Flash Fiction Contest Runner Up, Supie Dunbar!
interview by Marcia Peterson
WOW: Congratulations on placing in the top ten in our Winter 2016 Flash Fiction competition. What inspired you to enter the contest?
Supie: My story, "Call Home", made it to the second round of judging in your Spring 2015 contest. That motivated me.
WOW: Can you tell us what encouraged the idea behind your story, “A Shirt Tale?” I like the play on words with the title.
Supie: Usually an image or line of dialogue or a character’s name enters my head and lingers there for months until it becomes a story. With "A Shirt Tale," I had an image of a shirt running along the side of a country road. Months later, Lorraine appeared with her clothes-pins and cluster of bruises. This is my first story with an element of unreality in it. It had a fairy tale quality, hence the title. When Angela informed me I was in the top ten, she commented on the magical realism of the piece. I had to google that. Thanks, Angela, for enhancing my knowledge.
WOW: You mention that you surprised yourself by becoming a writer during your retirement. Since then, your flash fiction and poetry have been published in several places. Tell us about your writing journey so far, which seems like it would be a lot of fun.
Supie: I’ve always been creative but my focus was on visual art. Four years ago, I accompanied a friend to a one-day writing session. At the end of the day I had two stories generated from prompts. I continued writing. My friend didn’t. It can be fun—an acceptance letter will leave me giddy for days. But I have over 100 rejections. Surprisingly, some rejections are supportive and positive. Not many, but some. Recognizing a talent late in life can be bittersweet. Of course "Better late than never" is true. But there is a little bit of regret. If I had started earlier maybe I coulda been a contender.
WOW: You still are a contender, keep at it! Do you have any writing goals in mind for the rest of the year?
Supie: Well, I’d like to place in the top three in one of your contests.
WOW: That's a good goal to reach for. Thanks so much for chatting with us today, Supie. Before you go, can you share your favorite writing tip or advice with our readers?
Supie: Submit. Submit. Submit.
Our summer flash fiction contest is currently OPEN!
For details and entry, visit our contest page.