(The runic tint to those even-ether eyes)

No comparison would bespeak of lies;

Only to the lay does the truth elude –

So Lady, let my love for you give rise,

To the dawning of our sublunary Sun!

For you; My suitors pledge that come what come,

On my honor, my life; Thy will be done!

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This is a sonnet, I think.

Ode to the Bubble Dragons

Bub and Bob brothers seeking glimmering

Grumple Gromit their archenemy gone

Taking their girlfriends wicked fleeing

Warped each boy into bubble dragon

Fighting trapping monsters soapy bubbles

Popping very dangerous to stumble

Snagging necklaces enemy troubles

Needing crystal ball zero chance fumble

Cave of Monsters now exuding quick funk

Skel ghost traces cases chases mazes

Homing bright scaled heroes descending punk

Zapping bouncing tyrant's many faces

Bubble Dragons full victory achieved

Spiky curst heroes blue and green restored

Apologies if this belongs in the Freeform competition.

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I... think I'm going to have to discount that one. While I just now realized that the rules don't specifically outlaw fan poetry, I think the original intent for outlawing fanfiction extends to the poetry competition. It's sort of like OCR's reasoning behind rejecting MIDI rips; the whole idea of creativity inherent in the system is to create something, not to copy or pay tribute to it. So sorry, and I'll make the rules a bit more explicit on this point.

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This is my entry in the short story category. The synopsis of it is pretty much a guy lost in the desert and if you want to know more, read it! Well here goes and hope you like it. Also if you have suggestions please feel free to message me.

Wandering the Corridors of Thought

by: mechasonic4ever

A bright light radiated from the Sun, which was high up in the sky, making the desert seem even hotter. Water was scarce, food was sparse, and the wind blew nothing but blistering heat making this trek seem disastrous as I grew faint. I proceeded onward through the harsh environment, knowing not what has even happened as this environment was forcing me to have these haunting memories. Continuing through the desert my vision became blurred as I was sent to see my past yet again…

“Today is a very great day for you all, today is the day that all of you, my Elite Knights, will aid your great land and destroy the Shadow,” explained the emperor dressed in plated steel armor holding a steel lance as tall as him, “Now, you will all storm the great citadel that has destroyed the woods and claimed the crater it left as its new home. You will all destroy the troops making a path for me to get to the throne room to destroy the leader, any questions?”…

And in an instant the horizon went back to the exceedingly scorching desert as I, in my sapphire blue robes, was marching onward through the infinite sands as the sun began to take its descending stroll to night. Along with the blistering heat, a fierce wind began to blow hindering the process of walking greatly as the horizon yielded no salvation. Knowing that the sand would blind me or suffocate me I dared not to open my eyes or mouth except in dire need. As the wind picked up and I became weary from the lack of oxygen and lack of sight to where I was, another memory slipped into vision making the winds seem unimportant…

“Talus, you must go help the emperor! We cannot hold off these enemies much longer!” a soldier pleaded with Talus as he fended off many enemy troops.

Listening to his advice, I, following the path that the emperor took, proceed up the winding stairs toward the tower quite swiftly. Upon reaching the top, the gigantic doors at the end slowly creaked open as if magically letting the faint noise of an organ distill the air with its aura. With my eyes, I could not believe what I saw but ahead of me at the throne was none other than my greatest friend Nasir garbed in black robes as he sat on the throne holding a fine goblet in his hands.

The emperor was already ahead talking with Nasir trying to reason with him. I could not hear what they said exactly but the emperor seemed to be talking of peace. At this instant, Nasir released a demonic and almost sarcastic laugh and then taking from his cloak a silver dagger, he stabbed the emperor in his chest, whispered something in his ear and pushed him to the ground.

“I see you have reached me, dear old friend, but now I face you as your enemy” Nasir chuckled, walking over the king who was breathing very faintly clutching his chest, “You can surrender or we can spar as we used to but for much higher stakes… The choice is yours”

“I cannot fight you Nasir, but only plead that you stop. Darkness has clouded your mind and tainted your soul cant you see that?” Talus explained “You can stop this foolishness and together we can find the true leader of the Shadow”

“Once again, you prove to be as amusing as you are naïve. I am the leader and I befriended you only to get your magical talent and bend it to my will” Nasir proclaimed taking yet another sip from the goblet, now standing up in front of the throne

Without another word I grabbed my bow and fired an arrow, which had a blinding white light trailing it, at Nasir sending him careening backwards toward the end of the throne room.

“You always were the better fighter Talus, but now I command the Shadow so you cannot win!” Nasir declared and sent dark tendrils from his fingertips and snatched the bow from my very hands.

Knowing that a scimitar lay in the sheath to my side, I grabbed it and flew at Nasir preparing to slice him across the chest. He just stood there as the blow was delivered and even with the wound running red with blood he still laughed as he stood there. I stood horrified as I just lay a deep cut into one of my oldest friend but he just laughed and acted like nothing happened.

“You may have thought that would work, but I can do much worse things,” Nasir chuckled as he threatened Talus “You will be held responsible for my actions next because you are unlike all others. You have both the symbols of the Legendary Race and the shadow race scarred on your palms. They represent your parent’s gifts to you to aid you but now that will ruin you!” and with that a great wave of darkness overtook the room and sent me into a dark haze…

As the dark haze ceased, I found myself once again in this accursed desert with the sun setting casting an orange glow over the golden sand. Staring at my palms I saw that upon my left was the symbol of the Shadow, a black crescent with six stars surrounding it and on my right palm was the symbol of the Lumios, a sun overlooking an hourglass.

Going further, I found an oasis and made camp there. A small patch of water resided there in which I took most for my canteen and rested my head against the only tree as I lulled into a sleep caused by the intense heat with a horrid dream clawing its way into my mind.

“You have been found guilty of destroying our sacred forest, abandoning your duties to destroy the Shadow, high treason, and the assassination of our Emperor” a knight said reading from a giant book as a mage and the Viceroy stood on each side as we were all in the desert by the transportation of the mage “Because of your many years of service and your exceptional magic skills, we spare you death but leave you stranded in this desert forever to wander”

“… and if you should ever return, I will personally kill you” the mage added

With that the three people vanished from my sight and I began to wander the desert with no hope at all of what to do.

Abruptly I awoke to be surrounded by five heavily armored men all bearing a golden broadsword in they’re hands. They all began to bicker about me saying what I was doing lost in the desert and began to say things like I was meant to be here or something but I cared not for they were taking me no doubt to some sort of civilization.

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Erm, Mechasonic, I believe this was the poetry comp. :0

Your short story may have to wait until that particular competition comes around.

ok i have a poetry submission too i just submitted what i thought was better... well here goes...

Alternate Reality

In the dark of night, not a noise is heard

In the dark of night, not a person moves ahead

They all lay sleeping in their beds

While in their heads are lingering dreams most absurd

In the dreams of people, all their wishes come true

In the Dreams of people, nothing can stop them from what they conceive

The all consist of various fantasies, both real and make believe

While in their thoughts they know that the dream cannot ensue

In the last minutes, we cling to our dreams

In the last minutes, we know that reality is near

They all try to resist, refusing to give what they hold dear

While in their dreams, they are pried from it at the seams

In the seconds before, all the memories remain

In the seconds before, the vivid tales stay clear

They all hold on to them, as they seem to disappear

While in their minds, they know not what tomorrow’s dreams contain

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Yeah, Mechasonic, we used to do trimonthly competitions with all three categories, but at current we are down to bimonthly competitions with rotating categories. I guess the confusion is somewhat my fault for not updating the current status of the competition all this time. :oops:

Well, there's just about a week left for submission, folks. I'm hoping there are a lot more entries in the works to blow last month's turnout out of the water. I've been on vacation for the last week, but I now have plenty of ideas and should be able to work one of them up before getting my wisdom teeth out next Thursday. Good luck to all those still working hard (or even yet to start)!

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I've been thinking about what to write for this competition, but I've never been good at poetry... we'll see if I can come up with something, won't we? I'm not exactly counting on it, though, simply because I've got two higher priorities at the moment: summer classes (I have two papers to write this weekend) and my for-fun novel, Eternal Legends. It's been, what, nearly two friggin' years since I last released a chapter for that, and I've been itching to get some work done on it for just as long. But if I come up with a poem idea between working on those, I'll definitely enter it.

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Masking Tape

When you woke up, you were plain

Only the veil you put on

your face hides the truth.

Frame that with dangling decoration

and put it above fashion

statements which fit the mold

people you'll never meet created.

How much becomes false

when what is presented is manufactured?

Impatient attitude? check.

Practiced facial expressions? double check.

Mirror seems to mock as it breaks

the disguise, winking in scattered pieces.

Even photographs feel unreal because

your eyes refuse to lie.

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Yeah, Mechasonic, we used to do trimonthly competitions with all three categories, but at current we are down to bimonthly competitions with rotating categories. I guess the confusion is somewhat my fault for not updating the current status of the competition all this time. :oops:

Well, there's just about a week left for submission, folks. I'm hoping there are a lot more entries in the works to blow last month's turnout out of the water. I've been on vacation for the last week, but I now have plenty of ideas and should be able to work one of them up before getting my wisdom teeth out next Thursday. Good luck to all those still working hard (or even yet to start)!

Yeah thats fine as long as my poem is counted as an entry im fine. Hope you guys like it and feel free to write any comments or anything! Thanks.

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Okay. Any and all criticism is welcome once the competition is over. :)

Night's Bygone Fantasy

Alone I awoke from a deep, dark slumber

My body, with chills, sweat cold.

And, I peered at the clock and betook its number

Only ten 'til one, the night yet to unfold.

T'was a nightmare I'd dreamed

Of the cruelest, vilest sort.

Of ghouls and of goblins it teemed

Of lives full of hope, cut short.

"Only a dream," I chided myself,

And crept to the pantry for comfort.

And there I beheld, not a shelf, but an elf,

My mind, I thought, began to distort.

But, then he drew forward,

Withdrew from his sash

A sword,

And beckoned me do nothing rash.

I turned around then,

And beheld with my eyes

All throughout the kitchen

A scene of surprise

The ghouls and the goblins of bygone fantasy

In attendance now,

T'was plain to see,

But how?

The elf, he strode forward,

And raised above his head

The ancient, runic sword,

The goblins soon to be dead.

But before he could strike,

The world shuddered grey

And it seemed to me like,

I was awaking to a brand-new day.

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