Banana. Elephantine. Kendama. — What kind of worlds can be created from just three words?
In the summer of 2014, I asked the readers of my email newsletter to send me just three words, which I would use to inspire flash fiction pieces I’d write on the spot. The project ended up a lot more popular than I expected, with dozens of word sets coming in both that summer and the following winter. The words ranged from fedora to susurrus, from explosion to widdershins, and I was inspired to write flash fiction stories just as diverse in content.
From a time traveler stuck on hold while being chased by a dinosaur, to family inheritance dispute, a magician’s quarrel to a private investigator on New Mars, not to mention a haunted bone garden and a Viking coming of age story, these stories run the gamut of time and space in bite-sized pieces. Each comes labeled with the three words that inspired it, both as a tribute to the original reader and as a fun glimpse into the mind of a writer at play.
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Excerpt from The Three Words Project