A Midsummer Tale 2019

Featured

A Midsummer Tale is a summer-themed narrative writing contest open to non-genre fiction and creative nonfiction.

The theme of the 2019 A Midsummer Tale Narrative Writing Contest is: Secrets. An event that must be kept secret. The weight of holding onto a secret. A secret long kept, now revealed. Whether your story is set at the beginning, middle or end of a secret’s lifespan, it must take place during the hot summer months.

The theme must play an integral role in the story.

Deadline for entries is June 21, 2019.

Toasted Cheese 19:1

Featured

The March 2019 issue of Toasted Cheese features poetry by Jerrice J. Baptiste, Teresa Blackmon, Carl Leggo, DS Maolalai, Amy Sherwood & Bill Yarrow; flash by Phebe Kirkham & Jared Levy; fiction by Louis M. Abbey and creative nonfiction by Tracy Lyall.

TC 19:1 also includes the 18th Annual Dead of Winter Writing Contest winning stories by M. Luke Yoder, Lou Nell Gerard & Maureen Rostad.

At Candle-Ends, Shelley Carpenter reviews My Husband’s Lies by Caroline England.

This issue’s Snark Zone is by Theryn “Beaver” Fleming.

The cover image is by jpellgen on Flickr, with additional photos by photographers around the world, all of whom have generously made their work available for use under Creative Commons licenses. Please click through and check out their photostreams.

Congratulations to all. Happy reading!

March 2019
Daily Writing Prompts

A Pen In Each Hand

  1. Use the phrase “Like a lion”
  2. Your setting is: twilight, hailstorm, countryside, romantic atmosphere.
  3. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: possibility, false, housing, glove, reduce.
    2. Write about mis-remembering something.
    3. Use the phrase, “Am I doing that just to get a reaction?”
  4. Write about: getting mixed signals.
  5. Write about a significant street address.
  6. Start with this line of dialogue: “Thousands remain without power.”
  7. Write a dialog in text messages
  8. Start with this line of dialogue: “Everything she said was a lie!”
  9. Use the phrase, “I really didn’t change anything!”
  10. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: grind, cylinder, predator, project, inspector.
    2. Write about trying to do two things at once.
    3. Use the phrase, “I hope she likes it.”
  11. Write about the after-disaster meeting.
  12. Start with this line of dialogue: “I beg to differ.”
  13. Start with “Is there coffee?”
  14. Write about a character who is: sensitive, sly & dependable.
  15. Use the phrase, “How can you drink this stuff?”
  16. Your setting is: twilight, storm brewing, airplane, electrifying atmosphere.
  17. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: hunter, jelly, association. revolutionary, paper.
    2. Write about an expected interruption.
    3. Use the phrase, “I am not a cat.”
  18. Write about a character who is: kindly, carefree & violent.
  19. Use the phrase, “I remember when…”
  20. Use these 5 words: panda, spirit, traditional, figures, skepticism.
  21. Write about a naive can-do attitude
  22. Use these 5 words: construction, challenge, logical, stunning, pitfalls.
  23. Drop everything and write a haiku.
  24. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: reptile, expand, rabbit, medium, fuel.
    2. Write about trying to wrap one’s head around a difficult concept.
    3. Use the phrase, “We could just do it the easy way.”
  25. Use the phrase, “It’s that time again…”
  26. Start with this line of dialogue: “What are you reading?”
  27. What would you do with an irony mark if English had one?
  28. Use these 5 words: expertise, blow, dueling, competition, Saturday.
  29. Use the phrase, “Just close the door and walk away.”
  30. Use these 5 words: burden, motive, briefing, freedom, proved.
  31. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: housing, revive, nest, miserable, enlarge.
    2. Write about a crowded situation.
    3. Use the phrase, “Holy smoke.”

The Spring 2019 Three Cheers and a Tiger Writing Contest is CLOSED.

The Spring Three Cheers and a Tiger Writing Contest is now open.

Entries must be received by 5 PM Eastern Time, Sunday, March 24, 2019.

Write a mystery story that centers around a diary entry or social media post for March 15th that starts out with “They told me to beware.”

Word count: Between 1,350 and 1,450 words.

  • Send entries to: threecheers19@toasted-cheese.com
  • Your subject line must read: Three Cheers and a Tiger Contest Entry
  • Paste your story directly into your email. No attachments please.

For complete rules:
Three Cheers and a Tiger Guidelines
General Contest Rules

February 2019
Daily Writing Prompts

A Pen In Each Hand

  1. Use the phrase, “You promised me cookies!”
  2. Use these 5 words: country, lake, caravan, historic, grave.
  3. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: assembly, comfort, serious, tough, series.
    2. Write about something that only other people seem to care about.
    3. Use the phrase, “What is all this stuff?”
  4. Write about: giving away the ending.
  5. Waiting while traveling
  6. Start with this line of dialogue: “This is not ok.”
  7. Coming home to an empty house.
  8. Use these 5 words: bashes, bodies, wins, bell, practice.
  9. Doing the same arithmetic and getting different answers.
  10. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: church, recruit, sip, joy, buy.
    2. Write about doing something because everybody assumes you always will.
    3. Fill in the blank, “These are not the ______ you’re looking for.”
  11. Frustrating delays.
  12. Write about: a landslide victory.
  13. Something trivial to one person hits another one hard.
  14. Start with this line of dialogue: “You remind me of…”
  15. Use the phrase “That wasn’t one of the options.”
  16. Write about: a canceled sailing.
  17. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: dominate, concede, mastermind, resource, job.
    2. Write about finding a letter from a long-ago loved one.
    3. Fill in the blank, ” ______ is down there, too.”
  18. Write about: things going too far.
  19. Mixing up the legends for several holidays.
  20. Start with this line of dialogue: “All I want is you.”
  21. Use the phrase “Am I the only one?”
  22. Write about: the earth shrinking.
  23. “This is not like the movies.”
  24. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: upset, astonishing, sand, agreement, gown.
    2. Write about filling an unexpectedly unscheduled time.
    3. Fill in the blank, ” ______ deserves applause.”
  25. Write about unwelcome corrections.
  26. Use these 5 words: cascades, mountain, provisions, beasts, epic.
  27. One thing ends without another beginning.
  28. Write about: a girls’ night out.

Dead of Winter 2018 Winners

The winning stories in our 2018 “Dead of Winter” short horror fiction contest are:

  • First place: “The Grave of Samuel Seymore James” by M. Luke Yoder
  • Second place: “Eidolon” by Lou Nell Gerard
  • Third place: “99 Words of Sorrow” by Maureen Rostad

Our next contest is “Three Cheers & A Tiger: Spring,” which is a 48-hour mystery contest. Dead of Winter 2019 opens October 1, 2019. We look forward to your entries. These stories will be published in the March 2019 issue.

Our contest info is here.http://tclj.toasted-cheese.com/contest.htm

January 2019
Daily Writing Prompts

A Pen In Each Hand

  1. Waking up to the after-party cleanup
  2. Use these 5 words: stickers, graffiti, memories, suitcases, map.
  3. Describe the fading of a dream.
  4. Your setting is: evening, thunderstorm, in a forest, lonely atmosphere.
  5. That last look around before departing.
  6. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: march, tick, abolish, unrest, constant.
    2. Write about having too much stuff.
    3. Use the phrase, “Next in line.”
  7. Expectations that are partially fulfilled.
  8. Start with this line of dialogue: “Strange and warm.”
  9. Explaining something wrong to somebody who knows the answer.
  10. Write about: seeing through a new pair of eyes.
  11. A Big Round Number birthday
  12. Use these 5 words: kindness, doctors, deceased, kiss, night.
  13. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: summary, budge, judgment, leg, bang.
    2. Write about a seeming coincidence that isn’t.
    3. Use the phrase, “I don’t think that’s right.”
  14. Use these 5 words: interfering, credentials, stateless, violence, historic.
  15. Beware the Ides of… January?
  16. Use these 5 words: perfect, body, bondage, invisible, lost.
  17. Cheering while somebody does something amazing.
  18. Your setting is: mid-afternoon, heavy rain, a village, neglected atmosphere.
  19. Writing a letter that won’t be sent.
  20. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: glacier, burial, cabinet, realize, rib.
    2. Write about a failure of something that’s usually reliable.
    3. Use the phrase, “I really should learn that.”
  21. Words of comfort fall flat.
  22. Use these 5 words: collections, adventure, struggling, fake, enemy.
  23. Missing an important engagement.
  24. Write about a character who is: industrious, fun-loving & depressed.
  25. Transferring all contacts but that one to a new device.
  26. Start with this line of dialogue: “This is what he lives for.”
  27. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: window, crash, bulb, skin, repeat.
    2. Write a confusing set of instructions.
    3. Use the phrase, “That’s not what we expected.”
  28. Start with this line of dialogue: “It’s for science!”
  29. Moving on from a situation that once was wonderful.
  30. Start with this line of dialogue: “I don’t believe her for one second.”
  31. Coin a new word and use it.

December 2018
Daily Writing Prompts

A Pen In Each Hand

  1. “Create a diversion!”
  2. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: relieve, attract, tire, occasion, feminine.
    2. Write about a nearly forgotten place.
    3. Use the phrase “tell me that you love me,” in an ironic way.
  3. “Ask yourself if you want the prize.”
  4. Use the following phrase: canceled due to weather conditions
  5. Write about unexpectedly nice weather.
  6. Use the following phrase: cleared of charges
  7. Write about a date that will live in infamy.
  8. Your protagonist is named Mayu Kawasaki.
  9. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: consolidate, pipe, tablet, sound, lion.
    2. Write about an odd way of saying something.
    3. Use the phrase “Is that real? Or did I make it up?”
  10. Your protagonist is named Terrell Holley.
  11. “Tell me again why we’re doing this?”
  12. Use the following phrase: a boys’ club
  13. Write about unintended consequences.
  14. Start w/ this line of dialogue: “A former student of mine emailed me today.”
  15. Characters playing the “What’s the next number in the sequence” game.
  16. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: chain, glance, mark, shine, consultation.
    2. Write about deciding not to care.
    3. Use the phrase, “Two generations ago.”
  17. Write about a birthday celebration gone wrong.
  18. Include a character who is a preschool teacher.
  19. Write about skipping a day of the week.
  20. Include a character named Ava Morrison.
  21. The universe holds its breath.
  22. Include a character named Naoto Kaeshiro.
  23. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: color-blind, know, commemorate, hunter, manage.
    2. Write about cooking.
    3. Fill in the blank: “Eat, drink, and be _________.”
  24. Start with this line of dialogue: “That was definitely an earthquake.”
  25. Write about someone who doesn’t celebrate holidays.
  26. Use the following phrase: we are survivors
  27. Sum up your year in writing.
  28. Include a character who is a veterinarian.
  29. Start with “They call it Boxing Day because…”
  30. Get today’s prompts on Twitter.
    1. Use the following five words: consultation, convenience, loan, frog, lunch.
    2. Write about the second Thursday.
    3. Use the phrase, “That was a mistake.”
  31. Write about the First Annual _________.

Toasted Cheese 18:4

The December 2018 issue of Toasted Cheese features poetry by Holly Day & Mandy Haggith; flash by Ona Gritz & Shani Naylor; fiction by Marcie McCauley & Charles Rafferty and creative nonfiction by Fiona Chai.

TC 18:4 also includes the Fall 2018 Three Cheers and a Tiger Writing Contest winning stories by Michelle LaValley & Jon Meaders, Caitlin Cacciatore, and Karen Davis.

At Candle-Ends, Shelley Carpenter reviews Two Towns Over by Darren C. Demaree.

This issue’s Snark Zone is by Theryn “Beaver” Fleming.

The cover image is by Hotel du Vin & Bistro on Flickr, with additional photos by photographers around the world, all of whom have generously made their work available for use under Creative Commons licenses. Please click through and check out their photostreams.

Congratulations to all. Happy reading!