A 100 Word Micro-fiction Story


My second shot entry for the NYC Midnight 100 Word Micro Fiction Challenge (spring 2022). Again, for this contest, NYC Midnight assigns writers to a group that consists of a genre, action and word that must be utilized. Writers have 24 hours to submit. The judges choose top 15 entrants to move on to next round. There are over 6900 writers participating from all over the world, so each group has about 60-70 writers to start. The contest has 3 rounds total.

My Assignment:

GENRE: Drama; ACTION: Turning on an air conditioner; WORD: Mix

For this one, I had to be careful not to veer into dark humor (my comfort zone). I was really proud of how it turned out, but the judges seemingly missed my innuendo, which made the ending a bit confusing for them (from the feedback I received). The top 15 stories were selected to move on; this one placed #16 (First place for Honorable Mentions). I’m curious to see my regular readers’ thoughts, since y’all are more used to my boys’ and my twisted sense of dark humor.

Hint: The number in the last lines of the story is the key to why this ending should hit harder.

The Story:

A six-figure salary for some A-listers’ children’s summer tutor? A super-sized staff and sprawling estate? It sounded dreamy. It was a spectacular disaster.

The NDA. The film crews. The LISTS.

“No sweets. No starches. No soda. No snacking. No swimming after meals. No bare feet. No turning on air conditioner until it’s above 78°. No heat until it’s below 62°. No personal days. No social media. NO FLIRTING.”

A toxic mix of insecurities, jealousies, lechery, cruelty, and unchecked extravagances. These people are broken. I will not break.

The playroom was 75°. It’s 69° now. I did not break. I shattered.