oloughlinCongratulations to Jim O’Loughlin for his story “Choices Made.” 

 He placed third in The Flash Fiction Chronicles String-of-10 Contest held in August.  The challenge was to write a piece of short fiction, 250 words or less, using at least four of the following prompt words: 


 QUOTATION: And when is there time to remember, to sift, to weigh, to estimate, to total? –Tillie Olsen * 


by Jim O’Loughlin

Later, he would be able to consider all that he had left behind and never saw again: the wedding album, the birth certificates, the kids’ favorite toys, even the laptop.  In the moment though, with the storm surging and blow back peeling off the roof like masking tape, he only had time to grab what he could on the way out.  

Still, even as he ran to the car, dripping sweat and bleeding from the gash in his forehead, with the river already up to the wheel wells, he realized that the choices he had just made said something about who he was.  In his arms, he held a phone book, the cantaloupe that had just turned ripe, and a gallon of milk. And he had made sure to lock the front door.


Jim O’Loughlin’s flash fiction has appeared in Quick Fiction, The Pedestal Magazine, and North American Review.  He is the publisher of Final Thursday Press  at http://www.finalthursdaypress.com.


Second Place will be published here at Flash Fiction Chronicles on Friday, October 23, 2009 and First Place will be published at Every Day Fiction on Sunday, October 25, 2009.


 *The quotation was also part of the prompt, but there was no requirement to use it in the story.