WRiTE CLUB 2015 - Bout #7



What is WRiTE CLUB?  It started off as a modest writing competition, inspiration loosely derived from the movie FIGHT CLUB, and it has since grown into a writing community sensation that is now sponsored by the DFWWriters Conference.  There are numerous versions of this concept floating around the internet, but nothing like we do it here.  Its essence embodies simple, good-natured competition, with lots and lots of fun sprinkled on top. 




Over the course of ten weeks I’ll be holding daily bouts (M-F) between Anonymous 500 word writing samples, submitted under a pen name.   The writing can be any genre, any style (even poetry) with the word count being the only restriction. Today is Bout #7.  Read each sample carefully and then leave a vote in the comment section for the one that resonates with you the most.  Anyone can vote... but only once per bout. Don’t forget to leave with a brief critique of both submissions as well.

Voting for each bout will remain open for one week. The winner of each will be posted HERE, at the WRiTE CLUB scoreboard.  Are you ready?


Here are the first two randomly selected WRiTER's.

Standing in this corner, representing the thriller genre and weighing in at 496 words, please welcome to the ring……..Risky



U.S. Heat wave - death toll hits 150

Charles aimed at the back of the jabbering man’s head.  Situations he once found mildly irritating now propelled him quickly into rage.  “I’ve had it,” he thought without removing his gaze from the unsuspecting idiot.  Charles checked his aim with both eyes open, and although the bus was crowded, he had a clear shot between the rows of passengers.  He was ready, his hands as steady as a surgeon’s.

“Should have been a doctor,” his mother nagged during their weekly phone conversations.  “You’d buy me a nice little condo in Miami…I’d be so proud of you.”  

The target bellowed with laughter.  Charles rolled his eyes in disgust.  It was time.  His finger twitched momentarily, and then in one smooth motion, eyes never leaving the back of the target's head, Charles pulled the trigger.  The recoil from the shot threw Charles back against the seat and he moaned with satisfaction.

The woman next to Charles stared openly at his fingers held stiffly in a gun-like position.  Charles smiled weakly and shook out his hand.  “That guy up there really gets on my nerves,” he said.  She raised her eyebrows in reply and pointedly returned to her newspaper.

Trade embargo with China declared
Bus commuter found dead at bus stop

Jerry pushed the knife past the resistance of his wife’s aerobicized muscles.  After sleepwalking through 23 years of marriage he wondered, had she changed or had he never realized what a nagging bitch she was? 

Jerry pulled the knife from the tendons’ grip and examined the bloody teardrops on the blade.  The knife felt like the handshake of an old friend.  His lip curled into a sneer as he swung downward once more.  This time the blade met no resistance.  “Practice makes perfect,” he said with satisfaction.

“What are you doing?!” Her coarse whine sent a ripple of despise up his spine.  His eyes rose slowly and steadily to meet hers.  Jerry grunted as he pulled the knife from the wounded steak.  He chuckled.  “Nothing…dear.”

China crisis escalates
Husband sought in stabbing death of wife

They knew he was out of control but were afraid to say it. 

“I want that goddamned reporter removed!”  His words spit through clenched jaws.

“We’ll bar him immed…”

“I want him eliminated, goddamn it!”  he growled.  “Do I have to fucking spell it out for you?!  That asshole ridiculed me on live t.v. for chrissakes!”  He stormed across the room and flung open the door with such force that it bounced off the door stop and slammed shut, all in one motion.  He roared.  The ferocity of the sound filled the room.  A spot of urine appeared on the crotch of one of the men standing near the door.

“Take care of it!”  he snapped over his shoulder as he opened the door and pushed past the guards.

“Yes sir, Mr. President,” someone mumbled.

UPI reporter found dead – drugs suspected
President declares war
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And in the other corner, representing the contemporary realistic genre with 408 words let me introduce to you……….Alex Preston




I never get caught.

Not since I set off the security alarm when I moved in with Dad and Kate. I’ve gotten pretty good in four years.

I hold the alarm sensor in place and slide the dormer window open. Adrenaline explodes in my veins. This never gets old. My bare feet easily follow the memorized route over the slate roof to the ridge—to the end near Cassie’s house.

At forty feet up, I’m invisible. I can see the whole neighborhood of stuffy mansions, and beyond, to downtown Dallas. A chilly breeze carries the crisp orange scent of spider lilies from Kate’s gardens.

My phone vibrates, and I click the ear bud. “Where are you?”

“Rigging the drone so your coffee won’t spill. You’re getting a mini. Anakin’s attempt to carry your grande mocha was a total fail.” In the background, Cassie’s brother calls her name. She lowers her voice. “Hold on. Let me get rid of him.”

I listen to Cassie yell at Logan to get out of her room.

Hearing them fight, I miss having a brother. A wave of guilt crashes against the longing.

A door slams and Cassie appears in the window, drone in hand. Something like a sock dangles from its legs.

It buzzes to life and ascends. Kind of. Up a foot before dipping back down. It’s coming closer, but not getting any higher.

“Are you sure it’s supposed to carry stuff?” I lean forward and watch it sway midair.

“If Amazon’s using these to deliver packages, coffee should be easy.” She grasps the controller in both hands, tilting it as she steers.

Cold coffee, delivered in a gym sock. Can’t wait. “That screechiness doesn’t sound right. Don’t ruin it.”

Cassie leans farther out the window as if getting closer will give it a power boost. The engine strains harder.

There’s no way. The thing’s still twenty feet below me. “Thanks for trying. That was sweet of you.”

Disappointment reflects on Cassie’s moonlit face. “Aborting the mission.” She steers the drone back toward her house and slams it into the brick wall beneath her window. It plummets and hangs in a bush. “Anakin, no!” Cassie watches it die. She shrugs. “I tried.”

“No biggie. We’ll go to Percs after school. You owe me a mocha.”

“Yeah, right. And you owe Logan a drone. Hey, Kade’s texting. I’ve gotta go.”

“Who’s Kade?”

But the phone clicks off, and Cassie closes her window.
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Enjoying two talented writers at work is only part of the price of admission, now it’s up to you to decide who moves forward to the playoffs.  In the comments below leave your vote for the winner.  Which one tickled your fancy?  After you vote please tell all of your friends to stop by and make a selection as well (but no coaching about who to vote for).  Yes, it’s subjective, but so is the entire publishing world.  It’s as much about the readers as it is about the writers. 

This is WRiTE CLUB – the contest where the audience gets clobbered!
 
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