Flash Fiction Friday: It’s that time again !

Posted: April 27, 2012 in dark, fiction, writing
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Many thanks again to Madison Woods for her organization, vision, creativity and hard work to put this together.

Visit her at http://madisonwoods.wordpress.com/flash-fiction/barbed-wire-and-bulls/ to read her 100 word flash.

Now, it’s story time. Please enjoy!


Liar’s Hamlet

Tethered again, iron gate sealed, foot-drags marked barren earth. Inside they’d be protected, those who lied, within circuitous fencing, towering, ornamented by rusted barbs.

Done for them, for protection.

When it began, we identified those who lied. Asked simple questions, revealing, before the court of many, another liar’s lie. Motivated to truth. A finger, a tongue, an eye, necessary sacrifices all. Marked them, for liars always lie. Marched them to Liar’s Hamlet, locked within heavy gate. For their personal protection, the others would not suffer fools.

Indeed, done for the good of us all.

Until none remained beyond the gate.


  1. Oh i loved it..what a horror you have woven here…

  2. Evocative! Makes me want to know more.

  3. Really liked the “tap tap tap tap” pacing.

  4. Janet says:

    Your repetition of the word lie really drove the story, normally such repetition would be a sign of weak writing but the way you used it made the story much more powerful. Way to go breaking the rules!

    Here’s mine: http://postcardfiction.com/2012/04/27/scraped/

    • JKBradley says:

      I’m happy you appreciated this. I agree, using repetition is a risk, but as I reread this a few times I felt it should work. I’m glad you thought it did. Thanks!

  5. Truly a vivid mental image to this story. It draws one in nicely.

  6. Sandra says:

    Interesting tale here. That last line ‘until none remained behind the gate’ – did that mean no-one at all in the sense that we are all liars, or none of the liars? A piece that bears reading several times. Nice one.


  7. erinleary says:

    I was torn (another barbed wire reference?) between writing about how barbed wire is used to fence land or fence in people, as in concentration camps or internment camps. Your use is vivid and leaves a lot to our imagination about who is inside and why.

    Thanks for stopping by mine.


  8. Interesting story. I think ‘lie’ is used for emphasis, that we are all liars, one way or the other. I see this as also philosophical. Mine is here: http://readinpleasure.wordpress.com/2012/04/27/fridayfictioneers-sobibor/

  9. Dystopia at its finest, chilling tale about tempering judgments. Loved it.
    You’ve already seen mine but its here for other visitors: http://bit.ly/I78fA3

  10. TheOthers1 says:

    We are all liars. It wouldn’t have taken long before there was no one left outside. Great story. I kept thinking about the line related to it being for their protection. Great.

    A link to mine: http://unduecreativity.wordpress.com/2012/04/26/sharp/

  11. oldentimes says:

    I think you have it right “until none remained”, for in life we are all liars in some fashion.

  12. William Stadler says:

    Dang. That’s crazy! I like it. The mood is heavy, and the point is solid.

  13. oooer … that is frightening indeed 🙂

  14. writelindy says:

    A tangled weaving of wire. Love it.

  15. Stacey says:

    I like how “rusted barbs” become an ornament. Suggestion for your Indie 500 project — as it builds you’ll probably want to keep a cheat sheet of the characters/settings/what happens. Some contributers my not be reading the whole story, just the last 500 words when they come up with their piece. You may also want to start/compile/provide a style sheet to help cut down on editing (consistency is tough for a single author, let alone the number of contributors you’ll have!). If you need an example, there’s a basic one here — http://www.ecoscribe.com/freestuff/stylesheet.htm. Good luck!

  16. susielindau says:

    I guess nobody is perfect! Great flash and I loved the poetic nature of it.

  17. Wow. Isn’t that the truth. We all lie to one degree or another…but, now that they are all inside…what’s next?

  18. I wasn’t sure if I liked this at first. The halting style threw me a bit, but what a wicked ending! Very well done.

    • JKBradley says:

      I’m glad you enjoyed.
      I also respect your thoughts on my writing style. I’ve found for me, writing that way is the only way that works, otherwise my voice gets too bland.
      Thanks for reading!

  19. seanfallon01 says:

    Thats really cool and evocative and i especially liked “A finger, a tongue, an eye, necessary sacrifices all”

  20. Russell says:

    Where have all the liars gone, long time passing. Now, I’m going to have that song stuck in my head all day long 🙂 Thanks for the comment on mine. Can’t promise I’ll try the Indie 500 this week, but will sure come around to check out the stories.


  21. Whatever your intent was, what you actually wrote was the torture will make all of us do anything – including lie, to save the rest of our fingers! meaning, we are not all necessarily liars, but this method will produce the wrong results – resulting in all of us losing an eye!
    A gruesome and gritty little tale.

  22. siobhanmuir says:

    It brings to mind exclusivity and being careful who to exclude lest you find yourself within that group someday. Nicely done.

    Here’s mine:


  23. Tina says:

    Your writing has left me addicted – wanting and coming back for more. Thank you for that.

  24. Without exception ~fantastic ! I can’t recall the author of Blood Meridian [sorry my gray mass is exhausted] nevertheless, that’s the type of style you have captured. Thanks again ! Sincerely Deborah

  25. Nobody’s a liar. I’ve certainly never lied.
    /sarcasm off
    This was a great, philosophic take on the prompt, and a relatively original one. I bet this one was tough to pull off in so few words. I can usually spot those a mile away 🙂

    Here’s mine: http://the-drabbler.com/trespass/

  26. Michael Fishman says:

    This read more as a metaphor to me than a fiction and I liked that. I also liked having something meaty to think about after reading this. Good job on both entertaining me and tickling my brain into motion!

  27. Madison Woods says:

    Loved the sense of “this is for your own good” sort of feeling I got from this. Great story.

  28. oni1138 says:

    so many liars!! coolio 🙂

  29. Andy Flood says:

    Wonderfully dark tone, cautionary stuff written in a very distinctive style. It feels very layered to me, open to interpretation. Rather draconian treatment of liars but i suspect it would certainly act as a deterrent 😉 Well done.

  30. Sonia Lal says:

    Loved this story! Well done.

  31. Nicely done. I agree with oldentimes–“til none remained” –an eventual reality.

    Thanks for commenting on mine.

  32. EmmaMc says:

    Very heavy and like many others have already said the repetition of the word ‘lie’ worked so well. I didn’t even notice how much it was repeated in honesty until I reread it. Really great story.

  33. Nellie says:

    This had a very ominous feel to it. And the punch with the last line. Awesome. 🙂

  34. Brutal, a terrifying regime suggested here. More than enough horror suggested, really effective writing. I liked this a lot!

    My own gruesome entry for the prompt is over here: http://joannakneilson.wordpress.com/2012/04/27/flash-fiction-friday-wire-pilgrimage/

  35. Joyce says:

    I’m just now getting to some of these older ones as i am a newcomer. Thanks for reading my last one, and comment left. You have used powerful words here and used them well. Very dramatic and suspenseful. My interpretation here is one of the Holocaust and the barbed wire fences to keep the Jews in, and the lies told to them upon the round-ups, etc. Was that your intended projection here? The Holocaust is a subject and area of interest to me as I do a lot of research and writing on my German Jewish family history.

    • JKBradley says:

      Thank you, Joyce, for taking the time to read back through some of the older postings. The element which drove the narrative here was based on the famous statement made by Martin Niemoller entitled “First they came.” I’m certain you are familiar.

      • Joyce says:

        Yes, I do remember that famous quote. It is an unforgettable one. One can always find enough ideas to write about just looking back into history and reading the news headlines of today.

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