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In a flurry of flame and fur, fangs and wicker, thus ended the world’s first and only hot air baboon ride.

That was the runner-up entry to the Adventure category, and it only gets worse from there. Ok, so what IS the Bulwer-Lytton contest? For those who don’t know (and according to Wikipedia):

The Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest (BLFC) is a tongue-in-cheek contest that takes place annually and is sponsored by the English Department of San José State University in San Jose, California. Entrants are invited “to compose the opening sentence to the worst of all possible novels” — that is, deliberately bad.

Enjoy these! They’re well funny!

[Link: 2009 Bulwer-Lytton Fiction contest winners]

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I’ve been following the Dreden Codak webcomic for a while, and occasionally something really funky comes out of it. In this particular case, it’s a list of 42 3rd act plot twists that can, and often does, happen. The twists are arranged on a matrix, so along the top you have peripeteia (your standard plot reversal), anagnorisis (realization of things as they actually are; see the link for deeper explanations), petard hoist (done in by your own machinations), reverse macguffin (reverse driving plot element), Shyamalan (plot twist as written by M. Night Shyamalan), Double Shyamalan (double the fun of a standard Shyamalan), and deus ex machina (literally, God from the machine, where a plot device appears from nowhere to solve all the problems). Along the side, are the standard genres of fiction: tragedy, thriller, science, horror, fantasy, and mystery.

I dare you to come up with a work of fiction that fits each plot twist.

[Link: Dresden Codak – 42 essential 3rd act twists]

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