I was first introduced to the concept of microstories some time in high school. Here are fifty microstories I have written. Each has exactly fifty words, and each has a twist. The first microstory I ever wrote is listed first. Enjoy :)
Little Billy had stayed up all night waiting for Santa Claus. At last, the jolly man in red came falling down the chimney. “Santa!” Little Billy cried. “Sorry Kid,” Santa sighed, pulling a revolver from his sack, “But now that you’ve seen me, I’m going to have to kill you.”
Rose smiled, admiring herself in the mirror. Her hair was perfect, and her cream dress lightly touched her skin. On her feet she wore suede boots. She walked outside, and noticed a big puddle of muddy water on the road. Then – the sound of an engine. The bus was coming.
Jennifer searched for her beloved Fifi, a Persian cat that was a ball of coffee-coloured fluff. She went outside, and saw Gus sitting in his kennel. “That’s funny...” She thought to herself, “He looks pleased with himself today. If I didn’t know any better, I’d think he was smiling.”
“I’m sorry Mrs. Johnson, but he didn’t make it,” Dr Vaughn said sadly. Mrs Johnson was silent, but tears began to trickle down her face. She had never experienced grief as deep as this before. Dr Vaughn looked at his notes again. “Whoops,” he said, starting to chuckle, “Wrong person!”
Kim hated herself. She couldn’t live like this anymore, and would end it tonight. She picked up the scissors, wondering what everyone would think when they realised what she had done. Taking a deep breath, she opened the blades. She smiled as the locks of hair fell to the floor.
Paul put his hands around Lisa’s neck and squeezed. Lisa stiffened as she felt the pressure increase. She was powerless, and closed her eyes, waiting for the end. There was a crack, and then it was over. “Are your headaches getting better?” Paul asked. “Yes, thanks to you,” Lisa smiled.
Jorge ran, people chasing him, trying to grab him from every direction. He panicked, his chest tightening. He knew he needed to get to safety. He was nearly there. Why had he left it so late?? He burst through the doors. “Hi Jorge,” smiled the pharmacist, “Here for your medication?”
Tenderly rubbing her stomach, Dr. Catherine Bell stepped onto the train, headed for work. She looked around at all the occupied seats. No-one offered theirs to her. Suddenly, one of the passengers fell off his seat, convulsing. “We need a doctor!” someone yelled. Catherine held onto the pole and watched.
Scarlett traced a line down Tristan’s face with her finger. She looked into his eyes. “I love you,” she smiled as she leant forward and kissed him, before assuming a professional stance at her desk. Tristan’s parents walked in. “Mum, Dad,” Tristan said, “This is my English teacher, Mrs. Trickett.”
Roger looked at the clock. 1:19am. He sighed, another night of restless sleep. He hoped he would fall asleep again soon. Suddenly, the house started vibrating and he heard a loud humming sound. Then, a flash of bright light, followed by an eerie silence. Roger looked at the clock: 3:47am.
Paula was anxious. She hated watching talk shows, and now she was actually in one and she didn’t know why. She looked across at her boyfriend, Mark. Did he know what was going on? Applause, then a woman walked out onto the stage. “Mum?” Paula and Mark said in unison.
The workers carried the grain on their backs, struggling in the heat. Their work was thankless, yet they were dedicated, hard workers. Out of nowhere, smoke started billowing from a point on the ground. The workers looked up to see a circle of glass angled to magnify the sun’s rays.
To be alive or not, that is the question. Whether ‘tis more splendid for the mind to suffer the spears and daggers of bad luck, or to take up weapons against an ocean of troubles and by opposing... Shakespeare sighed, crumpled up the paper, and tossed it on the floor.
Mike was having a great time. He’d sampled all the food in the buffet, danced with the bridesmaids, and posed for many photos. Mike jumped, startled, as someone tapped him on the back. He turned around, facing the bride and groom. “Excuse me,” Rebecca said, “But do we know you?”
She laughed at the terror she had created. Chaos reigned as everyone ran around trying to escape her, trying to hide. She loved threatening these tiny, defenceless people, and watching them cower in fear. Luckily for the Munchkins, she was suddenly killed when a house fell on top of her.
Lakshmi tossed and turned, unable to get to sleep in the summer heat. She’d been awake for hours. She let her sweaty hand dangle off the edge of the bed. A cold chill swept over the room, and she felt someone reach out from under the bed and grab it.
Ara wept silently. She knew this day would come, but she didn’t realise how soon. She had been to many sad events in her life, but no day felt as sad as this one. “Hurry up Ara!” her mother called. “You don’t want to be late to your own wedding!”
Lisa smiled. She liked Garry, and their first date had been perfect! He’d laughed at her jokes, paid for everything, and kissed her on the cheek as she left. She couldn’t wait to see him next, but it would take a month to save the money to hire him again.
They swam as fast as possible, propelled by a powerful urge to get there first. Most didn’t last the distance, and dropped off like flies. The leader surged forward, and at last saw his prize. Using his last burst of energy he reached the egg before any of the others.
Asia stared out from behind the bars of her cell. How she longed to be out, free to go wherever she wanted, whenever she wanted. Two children stared at her from the other side of the bars. Asia roared as loud as she could, and watched as they ran away.
Superman awoke. Where was he? His eyes searched the room, desperately seeking a clue. He tried to sit up, but something restrained him. He called out, and a light switched on. “Where am I?” he asked. “You’re at Danvers State Hospital, and it’s time for your procedure,” came the reply.
Dan awoke to discover he was paralysed. He couldn’t move any part of his body, and he couldn’t even talk or open his eyes. He heard his wife’s sad voice. “Am I doing the right thing, Doctor?” “Yes,” came the reply, “the only thing keeping him alive are the machines.”
Cooper sadly watched his family packing. He knew they were leaving, but couldn’t understand why they weren’t taking him along, why they were abandoning him. Penny came out, a bone in her hand. “Don’t worry buddy,” she said, patting him on the head, “We’ll be back before you know it.”
Mark stood at the front of the church, alone. It was very late, and he knew she wasn’t coming, but he didn’t understand why. They had been looking forward to this day for years. A police officer walked into the church. “I’m sorry, but there’s been an accident,” he said.
It was like a scene out of a horror movie. There were feral creatures, running around seemingly possessed, attacking each other, and causing havoc. Lila cowered under a chair and waited for it to stop. A bell rang. There was silence. “Ok children, it’s nap time!” called a woman’s voice.
The little girl hid under the covers and sobbed quietly. She had everything a little girl could want, designer clothes and shoes, expensive toys, and a huge bedroom in which to enjoy it all. On the surface she looked like a spoilt brat but, deep down, Suri Cruise was miserable.
“Now I’ll make my beautiful assistant disappear!” exclaimed Marvin the Magnificent. Stellar crawled into the box, closed her eyes, and prepared to fall through the trap door under the stage. There was a jolt, and Stellar opened her eyes. She wasn’t under the stage. She didn’t know where she was.
Dalila smiled as she watched her daughter playing in the fields, laughing and dancing in the warm spring air. The war was over, and they now knew freedom. Then, out of nowhere, an explosion. Dalila ran to her daughter, but the land mine had already taken the little girl’s life.
Shelly swam through the reef, marvelling at the beautiful sea life. She looked at her watch. She was meant to meet the others back at the boat over ten minutes ago. She surfaced from under the water, and looked around. All she could see was the ocean in every direction.
Xin let the fabric run through the sewing machine, stitching it together. She wondered who would wear this dress. She worked for a good brand, so she knew it would be someone who was rich or famous or both. She finished the dress and sighed. She’d earned another ten cents.
One final push and her baby was out. Jenna knew she was incredibly lucky this kind stranger had stopped to help her as she gave birth on the side of the road, alone. “Is it a boy or girl?” She asked. She started to panic when there was no reply.
Blake walked slowly to his death. He had come to terms with this a long time ago, but that didn’t make it any easier. The guards strapped him into the chair. “Any last words?” one asked. Blake looked up. “I’m innocent,” he said, before 2000 volts tore through his body.
Kathleen stared down at her tiny baby. He looked so perfect, so innocent, and she just knew he was destined for great things in his life. The doctor walked in. “Have you thought of a name for him yet, Mrs. Manson?” he asked. “Yes,” she smiled. “I’m calling him Charles.”
Vanessa froze when she heard her little girl shouting. Her eyes scanned the Australian outback that surrounded their farm and she spotted her. She ran to her, and picked her up. “The sky’s falling Mummy,” she sobbed, frightened. Vanessa smiled. Her daughter was finally seeing rain for the first time.
William woke up from a quick nap and went to check on his daughter who was asleep in her cot. He walked into her room, but she wasn’t there. He turned white as he noticed the open window. He rushed over, and looked down fifteen storeys to the ground below.
Jenny finished using the wood chipper, and not a moment too soon. She heard the doorbell ring and answered it. “We’re here to ask you some questions about the disappearance of John Washington,” the police officer stated. “Do you have any information?” “I don’t, sorry,” she replied, hiding a smile.
Brian awoke with a start. He realised he had slept late, and was in danger of missing his cruise. He got dressed in a flash, grabbed his suitcase, and got to the dock in under fifteen minutes. He was too late. He stared sadly at Titanic as she sailed away.
Noah herded the last of his animals onto his great ark. The difficult task was at last finished, and the rains would come soon. “Father,” his son said, “we have no more room for these last two creatures.” “Never mind,” Noah said, raising the gangplank, “No-one likes unicorns much anyway.”
The Triceratops ran for his life, trying to escape the Tyrannosaurus Rex. After finally reaching safety, he stopped and breathed a sigh of relief. He was safe! He looked up at the sky. Bright flaming rocks flew through the air and crashed off in the distance. He felt scared again.
Jacob loved his job at the skydiving school, especially as he got to dive himself. At the end of a particularly stressful day Jacob was looking forward to diving before going home. It was only after he jumped out of the plane he realised he’d forgotten to wear his parachute.
Harry was a hero, working as a volunteer firefighter. Whenever there was a bushfire he would be first to get there, first to help out. One morning he left home early, carrying a box of matches in his pocket. He knew where the next fire was going to start.
Zach trudged slowly down the street to school. He hated it there, he was constantly bullied and he didn’t have a single friend. He walked through the front gate. “Hey, loser,” one of his classmates said. “Say that again,” Zach dared him, pulling a rifle out from under his coat.
Lachlan and Cynthia looked at the image of their unborn child on the computer screen. She was so beautiful, but imperfect nonetheless. “I want her to have sky blue eyes,” Cynthia said, “and blonde hair...and an IQ above 130.” “Done,” the doctor replied, typing the information into his genotype processor.
Prince Charming cut through the thorny jungle surrounding the palace, slayed the giant fire-breathing dragon that guarded its gates, and clambered up the thousand stairs leading to Sleeping Beauty’s bedchamber. Once there, Prince Charming took one look at her, frowned, then turned away and returned to his own kingdom.
Dot woke up, a feeling of dread in the pit of her stomach. She turned to face her husband of fifty years, Herb, lying next to her in bed, only to discover he was dead. A single tear rolled down her face. She closed her eyes, never opening them again.
The doctor looked at the potion he had been working on for years. If it worked, he would become a millionaire overnight. He took a deep breath, then brought it to his lips and drank. He closed his eyes and waited. Then, he screamed in agony. Something was very wrong.
Claudia looked at the photographs that had been taken in the previous day’s photo shoot. She had been airbrushed to perfection. Her hair, skin, and body...they were all beautiful. “What do you think, Ms. Schiffer?” the photographer asked. “I wish I really looked like that,” she replied sadly, looking away.
“So why did you kick your husband out of the house?” Brooke’s therapist asked. “Were you two fighting a lot? Did you not love him anymore? Or was it something else altogether?” Brooke thought about her answer, before responding. “He was off with the fairies.” She paused, smiling grimly. “Literally.”
Sophie finally finished writing the last of her fifty stories. Each had exactly fifty words, and each had a twist. She reread them, one at a time, then made a shock realisation as she checked the word count of each: Microsoft Word had counted hyphenated terms as one word only.