Friday, 31 December 2010

Lily's Friday Prediction

Today's Prediction comes to you live from the sick bed of Lily Childs (now the back's OK I have a smattering of flu to contend with. How dull.)

Firstly, congratulations to last week's winners and runner-up - William Davoll for Winter Bleak and Michael Solender for The Intended. Well done both.

All change - well, a little bit

Secondly, there's a little change to this last Prediction of 2010. Whoever wins the challenge will get to judge the following week's Prediction - the first of 2011. Hope you'll be up for that? Just a one-off for the moment but let's see how we get on.

So here are this week's words:

  • Keel
  • Fury
  • Clock


The rules are: 100 words max flash fiction or poetry using all of the words above. Please add your entries in the Comments box below. You have all week until 9pm UK time on Thursday 06 January to enter.

Winner will be announced next Thursday or Friday. If you can, please tweet about your entry, using the #fridayflash hashtag, and blog if you feel like it.

And as one year closes and another begins I raise a virtual glass to wish you all a happy, healthy, literary and prosperous 2011. Cheers!

Thursday, 30 December 2010


A quickie...

I simply must recommend the latest stories on the marvellous Thrillers Killers 'n' Chillers. Buffalo Gal Jodi MacArthur whacks the crap outa Santa whilst R.S. Bohn snips and slices under the boardwalk. Love you two horrornistas.

What I Did On My Holiday is a chilling child's essay by Lewis Morris. Ash Scott-Lockyer's Chop Shop is pure UK Geezer Noir and Calling Out By Joshua Scribner worries the parents amongst us.

Go visit. Do... You'll love it.

Prediction Winner

The last Prediction winner of 2010 - and what a year it's been. Such extraordinary flashes and drabbles from wonderfully talented and imaginative authors. It's been a privilege to host and comment on your work.

OK - it's another toughie, comme d'habiteuuuwwwwwdah. Summary time:

  • George Michael crooned disdain in David Barber's Christmas In The Asylum.
  • The message from across the stars in Michael Solender's The Intended terrifies us as a human race.
  • The Priory is mimimanderly's mini epic adventure. Does she survive the descent?
  • Despair rises to hope, and back again in AidanF's The Governor's Daughter.
  • Antonia Woodville's gormless gold-seeker gets his come-uppance in Treasure Hunt.
  • William Davoll is triple-distilled this week. Yo Mother is a festive nightmare. Her Beauty took mine eyes speaks of Godgifu, Lady Godiva and Peeping Tom. Winter Bleak twists the legend of the apparent Virgin Birth.
  • I think my Unholy Worship might have upset some; can't apologise I'm afraid. Shit sticks.
  • Erin Cole gave us Geminis a swift kick up the backside in Free Horoscopes. And then there's the Cancerians...
  • Beneath the Tombstone of St. Selabon saw two grave-robbers meet their demise at Chris Allinotte's fingers.
  • We had a double blast from Susan May James, teasing us as always with snatches of greater things. Buried Treasure's monkvestite is about to be thwarted whilst Monks' Mistress reveals a true goldigger. 
  • Cold sacrifice slides through AJ Humpage's macabre observation in Of Separation.
  • scratchypen's bad guys are hiding the glimmering evidence in Crime Won't Pay. They've been spotted.
  • Pixie J. King sneaks in to report a mashed-up robbery in A Tale of Two Brothers.

And so, the Lily's Friday Prediction final winner of 2010 - and he's been nearly there for weeks - is... William Davoll for Winter Bleak. It chilled me to the bone in both atmosphere and description, and threw up some of my own convictions. Congratulations William. In a further bleak message Michael Solender reaps Runner-Up prize with The Intended. Well done Michael (I'm giggling at saying that to you!)


The morning of New Year's Eve 2010 will see the year's last ever Prediction. Maybe it'll carry something a little bit different...

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Daily Bites of Flesh - now on Kindle!

Back in November I was thrilled to announce that Pill Hill Press' horror anthology Daily Bites of Flesh 2011 was available in print. And now - if you've got a Kindle, or the free Kindle app for your PC or phone you can download this fabulous compendium of horror for just £3.73 from Amazon UK or $5.75 from Amazon US.

You get a tasty bite of flash fiction horror for every day of the year - what could be better than that? Two of my pieces - Spangles and Pustula Peculiar appear in 'June'. You can read excerpts below.

For a sneaky peek at some of the other stories in the collection - and ooh - are you in for some delicious treats from some excellent writers - you can download the whole month of January for free as a Kindle sample from Amazon. Just go to the relevant Amazon link above and find the Try It For Free box.

You can buy Daily Bites of Flesh in print direct from the Pill Hill shop for $22.49. Or from Amazon (UK - £21.99 and US - $24.99) and at Barnes & Noble.

Many thanks to Jessy Marie Roberts for her astonishing work in compiling and editing this anthology.


They found sequins in my knickers. The silver disks filled my crevices, finding their way into folds of flesh where they cut and sliced me raw. The question the cops asked themselves – did a killer place them there, or did I?

Hudson swore as his boss gave him the best job of all; standing between my legs to catch the corpse as they cut me down. The wind was ferocious. My body swung in circles from a creaking oak, a pendulum. Hudson danced like a girl, trying to avoid the spillages splattered over the forest floor beneath me. Evacuation - the elegance of death.

Pustula Peculiar

Ginger limped sideways to reach for another bottle. Taking a swig he gazed at the dancing dead.

“More,” the woman called from her shackles. “I need more”.

She widened her mouth to accept the Absinthe. The excess ran in rivulets down her neck raising the skin in blistering welts. Labella took the full mouthful into her throat in a single, rasping gulp.

The men looked on. No more smiles, just pant-pissing terror as the drumming began to slow.

“Quickly,” they begged. “Do it now.”

Friday, 24 December 2010

Lily's Friday Prediction

I've been scouting around matey bloggers' bloggety blogs to find everyone has already sent out their festive greetings messages. Have I slept 48 hours and woken up on Boxing Day? I bleedin' hope not because I wanted to see little un's face when she opened her presents. No? Fortunately it still seems to be the morning of Christmas Eve and everyone apart from me is simply being organised.

Congratulations to Aidan Fritz for winning last week's Friday Prediction with his stark elven chiller Mörkt Alven and to runner-up William Davoll for the frank and disturbing The Lie.

Time to lay my hands on the old book... This week's three words are:

  • Priory
  • Gold
  • Shift
Hmmn; that combination evokes something dark in in my gut. What does it do for you?


The rules are: 100 words max flash fiction or poetry using all of the words above. Please add your entries in the Comments box below. You have all week until 9pm UK time Thursday 30 December to enter.

Winner will be announced next Thursday or Friday. If you can, please tweet about your entry, using the #fridayflash hashtag, and blog if you feel like it.

So be inspired, and in the meantime eat, drink and be merry to your heart's content. Have a good one.

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Prediction Winner

Crawling our way towards Christmas, I am sure we are all looking forward to a relaxed (?) break with plenty of opportunity to fiddle with our Muse, as it were. But Lily's Friday Prediction, like a Man Cold, will persevere.

A plethora of talent this week. Let's sum up:

  • Mimimanderly's sculptor drugs his victims and turns them to stone in her cold Marble
  • More Art World terror from Antonia Woodville as her baddie seeks the perfect Still Life.
  • Revenge rages sweet with Susan May James' educational tale, A Teaching.
  • Sue H twists our guilt and then stabs us with it in her emotional In The Bleak Midwinter.
  • Naughty Michael Solender toussles with Barbie and disabuses us of the Santa myth.
  • My poem's Wasted Matchstick Girl straddles herself between lovers, spreading her unique love.
  • We are frozen in an urban fantasy, victims of the Dark Elves in Aidan F's Mörkt Alven.
  • A return visit from Antonia flashes us back to the lies and fear of The War Zone.
  • Volcanic fallout petrifies the masses, intoxicating our souls in AJ Humpage's Vulcan Rising.
  • David Barber slaps the dirty side of Hollywood in our faces with The Business.
  • Diana gallops - audibly - to safety in Double Trouble, the latest in Chris Allinotte's series Diamonds.
  • The Undead are threatening our senses in David Barber's new chapter. Who undied?
  • Superstition, revenge and remorse gather at the crossroads of scratchypen's The Truth Will Out.
  • William Davoll's The Lie is traumatising in its bluntness, and tragically evocative.
  • Pixie's Forgotten Child is a tremble of despair, emotion and confusion for her tragic heroine.

The diversity of this week's offerings made the judging even more challenging than usual. I've been enjoying them all week for different reasons. Perhaps my choice is subjective tonight - I won't reveal what kind of a day I've had, but a Californian Chardonnay is my friend this evening. So...

This week's winner is AidanF's Mörkt Alven because it chilled and disturbed me with its creeping dark elves. Runner-up? Very difficult but I'm going for William  again because of the unique voice and the stark depiction. Congratulations Aidan and well done William. Every single entry was brilliant, it has to be said. Please do return.

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Voice of an Angel

The wonderful author and poet Angel Zapata has launched a gorgeous quarterly flash e-zine 5x5 Fiction: Stories Told Loud and Clear.

Angel is looking for "exceptional stories to shout from rooftops. Complete stories (not rantings or poems) must be exactly 25 words long, told in exactly 5 sentences, with each sentence comprised of exactly 5 words."

This is a very exciting new flash challenge. Do go visit, do submit...


Friday, 17 December 2010

Lily's Friday Prediction

Here flies Madame Time again, so I shall be brief. As always a stimulating and inspiring round of entries last week. Congratulations to AJ Humpage for her winning tale, Fell, the Breath and to runners-up RS Bohn for Unseen and William Davoll for First Harvest.

It occurred to me that some of you go on to expand your entries into full pieces. Do tell us - even if it's six months later, we'd love to hear about it.

And so, my encyclopaedic dictionary has thrown out three simple words this week - but you don't have to make it easy for me:

  • Waif
  • Lie
  • Inanimate


The rules are: 100 words max flash fiction or poetry using all of the words above. Please add your entries in the Comments box below. You have all week until 9pm UK time Thursday 23 December to enter.

Winner will be announced next Thursday or Friday. If you can, please tweet about your entry, using the #fridayflash hashtag, and blog if you feel like it.

Twist my fancy with your words; I'm waiting...

Prediction Winner

Anticipating the temperature plumetting to minus 12 tonight I've been wrapped in a gorgeous but horribly scratchy high-necked sweater all day. I can't judge under such restriction so, embraced in far more appropriate red satin I am ready to begin. Is everybody in...?

Everyone knows horror's my thing, but that doesn't mean I don't adore talented writing in many genres. Possibly what touches me most is stark passion which can be the darkest demonic strangulation or a raw and innocent declaration of love. I'm so enjoying the variety of work coming our way on The Feardom; thank you everyone for sharing your talent with us.

We all kept it to one-apiece this time and as always, here's a summary of last week's entries:

  • Chris Allinotte stands and delivers part three of Diana's desperate theft of Diamonds. Who do they really belong to? He's promising us the answer.
  • We were ravaged by AidanF's violent séance. متشابكة الجن - archaic, demonic and cruel.
  • mimimanderly's self-employed loner loses hope in a bucket of acid.
  • A chain letter proclaims death, then proves itself in Michael Solender's disturbing write. Reminded me of Palahniuk.
  • Asuqi's caustic rewrite of The Princess and The Frog, The Dark in Deed and Mind is surely a film-in-the-making.
  • Antonia Woodville brings us into the here and now with her ghoulish unchained reverie.
  • Fell, the Breath spills from AJ Humpage's fingers as purely as the seduction she so exquisitely describes.
  • The combination of sensuality, love and abandon in RS Bohn's 'Unseen' leaves us trembling.
  • scratchypen's first entry with The Long Wait was chilling and detached, leaving us wanting to know more about the narrator.
  • We were all touched by David Barber's honest and beautiful words in For My Father. So glad to hear your Dad is well on the mend, David.
  • My take on a greek Myth A Greater Mystery mixes the parallels and multiple aspects of the Great Mother.
  • Susan May James observes as if from above her character's assault and horrific near-demise in this chilling narration.
  • The swaying sea of grain in William Davoll's First Harvest had me reeling with the delirium of the piece.
  • Pixie J. King has an inimitable way of scaring us with her last-minute entries. With Kisses was well-worth the wait.

Three pieces in particular blew my mind this week, as such - and I will make no apologies - there is one winner and two equal runners-up. I hope I can explain myself. This week's winner is AJ Humpage with Fell, the Breath. AJ's poetic descriptions are to die for, and here she brings us La Petite Mort in a divine whisper. Congratulations Ally.

My first runner-up is RS Bohn's Unseen. Pictorial, sensual, powerful. My second is William Davoll's First Harvest with its trippy journey ignited by many women's fear. Well done both.

Fabulous entries and comments everyone. Please keep coming back.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

In Absentia

She's not been around much over the last couple of weeks, that Muse of mine. I wonder if I have angered her in some way, or unwittingly ignored her teases. Truth be told I, like many other writers and artists have been so busy lately trying to deal with the snow (for non-UK readers - we're useless over here, can't cope with the lovely white stuff), worrying about poorly children and poorly friends, being abysmally bad at organising and preparing Christmas cards and presents, and of course, getting bogged down by the day job - that I realise all I am is a victim of time. But the Police don't have a Support Service for that.

Tonight, I took out the ghost story I wrote for a national newspaper competition - which didn't get shortlisted - and rewrote some of it. Is it any better? I don't know. I still love it. It still made made me cry, still scared the hell out of me. I want it to find a home - a well-paid home - so I am on the hunt. But picking the story back up has set the sparks off again, and she is back. I'm so glad.

I've now jotted down a disturbing story about unbeknownst love. I have made notes concerning a judgemental and unbidden shadow. There are poems in my head that - not deliberately - break all the rules. And now I am also inspired to write something on Persephone, Dread Queen consort of Hades. The latter will, of course, require me to vacation in Crete again - which will be such a hardship.

This is more of a private ramble than a public display. I don't mean to sound pretentious or up myself; I just needed to clear some cobwebs.

Over now, to judge last week's astounding Prediction entries. Thanks for letting me drone on.

Friday, 10 December 2010

Lily's Friday Prediction

Eighteen entries from thirteen writers proved a true judging challenge last week! So much so that after selecting Erin Cole's incredible Bare the Bones as the winner I was totally unable to choose a runner-up. So I left it up to you and by a majority vote it's AJ Humpage's profoundly disturbing Mea Culpa. Well done AJ!

And now for today's words, if you please:

  • Spring (noun or verb, any tense - aren't I kind)
  • Chain
  • Melt


The rules are: 100 words max flash fiction or poetry using all of the words above. Please add your entries in the Comments box below. You have all week until 9pm UK time Thursday 16 December to enter.

Winner will be announced next Thursday or Friday. If you can, please tweet about your entry, using the #fridayflash hashtag, and blog if you feel like it.

I'll be twiddling my thumbs in anticipation...

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Prediction Winner

Brutal and dark, last week saw a frightening array of entries, of personalities. I loved every single one of them.

To sum up:

  • David Barber slapped us with a stunning triple whammy #1 Episode 2 of The Undead continued to entice. #2 One wedding and a huge funeral - they'll be sorry. #3 He took the wrong move and all would be swiftly, and very nastily lost.
  • mimimanderly blew her audience away on New Year's Eve. They should have known better.
  • Diana spangled her diamonds in our direction, playing the teasing game, thanks to Chris Allinotte.
  • Gothic graveyards had Antonia Woodville serving cold supper to the starving, the ever-hungry.
  • Erin Cole lied through her teeth to bring us a strangling and skeletal untruth.
  • A restaurant packed with silent diners was enough to warn us - too late, in Susan May James' Lambs.
  • Sushi is suggested whilst geishas and delicate precision fills asuqi's teapot of disappointed love in That of Which the Heart is Filled.
  • Dominion provided the spiralling, metamorphosic first entry from William Davoll followed by more merging of body and soul, of senses and self-sacrifice in You Are What You Eat.
  • AidanF's demonic Qarînah lay slinky on the lover's pillow, tempting, taunting...
  • My poem Swallow revealed unsavoury choices whilst Lydia takes her choice of tidbits at masterchef Marcel Garotte's restaurant in Tasty Bites.
  • Awakening school-tide fears, Anthony Cowin delivered the revenge we can (should) only perform in words in Old School Cries. 
  • Michael Solender likes to play. His Hot Tub in Hades had skin being sloughed off and flesh melting away.
  • AJ Humpage is guilty of hurting our pristine sensibilities with her raw tale of bigotted injustice.
  • Black & white TVs with curving screens took us into the past then into the present with ghostly, tragic memories from Bill Owens.
  • Cold in the title and cold is the decision to end it all in Pixie J. King's disturbing Cold Reflection.

Hard, hard choices here because the standard and skill is just excellent. However, for me Erin Cole's Bare the Bones teased my senses beyond belief and sang to my appreciative ears so wins this Prediction. Congratulations Erin.

I simply cannot choose a runner-up, so I'm putting it to the vote (how mean am I?) You have 48 hours to decide - whether you entered or not. Comments below please.

Tomorrow's Prediction at UK daybreak...

Fallen Angel

Multiply my eyes
by millions.
Stick six sticks
into my sides.
Let me spit on flesh,
Herald me,
Lord of the Flies.

Friday, 3 December 2010

Lily's Friday Prediction

The sun is shining down on the blanket of snow here in Sussex, turning icicles from daggers to drips.

Congratulations to last week's Prediction winner asuqi with her wonderfully weird tale of parallel timescapes, and well done to William Davoll whose tentacles twisted him into runner-up. Everyone's comments were welcomed by us all.

Today's words are kind of easy, I think. I'm looking forward to seeing how you can mix 'em up.

  • Outsider
  • Invite or Invitation
  • Effervescent


The rules are: 100 words max flash fiction or poetry using all of the words above. Please add your entries in the Comments box below. You have all week until 9pm UK time Thursday 09 December to enter.

Winner will be announced next Thursday or Friday. If you can, please tweet about your entry, using the #fridayflash hashtag, and blog if you feel like it.

Who's up for the challenge?

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Prediction Winner

Time for the results from last week's Prediction - whoa - you are a right tasty bunch! These are the most beautiful, the most dangerous bites of fiction. Thank you for coming back week after week, and welcome too, to new entrants. Even if you're just taking a sneaky peak, you're a part of it.

The summary:

  • Profoundly heart-breaking - Michael Solender's recounting of a life not wanting to be lived.
  • The story of the cold yet manic Cutter by Anthony Cowin sliced through our vengeful senses.
  • Chris Allinotte's thieving Diamond Diana is the deadliest enemy of arsehole toffs.
  • Antonia Woodville's bonkers dialogue had us seeking for explanation, and squawk, did we find it!
  • The brilliantly titled Scarbucks from Sue H was more amusing and satisfying than it morally ought to be. Hey ho. Result.
  • Honey by AJ Humpage hurt our very souls; so wrong, so unnacceptable.
  • Bill Owens hit us with another double:
    • #1 - poor kidda getting revenge on his guardian felt correct; justice without intervention
    • #2 - Bill kindly wrote this about me "swaying, twisting, bronze peacocks in their outlandish costumes. Curved where they should be." (Not really.) A tale of restrained hunger.
  • Me, I had trailer-trash Chuck struttin' his pinched stuff before punctured Mama.
  • Vegas from RS Bohn slapped us hard with the relentless sleeze of the city of filth.
  • We were teased and taunted by David Barber's The Undead, and SO want to know what happens next.
  • I have avoided the toilet since William Davoll's silent, slimey and squidactic 'Don't Sit Down'. But oh, oh, oh...
  • Elspeth questioned and brought us firmly down to earth with desperately tragic A Mother's Love.
  • asuqi's freaky twist in time tapped at reality; I found it horridly and beautifully wanting.
  • A noir hit with Perp from Susan May James tricked us into believing it was a standard, if perverse investigation - until the fidget...
  • The skinny bitch of Sandie Owen's Peacock Feather screeched her last with the stabbing of the quill, or it shut her up at least.
  • Pixie J. King's upsetting tale, Daddy's Little Girl hit hard when heard with the abuser's voice. May he die - painfully.
  • AidanF was a little late this week ;), but didn't disappoint. Hurt and loss spasms through this semi-dialogue in the world of faery.

For its most bizarre and striking imagery, this week's winner is asuqi with Every Present is a Pearl on an Eternal String. I just loved this wild delivery. Congrats asuqi. And because I love gruesome toilet humour which made everyone here uncomfortable, my runner-up is William Davoll's anal (in the most painful sense) Don't Sit Down. Well done William.

Unbelievably hard to judge. Please make my job even harder next week, you horribly talented writers you.

New words will be announced tomorrow.

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

All Things Toxic

As a member of Talkback, the private online forum from the UK's Writing Magazine and Writers' News I regularly enter their monthly 'One Word Challenge.' You can enter both poetry up to 40 lines and prose up to 200 words based on a one-word theme.

November's word was TOXIC.

These were my entries:


I’m grasping, grasping...

Grasping at details and the banister and snippets of music as I hurl myself up the stairs to fall through the bathroom door to hurl and hurl again down the filthy bog before lying, shivering on the cold tiled floor.

Pills, you give me pills and I’m up and I’m HAPPY and I can’t stop dancing and kissing and loving you, and you, and you.

Ah, the beat – it’s Joy Division and I’m Ian Curtis and I can move like him but I don’t want to die, not today, I don’t want to die. And I cry, tears are desperate, begging for love and attention and... I need the toilet.

I’m back on the floor and the cramps hurt real bad and there’s only one thing that can stop all this hurt – and it’s you, yes it’s you with your bag of bad deeds and your needles and foil and I don’t want to go there but I can’t go back down and I look at your skirt and your legs and your lips and I’m lost. Nearly lost.

You’re dead on the bed.

My gut spills.

I steal your bliss in a bag. Call the cops.


Red lorry, yellow lorry.
Great, humongous grey lorry
lying in the street
spilling chemicals like sweets.

Dead dolly, headless dolly.
Pink and broken flat dolly
lying in the street
melting slowly in the heat.

Ripe body, rotten body.
Killed by poison, burst body
lying in the street
decomposing, rancid meat.

You’re sorry, I’m so sorry.
Too late now we’re all sorry,
lying in the street
we’ve been lying through our teeth.
Mother Earth concedes defeat.


Lily Childs is a writer of horror, esoteric, mystery and chilling fiction.

If you see her dancing outside in a thunder storm - don't try to bring her in. She's safe.