Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike

Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike

So what’s a vignette? You might know them as flash fiction, or even just sketches. We will provide a prompt each Sunday that you can use directly (including it in your work) or just as an inspiration. You, in turn, will write about 50 words (yes, we are going for short shorts! Not even a Drabble 100 words, just half that!). Then post it!  For an additional challenge, you can aim to make it exactly 50 words, if you like.

We recommend that if you have an original vignette, you post that as a new reply. If you are commenting on someone’s vignette, then post that as a reply to the vignette. Comments — this is writing practice, so comments should be aimed at helping someone be a better writer, not at crushing them. And since these are likely to be drafts, don’t jump up and down too hard on typos and grammar.

If you have questions, feel free to ask.

Your writing prompt this week is: Brown

And there will be Grant.  Our house guest left.  I was sorry to see him go.  It was fun.  BUT when you talk till you drop, it’s kind of exhausting.  I’m contemplating a nap. 🙂  We hope he visits soon again, though.

41 thoughts on “Vignettes by Luke, Mary Catelli and ‘Nother Mike

  1. “How is he?”
    “He’s bad.”
    “Bad bad.”
    “Bad bad?”
    “Aw come on, really? Him? I know him. Stand-up guy, really.”
    “Hold-up, you mean.”
    “You really have it in for him, don’t you?”
    “It’s everyone who had ever to deal with him, he’s the baddest in the whole damn town!”

      1. Aye. I love it when I can reference the theme without stating the word directly. Granted, i like other times as well, but there’s something about invoking/evoking without being explicit[1].

        [1] Not sponsored, nor do I endorse the habit that the product feeds/feeds on, but this seems an apt time and place to say: “Be happy. Go Lucky! LSMFT”

  2. “So where do we meet our contact?” asked Harold.
    “An odd little bar, rather strange name.” replied Maud.
    “Most bars around here have odd names. So what?”
    “T’were The Blue Note, it’d be no big deal.”
    “I hear a ‘but’ in there.”
    “I hope no butt. T’is The Brown Note.”

  3. He stared into the roasting pan. Gingerly he put the lid back on the pot and stepped away from the stove.
    “Honey! Is roast beef supposed to be brown when cooked?”
    “Yes dear, it is. Why?”
    “Well what is being served up tonight will be grey goo instead.”

  4. “Today we will be examining this work, Somber Scent Hound and Lagomorph Colony, as painted by Altoon. Notice how Altoon combines burnt umber, beige, and raw umber to form the delicate shadows on the scent hound’s head and neck, then continues with his russet, taupe, and chestnut to blend the bunny into the surrounding scenery.”

    “It all looks like brown to me,” Jack whispered to the brunette sitting next to him.

  5. Kids have gotten into the crayons.
    In the bathroom, my wife’s plucking her eyebrows. Why, I don’t know. It’s a woman thing, I guess.
    Brown all over the wall next to the toilet. My wife smiles at my exasperated expression.
    Then, she bends towards me and whispers, “It’s not crayon…”

    1. A long time ago my boss had twin daughters. He told me of the time they were left in their crib for a while and discovered they could reach through the cell’s bars and paint the walls with the contents of their dydies … I think he was living in military housing at the time …

    2. I see you’ve been listening to my wife regale you with stories of raising my two sons. How my 3 year old discovered that you can make frescos with Number Two all over the walls of the bathroom. Neither of us were happy about that. And neither was Base Housing.

  6. “Freshet coming! Bow white!” Mose said.

    Hank blinked. Instead of dark brown, the river had an orangish tint. “What are we going to do?”

    “Keep to the middle, and pray we don’t bust up in the Narrows.”

    Together they rowed the timber raft to the center of the rising river.

  7. Like ghosts, they stood about, pale as salt. The rest of the court was untouched, brown wood, tapestries in green and red and blue, gardens filled with greenery and whatever flowers bloomed in pink or yellow or blue or red. Even the gray stone made the statues look uncanny in shade.

  8. Everyone stared. Halley blushed.
    Three nut-brown young men, lithe as willow wands, walked toward her and bowed. The leader straightened, glanced sideways at her from oak-leaf-green eyes and said, “We have heard much of you, now we would wish to hear it from your mouth.”
    The stares did not stop.

  9. She studied him while she waited for him to answer, noting his smooth, angular face, slightly broad features, his blunt nose. He was shades of brown. Straight dark brown hair, light brown skin, deep brown eyes. Not at all the fashion. (…)
    “My name is Robin.” He stared at her so intently that she felt a shiver.
    He stood now and she discovered that he was only slightly more than her height. She watched him move the kinks from his shoulders and suddenly thought of a cat. There had been a black panther at the zoological garden when she was a child. In the sun it wasn’t black at all but a dappled rich brown. Robin was such a safe name for someone who moved the way the panther moved. She wondered if he’d lied about it.

    (Not something new but something I’m working on. There’s bits between but this is all the bits about “Brown”.)

  10. Oh, what a lovely brown. The kelp lies rotting where the receding water has left it. It steams around me as I push myself to my feet. Compared to what I just left, this is paradise. That awful, awful gray.

    If only I could stay here forever. However, duty calls.

  11. She stretched out on the comfortable bench at the yacht harbor and listened to the sailboat riggings clatter in the afternoon breeze. A golden brown sea otter floated by, belly up, whiskers twitching. Foghorns rumbled and moaned – a dissonant, crisscrossing pattern of low frequency, vibrating notes. She closed her eyes.

  12. The brown sea otter swam on its back by Brownsea Island, holding a bowl of chocolate ice cream on its belly. Slooooooooooooowly it turned… (To be continued.) (Maybe.) (OK, not likely.) (Forget I even mentioned it.) (You are getting sleepy…Your eyes are closing…On the count of six…SIX!) (50 words.)

  13. Sarge was flying to fast to avoid passing through the gateway.

    On the other side was a void with the woman he was chasing waiting for him.

    Her brown eyes sparkled with delight as she said “The gateway is still open for you to return to your world, but it is important for your world and mine for us to talk”.

  14. He looked over the field, brown eyes filled with sadness. Troops marching in perfect order, the day promised a glorious victory. When his troops fully filled the field, floodgates opened; a muddy morass filled knee high with water and disorganized infantry appeared. General Brown had a glorious victory, not he.

  15. She popped into the parlor, grinning. “I’ve finished painting the room where you’ll be making your literary pursuits.”

    “Great! Let’s check it out.”

    He entered, and stopped with a gasp and a frown.

    “Something wrong?”

    “It’s a lovely blue”


    “I was really hoping to be in a brown study.”

    1. “Well, how about I put in a sound system? That way you can play George Clinton’s ‘Atomic Dog’ and be in a blue funk instead.”

  16. Mary Simmons kicked off her shoes.

    It was a strange unsettled time, for individual lives and all of society. The university was where one learned. What was taught there was traditional wisdom. That was breaking down. Zappa’s words seemed right.

    Brown shoes don’t make it, quit school, why fake it?

  17. The use of two quotations in this prevents reduction below sixty-five words, even reducing the quotations to their minimum wordage..

    He had hoped for more, for better. Sure, the school founded as “The College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations” had a reputation for being liberal, but his dictionary claimed the liberal arts were “intended to provide chiefly general knowledge and to develop general intellectual capacities (such as reason and judgment) as opposed to professional or vocational skills.”

    This was madness.

      1. Wallaby might be forgetful.
        Perhaps even absent-minded.
        Maybe even… slow (like ox).
        Wallaby still NOT moron like Posner.
        As for dunderheadedness, has wallaby tried Selsun Blue?

  18. Crossing the dining room he took a mug, held it under the tap and turned the handle. Slowly the mug filled with a richly coloured fluid, carrying scents of jasmine, sweet berries and fresh toasted pastry.

    Turning to the cashier he asked, “Since when was coffee supposed to be green?”

  19. When Roger had decided to come out here to Indiana and stay a week with a couple of his clones who owned a business, he’d thought he’d be spending some time with his nephews and nieces, maybe even getting in some good hunting. He certainly hadn’t been expecting to have to referee a shouting match with a delivery driver.

    At least things seemed to be settled now, the package in the screenprinting shop and the familiar parcel-service van heading back toward Bedford. “So just what was all that about, Marc?”

    The younger man’s frown returned in full force. “I told Dan to send it FedEx, since we’ve got an account with them and can handle the COD charges that way. Instead he just had to send it UPS.”

    (Decided to go back to the Gus on the Moon timeline for this one).

  20. Eyes opening to a pool of blood, he realized it was his own.
    Drawing in a breath, pain wracked his body. Glancing at the gory hole in his chest, he concluded that the bullet had missed his heart.
    The bleeding had stopped, which seemed like a good thing; he felt dehydrated and stiff. Finding a doctor seemed like a good idea: the puddle of blood was awfully big…and brown.
    That’s not a good thing!

  21. Mike sat there looking at the writing prompt.
    He pondered. “Well, it’s the color of excrement. But I don’t think that’s what they had in mind. I’m sure a fertile mind could do something with it.”
    Suddenly a light came on. The perfect topic and he’d do it up brown!

  22. Brain, brain, my brain is gone.
    Gone is my brain since I got to work.
    Melt, melt my brain will melt
    Melt will brain if I get more work.
    Brown, brown, my mood is brown
    Brown is my mood since I am stuck here.
    (to the tune of Love Is Blue”)

    [the kind of day I am having.]

    1. Well, you’ve created an earworm that will live after all of us are dust, if that’s any consolation for your day! –Seriously, I’m gonna be humming that all the way home.

  23. One might have called the Duregh High Lady’s eyes “brown” in the same way one might have called moonlight through sapphire “blue”: technically accurate without capturing anything at all of the brilliance, the fierceness, the clarity of that unflinching gaze, the ancient Elder beauty that made even grief and pain things of wonder. Mycroft slowed and stopped, struck to the heart by that shining, anguished stare, and realized what the silence in the audience hall meant. The Dureghar had known his tidings before he had halfway crossed the floor; read it in his drawn face, perhaps, or heard it in the weight of his steps. Without meaning to, he dropped to his knees and bowed his head.

    When he looked up, diamonds glittered on the High Lady’s cheeks.

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