Just a Hint & Nothing More

“small” by jelens. Photo: Design Mine.

I don’t often take up challenges, but this one was a doozy. In other words, hard to resist.

You see, my blogger pal, Jayne Martin threw down the gauntlet in her blog, injaynesworld, when she invited her readers to write a piece of “Hint Fiction.”

Hint Fiction?

Never heard of it, but it turns out it’s a genre all its own. Totally legit. There’s even a book or two on the style. If you don’t believe me, check out this story about it from NPR.

As it happens, it’s a way of writing fiction for folks who don’t have time to read. The story is told in 25 words or less, and successful ones evoke a longer story, making you wonder what happened and what will happen next.

Anyway, 25 words is really short if you ask me. So, you can better believe yours truly used all 25 words to write hers. Take a gander at what I’ve written, which is based on something from my past, and see what you think:


Don’t know how I survived Camp Prison-Shit. If not for Jon and his dog, Lucas, I’d been cooked. Of course, slipping into a coma helped.



Feel free to write your own in the comments below, or on your blog (if you have one, that is).  Also, what do you think happened in this story? Care to venture a guess?

Visit the Links in this collection, to add your own or to see what Hint Fiction others have created.





46 thoughts on “Just a Hint & Nothing More

  1. Took notes. May try this as interactive post on my blog. People that visit have fun playing off the humor of the cartoon and each other so may get some quality participation.

  2. Now I’m curious! Going to take a gander at the next post. (I’m way behind. Forgive me.) Hint fiction – shorter than flash fiction? My goodness. So much for the long-form writer! 🙂

  3. Hey Monica,

    Excellent post ever..

    I am excited to know more so definitely others readers want also to know more. You have explained in a great way.


    • Oh, you should go sometime. Of course, humor and time and faded memory have a way of making it out to be worse than it actually was. But still, it was pretty wild. Those were the days…

  4. Slipping into a coma certainly makes the time pass more quickly. Sounds like summer camp from hell!

  5. I was going to email you Monica, then, while packing, I saw you had posted. You know I always love what you have to say. So when you mentioned hint fiction, I thought, what is that? I’ve never heard of it. How smart and like you say, much like a haiku – my daughter learned to write haikus this year. So exciting.

    I could not write in 25 words… You’ve seen my reviews. As a challenge, I often think of writing mini reviews on a couple of books. Um, I never do it because I have so much to say.
    I am intrigued. In spite of the fiction. I know there is a story behind it and I for one really miss your stories, so I hope you write what we all want to read.

    • Oh you are such a dear to say such kind words. My little endeavor in Hint Fiction is actually from a very real story–one crazy summer I spent as a camp counselor in a very non-traditional camp. I may turn it into a fuller story one of these days. Enjoy your trip (safe travels, too!) and do stay in touch. Otherwise, I’m afraid I will miss you too much! Hugs!

    • OMG, you have me in stitches with that line, “comas can be so helpful, it’s true.” I never laughed so hard–and yes, you’re right on the nose! They sure come in handy for getting out of all sorts of undesirable situations. 😉

  6. I’m so intrigued. I was thinking that you had to clean latrines at a summer camp, and got trapped in a small hot building and Jon let you out? And you passed out from being overheated?

  7. I know I’m a weirdo but this actually brought a smile. I imagine whatever happened when you were a youngster wasn’t funny but telling the full story today is probably pretty damn amusing.

    • MaryLisa, that was quite a summer, that’s all I can say. But I must say, your comment, as well as some of the others left here, are inspiring me to tell the story. Thanks! 🙂

    • Thank you so much! I elaborate on my description of it in the reply comment I left Val. Check it out and many thanks for stopping by and reading my blog and, of course, adding your two cents to the conversation. I love it!

  8. Okay, this one is clearly above my grade level. You’re going to have to give me more of a hint. You’re allowed to title your piece, you know. Think about it. 😉

  9. I’d never heard of hint fiction before. Just 25 words, huh? And here, I’d thought Twitter was brief with its 140 characters!! I suppose it’s pretty good training, though, for those who tend to be wordy (or for those trying to find the meat of a longer story they’re working on!)

    • i guess I’m one of those who can be a bit verbose. Which is why I always refuse doing the 5-sentence stories. Who am I kidding? Then I go and do this. Actually, the style reminds me of a haiku. Hope you try your hand at it, Debbie!

    • Flash fiction is the 5-sentence stories? Me too! I didn’t think it could get any shorter. Did you check out Jayne’s post on this topic? She included a piece of hint fiction that Hemingway wrote. Most intriguing!

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