Friday Fictioneers–Flying Her Colors

Posted: May 29, 2013 in Friday Fictioneers, Writing
Tags: , , , ,

Flash fiction is a style of fictional literature or fiction of extreme brevity. There is no widely accepted definition of the length of the category. Some self-described markets for flash fiction impose caps as low as three hundred words, while others consider stories as long as a thousand words to be flash fiction. –Wikipedia

Friday Fictioneers asks for stories of extreme brevity, a mere 100-words, chosen with care for maximum impact. Feel free to write and and/or read. Read by clicking on the blue link critter at the end of my story or participate by going to the website of our hostess, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields:

The photo for this week’s story is mine, from a trip to New York City earlier this year. Please honor my copyright.


Genre: Sci-fi.
As always, my word count is 100.

Flying Her Colors

She’d always hidden in plain, or not at all plain, sight, gathering her information brazenly at parties and soirees.

The day they took her, someone hung her dress defiantly from the balcony. The photo, prudently anonymous in origin, became iconic.

They shipped her off-planet after hooking her on alderone, more addictive than meth from the old days.

The day she died (word somehow smuggled back), dresses blossomed like exotic flowers from balconies and fire escapes. The traitor hung as well, quite publicly. Police searched fruitlessly for the culprits.

The resistance strengthened and flourished, its flag the color of her dress.

  1. seanfallon01 says:

    Awesome! Great photo too

  2. Dear Janet,
    Thanks for the loan of the picture. Loved it at first sight. Your story, as always, is well told and complete. Although she doesn’t have a name it’s apparent she was a leader and a force to be reckoned with. Well told. Well told indeed.

    • As far as the loan of the picture, Rochelle, my pleasure and thanks for choosing it. I’m sure she had a name but it wasn’t important and sometimes a name gets in the way of the story because readers may have preconceived ideas about someone with that name. I’m always delighted when you like my story and I’m looking forward to diving into yours shortly.

      Have a wonderful Wednesday (almost said Friday:-).


  3. Sometimes all the resistance needs is a figure or icon to rally around. A dress is as good as any. πŸ™‚

  4. Sandra says:

    Superb; loved it Janet. The tone was so dramatic.

  5. Hannah says:

    This is a great photo and the story is wonderful too! I like the idea of the dress as an icon.

  6. Catherine Louise Gurganus says:

    Great story. I loved the photo. I so appreciate your talent as it inspires me to write better. Thank you.

  7. […] Janet Webb is the photo source for this week’s adventure. Thanks Janet, your photo inspired a different thought about my continuing serial. […]

  8. ahh very nice. a revolution in the making
    Loved the picture hope the trip to NYC was great – thanks

    • Thanks. Yes, the trip (although only part of a day after a train ride from Philly) was fun. And I loved the picture myself, so I’m excited to be able to share it with the Fictioneers.

      Enjoy your day!


  9. Great story and a great picture! That’s good for a lot of stories :o)

  10. Lynda says:

    Your story is very deep for only 100 words. Well done!

  11. […] was something deeply haunting about this week’s FF prompt from Janet Webb. So much so that I almost went with a ghostly theme for my story. But ultimately, the story landed […]

  12. elmowrites says:

    Fantastic story, Janet, this is one of my favourites from you ever. So much guts and emotion in the story – the detached tone somehow adds to that! Love it.
    I also love the photo – nice one!

    • Thanks very much, Jen. I always appreciate your time and comments because you’re a good writer and I know how busy you are. πŸ™‚ Just got home so I have some reading to do later today, but it will be enjoyable.


  13. Honie Briggs says:

    Leading the resistance in a party dress! I love it. You painted a complete picture for me, Janet.

  14. yerpirate says:

    Superb photo as a prompt. She paid the price, and your tale made me instantly remember the women French resistance fighters of WWII but also other famous, and often tragic figures. Your story rings real!

    • Managua, thanks for that because I was hoping for a bit of tat WWII vibe and I’m glad it came through. Glad you liked the photo. I’m think of making a print and framing it because I think it’s one of my better shots.


  15. denmother says:

    Loved it! Red revolution. Fabulous.

  16. […] Copyright – Janet Webb […]

  17. Helena Hann-Basquiat says:

    I was thinking along similar lines at first — dress as symbolic gesture. I like this one very much, darling!

    • Much appreciated, Helena. Maybe it’s because the dress is so striking against the background that it makes us think of the symbolism. No matter why, I’m glad you liked it.


  18. Mystikel says:

    Very fashionable resistance flag πŸ™‚ Great picture too! I’m still waiting for my muse to get to work so right now am just reading and commenting. She may be punishing me because after posting my own story last week I didn’t get ( or make) the time to read and comment on other FF stories. Sorry Janet and everyone. I will be diligent this week and hope my muse rewards me with a story!

    • Real life has a nasty way of interfering. I have many more to read today but I have to get back to work on the many things around the house. I find that letting the muse rest often make her get ideas and start pushing them into my mind, so don’t worry!


  19. John Hardy Bell says:

    Not sure about the world this story exists in, but I want to know a LOT more about it!!! This is my kind of flash fiction for sure!!!

    Great stuff Janet.

  20. misskzebra says:

    Really enjoyed this story, and using the photo for inspiration. Thank you.

  21. H. Ken Abell says:

    This is a powerful piece. “dresses blossomed like exotic flowers from balconies and fire escapes” is an excellent phrase.
    Well done.

  22. Love the photo… I look forward to what stories can be told from it. Loved your story… it has a ring of reality to it despite the sci-fi setting. I could see this happening.

    • Thanks, Bjorn. The stories are varied as usual and interesting as always. I’m glad you got a realistic feeling from it as it was the type of sci-fi that might (but hopefully not) come true.


  23. Penny L Howe says:

    Ohhhh, really liked HER! The stuff legends are made of, and a female, just excellent. Of course (as always) very well written!

  24. Penny L Howe says:

    p.s. – Outstanding photo Janet!

    • Penny, that means as much as your compliment on the story as this is one of my favorite all-time photos and I love photography. Thanks for coming back and mentioning it.


      • Penny L Howe says:

        Sometimes Janet (and no she’s not paying me to say this) when one shows up at a website and everything (especially the photograph) is of a high quality, you can accidently take this high standard for granted. I’ll try not to do that when I come here. Just the simple truth! πŸ™‚

  25. vb holmes says:

    Great photo and story, Janet–the story could stand on its own in any time frame or location and the photo offers many opportunities for interpretation. Two Very Nices.

  26. dreaminofobx says:

    Thanks for letting us use your photograph this week! I’m not sure yet where I’m going with my story, but should have it ironed out by Friday! Love your line about dresses blossoming…

    • It’s a pleasure and a privilege to have my photo chosen so I’m pleased everyone seems to like it. Glad you liked the story, too. As far as your story, Friday is soon enough and I look forward to reading it.


  27. […] I learned as I made my way through the A to Z Challenge (Paula’s Place) Β new blog of the day Friday Fictioneers–Flying Her Colors (This, That, and the Other Thing) The Dress (40again’s […]

  28. kdillmanjones says:

    I was going to skip this week, that is, until I saw this photo. Wow! The story is really gripping. It felt so dark the first time I read it, then the end, the resistance, gives me hope. The idea that her dress inspired their flag adds so much richness to the whole thing.

    • Hope you’re having a great Wednesday, Kristin, and I’m glad my photo inspired you to write this week. Glad you liked the story, too. In the heart of darkness, hope springs eternal. πŸ™‚

      Thanks for dropping by. Can’t wait to do tea again one of these days, but I’m in Cleveland for now, getting the house closer to market time.


  29. This was very powerful.

  30. Jan Brown says:

    Loved this – the dress an icon – the image of dresses flying from balconies everywhere…. Great story!

  31. Linda Vernon says:

    Oh I loved this story, the way it began, I had no idea it was going to be science fiction. I love the way you’ve seamlessly worked it in as a backdrop to a compelling theme.

    • Seamlessly? I’m sure that dress has seams, Linda. πŸ™‚ Seriously, I’m glad you liked it. It’s only somewhat sci-fi, but considering it’s on the the second sci-fi I’ve one in all the time I’ve been doing FF, I figured I should mention it.


  32. Has a 1984 flavor to it, plus that ubiquitous dress! Good piece, but I want the whole short story …

  33. yarnspinnerr says:

    A wonderful story in response to a lovely prompt.

  34. nightlake says:

    very well a few words

  35. elappleby says:

    Wonderful photo and wonderrful story. I can picture 100s of dresses hanging defiantly from balconies across the city! Great stuff πŸ™‚

  36. Joe Owens says:

    Although I have not watched the show at all, this somehow puts me in mind of Falling Skies. I like the story and could see it all so well; You have a great and descriptive style Janet. As well as an eye for the perfect photograph..

    • Nice of you to say so, Joe. I’ve never even heard of “Falling Sky” but I don’t watch much TV (or is it a movie?) Either way, I’m glad you liked both story and picture.

      Enjoy your day,


  37. Trudy says:

    That’s a really big story packed into a mere 100 words! Loved it!

  38. Very good. And I see the inflation in the economic value of symbols increasing too over time. (Scratched graffiti, painted symbols, yellow ribbons, pairs of trainers … red ball gowns! πŸ™‚ )

  39. […] Wisoff-Fields for the Amish inspiration and to Janet Webb for providing this intriguing photo (and a flag for everyone to rally around). Here’s another that went with the Amish theme. To find out what the rest of the Friday […]

  40. Mike says:

    A great story to go with a wonderful photo.

  41. petrujviljoen says:

    I would love to name ‘they’.

  42. unspywriter says:

    Great photo, and a vast story in just 100 words. Wonderfully done.

    Here’s mine:

  43. […] you to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for leading this group of talented writers. I’d like to thank Janet Webb for a challenging photo prompt. Brava! This prompt gave me several ideas, from humorous to lurid to […]

  44. rgayer55 says:

    Really enjoyed your offering this week, Janet. I had fun with the photo too–and Bill seemed especially excited to meet Carlotta. A dress can signal an uprising in more ways than one. πŸ™‚

  45. Janet, I enjoyed your sci-fi approach. It’s wonderfully written piece. I loved this photo.

  46. neenslewy says:

    Great Flash, you packed so much story into your 100 words.
    I liked this idea and description;
    dresses blossomed like exotic flowers from balconies and fire escapes.

  47. wmqcolby says:

    Wow! Makings of a novel there. Sweeeeeet!!!

  48. Sunshine says:

    you chose your 100 words well, Janet. a very creative idea for the photograph. (thanks for sharing it!) now, yay for the resistance! ☺

  49. Sarah Ann says:

    Really like this. It begs for more. Well, I’d like more of who she was and why they had to get reid of her. A great story of hope and determination.

  50. I like the way you squeeze in just enough of the background situation to let us understand the story. Very nice!

  51. Very well done – love sci-fi.

  52. Your photo reminded me of Dubai, but I imagine all big cities have imagery like that, but I haven’t stayed in many big cities. The dress was a great feature to capture and the story was excellent πŸ™‚

    • Bill spotted the dress and I immediately took a couple pictures as it seemed very iconic to me. Although I’m not a big fan of big cities, at least for long periods of time, we did have a great time there (NYC) that partial day. Thanks for stopping in, Madison, and I’m glad you liked the story.

      Have a wonderful Friday,


  53. Wow, I want to repress this one. Sometimes no word describe how a story hits you. Thanks for visiting my blog and liking my melancholy photo post.

    • First, you may reblog it and it would please me greatly. Secondly, I’m so glad you enjoyed it. We do the Friday Fictioneers each week and if you care to read more, go to the category section on the left side of my blog, pull it down and look for Friday Fictioneers. It’s great fun. Finally, it was a pleasure to visit your blog. I hope you’re feeling better today and keep feeling that way, at least over all. πŸ™‚


  54. […] bit of a story written in response to my own photo in May of last year, a story titled, “Flying Her Colors.”Β  It’s not at all necessary to read that first story.Β  I leave it to you to do so if […]

  55. Nan Falkner says:

    Dear Janet, I’m from the future – sort of. This was a great story and I loved that the traitor got his due when she died. Awesome story – this is what FFF is all about! Thanks, Nan πŸ™‚