29 August 2017

from Author Stehman

We're excited to share some comments from author Jeff Stehman about his upcoming tale "A Familiar and Her Wizard."

I'm a member of the Codex Writers Group, and as with most of my flash fiction, this story was written for one of our internal contests. We're given 54 hours to write a story based on at least one of five prompts. We're not allowed to do any writing on a contest story before the prompts are given, but we can contemplate what kind of story we'd like to write. In this case, I got myself in a whimsical "wizard's tower" mood.

When the prompts were posted, "Who is the satellite?" jumped out at me. The question implies two characters (at least in flash fiction). Who else is in a wizard's tower? A familiar. What kind of relationship could a wizard and familiar have such that it's unclear who is the satellite? Oh, yes, this could get whimsical.

Usually we're well into day two of a contest before I have enough of a story in my head to start writing, but this one gelled quickly, and I was typing words within a few hours.

Another prompt was the delicious "How dark can you go?" While I didn't embrace that one, it did inspire me to add a hint of sinister to Maggie. She obviously loves her wizard, but by the end we know there's more to her than cuddles and sunbeam naps. If only we knew what that more was...

Thanks, Jeff! Very interesting!

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