I love travel and one of the places I have enjoyed visiting is South Africa so when Rachel Poli asked me if I would like to support Zozi Flash 2017, an anthology of South African authors, with an extract and giveaway I jumped at the chance.
Although I didn’t have chance to read and review all the Jozi Flash 2017 entries, I have chosen one to share with you today that particularly caught my attention.
You can download Jozi Flash 2017 here.
Jozi Flash 2017
It’s not quite the Gummi Bears, but it certainly bounces around a lot.
Jozi Flash 2017 combines the talents of ten brilliant authors with one gifted artist, to bring you a collection of 80 flash fiction stories across eight different genres.
From a children’s story about the folly of summoning dragons, to the horrors held in deliciously treacherous ice cream, the authors take you on journeys that weave fantasy and folklore together alongside practical detectives and everyday tragedy.
With stunning artwork prompts by Nico Venter, these South African authors have created an anthology that will leave you breathless.
An Extract from Jozi Flash 2017
Artefact by Nthato Morakabi
We were constantly searching for them. Researchers, analysts, and scholars from across all fields pursued possibilities of unknown artefacts that vetoed Fringe Science had suddenly revealed to us.
It was merely a matter of time before I was attacked by Them.
Pin pricks crawled along my bare feet and up along my legs. I felt them all. Millions of tiny needles clawing up my body.
My feet failed to budge. My body refused to move. It seemed only my internal system worked as my heart thumped in my chest and my frigid blood converged along my spine. My mind whirred uncontrollably at the irrational prospect of being covered in swarms of millipedes, perhaps ants, or worse – spiders. The skittering continued below the thermal blanket covering me, rising higher. The heat-reflective plastic sheet over me crackled with irregular movement.
Frantic, I urged my body to move. I utilised all mental capabilities to force some sort of response – to no avail. When the prickling feet reached my abdomen, some seemingly superhuman strength hoisted my body upwards, feet kicking haphazardly, hands hysterically sweeping over my body hoping to rid myself of whatever critters had infiltrated my bed. But there were none. Still shivering, I called to the ship’s AI for light.
Then I saw it.
It stood before me on myriad segmented legs that tapered to the floor. They were attached to an oblong cephalothorax that became a bulbous abdomen scraping the ceiling. A large head hovered above me and drew closer. The chelicera clicked together once. All eight eyes blinked separately.
A film of sweat covered my body as though every inch had been suffused in ice. I shivered uncontrollably.
I understand this form is a terror imbued within the human psyche, hence why I approached you thus.
“What …” was all I managed.
What do I seek? It is simple. Your ship approaches my home and my people are severely hostile towards your approach. Any closer and we will–
The door to my pod swished open, cutting off the voice. The creature scuttled around to face the intruder.
Relief washed over me as the great, bearded captain raised his Dissonance pistol and took aim. Only it wasn’t towards the creature, it was …
The weapon fizzled with life and an electric current buzzed through my mind. A moment later, the arachnoid began to shrink and amalgamate in a viscous fluid, its limbs fusing with a metallic glint until a single cubed entity hovered at the foot of the bed.
“Man versus machine was such a cliché in my day.” Captain Halberd grunted. A moment later, his secondary pistol had let off a resounding bang. The cube turned to ash. From behind his jacket he pulled out the infamous pocket watch displaying a swirling galaxy – the First Artefact. He looked up as though seeing me for the first time.
“I suggest you rest, Professor. We will require your expertise soon. We found a new artefact.”
About the Jozi Flash 2017 Authors and Artist
Ten talented authors and one gifted artist joined forces to create an anthology of flash fiction stories that embody the multicultural melting pot that is South Africa.
For more info on the individual authors, take a look at their author pages here.
Win free copies of eBooks by three Jozi Flash 2017 authors:
Beneath the Wax by Nthato Morakabi
1723: Constantine Bourgeois is a man of many secrets. Artisan by day, killer by night, he turns his victims into wax figures for his shop.
2045: Richard Baines works for the renowned Anthony Garfield Historical Museum. His mundane existence is a stark counterpoint to his fascination with serial killers and science fiction.
Constantine’s nightmares drive him to undertake a journey to uncover a long-forgotten secret. Richard’s research uncovers a company secret and the mystery of Madame Bourgeois.
Two men, two timelines, and truths that will only be revealed when they look Beneath the Wax…
Dim Mirrors by Carin Marais
Dim Mirrors is a collection of 39 flash fiction stories that open windows into worlds of fantasy and nightmare. Interwoven with images from mythology and folklore are the themes of love, loss, and memory. The comical “Not According to Plan” leads to more serious and introspective works like “Blue Ribbons” and “The Destroyer of Worlds”, while mythology and folkloric elements come together in stories like “The Souls of Trees” and “Ariadne’s Freedom”.
Sketches by Nicolette Stephens
Like art sketches, flash fiction stories are fleeting moments captured in a few hundred words.
In a world without men, the first boy child is welcomed as the saviour of his race; a cuckoo clock holds death and destruction in its beautifully carved figures; and a snowman holds a silent vigil of peace during war.
In this collection of 50 stories, illustrated with her artwork, the author delves into worlds of imagination and reality inspired by words and drawings.
Please note that this competition is run independently of Linda’s Book Bag and I have been asked to provide the following statement:
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter link here. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
For more about Jozi Flash 2017 follow the tour with these other bloggers: