As the last embers of 2012 die on the fire, it’s a time for reflection and review here at 330Words. This, our third year, saw nearly 11,000 of you visit the site to read one of the 73 stories sent in by 42 different authors. During the half-time break of 2012, we also celebrated a major landmark, welcoming the 200th tale onto the site. Not too shabby.
2012 kicked off with some of my favourite stories from the year. Oli P.Lill started the ball rolling with Bisto, while the ever-present talent of Dom Conlon and Top Man Benjamin Judge wrote two of my personal favourite tales of the year in the form of Another Angel and The Island.
In April, 330Words took part in the Chorlton Arts Festival as part of the Manchester writing collective #Flashtag, while I penned one of my most satisfying tales of the year with The Girl on the Moon, a story that would go on to appear in the launch issue of 2020 Magazine (Pictured above).
Valerie O’Riordan reads at #Flashtag’s Chorlton Arts Festival event
In May, Flashtag took to the stage once more with a unique live event for National Flash Fiction Day, while 330Words welcomed fantastic tales from Misti Rainwater-Lites and regular contributor Christopher Marshall. 330Words also made an impromptu appearance at Salford Art Festival, Sounds from the Other City.
330Words reads as part of National Flash Fiction Day
Spring was replaced by summer and tales from Sal Page and Clare Kirwan kept us entertained as rain fell across the city. We also had the first tales from a number of talented writers in the shape of Phil Monks, Rachel Campbell Zaino and Sheba Curran.
Flashtag hero David Hartley appeared on the site in July with his tale Shoot, while exile from Manchester didn’t stop Nick Garrard from plying us with words in Gift of the Gab. We also had a lovely tale from Emma Hinge and the apocalypse rose its head in Armageddon by Stella Turner.
Lucy Uprichard saw us into Autumn, while stories from John Risby, Gary Kaill and Dom Conlon kept up the ante as November approached. Meanwhile, The #Flashtag collective graced the launch issue of Manchester magazine Now Then, while I represented 330Words in the Manchester Weekender, courtesy of Tales of Bad Language.
December saw the return of Dom Conlon with his unique take on Christmas in The Visitor, while Laura Maley sneaked into the site during the last weeks of 2012 with Shape of a Laugh. If you grow weary of turkey and tinsel, their stories offer ample respite from the festive spirit.
In other news, it’s been a busy year for #Flashtag. In September, the group hosted a unique live music/words event with Word>Play for Didsbury Arts Festival, featuring the charming Valerie O’Riordan, Monkeys in Love and local poet Adrian Slatcher. Meanwhile, Benjamin Judge and I represented the group in the Lancaster Literature Festival.
Clips from Word>Play
It would be remiss not to mention the folks over at Bad Language, one of the region’s best performance nights, which celebrated its second birthday in November. It’s a fantastic evening of live words and poetry and I’ve always had a lovely time reading there. The group has some interesting stuff planned for 2013, so it’s definitely worth keeping an eye out for them in the new year.
It’s been a wonderful year for 330Words and it’s been a pleasure and a privilege to read all of your tales. I’ve got big plans for the site in 2013 and, hopefully, you’ll all pop by next year for more words and pictures.
Have a peaceful Christmas and a prosperous new year.
Our authors in 2012
Rachel Campbell Zaino
Sarah Grace Logan
Julie Morgan King