Archive for the 30 Stories in 30 Days Category

Recap of my 30 Stories in 30 Days Challenge

Posted in 30 Stories in 30 Days, Stories, Writing with tags , on October 17, 2014 by oneoveralpha

So it’s halfway through October and I’ve just realized that my last post here was at the end of August announcing that I would be trying to write thirty stories during the month of September.  I had planned to make updates about it, but I never got around to it.  And I had planned to do a recap with links to all the stories, but I just kind of forgot about that.  Well, better late than never.

First off, I didn’t reach my goal of thirty stories, I only wrote twenty-one.  Part of it was I had several other things going on, but a larger part was just … laziness, I guess.  It’s something I need to be working on.

Anyway, here are links to the twenty-one stories I did manage to write during the month of September.  I hope you’ll check them out and get a laugh or two.

“For the People?” –
“Just Another Statistic” –
“Onward Christian Soldiers” –
“Let it Rain” –
“A Series of Lines” –
“The Process” –
“Beware Upgrades” –
“Read the Fine Print” –
“Dust to Dust” –
“Flaunt It” –
“Always Have a Strong Finish” –
“I Just Write Stories” –
“The Morning After” –
“Memories” –
“Same Old Line” –
“Puppy Wuppy” –
“The Dim Past” –
“The Revolution Will Not Be Tweeted” –
“Just Another Brick in the Wall” –
“Moving On” –
“The Honeymoon’s Over” –


30 Stories in 30 Days

Posted in 30 Stories in 30 Days, Stories, Writing with tags , , , , on August 31, 2014 by oneoveralpha

Just moments after midnight, I’ll be starting my 2014 30 Stories in 30 Days Challenge.  In case you can’t figure it out, that’s where I try to write thirty short – sometimes very short – stories in as many days.  In previous years I have posted the stories on my website or here on this blog, but this year I’ll be posting them on my Bubblews page.  To get a little more information, check out this post which should answer any questions.

Wish me luck.

Stephen L. Thompson’s June 2013 Newsletter

Posted in 30 Stories in 30 Days, Stories, Website, Writing with tags , , , on July 9, 2013 by oneoveralpha

Welcome to my electronic newsletter, covering June 2013. Sorry this is a bit late, but these last few weeks have been a bit hectic.

* * *

My publication news for the past month:
Publication of my poems “A Price too High” and “For the Public Health” on my Bubblews Profile.
Publication of my stories “Figures,” “Hmmm,” “You Didn’t Pray Hard Enough,” “Details,” “Hot Heads,” “House Call,” “The Buzzing of Flies,” “A Not so Different Future,” “Heartbeat of the Night,” “For Want of a Pen,” “Directions,” “Woggy,” and “Memories” as part of my 30 Stories in 30 Days Challenge.

* * *

This month I wrote 7,914 words giving me a yearly total so far of 54,295. To reach my goal of 120,000 words this year, I’ll really need to step things up.

* * *

In June I ran my yearly 30 Stories in 30 Days Challenge, but things didn’t go so well this year. I only managed to put up thirteen stories. There are several reasons for this. One, I was sick for a few days which really slowed things down. Two, with good weather (for the first half of the month) there were all sorts of things I needed to do outside, which cut into my writing time. These two things combined to take away my momentum, which really floored me.

Hopefully, when I do this next year in September, things won’t take away my momentum and I’ll get back to writing thirty stories in as many days.

* * *

Here’s a photo of my story board at the end of June.


* * *

I’m always looking for new ways to spread the word about myself and my writing. The latest idea I came up with, was to ask that the readers of this post – if you’d be so kind – tweet out a message for me. The message being: “Check out Stephen L. Thompson’s Newsletter – #sltnews #writing” The #sltnews bit will let me see who tweets this. It’s an experiment, so we’ll see how it goes.

* * *

I didn’t get around to writing a haiku in June.

30 Stories in 30 Days #13 – “Memories”

Posted in 30 Stories in 30 Days, humor, Stories with tags , , , on June 30, 2013 by oneoveralpha


Taking a sip of her coffee, Laura said, “So, tell me something about yourself.”

Ed shrugged and took a sip of his coffee.  “What do you want to know?”

“I don’t know.” Laura looked around the coffee shop and saw a flier for a “Christmas in July” sale from some local business.  “What was the most memorable thing you ever got for Christmas as a kid?”

Ed looked at her for a few seconds, then began laughing.

“What’s so funny?”

“The most memorable thing I ever got was a severed foot.  In my stocking.”

Laura took another sip of coffee before slowly saying, “Okay.”

“My dad is a big practical joker.  When I was eight, I woke up Christmas morning and went downstairs.  The rule was us kids could go through our stockings, but we weren’t allowed to touch our presents or wake our parents.  My brother and sister had stockings full of candy and little toys, but mine seemed rather empty.  I dumped it out to find a plastic severed foot; a leftover from Halloween.  It was maybe half-an-hour later that my dad got up.  I met him at the bottom of the stairs and showed him the foot.  He just said I must have been really bad for Santa to leave a severed foot in my stocking.  He then laughed and went and got me one of my presents, which was a box with all the stuff that would have been in my stocking.”

With a smile, Laura asked, “Was your several foot the best toy you ever got?”

“Not really.  I forgot about it until my older brother Tom – who’s as big a joker as my dad – tied a string around it and hung on the tree as a decoration.”


“Yeah.  Mom wasn’t too happy, but between dad and Tom I think she knew fighting it would be a lost cause.  For years afterward it was one of our tree decorations.  I think it was the first year that Joan – Tom’s now wife – spent with us that it didn’t make it up.  But it’s probably still in one of the decorations boxes up in the attic.”

“Sounds like you have an interesting family.”

“That’s a nicer way to put it.  I usually just say my family’s nuts.”

Laura had just taken a sip of coffee and almost had it come out of her nose.

“Are you okay?”

“Yeah.  You just caught me off guard.”

Ed smiled.  “So, what was the most memorable gift you got as a kid?”

Laura thought for a moment.  “I don’t know.  I don’t think Barbies compare to a severed foot.”

30 Stories in 30 Days #12 – “Woggy”

Posted in 30 Stories in 30 Days, Stories, Writing with tags , , , on June 24, 2013 by oneoveralpha



“Are things that bad?”

Anne swiveled her chair around to see her husband Tom leaning against the door frame.  “What?” she asked.

“I’ve been standing here for a couple minutes watching you stare blankly at your laptop.”

Anne glanced at her laptop and said, “It’s mocking me.”

With a drawn out, “Okay,” Tom stepped behind her and put his hands on her shoulders.  “How is your laptop mocking you?”

“It’s sitting there, ready to be typed on, but I can’t think of where to start.”

“The beginning,” Tom suggested.

Anne jabbed back with her elbow, but missed Tom’s leg.  “Funny.”

Tom rubbed her shoulders and asked, “What’s the real problem?”

Anne put her hands to her temples.  “There are so many words flying around in my head.  They all blend together into a soup.  It’s like driving through a fog.”

“A word fog?  A wog?”

Anne groaned.

Tom chuckled.  “Just as long as it’s not a … swog.  A smoky, word, fog.” Running his fingers through her hair he explained, “That would mean you’re burning some brain cells.”

Shaking her head, Anne said, “Perhaps I should take a break from trying to write and call a divorce lawyer.”

Tom kissed the top of her head.  “Are puns cause for a divorce?”

“They should be.”

“And with me out of your life, you can be all alone … with your mocking laptop?”

Anne just sighed.

“Come on.  Get up.”

After several prods, Anne slowly stood.  “Why?”

“You’re not going to do anything here until the wog lifts.  You need to get out into cleaner air if for no other reason than to help your mood.”

“What’s wrong with my mood?”

“It’s moody.”

Anne stared at Tom for a few seconds, then grabbed a pen and wrote something on a pad of paper she kept on her desk.  She then showed him that she had written “Puns = divorce!”

Tom smiled.  “Hey, you wrote something.”

30 Stories in 30 Days #11 – “Directions”

Posted in 30 Stories in 30 Days, Stories with tags , , , , on June 22, 2013 by oneoveralpha


Something woke Peter.  He glanced around his darkened bedroom, but couldn’t see anything.  Then he heard what sounded like someone bumping into his kitchen table, followed by a muffled curse.

Peter rolled out of bed and landed in a crouch.  He reached under his bed and found the baseball bat he kept there.

Standing, he rushed to his bedroom door.  He eased it open and looked out into his living room dimly lit by a streetlight.  At first, he didn’t see anything, but then a tall man wearing a silvery uniform stepped out from his kitchen.

Peter slammed the door open and flicked on the light switch.  Stepping into the room he pointed the bat at the man and yelled, “Who the hell are you?”

The man squinted in the light.  “I’m dreadfully sorry,” he said.  “I didn’t mean to intrude.  Would you happen to know how to get to the Battle of Hastings from here?”

Peter blinked a few times.  “What?”

“Hmmm.” The man looked at his left hand and holographic images of red spheres and cubes appeared above it.  The man studied them for a few seconds then touched one of the cubes with his right forefinger.  The figures turned green, and the man said, “Ah.  I should have turned left at Alpha Centauri.”

He nodded to Peter and said, “I’m sorry to have inconvenienced you.  It won’t happen again.” He then vanished with a fairly loud pop.

Peter dropped his bat and slumped down onto the floor.  He sat there for several minutes before he got up and checked out his apartment.  He was alone and the door and windows were still locked.  But no matter how hard he tried, he couldn’t fall back asleep that night.

30 Stories in 30 Days #10 – “For Want of a Pen”

Posted in 30 Stories in 30 Days, Stories, Writing with tags , , , on June 20, 2013 by oneoveralpha


“David, open up!” Sarah pounded on his door a few more times, then paused to listen.  When she didn’t hear anything, she pounded some more.

A door opening behind her made her turn around.  Across the hall an older woman was peaking around her door.  “Is there a problem?” she asked.

“Hi, I’m Sarah Walsh, David’s sister.  I haven’t heard from him for several days, and I’m starting to get a bit worried.”

“He mentioned he had a sister,” the woman said.

“That would be me.” Sarah pointed at David’s door.  “You wouldn’t happen to know if he gave anyone a spare key?”

The woman looked Sarah up and down, then nodded.  “He gave me one.  I’ll go get it.” She closed the door.

Sarah waited.  And waited.  She was about to knock on the woman’s door when it opened.  “Sorry,” the woman said as she held the key out.  “It took me a moment to find it.”

Sarah took the key and said, “Thank you.” She went back and unlocked David’s door.  “David?” she called when she opened the door.

When she saw what was in his apartment, she cried, “David!” He was slumped against the wall; his skin grey and his eyes blank.  Sarah ran to him, but she didn’t need to touch his cold skin to know he was dead.  She took him into her arms and cried.

At some point, she looked up and saw the neighbor staring at the wall.  Sarah turned and saw that it was covered in words, written in blood.


Four months later

Sarah knocked on the door.

For ten or fifteen seconds, there was the sound of someone moving around inside.  Finally, the door opened a crack and an older woman looked out.  “Yes?”

Sarah smiled.  “Hi.  I don’t know if you remember me.  I’m Sarah Walsh, my brother lived across the hall.”

“Of course.  How are you my dear?”

“I’m doing okay.  Thanks.  I just wanted to make sure you got this.” Sarah held out a thin book to the woman.

The woman took it and read the title, “For Want of a Pen.”

“It’s a collection of David’s poems.  I self-published them for him.  If his pen hadn’t run out of ink, maybe he wouldn’t have finished them in blood.”

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