A 34-page book, with 44 stories in it! And all of those stories have a maximum of 129 characters in them!
Yes, okay.... not characters as in people characters. I'm talking about characters as in the number of letters and spaces in the story.
"WHAT?" I hear you cry. "129 characters to tell a WHOLE story?"
Yep. For Twitter afficionados this will all make perfect sense. That particular social media platform restricts individual posts to just 140 characters.
Which was the inspiration for Ben Warden, who has compiled this lovely little project that he describes as "an adventure into a crazy new world of alternative storytelling."
He posted about it on Twitter...and I was smitten. I submitted my 129-character story, and I'm delighted to say Ben accepted it, and it appears in this quirky little anthology.
Sneak preview time. Here's my story in Serious Flash Fiction, just to give you a little taste of what to expect:
Gasping, choking, thrashing around, eyes bulging. Life draining away. Looking up into heartless eyes. The fish out of water died.
So can I suggest that you hotfoot it to Amazon and pick up a copy of this little gem.
Where do I to start to review a 34-page book which has 44 stories in it?
OK, a brief explanation first. Each of the "stories" originally appeared on Twitter under the hashtag #SFFiction. The concept was the brainchild of the anthology's editor, Ben Warden. While tweets have a maximum character count of 140, Ben's ruling was, with the hashtag, the "stories" should be just 129 characters.
So here we have a wide variety of stories -- a brilliant new magician's trick, someone's last thoughts as the hangman opens the trapdoor beneath their feet, an assassin's kill, an extremely emotive story from Kate Sykes, and a particularly horrific car theft.
Hope I've whet your appetite for this unmissable gem.
Ah...now I know how to review it. It's just gotta be in 129 characters, hasn't it? A quick read, but one which I can thoroughly recommend. A successfully executed challenge for both established, and new writers.