There was a time when writing super short stories was a popular diversion. I personally enjoy the genre and judging from the number of contests for them, many others do too. But then it suddenly dropped of the literary radar. Don’t know why. Here are eighteen I dusted off. I tend to write them in spurts. Don’t know when the next spurt will occur. Maybe soon. In the meantime, spend a few minutes with these gems and then try to write your own. You’ll find it exhilarating, I promise.
Accidentally On Purpose
Dustin McHugh didn’t see the puddle water on his kitchen floor.
So it was foreseeable that he would step in it and that we would slip on it and injure his already ailing back. And that’s just what he did.
At the hospital emergency room he spotted a triage nurse. He knew right then and there that she would be his wife, especially since she wasn’t wearing a wedding ring and he had a habit of leaving his at home.
The Case of the Missing Stick
Sherlock slumped in his bed, too tired to get up to face the day.
“Have you seen my walking stick?” Dr. Watson called out. “I had it when I came in last night. Now it is missing. How very strange”
Suddenly Sherlock jumped up. A fresh mystery to be solved.
The Chair in Despair
The chair sat in the den for years. No, for decades. It was still in pretty good shape, being largely neglected by the Chaplin family.
That was exactly the problem. The chair resented being taken for granted despite the comfort and styling it never failed to offer. So the following Friday evening the chair decided to make stand.
The family was going to appreciate it or else!
Carl was shameless and entirely without guile. And he didn’t realize it.
So it was easy for hi to impose upon others without understanding that what others he imposed upon felt.
Mr. Reston understood this and quickly realized he could use Carl’s naiveté to his advantage. So he did.
Carl was happy he was going to be of service to a friend.
“Sushi? We call that bait where I come from.
“Tom, how long have we been on this fishing trip?”
“And how long has it been since we ate.”
“Did you bring any matches to start a fire with?”
“Right, sushi it is then.”
For the first time in what seemed like months, Noah sat back and relaxed. The flood was finally receding. Everything would be just fine.
“Dad,” called his son, stepping onto the Arc’s slippery deck.
“Hmm?” answered Noah nonchalantly.
“I was just checking on the animals.”
“And?” asked Noah
“”I think one of the unicorns is sterile.”
A silver dollar!
Sheila smiled and bounced out of bed.
All she had done was follow her grandma’s advice and place a tooth beneath her pillow.
She hurried downstairs to show his granny but stopped when she saw a glass of water with a mouthful of her grandpa’s teeth floating in it.
Suddenly she realized she was fortunate to have only lost one tooth.
“Smith!” shouted Professor Jenkins. “It’s finally ready. Time to try out the time machine.”
“But professor, won’t it be dangerous?”
“Nah! We’ll start by going just minute back. Very conservative.”
Smith stepped into the machine and the professor pushed a blinking button.
“Smith!” shouted Professor Jenkins. “It’s finally ready. Time to try out the time machine.
The evening was slow and long. Nobody asked Angela to dance.
She picked up her wrap and, head hung lowly, headed toward the gym door. Never again, she swore to herself.
“So, honey,” her mother asked when she walked through the front door, “did you enjoy the Sadie Hawkins’ dance?”
Visit to the Dentist
The drill’s roar was shrill.
The dentist leaned closer. “Wider please,” he said. “This one’s gotta come out too.”
The patient, an IRS agent, squirmed again. Three hours. God!
His eyes caught the dentist’s framed diploma.
“Funny,” he thought. That’s the same name as the guy we just audited down at the office.”
“Snow!” shouted Lucy.
“Wow!” shouted her brother, joining his sister at the window.
The buses couldn’t run. School would be cancelled.
Then they realized a terrible truth. Home schooling.
“Death from above,” smirked Willis. He planned this for days.
He sat down on the ground and held his magnifying glass carefully to focus the sun’s rays into a lethal pinpoint of light over an anthill.
Smoke slowly emerged. He felt glee and not a speck of remorse.
He felt like the Grand Executioner in his comic book. Mercy was an unknown quality.
Meanwhile, miles and miles above, the ozone layer grew steadily more porous.
“Another one?” asked the balloon salesman.
The little girl smiled and nodded.
She asked for a red one this time. She then carried it over to her little brother, who was holding at least a dozen others.
She tied it to his hand, like all the others.
She waited for a moment and then frowned.
She returned to the counter for yet one more.
He’d be airborne yet!
Everyone stared at the clock. One minute till summer vacation.
Thirty seconds. Fifteen. The bell rang.
“Yeeeooow!” screamed Fred, throwing his papers excitedly in the air. He rushed out of the room, leaping down the hall like all the other children.
For the first time the students realized just how much Principal Cabot looked forward to summertime.
The Bloody Basket
Lady Chalfontaine screamed and struggled but it was no use. Her head was locked snuggly into the block.
The axe was raised and her head was lopped off with swift ease.
A poor woman whose job it was to collect the head basket hesitated.
For a moment she thought it looked like her aunt Madeline.
By the Grave
“Ashes to ashes, dust to dust,” said the pastor.
The mourners hurried away in the cold morning rain.
All but one. A man who nobody recognized.
“What was she going to do,” wondered the pastor.
The stranger stood silently by the gravesite, whimpering.
He had accidentally dropped his care keys into the grave along with the handful of dirt.
High noon. The two men squared off in the dusty, windblown street.
Cal squinted at Old Harry, then kicked a stone into the ditch. They waited for each other to speak. Harry scratched is jaw. Cal sighed.
That was the problem with living in a one-horse town.
They always had to figure out a solution when both of them wanted to ride out at the same time.
“Read this one,” asked the aspiring writer as he handed his girlfriend his latest short shirt story.
She did and handed it back to him.
“It’s cute, she said.
“That’s all?” he replied.
“It’s not my favorite but its okay, I guess.”
He threw the story in the garbage can.
“Infidel” he muttered as he walked away.