Tag Archives: winners

March Flim-Flam Game Winner

flim-flam game winner march 2014The garden gnomes are giddy and all beside themselves. In March, something magical happened. We started receiving more flashes in the pan to add to the Flim-Flam Bush weekly, and the quality of submissions went up too. That filled us so full of glee that we threw a party.

We were, for the first time since starting the games, able to publish a new story every Wednesday throughout the month. Not only that, but we’re booked up through April, as well. And we’ve started publishing stories for May.

All of this great participation is encouraging to us gnomes. We’re hopeful that someday we’ll be able to publish a new flash fiction story every day. Keep ’em coming!

Announcing The March 2014
Flim-Flam Game Winner

This month was spectacular. It was a very close race. Lydia Bengston came in with a late entry titled “The Shriveltongue Demon,” which managed to gain a lot of social media attention fast.

The week prior, Toni Stauffer, met with social notoriety of her own and even enticed one reader to leave a comment on her very creepy story “For Sale By Owner.”

This event left the garden gnomes regretting a missed opportunity. We decided to award points for comments. So every comment left on a story from here going forward will earn the author of the story additional points on the Flim-Flam Score Card. If you like a story, jump in with some praise!

While the garden gnomes were very happy with all of the stories submitted in March, these two – “The Shriveltongue Demon” and “For Sale By Owner” went neck and neck right to the finish line. In the end, it was “The Shriveltongue Demon” by a nose hair. Congratulations Lydia!

Interestingly, Lydia’s story was more popular on Facebook while “For Sale By Owner” was more popular on Google+. We’re not sure what that means, but we think both authors deserve some applause. You get a standing ovation from the gnomes.

The Final Week For
Sulfurings Submissions

When the gnomes started this publication we had in mind a new publishing model, one built for the third millennium. The idea was to give writers a graduated means of achieving publishing success. The first degree of that scale is the Flim-Flam Bush.

Our hope was, and still is, that authors published in the bush would go on to submit to our anthologies and be published there. Some have. Others started with our Garden of Eden anthology and then submitted to the bush. We’re okay with that too.

The next level of publishing opportunity will be our standalone novellas, the first of these opportunities being the Mythicals imprint (with more to come). And while we wait for that first submission to roll in, we’ve still got one week left for the Sulfurings anthology to fill up. Our biggest need is for short stories ranging from 1,501 to 10,000 words.

If apocalyptic or post-apocalyptic lit is your thing, we hope you’ll consider sending the gnomes something for Sulfurings.

And finally, we’ve introduced a new opportunity for non-fiction writers. Gaslight will focus on commentary on news of the weird. The gnomes can hardly wait to see what you come up with.

Garden Gnome Publications constantly strives to fill a niche in the speculative fiction and non-fiction markets, reaching ever new heights of weirdness for the glory of the gnomes. If you’re not too stoned, we’d welcome you to step foot in our garden and stay awhile.

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Winner Of The First Flim-Flam Flash Fiction Contest

Choosing a winner of a contest can be difficult, especially for your first contest. I was a bit apprehensive going into this first contest because I wasn’t sure what I was looking for. I simply wanted to juice up the blog with some fast action – and, boy, did I get what I asked for.

My initial call for entries was vague. I put out a call on Facebook for some flash and said I’d pay a measly $5 for the first story I accepted.

One person was quick on the uptake. In just an hour I had my first submission. The submitter was proud of the fact that he wrote a story about a garden gnome. Since I didn’t put a deadline on the contest, I decided to initiate one, so I chose Friday, August 30, 2013.

I spread the word as far and wide as I could in such a short time – Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Craigslist. Then I sat back and watched the submissions come in.

I didn’t get as many as I’d liked, but the ones I got were quite good – most of them. I decided not to read any of them until the deadline, then I would read them all at once. The diversity of submissions was quite impressive. I wrote back to several of the non-winners and told them I’d like to publish their stories anyway. They all accepted.

But there was one submission that earned a spot in my heart even after I’d read all the others. It was the story about the garden gnome, the first submission received.

What’s So Special About Garden Gnomes?

It’s a fair question to ask: “What criteria did you choose the winner based on?”

Luckily, no one has asked me that question – yet. But if they did, I’d have to say in this case it was very simple. I wanted something that was representative of what Garden Gnome Publications is all about. That could be an easy thing to find or quite difficult. In this case, the winner had a leg up on everyone else. He helped me create the look and feel of the website. In fact, he created my header.

That may seem unfair, but I didn’t know David Anderson was going to submit to the contest (and he didn’t know I was going to have one). Nevertheless, he hit me with a story I couldn’t resist.

There were other stories that were better written. From a craft standpoint, several stories were much more winner-worthy. But most of them weren’t creepy enough, or funny enough, or weird enough. One, I felt, was too short, though it was an extremely well thought out and written story. Another almost took the prize but in the end, the garden gnome represented the essence of Flim-Flam. I had my pick.

Congratulations to David Anderson, graphic artist and writer in the Bizarro fiction genre. You can read his story on the Flim-Flam Blog tomorrow.

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