[UPDATE: So honored to share that this story placed this year!]
I feel like all the seasons have been a frenzy this year but, at least writing frenzies are the GOOD kind of frenzy. If you’re a member of the kidlit writing community, you’ve heard of Kaitlyn Sanchez – mom, teacher, children’s author, agent, (maybe super-human?), and host of so many wonderful contests. This year, Kaitlyn and children’s author, Lydia Lukidis, are hosting the Fall Writing Frenzy and offering some amazing prizes. A story in 200 words or less, based on a provided picture. You can check out the rules here.
Now, usually I stick to picture books and, recently, middle grade, but I couldn’t resist a little YA romance this year. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!
ALIVE (199 words) by Nicole Loos Miller
He gasped, taking his first breath in over a year.
Halloween. She must be close.
He flexed his fingers, smiling. Soon he’d be able to move his whole body, if only for one night.
Ten years ago, she’d been playing with her homemade wand in the cornfield. The green spark surprised them both – landing on the scarecrow’s chest, igniting a beat within his heart.
Now, she was eighteen. The farm had been sold. It would be their last night together before he was torn down, his fields paved.
Dried cornhusks crunched underfoot as she approached. He climbed down, limbs awkward with disuse.
His heart ached as her green eyes pierced through him. She was different this year – taller, face thinner. But that same mischievous smile sent a tingle across his burlap skin.
She reached out and nestled her fingers between his.
“I missed you,” she whispered.
His reply caught in his throat.
She laughed – a bright, silver sound.
His heart beat like a caged bird.
“I made a wish,” she said, leaning close. She smelled of cloves and fallen leaves.
Her lips on his.
But this time, it spread.
He was alive.