Cats & Dogs – Submit Your Seventh Short Story For 2018 Today

We have written seven stories to date! Well done, writers. I am very proud of everyone.

Submission process: 

I will accept and approve posts for Cats and Dogs (Word count: 300 words) from 11 July 2018, 8:00 (Johannesburg time | GMT +2:00), until 12 July 2018, 8:00 (Johannesburg time | GMT +2:00) on  Please ask Google to figure out what time that will be in your part of the world.

Please use the correct format:

In the post title bar:  Story Title by Author Name.

Just above the story: Prompt: XXXXXX | Word count: XXXXXX | Genre: XXXXXX

Warning: Please add a warning if your story is not appropriate for sensitive or younger readers.

Can I still join?

You can join the 12 Short Story Challenge in any month. So, if you start in June, that will be month one for you and then May 2019 will be month 12.

Here is the procedure:

  1. Read today’s post.
  2. Post your story on 12 Short Stories.
  3. Read and comment on at least four other stories. Please spread the love. Look for stories that haven’t been read, instead of everyone reading and commenting on the same stories. If you want tips on how to comment, read this post: The Complete Guide To Evaluating Your Short Story.
  4. This is an exercise in discipline. The comments are a bonus. There is no prize because I want you to focus on writing for yourself and to try and take more risks.
  5. Be kind when you comment. Start with a positive comment, suggest an improvement, and end with something positive. We are here to learn.
  6. Our next prompt is at the end of this post.

A few more points:

  1. I will try to read as many posts as possible, but I do have a day job that I would like to keep.
  2. NO hate speech. None. If you see something nasty that I should be made aware of, please send me a message.
  3. Be careful of profanity.
  4. I need to approve every post. Please be patient with me. I am teaching during the day and I will approve them as quickly as I can. They will all go up. 

Here is my short story:

Poor Man’s Cocaine by Mia Botha 

Prompt: Cats and Dogs | Word count: 300 words exactly | Genre: Action

Warning: Violence

The girl was slumped against the wall of the alley. Her lips blue, her eyes lifeless. Joy tried to look away, but the girl demanded her attention.

“Cause of death?” Drew asked. 

“Overdose, that’s why we called you.” The sweaty detective said mid-swagger.

Joy looked away from the girl. “Why not the coroner?”

“Coroner is coming, Senorita, but this one asked to be kept in the loop.”

“And?” Drew folded his arms.

The detective opened a small glittery clutch and showed them the content. Lipstick, tissues, money and a small plastic bag. “This is Cat.” He pulled out the small baggie, clouded by a powdery residue. “Our typical poor man’s cocaine. We see a lot of it here, cheaper and the high lasts longer, but this is new.” He picked up the second bag. A small blue pill sat snug in the bottom corner. A picture embossed in the hard shell: a pit bull. “They’re taken together. It increases the high, but something has gone wrong. She is the fifth one we’ve found so far.”

“Cats and dogs. You’re kidding, right?” Drew ran a tired hand over his face. “Any ideas?” He turned to Joy.

“Carlos was working on something, but it’s not like him to push a product that isn’t ready. Dead customers are bad for business.” Joy crouched next to the girl. “Are you done?”

The detective nodded, and Joy pulled up the girl’s skirt exposing her thigh. A brand had melted into her soft flesh, the tell-tale lines of his mark etched in scar tissue. “She is one of Carlos’s.”

“What do you mean she is one of Carlos’s?”

“He has diversified.”

Drew is quiet. He looks at her. “Human trafficking?”

She nods.

“That’s why you left, isn’t it?”

Joy turned and walked back to the car.

Here is the eighth prompt for the 2018 challenge:

If you want to learn how to write a short story, join us for Short Cuts in Johannesburg or sign up for our online course.

 by Mia Botha

If you enjoyed this post, you will love:

  1. A Complete Beginner’s Guide To Creating A Privacy Policy
  2. 31 Writing Prompts For July 2018
  3. Forbidden Places – Submit Your Sixth Short Story For 2018 Today