The Out-of-Order Challenge!

by ♠Ana Cristina♥
originally published at 04:41PM on Friday, May 23, 2008

Incredibly, I’ve now reached the big 500. This is all thanks to the many series I’m a part of with thebetweenspace, Never Explain, THX 0477 , NightMaiden, and Valley Fey/Pinprick, respectively (hope you don’t mind some shameless promotion there :p).

This is cause for a challenge, methinks. While I was watching Pulp Fiction the other day, I got inspired. Perhaps what I like best about that film, apart from the dialogue, is the fact that it’s “told” out of order. Only at the end are you able to piece the parts together. I’ve always wanted to write a story with a nonlinear sequence. I’m flirting with a couple of ideas but none of them have stuck yet.

So my charge for you is to write a series with a nonlinear sequence. Your entries should be no shorter than 3 ficlets in length, although you are welcome and encouraged to expand them more if you wish. However, your entries must be posted no later than June 15th, at which point I will judge which stories met the challenge the best.

Happy ficleting!


  • from thebetweenspace:

    Congratulations on the big 500! Fantastic challenge. I’ve always wanted to write that kinda story. Places thinking cap on...

  • from [ wall.doll ]:

    Wow, I was actually thinking about writing a story story like this the other day. I’ll definitely have to get to this.

    Congrats on 500!

  • from One Time, One Chance:

    congradulations on 500!
    i myself need practice with writing nonlinear seqeunce, but i’m really looking forward to seeing the entries that come from this!

  • from John Perkins:

    This should prove to be a very mighty challenge indeed. Pulp Fiction benefited from the medium I think. Pulling this off successfully in ficlet form, I imagine, will be very difficult. I’ll give it a shot though.
    And congrats on the milestone.

  • from JMSquire:

    I’m going to try my hand at this as well, though I’m not sure how well it’s going to turn out. Like Perkins said it’s going to be difficult to pull off with ficlets.

  • from THX 0477:

    Daunting challenge and then some. And 500? Seriously? I’m woefully behind, it seems. Still, bet I have you beat on comments. Yep, I’m hanging my hat on that.

  • from Kermitgorf:

    I was confused by Pulp.. great film. but made my head spin… Congrats on 500.. wow.

  • from More Than Meets The Eyes:

    Whoa! Congrats on the 500th ficlet. I like this challenge. It makes you think.

  • from THX 0477:

    I went to my dark place. I shouldn’t go there.

  • from Stovohobo:

    Dang…I thought I was up there with the ficlets. Only about nine away from you, though.

  • from PyroPunk 51 (PPP LoA):

    Congrats Ana. We’ll see maybe I can think of something Memento-like.

  • from thebetweenspace:

    Okay, I’ve entered, but I’m not completely happy with mine…

  • from Valley Fey/Pinprick:

    Definitely entering, congrats on 500!

  • from S. Lynn:

    Congrats on 500! I’ll have to think about this one for a bit. Definatly interesting though!

  • from Mighty-Joe Young:

    congrats on 500
    have you seen twenty nine grams? it made me have to search for the cliffnotes or twenty nine grams for dummies i still feel dumb and i saw it eight years ago.

  • from Trann:

    I debated posting all entries here with identical titles so no order could be inferred. I read through and liked them in almost any order so I thought I’d let the reader decide for themselves…
    But I didn’t…

  • from Mistress Elsha Hawk:

    sorry about the double post, computer glitch, read the second one.

  • from Music-Hearted:

    Congrats on 500! I know I’m a little behind, but I’m going to enter the challenge.

  • from Russell Ruffino:

    Congrats! Awesome challenge by the way. Made me write a story I’d never have written and tell it in a way I’d never have thought of, which is what challenges are all about. Not only that but I’m quite pleased with the result. Hooray for you!

  • from John Perkins:

    Ok, finally finished my series. Nowhere near as good as some of the entries, but I had fun writing it. Thanks for the challenge.

  • from ♠Ana Cristina♥:

    Wow, this looks like it was a successful challenge! Great work to all who entered and many thanks to those who commented on the entries – you helped me make the tough decision during judging.

  • from Never Explain:

    Sweet, I got a mention in this. Very cool. Much appreciated, Ana. I wish I could have entered this challenge sooner.