Flash Fiction Writing Prompt: Web

neah bay spider web flash fiction writing prompt KS Brooks
Image copyright K.S. Brooks. Do not use without attribution.

Use the photograph above as the inspiration for your flash fiction story. Write whatever comes to mind (no sexual, political, or religious stories, jokes, or commentary, please) and after you PROOFREAD it, submit it as your entry in the comments section below.

Welcome to the Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge. In 250 words or less, write a story incorporating the elements in the picture at left. The 250 word limit will be strictly enforced.

Please keep language and subject matter to a PG-13 level.

Use the comment section below to submit your entry. Entries will be accepted until Tuesday at 5:00 PM Pacific Time. No political or religious entries, please. Need help getting started? Read this article on how to write flash fiction.

On Wednesday, we will open voting to the public with an online poll so they may choose the winner. Voting will be open until 5:00 PM Thursday. On Saturday morning, the winner will be recognized as we post the winning entry along with the picture as a feature.

Once a month, the admins will announce the Editors’ Choice winners. Those stories will be featured in an anthology like this one. Best of luck to you all in your writing!

Entries only in the comment section. Other comments will be deleted. See HERE for additional information and terms. Please note the rule changes for 2018.

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8 thoughts on “Flash Fiction Writing Prompt: Web”


    Web Idyll

    Danny had noticed it growing up. A small prairie town, other towns nearby, hundreds of locals living on farms, needing the benefits of the service towns but leery of growth, knowing that the outer world thought nothing of encroaching.

    They didn’t put it that way usually. Mostly it was something like, “They from around here?’ referencing anybody who smacked of newness.

    Of course, there was always some newness, a professional, a doctor say, or a teacher. There was always someone new but that was tolerated if their virtues were self evident.

    They were acceptable additions.

    In that mesh of understanding by locals about who they were as a people, as a community, it was also something less spoken. Things had to get done.

    There was a system in place to do most things, government things, officials who dealt with the mundane and the occasionally maniacal.

    But sometimes, something else needed doing, something dark, certainly something the secret movers and shakers didn’t care to acknowledge.

    A major financial decision perhaps.

    Or the need to move someone along, some toxic newcomer who’d breached an unbreakable code of conduct.

    It was the next level of small-town ethos that he’d always known about.

    And now here, in this new world, an Island community he had immersed himself in, married into, raised children in, he suspected there was a shadow entity that had the final say about things dark and unspeakable.

    He knew he would cross with that entity.

    Perhaps he already had.

  2. “Give me a sign,” I whispered as I stepped out the door.

    After so many months of serial disappointment, I needed some quantum of hope, some morsel of solace. Yet the sky remained dull gray, the low cloud deck like a ceiling of beaten lead above. Just like my life right now.

    What fresh kick in the teeth would be coming my way today? Last week it was the alternator on the car that got me to work. There went the money I’d carefully saved for a vacation – and not even a fancy one, just a long-weekend trip up to Lake of the Ozarks and a little cabin to myself.

    I know, I should be grateful I had the money to hand instead of needing to borrow. But it’s going to suck to spend those days off sitting here at home. I’d thought about free activities here in town, but I knew it would just rub my nose in what I’d lost. For some people half a loaf is better than nothing, but I’m one of those people for whom a taste of honey is worse than nothing.

    All the way to work the sky remained dreary. And then, as I parked and got out of my car, the clouds separated and allowed the sun to shine onto me. And onto a spiderweb spun between the forking branches of a bush. In that moment the dewdrops upon the threads shone like strings of tiny diamonds.

  3. The vibrations of his web jerked Bartholomew out of his reverie… if it can be said that spiders have reveries. Using #3 and #7 of his eight eyes, Bartholomew discovered a nicely plump house fly struggling to free itself.

    “Aw fer… why all the way over there… why couldn’t it get stuck closer… like right here?”

    He started towards the fly, stopping to admire his reflection in a drop of dew that collected on a nearby leaf, using eyes #1 and #5 because they’re being slightly out of focus, they were the most flattering,

    “I am one drop-dead handsome guy!”

    Bartholomew had a exceedingly wide a vanity streak.

    The fly, whose name was Carl, if you care (and actually if you don’t) watched quizzically as the habitually starving spider actually kept staring at himself rather than eating one housefly. Carl, being a rather crafty bugger, decided on a plan.

    As the spider approached, Carl called out to him, “WAIT, STOP…

    Bartholomew stopped.

    “Damn you’re one handsome fellow… turn to your left would you. I wanna get a look you profile.

    The spider turned.

    “You… you… you’re gone be a star!”

    “You must be one of those celebrity spiders my talent agency has been looking for. We’ve got a major project featuring the super popular Miss Muffet you’ve heard about… and then there’s the big “Waterspout” project on the horizon. Cut me loose and I’ll get the contracts.”

    Bartholomew decided to forge his lunch that day.

  4. The Spider

    In the heart of a dark city, lived a man known only as “The Spider.” He was an evil genius, and his web of deception was legendary. He relished in manipulating those around him in his quest for revenge.

    One particular evening, The Spider set his genius intellect on a vulnerable target – a wealthy businessman named Victor Caine. He knew the businessman yearned for power above all else, and with this knowledge, The Spider began spinning his web.

    The Spider arranged to meet Victor in a secret location where he promised the businessman power and wealth if he drank a special elixir. Intrigued, Victor drank the potion, which allowed The Spider to manipulate Victor’s mind, making him believe he had obtained extraordinary abilities.

    Riding the waves of his newfound confidence, Victor swiftly rose to prominence, gaining control over the city’s power structures. However, as Victor’s power grew, so did his arrogance. Blinded by his delusions of grandeur, he started to make reckless decisions, unaware that every move he made was orchestrated by The Spider.

    Soon, Victor’s empire began to crumble, and the people he had once manipulated turned against him. Eventually, he fell from grace, leaving him with nothing but his shattered ego.

    The Spider reveled in his victory, having achieved his ultimate goal of destroying Victor. But he knew the web he had woven was far from complete. There were more puppets to manipulate, more lives to ruin.

    So, on your rise to success, beware of The Spider…


    You’re always suspicious, but you’ve no cause to care.

    It’s only a diamond-bejewelled antenna aligned toward God.

    The wary avoid it, often seeing the lost souls, the unfortunate waiting to commune. And the misguided crash into it, some blasting right through, many uncaring as they depart my snare. Some will be fortunate, and some will leave part-bound, their battered wings misfiring as they falter, spiralling slowly to their deaths.

    There are very few who will escape me and live. It’s a sacrilege when that happens, my efforts demanding a reward for my ingenuity, my engineering skills, and the filaments I use, creating and spinning my threads, a psychopomp of almost infinitesimal size.

    It needs to be said that I’m efficient, my venom and speed dispatching all who err and get caught. But there’s a delicacy and grace to what I do. I circle and retreat and then secure, my constructions mathematical, inherently scientific, always disguising the darkness beneath where I dwell.

    I’m a cautious opportunist; it’s true. But I’ve an appetite matching my ambition, never refusing a challenge. I’m patient and ultra-organised, cruelly vicious, my gossamer and my fangs more than a match for most that visit.

    Or maybe I’m just a curiosity. A many-legged night-dweller that threatens you from your dreams, waiting to tangle you like the sheets that bind, while my faceted eyes capture the moonlight.

  6. “Hi, sir.”
    “I’m just checking things here, nothing to worry about.”
    “Nice day, Inspector Black.”
    “I’m sorry, I really can’t socialize with you.”
    “That’s okay.”
    “Now, have I got the name correct – S. Pider?
    “That’s me.”
    “Great. It says on the permit for the web, that you would have 16 access points, is that correct?”
    “Yes, sir.”
    “Got a little sloppy on one of them. What happened?”
    “Oh yeah. The wind was blowing that day, and I had to improvise.”
    “Are you trying to flaunt your knowledge, Mr. Pider? What’s an im pro vise?”
    “No, sir. I was trying just to make sure it was properly supported.”
    “Yeah, that always helps. Have you caught anything in it yet? You look pretty hungry.”
    “No, sir. It was just completed last month.”
    “Let me check some other things here- Center cluster properly placed – correct. Horizontal rigging properly reinforced – well done. Lanyards properly tied to high point structure – nice. Minimum of seven ribs on each access from center – marvelous.”
    “Nice, huh?”
    “Are you trying to influence me, Mr. Pider?”
    “No, sir, just proud of my work. My father taught me well.”
    “Pider, Pider, you’re not the son of Silky Sam Pider, are you?”
    “Yes, he was my father,” he replied with moisture forming in his many eyes.
    “He was very handsome, unfortunately, he tangled with my girlfriend.”
    “What’s this mess off to the side of the left structure?”
    “I was trying to mate that day.”
    “Just like your father – Web Construction Disapproved!”

  7. Premonitory Web

    I left the sanctuary, contemplating what I should do next. Walking, I attempted to work through the problems. It seemed impossible because there were so many and they grew in number daily.

    Looking ahead, I saw a female staring between two trees and utterly unable to move. Terror ran helter- skelter through her veins while her breathing was torturous. Lost and bewildered. Attempting to stammer out words was futile, so she shakily pointed. A perfect spider web glittering with dew. It was complex, complete and captivating. As delicate as fine lace, as interesting as nature and as perfect as new born life.

    After leading her away from the web, she became calmer and more coherent. Barely above a whisper, words were wrung out of her dropping dead like stones, “Don’t you see? The web is a premonition.”

    She paused for so long, I thought she had entered a trance. Patiently, I gave her a little more time to compose herself. Shakily, she began again, “ Sir Walter Scott said it best.”

    Another long pause before she began again, “‘Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practise to deceive.’”

    Initially she must have thought that this explained everything, but when I looked at her blankly innocent, she continued, “We are acting dishonestly. How? We have convinced ourselves that other people are out there in the world. We are lying to ourselves. There is no one else in the world. We are the last survivors.”

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