Please join me in offering a huge thanks to Guest Judge: L. T. Dalin who took the time to critique each story this week.

Judges Comments

Untitled by Mark Ethridge
@LurchMunster I love this story. It reminds me of when I was little, and we’d play boys against girls up on the hills. I’ve been so tuned to songs lately that for me, this resembles the feel of Kid Rock’s “All Summer long” – which is one of my favorites. Very well done, Mr. Munster, this is a well-balanced piece of memory lane.

Untitled by Rebekah Postupak

I read this three times – the first time. I couldn’t help it. There is a sensuality to it that’s captivating and unusually erotic in its clean lines. Color me impressed.

Untitled by Nellie

I really liked this, though at first I didn’t quite understand the ending. I realized it was my own fault for reading it too fast - expecting something obvious. I think this would make a terrific longer piece! Well done!

Academic Abandon by Jeffrey Hollar

The intensity of this story is remarkably well written, and I think that anyone who’s ever been to a rave – without admitting to such – would recognize the feel. I like the idea of a stale anthropologist ending up in such a place and I think you described his “transformation,”  if one can call it that, very nicely.

Untitled by Alissa

A mystical story indeed. I would have loved to know what exactly was coming, and what she didn’t know – but all in all, I really liked it. You did a good job of setting up anticipation and ending with a cliffhanger.

A Tall Tale by Lisa McCourt Hollar

This is a delightful twist to the story of Jack and the beanstalk! I liked the fact that they seemed like a “normal” couple, with a family until she goes to check on her sheep. One thing, which confused me, was that she didn’t like the fact that he was a giant-killer and rather preferred him a herder, yet she had no problems seeing herself as a giant killer. I guess one never knows what one likes until one is faced with it! Great job with this interesting twist.

Untitled by Cara Michaels

The much heard of and talked about Circe. I like the intensity and sudden death-feel to the story. As always you have a marvelous way with words.  It does feel as if I were thrown into the middle of a page of a very exciting book – but this would definitely entice me to read more. Great work!

Honorable Mention

All honorable mentions will automatically be entered in the drawing for a paperback copy of Song Stories: Volume I after it is released next month.

Jeffrey Hollar @klingorengi:  While the days of frantic gyrating is behind me, this did remind me of a few epic nights. I think you did an exceptional job painting a picture - and you really do deserve an Honorable, honorable mention.


The winner of this week's contest earns a free kindle copy of Song Stories: Volume 1

Untitled by Rebekah Postupak  (@postupak)
With every judge there is an element of personal preference. Really, it's the main element. I loved this story because it was so female. Full of hear-me-roar, yet a handful of batting eyelashes and red-lipstick. It spoke to that woman within who yearns to wear pretty dresses and spend four hours curling her hair. Great work!

“You have summoned me; behold, here have I come.” (Keep your eyes down; don’t look up, don’t look up, don’t look up.)

“You are even more breathtaking than the last time I saw you.” His voice thundered across the hall. “What wizardry is at your command, that you could achieve such a feat in so short a time?”

“No wizardry, lord, save that which is natural to a woman.” (Hunch your shoulders. Stoop. Tremble a little.)

Now he was behind me, his breath warm on my neck. His voice was thick. “But you are no natural woman.”

(Pause. But only briefly.) “And you, my lord, are no natural man.”

“No.” One hand brushed across my cheek, a quick flash, like lightning. “No, I am not. So—so you will have me? Surely you did not journey this great distance to reject me again.”

“It depends. You know my condition.”

The room temperature dropped, and I shuddered at the sudden chill. “Marriage,” he said.


“But you know—you are lovely, oh, you are so lovely! Your skin is so soft—but surely you know I am not the marrying sort. Would your woman’s heart not be satisfied with jewels? No. Foolish thought; you are too clever for jewels. A kingdom, perhaps? Or several. All within your grip.”

“Kingdoms I have,” I said. (Keep your voice gentle, demure. Like silk.)

“I could give you more kingdoms—what is that fragrance? your hair—”

(Not much longer. Don’t look up.) “That is the smell of the East wind, my lord. I came to you freshly washed by the dawn.”

He groaned. “You will not yield? This is the only way?”

“Yes, my lord. Marriage, then I am yours. Yours only.” (Now whisper. Whisper softly, so he can hear you, but barely.) “Yours entirely.”

A thunderclap. “Enough! Enough. This once, and this once only, I shall be the one to yield. You wish to marry the king of the gods? Then so you shall. My hand, my heart, are yours, Hera, you who have driven me to the brink of madness. Now take pity on me, and say you are mine.”

“I have your word? Then yes: I, O Zeus, am yours, to do with as you will.”

And as the sky around us exploded into storm, I lifted my eyes and smiled.

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