I am super stoked to inform you of our newest book release, our proudest achievement, and our most precious baby of all the books…
Introducing “Blown Away”, the 3rd and final book in the ‘Life’ Series! Not only has this book been a huge labor of love for us (over a year in the making), but it is the first book of its kind to feature Fifty Words or Fewer Stories! Yep, that’s right: each one of the fifty stories in this collection are at least fifty words, or often less. This is flash fiction at its tightest, challenging form. Here’s more:
“Blown Away” rings in the 3rd and final installment of the best-selling ‘Life’ series, in its slicing examination of one of the most delightful and likewise, challenging portions of life: the unexpected. Using characters in inventive new ways (water and fire fall in love in “Fiery Dance”), examining people in surprising – and often, devastating –circumstances a soldier returns home to find an unforgiving country, (“A Soldier’s Story”), and serving up twists in every tale (a schoolchild reveals a little too much in “Show and Tell”, with hilarious results) Blown Away seeks to do just that – blow you away – all in fifty stories, fifty words or fewer. Life is run on the unexpected, and Blown Away recreates and reveals the wild ride it often gives us, and where it takes us. In the first ever, short story collection series, author Paul Worthington powerfully demonstrates the joy and despair of the unexpectedness of life, and all the beautiful colors in between. Prepare to be blown away…
It is currently available for pre-order, and will be released on February 14th, 2015. (We will release it on Valentine’s Day because we’re sure you’ll love it so much.) The stories range from heartfelt to thought-provoking, hilarious to deeply powerful, every one of them with an unseen twist. Here’s one story at this blog post, but continue reading below for an extra two stories to get a glimpse into “Blown Away.”
But, where to get it, you ask? Click any of the buttons below to go to your preferred place of purchase, and pre-order now!
After challenging ourselves to writing 300 words or fewer stories in the 2nd ‘Life’ Series book, “Dusty Remains,” we decided to go a little crazier and try out 50 words or fewer stories. We wrote and wrote, and after perhaps some 75 stories, we whittled it down to 50.
But nope. We had to give you the best of the best. Only 25 out of that fifty survived the cut, and we went writing again. Fifty word stories might sound easy, but yeah, it’s a little tricky. One of our key processes were to choose three random words, and construct a story out of that. For example, from the story “Ashes to Ashes”, we chose the words: dust, counselor, and keys, and this what was formed:
Ashes to Ashes
As the dust cloud covered the horizon, Mr. Henderson with wide eyes rushed us back into the van.
The pack of wild dogs sprung from the dust and tore into our camp counselor…just as I saw the van keys laying in the grass.
We finally got to fifty great stories (out of a pool of probably 150+), and put together “Blown Away.”
But why not give you an extra treat? We contacted one of our favorite artists, Peter Underhill, to create a series of beautiful pen illustrations to accompany fourteen key stories. Our book cover designer, Moe Pike Soe, created a slamming book cover for us, and then it was time for it to hit the presses. And now, that’s where you come in:
The Worthington Challenge
You have the option to pre-order the book now, and receive it on February 14th, 2015. But meanwhile, tell all your short story-lovin’, rabid-readin’, need-a-break-from-the-daily-hustle-and-want-a-good-short-entertaining-book friends to check out “Blown Away.” Moreover, we’ve also introduced something new – a good, fun challenge – so you can win something extra as well. If you can read one Blown Away story a day, for fifty days, and then e-mail us your experience to firstname.lastname@example.org, you will win a free copy of our latest, soon-to-be-released short story, “Three Sheets to the Wind.” But be aware…there’s only fifty winners. (We really like the number fifty, as you can see.) Pre-order, read, and review as soon as possible!
Every one of these stories are God-inspired. Without Him, they would not have been possible. And we thank you for being a part of this process with us. Your support encourages us every day, and we truly wrote these stories just for you: whether you simply love short stories, are intrigued by flash fiction, or are looking for a book that gives you a great read without taking you months to read it, “Blown Away” is for you. Pre-order at the available places below, and get ready to be blown away…
I just have to say it – I appreciate every reader that finds his or her way to our blog. Thank you – you are the best, hands down.
Speaking of hands, do you like yours? I like mine’s. I wash my hands a lot, even when they are clean.
Have you ever thought how different your life would be without hands? Let’s write a fifty words or less story living without hands. Write with abandonment. It’s your story, and I’m interested in reading your piece of flash fiction. Here’s my fifty words or less story from the soon to be released book, “BLOWN AWAY.” Afterwards, leave your fifty words or less story in the comment box, along with a good hand-slapping high five.
My family, except my mother, woke one morning and found our hands missing. My father lost his job as a pianist; my sister lost her hand modeling job, and me, my life as a pro bowler, gone.
Frustrated, we blamed Mom.
“Hey!” She screamed, “Don’t go pointing fingers at me.”
If you loved this story, make sure to check out the soon-to-be-released book, “Blown Away.” And by the way, check out this funny video, A Short Story About Hands, by Casey Donahue. It’s the best…hands down.
There is a need for stories with strong morals; morality has been on life support for years.
Our goal is to give the reading public a fresh dose of stories devoid of the normal fare of drugs, sex, and violence. There are other ways to tell stories. And we know there are those who share our sentiments. Storytellers come forward – write a story that will sweep the world.
1st place winner: $100.00 Amazon Gift Card
2nd place winner: $50.00 Amazon Gift Card
3rd place winner $25.00 Amazon Gift Card
Contest: Begins February 4, 2013. Ends: February 22, 2013.
Winners will be announced on February 25, 2013, by posting their stories and a link to their website.
First Writing Contest!
1. We encourage you to copyright your story. It only takes about an hour and costs $35.00 to copyright several stories.
2. Your story must be 300 words or less, minus the title of course. Anything more will be disqualified and deleted.
3. Feel free to comment on others’ stories. Give constructive criticism. We are here to encourage each other.
4. No sex scenes, nor rude, crude sexual jokes.
5. Keep cursing to a minimum. Make it as PG-13 as you can.
6. And of course…
Have fun and DO YOUR BEST!
By the way, this post is 234 words!
Imagine. You’re invited to an extravagant party. When you arrive, you and a party of eleven strangers are escorted to a gorgeous, lavish table with an enormous silver bowl filled with twelve white envelopes. Your curiosity is piqued when the host reveals that inside each envelope is five thousand dollars.
Suddenly, the host is called away for an important phone call. Before leaving the room, he informs that each of you can have one of the envelopes. But if you can wait until he returns, he will double what is inside the envelope. “For those who can’t wait,” he says, “take an envelope and feel free to leave. And thank you for coming.”
Under an unknown watch, the wait begins. One hour – two impatient guests retrieve their prize and quickly leave.
Two hours – four more guests hastily scoop up their gifts and head for the door.
Six hours – two tapping their fingers on table, look around the room, reach into the bowl, take their envelopes and leave.
Ten hours – murmurs of “how long do we have to wait. I’m tired. I’m hungry. This is dumb. Why would he invite us and not even feed us.” Two more exit.
The eleventh hour. You look over and smile at the only remaining guest across from you-just you and him. Standing up, looking around, he tips his hat, reaches into the bowl, wags the envelope and waves goodbye.
The sun is coming up, beaming through the stunning picture windows. You glance at your watch. It’s been twelve hours since you walked into the room. Tired, discouraged, you think about reaching for the last envelope. But you resist.
Over your shoulder, out of the corner of your eye, you see a figure. The host walks up. He smiles. He hands you twelve white envelopes, one for you and one for every guest that left early. His chauffer drives you home – it was worth the wait. Now imagine this same scenario with a bunch of third graders. Instead of white envelopes, the prize is a big bowl of marshmallows, your child’s favorite. Could he delay the urge to eat? He might if he reads Don’t Eat the Marshmallows… Yet!
For this Good Friday, my son and I read this story. Encouraging him to be more like the last guy – delaying gratification. I want him to understand you can reap bountiful rewards in life if you can delay personal gratification. Is it hard? Sure! Is it worth it? Definitely. I shared with him Dave Ramsey’s motto, “IF YOU WILL LIVE LIKE NO ONE ELSE, LATER YOU CAN LIVE LIKE NO ONE ELSE.” And he will, if he learns to eat the marshmallows, but just not yet.
I invite you to tell us your GOOD FRIDAY story; in the meantime, help yourself.