The First Campaigner Challenge …

Righty then, the first campaigner challenge is here.

“Write a short story/flash fiction story in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be in any format, including a poem. Begin the story with the words, “The door swung open” These four words will be included in the word count.

If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional), use the same beginning words and end with the words: “the door swung shut.” (also included in the word count)

For those who want an even greater challenge, make your story 200 words EXACTLY!”
I added my own challenge to this. No dialogue, no living things in sight.
So here we go, at 200 words …


The door swung open, hinges creaking in protest at the insistent wind. The weathered wood hit the tarnished rim of a bell, long bereft of its clapper, setting it to erratically bob on a rope that had once been a hearty, thick thing. Time and the gnawing of many tiny teeth had worn it down to a frayed mess.
Windowpanes clattered a warning at the intrusion on their silence. One, broken previously by a careless branch, released its last sliver of glass. It tumbled to the remains of a table, leaving a faint smear in the grime as it slid down to the floor. There, it shattered into splinters, scattering through the dirt and hair and the leavings of small animals, edges twinkling in a rainbow flash of false gaiety.
A leaf wafted through the foot worn doorway, skittering across the stone floor to halt at the foot of the dusty hearth as the wind lost all interest in carrying it. The wind continued alone. Disturbing year’s worth of soot, along with feathers and grasses, as it snaked up and out the chimney.

Down in the room, the windows once again rattled with their disapproval. And the door swung shut.

45 thoughts on “The First Campaigner Challenge …

  1. Now there's a setting that has gained a personality. you have dared to blend character and setting and thus have defied these boundaries.
    This would go well as an introduction to an upcoming scene.
    However, I'm sure its haunting candor, if worked well, would be Remarkable at the END of a scene.

    It is a scene that is honest about its spooky appearance… and it seems as if it would have no other joy then to betray us in some creative fashion.


  2. Wow. ^_^ Thanks everyone, your comments are all appreciated.
    Especially when short isn't really my forte. It was a real test trying to stick it all into 200 words and have it make sense.

    Can't wait to see what the next challenge is.


  3. Reminds me of an abandoned house. For some reason, I'm picturing an ancestral home, or maybe a general store, in Kentucky. Then again, my family has an old, unused general store in Kentucky. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s