Microcosms 138

Hello, Friday flash fictioneers, and welcome to Microcosms 138.

Thanks to William and Robert Chambers for providing the theme of this week’s contest. They first published Chambers’s English Dictionary in 1872. Now rebranded as The Chambers Dictionary, it is widely used by British crossword setters and solvers, and is famous for its occasional humorous definitions, such as that for éclair (“a cake, long in shape but short in duration”).

All the Character and Location elements this week have been taken from the headings of page columns in my well-thumbed 1998 edition.



(If YOU have an idea for a future contest and would like to be a guest host, please contact us.)


Our contest this week begins with THREE things: character, location and genre.

We spun, and our three elements are – character: Fiddler, Location: Ballroom, and genre: Romance.

Write a story using those OR feel free to click on the “Spin!” button, and the slot machine will come up with a new set – character, location and genre. You can keep clicking until you have a set of elements that inspires you.

*** HEY! Remember to include which THREE elements you’re using AND a title for your entry – not included in the word count.


  • Agony Aunt
  • Banjoist
  • Captive
  • Doctor
  • Eccentric
  • Fiddler
  • Ambulance
  • Ballroom
  • Camp
  • Deathbed
  • Election Count
  • Freight Car
  • Drama
  • Romance
  • Crime
  • Horror
  • Alternate History
  • Fairy Tale



Last week’s Judge’s Pick, Nikky Olivier, has kindly agreed to act as the judge this time around.


REMEMBER: all submissions should be a maximum of 300 words in length (excluding the title).

You have just 24 hours until midnight, today (Friday) New York time (EST) to write and submit your masterpiece.

*** If you are new to Microcosms, remember to check out the full submission guidelines. ***

All being well, results will be posted next Monday.

Microcosms 139
Microcosms 137

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