Flash Clash Challenge: Day #17

It’s Day #17 of my Flash Clash Challenge, and I’m sorry I’m a bit late in posting today. You see I was busy shouting from the rooftops, letting everyone what a genius Alex Burrett is for his story today, a remarkable little number called Godwatching. As its name may suggest the Good Lord does makes an appearance, but His appearance is anything less than ‘good’. It’s not His fault though. You see there’s a voyeur in his presence – an ‘Astral Traveller’ called Carol – and it is her encounter with the Holy Father that forms the basis for this story. It’s not often I award a 5 out of 5 (because nothing’s perfect, right?), but on this occasion I was actually looking for a 6th. Nuff said!

If it wasn’t for Burrett’s storytelling brilliance today then Nik Perring would have definitely took today’s title for best story. Emotional and sensitive, yet lightly flavoured with a sprinkling of humor, In My Head I’m Venus stands as one of the most thought-provoking stories I’ve read in Nik’s collection so far (with the definite exception of Kiss which is indescribably thought-provoking :)). A superb story, even more so given that it’s achieved in so little a word count. Pure genius!

So how did the rest of the ‘combatants’ measure up today? Let’s take a look:

Author Collection Story Title *Comment Rating
Nik Perring In My Head I’m Venus Wonderful Rating: ★★★★½
Alex Burrett Godwatching Perfect Rating: ★★★★★
Etgar Keret The Mysterious Disappearance of Alon Shemesh Strange Rating: ★★★☆☆
**David Gaffney Potato Smiles
Shop Talk
Rating: ★★★½☆
Rating: ★★½☆☆
***Dan Rhodes Madrid
Rating: ★★½☆☆
Rating: ★★★½☆
Rating: ★★★½☆

*Keeping in the spirit of flash I’m limiting myself to only giving single-word comments for each story.
**As they are incredibly short in length, David Gaffney’s stories are being ‘ticked off’ two at a time.
*** Dan Rhode’s stories are even shorter than Gaffney’s and to ensure that I finish his collection in time, I have to cover three per day.

Inspired by the publication of Nik Perring’s debut flash fiction collection, the Flash Clash Challenge is a fun contest in which three four other experts in the field are compared alongside Nik. You can find out more about it HERE.

About Rob

Rob, a self-confessed bibliophile, is without any hope of rehabilitation. He gets unnaturally excited over anything book-shaped, and if book sniffing were a crime then he would have been locked up years ago (which wouldn't bother him in the slightest provided his cell was lined with books).


  1. Right. You’ve convinced me (well, you had before and I’d been busy and/or lazy). Mr Burrett’s book has been ordered. Looking forward to it muchos.

    And thanks so much (again!) for doing this. It’s fab.


    • Rob (Twitter: robaroundbooks)

      Wow, Alex will be pleased (and maybe a little anxious as he’s creation is going to be scrutinised by someone who knows stuff i.e. not me :)).

      As for thanking me? No need! This is the best fun I’ve had in ages, and although I feel as though it may be dragging on and cheesing off a few of the RobAround visitors, I’m glad I’m doing it.

      • Well I think you do deserve thanks, Rob – it’s been brilliant to read (and that’s not just from an author’s point of view). I’m really looking forward to it> Now, I just need the time to read…

  2. I agree with Nik — it’s a fab project, Rob! Unfortunately, I just figured out that the Perring and Burrett books are not in the US yet! I’ll just have to start with the Keret.

  3. Well, I just finished reading the Keret book (review to come soon) and am in love with flash fiction. I’m not always a fan of the short story but these definitely worked for me. I’ll be buying the Perring and Burrett books soon because I need more of these “bursts of story”!

    • Rob (Twitter: robaroundbooks)

      I’m delighted you’re suddenly so in love with the form Kristen. My job here, is done 🙂 (Well, not really because the Flash Clash Challenge still has a few more days to run :))
      Anyway, I look forward to seeing your Keret review