Fly fishing fruitlessly in mangroves

Fly fishing fruitlessly in mangroves

Thursday, August 14, 2014

SCD Story Submission

Earlier today I submitted a "very" short story to 'Sporting Classics Daily' for their new contest of hunting stories totaling a mere 200 words. The stories could be fact or fiction and the contest runs through October. It didn't take me long to think of a story, then I just polished it up a bit.

I wanted it to be unique. Here it is...exactly 200 words.

*Awake and moving, I step gingerly through the briar. The early morning shows my breath frosty in the air. A light slumber and the biting chill of night might have these bones a little rickety, I might be slightly grayer than seasons past, but I am wiser too. My instinct tells me it is time to go. I walk, stop, look and listen, my senses on fire as I scan the woods with dawn’s light upon me. Through many a season I have learned the art of being unseen, I have learned to trust the wind, and I have learned that patience will rule the day. I know these woods well, from the moss covered rocks to the countless rotting stumps; those lingering ghosts that whisper tales of their past glory. Warming up slightly I continue to slowly move; walk, stop, look, listen. The woods are alive, but still, and movement betrays all of its treasures. I close in on a clearing I know well, where oaks grow tall. The winds mysteriously shift, therefore so do I and a new scent catches my attention. The acorns will wait and I move on undetected, while the man in the tree remains.*  

Hopefully you realized the plot twist at the very end. I gather the majority of those who would ever read that passage are hunters and would easily assume the narrator was also a hunter. Not until the very end do we realize the story is being told from the perspective of the deer. Sure, that helped me make a unique story, but it also helped me explore something I have long considered, the similarities between predator and prey. With a trace amount of ambiguity I was able to mask the true identity of the narrator.
I think if I ever have the time, this "very" short story might turn into a longer more in-depth study, but for now hopefully some of you can enjoy it, since this might be the only way it will ever see the light of day. But hey, if I win, there is a pretty sweet LL Bean jacket in my future.

I welcome any feedback.