Free August Modern Art Writing Competition


Four Prizes!

I think you'll agree that all four of these 75 words vignettes deserve to win for their various merits

    You Think You Know the Ocean

by Susan James

You think you know the ocean and then there’s this: the empty berth in the harbour and an empty casket next to the hearth. You’ll not remarry. Nor will you ever again spit fire at a damp sou’wester hung on his chair. The women in the parlour take the tiller of your grief to let you drift a while but the tide is turning and, anchored inside the swell of your belly, so does she. 

© Susan James 2017

Inspired by Swell

I chose this piece as my absolute favourite because I found it very moving. It made me tingle and brought a lump to my throat. The choice of words is exceptional and so very relevant. 'The women in the parlour take the tiller of your grief ' is particularly spot-on. And yet there's a happy ending:  no not all sweetness and light but a very true to life phenomenon. Exactly the same thing happened to a friend of mine. From adversity came new life.

~  Bern Ross

Runners up

These three 75 word fictional pieces were also strongly considered for first prize and deserve publication for the way they say so much in so few words :

Father's Day

by Valerie Griffin

I scoop the cooling sand, sifting it through my fingers. My hair is crusty with dried sea and my skin tingles from the summer’s day. Grinning, father returns and flops down next to me. We eat our fish and chips out of white paper soggy with vinegar. It tastes good in the brackish air.

 “It’s been the best day,” I say, as we watch the sun become a shimmering orange and slip into the sea.

© Valerie Griffin 2017

Inspired by Pure is the Sunset

A story in 75 words is a challenge in itself. Not many people know that.

The Beginning

by Susi  J Smith

He watches darkness creep through the valley. Birds take flight. The encroaching mass consumes their bodies. But the man remains, unmoving. A smile graces his pale face: “The light shall always return.”

        Animals scatter, trampling their fallen into the dirt. Dust hazes the air as they fight for freedom.

        Still the man stands.

        Shadows slither up to the loch and stop by his feet. Chaos calms. Darkness retreats. The man turns, walking into the light.

© Susi J Smith 2017

Inspired by Echo Valley

The Cat

by Noelle Bryant

 Sleek satin sable, settled, softly


Trembling twitches.

Spasm shakes.

Doze disturbed, disrupted.


Rouses regretfully, rises reluctantly.


   S-tre-t- ch.

Curvaceous claws curl, contract.

Stately showboating, swaggers.


Purposeful pacy parade, patrolling.


Inexorable, incremental, imperious, measured movement, murder-motivated.

Careful, concentrates, clearly certain.

Cautious, creeps; contemplative,


Sinuous, sensuous sneaky slink,

silently stalking.

Paws pause, poised.


Chagrined, confused, confounded, puzzled, peers, perplexed.

Resigned retreat.

Stoical saunter.

Cushioned collapse, curls.


© Noelle Bryant 2017

Inspired by "I Know You're There"


Thank you to EVERYONE who took part. Check back often to see the next competition winners!