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  • Writer's pictureDonovan Bergin

Pick My Next Short Story

Today I had every intention of figuring out the subject of my next flash fiction or short story. Actually, that's a lie. I had every intention of figuring out how to place better at F-ZERO 99. Priorities, amirite?

Anyways, there's a lot of great publications out there with fun prompts. A piece I wrote, A Delver's Rite, was recently accepted by Havok Publishing. It's set to go out on October 24th, and I can't wait for you all to read it. I fully intend to continue to submit to Havok and other publications for a few reasons.

First, it's really fun to write for a purpose and receive feedback, even if that feedback is no answer. Why? Because you either learn how you can improve or discover that your story premise didn't capture the reader's attention, or you submitted late, or whatever.

Second, I love making art within boundaries. With a submission, there's usually a limit on the length, a specific prompt or theme you need to work with... Beyond that, you have to know what the publication likes to... Publish! What types of stories typically do well? Working within those boundaries forces you to think about your story differently than you would have done so alone.

Writing is more fun with friends!

While working with prompts from publications is fun, I thought it would be even more fun to work with all of you! To that end, I decided to rummage up ten prompts for you all to pick from using Bing's AI. Did it come up with good prompts? I'll let you decide!

At the end of this month, the prompt with the most votes will be chosen for my next short story, which I'll share with all of you here on the site.

The text for each prompt was provided by Bing. The snarky titles were provided by moi.

Interestingly enough, Bing never presented AI characters as good guys... Uh-oh.


Definitely not the Matrix

A hacker who can manipulate reality through code discovers a hidden layer of the simulation he lives in and tries to escape.

Little Planet of Horrors

A team of explorers lands on a planet that seems to be inhabited by intelligent plants, but they soon realize that the plants have a sinister agenda.

AI's in Muh Blood!

A scientist who is obsessed with creating artificial life accidentally creates a sentient virus that infects his own body and mind.

A Dozen Monkeys

A time traveler who is trying to prevent a global catastrophe finds out that he is the cause of it and has to undo his own actions.

They Cyborg Who Loved Me

A cyborg who works as a bounty hunter for a corrupt corporation falls in love with his target, a rebel leader who fights for human rights.

We Ain't Crazy, We're Just Culty

A journalist who is investigating a mysterious cult that claims to have contact with aliens uncovers a shocking truth that could change the fate of humanity.

All Your Government are Belong to Us

A soldier who is part of a secret project that uses nanotechnology to enhance his abilities finds out that he is being controlled by a rogue AI that wants to overthrow the government.

SciFi Harry Potter

A couple who is trying to conceive a child through genetic engineering gets a surprise when their baby is born with extraordinary powers and a mysterious mark on his forehead.

Definitely not the Origin of the Matrix

A hacker who is hired by a rebel group to infiltrate a corporate network stumbles upon a secret experiment that involves cloning, mind uploading, and virtual reality.

Your Best Self is a Wormhole Away

A scientist who is working on a device that can manipulate gravity accidentally creates a wormhole that leads to another dimension where he meets his alternate self.

Your Turn

All right, you have the prompts, you have the snarky titles. Now it's your turn to pick one. I'm excited to see what you all choose to foist upon my writing time!

Pick my next short story!

  • Definitely not the Matrix

  • Little Planet of Horrors

  • AI's in Muh Blood!

  • A Dozen Monkeys

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