Genre: Short Story Collection
“In Fast Fiction, you'll enter a cafe where the menu is loaded with nothing but literary appetizers, designed to be quickly consumed and easily digested. You'll meet people with secrets and others who wished they knew how to keep them; characters looking to exact revenge and others getting their just desserts when karma calls. Fans of the combo platter will see it all here, from the dark to the darkly comical; the laugh-out-loud funny to the thought-provoking; offering more twists and turns than a pretzel—more ups and downs than a souffle. Designed to be picked up and perused at any time—Fast Fiction is perfect for those impromptu moments while you're waiting in line or otherwise find yourself with some extra time to kill--not long enough to get deeply engaged in a novel but just right as a fun alternative. Even if you do have time to put your feet up, get comfortable and grab a book, these 101-word tales will keep you entertained, briefly encountering characters you will never see again--if you're lucky.”
An “ex-cop” turned magazine writer and newspaper reporter, now working as a private investigator as well as making movies and writing fiction, Scotty Cornfield obviously has a wide range of talents and experience. Oops, forgot to mention performing stand-up comedy as well.
For more, visit Mr Cornfield’s website.
If you aren’t familiar with flash fiction contests or how they work, do an internet search for Indies Unlimited, and you’ll find one approach. In their weekly contest a photograph is shown as a “prompt” and contestants are expected to write an extremely short story (no more than 250 words) as their entry to the weekly contest.
Scotty Cornfield who wrote this book participates in a contest that is apparently sponsored by the Monterey County Weekly newspaper in Monterey County, California. They give a “prompt” of a few words, sometimes as few as one. Contestants are expected to tell a complete story inspired by that short prompt. But their expected word count is more difficult and extremely precise. The story must be exactly 101 words. No more, no less. Exactly 101 words. I tend to ramble. I’m just barely getting started at 101 words. I’m way past that in this review already. To write a 101 word story, making the tale entertaining and well written is an admirable skill for sure.
Here we have around 100 of these stories with a title, 101 words of story, and then (just in case we’re curious) the prompt used as the story’s inspiration. They tend to be fun and while reading the 90-something words prior, what you expect is rarely what you get when the ending comes. No doubt with as much variety as these stories have there will be some that you’ll love and some that you won’t like as well, but with only 101 words to finish, you’ll be eager for another one after reading the good ones and won’t feel like you wasted a bunch of time on those that you didn’t. A fun, quick read.
Some adult language.
No significant issues.
Rating: **** Four Stars
Reviewed by: BigAl
Approximate word count: 10-15,000 words