Winner Announcement \\\ Judges Feedback \\\ LINKBAIT AND SWITCH Contest

Moving beyond the standard format of short story writing can give writers the opportunity to stretch their wings and get the creative juices flowing, There’s also the danger that the brief will scare writers off, or the intention won’t carry over just as you liked it.

That’s not been the case this week, as we showcased four wry, witty and funny pieces of clickbait set in galaxies not so far away. Before we get to the winner, I asked one of this week’s judges what makes them laugh, or how exactly do you write humour?



Judge Moustachio Joe


I guess humour’s different for different people. Stand up comics have that problem where they do the same jokes in two different towns or even on two different nights and they get vastly different reactions.

Writing humour is different. It’s not like you can just write “knock knock” “who’s there?” sort of stuff.

What makes me laugh is the character’s reaction to the circumstance, conflict, or other characters. I like it when I don’t see it coming, but when it’s also ‘within character’. That’s hard to do, and maybe that’s why writing humour in fiction is kinda hard.

In this award, where characters weren’t required in the traditional sense, it was something else. We all know what clickbait articles look like, but what about how they might look in a futuristic setting.

There were two things I found appealing

A backstory, or at least conveying something more than just the list. I think in particular Catherine Moller’s Seven Historic Planets In The Commonwealth You Have To Visit Before You Replicate  did this really well, as the list gave us small clues to a bigger story of what was happening.

The other was what might people might actually be looking for in the future, or at least a sci fi future. I think they all did this really well, and it was damn hard to pick between them. Joey To made me laugh with the “intense gravity pull” and his use of links was right on the money.

Kelly Sheenan’s comments on earth were subtle and gave me a chuckle, and Ash Warren’s story kinda speaks for itself, but the whole idea of robots companions with programmed conversational topics was, well, I guess it’s not too far off what we have now I guess.

Don’t know if I’m supposed to laugh or cry…


Winner Announcement