The 2005 Purple Prose Parody Contest
July 15, 2005:
We kicked off our ninth annual Purple Prose Parody Contest on June 1st. Fourteen entries were received during the submission period. Below you will find more about this year's contest, including information on submissions, voting, when and where the winner is announced, as well as links to each entry. The submission process ended at midnight, June 28th. Voting began on June 29th and ran through midnight, July 13th. Only one vote per person was accepted - and entrants were advised that it's really best to not have your entire family vote for you en masse.
The winning entry, as announced in the July 15th At the Back Fence column, is Widget Jones's Diary, by Amy Edwards and Kate Johnson. and as well as whether the contest just ended was our final PPP Contest. When informed of their win, Amy had this to say: "'We'd like to thank the academy...' I'm just wayyyy too proud of writing the worst of the worst - is it sad that the most popular thing I've ever written was so bad?" And because only one prize was allotted in this years contest, Amy, who lives in the U.S. - Kate lives in the U.K. - added, "You bet your sweet bippy I'm lying about the colors. 'Oh, hon, they'd look so horrible on your blondeness... they're definitely designed for a brunette.' Heh heh heh!" As for Kate, she responded, "Oh my God, really? I'm not sure if I'm proud of us or not! LOL - no, I am. I'll be seeing Amy in a couple of weeks, so I can fight her for it then."
Although love scene parodies remain the most frequent of entries, we encourage entrants each year to let their imaginations run wild. Homages to favorite authors, use of the "merge-matic" concept (Whitney, My Savage Love, anyone?), parodies of the Big Mis or Big Secret, homages to your favorite Chick Lit novel, big-city heroines giving it all up for her small-town sheriff, epilogues replete with characters from previous books in a series and multiple rugrats, or Regency ball scenes...there's no end to what you might do in a winning entry. The only limit is the word count. Entries over the past few years have been limited to 1,500 words.
This year's new twist was Western/Frontier Romances. Between wagon trains, cattle runs - and rustlers - picnic basket auctions, heroines who can ride and shoot like men, steely-eyed sheriffs and cowboys, and the villain who lives next door, forcing the heroine into marriage to save the farm, I hoped for our best contest ever. Entrants were not limited to parodying the Western - but in case of a tie, it might well be the deciding factor.
Entries were limited to no more than 1,500 words and must have been received no later than midnight, June 28th via email. Email submissions required the subject line: "2005 PPP Contest" and the name and snail mail address for entrants were required as well so that mailing the winner's prize could be expedited easily.
Entries were received as posted. In order to begin the voting process on June 29th, all entries had to have been received via email no later than midnight, June 28th and as the cut-off date for submitting was midnight, June 28th.
Voting continued through midnight, July 13th.
Amy Edwards and Kate Johnson are now forced to fight it out over a collection of cosmetics (pictured at right above) from Bare Escentuals, with a value of $80. The Four-Piece Color Kit in Evening Bag is comprised of a "Smile" lip gloss, "Surprise" glimpse (for the eyes), "Beauty" blush, a wet/dry eye shadow/liner brush, and silk evening bag.
An homage to Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dark Hunters as written by Melissa Russo:
Seize the Day
Chapter 1: Pale beams of sunlight caressed the goddess Heferina, bathing her in the glow of the early morning sun. She sighed. Nothing was ever easy. With the rise of crime and other atrocities she feared for mankind, and so created a different breed of hunter. Men designed to protect and defend mortals during the daylight hours. Lesser in ability than their dark brethren, they would be known as Lite Hunters. Heferina gazed out from her temple, with eyes that could see beyond her realm, to watch her creation.
Present Day-New York City
It was a beautiful morning. The kind that made a girl glad to be alive. Dressed in a T-shirt and running shorts, Muffin Runningirl left her apartment geared up to seize the day. The cool, crisp air seemed to bring all her senses to life. The colors were brighter, traffic noise less irritating. Even her neighbors seemed less offensive on a morning like this. Muffin reveled in the autumn weather as she stretched her legs, preparing for her daily run. She started off toward Central Park at a fast walk, and then transitioned into an easy jog. Pausing to check her watch and pulse rate, she prepared to step it up. Muffin crossed the bridge and took the path leading deeper into the park, only to find a gang of punks in bandanas and black leather blocking her path. Muffin swallowed as a shiver of fear went up her spine.
For the past 30 years Stud had walked in solitude. That was the way of a Lite Hunter. Eternally in sunlight, always alone. Forever, and ever alone. It was a lonely existence. Watching his former friends get paunchy and bald, he maintained his great, manly physique. While his old buddies reached for their Viagra, Stud reached for the next woman. It was too depressing to contemplate. He found himself wandering aimlessly toward Central Park to start his patrol. Even though it was early morning, he knew that crime didn't punch a time clock.
Stud paused as his Lite Hunter senses detected the presence of a woman in danger. He could feel the human's terror, and faster than you could say "Far Out Man!" he was deep into the park.
"Hey baby, how about a little action?" they taunted Muffin. Just as one started to put his hands on her....
Out of nowhere, prisms of light flared to life. Overhead, a dazzling rainbow began to pulse and swirl causing everyone to throw their hands up to protect their eyes. The punks squinted and looked around.
"Who wants to dance?" Stud called out.
Muffin turned, and saw the silhouette of a man poised near the edge of the trees. She tried to see the newcomer, and even though she could see nothing of his face, his aura was psychedelic, like an acid trip gone bad. Dressed all in white polyester he stood proudly in the classic John Travolta pose from Saturday Night Fever. He stood in silence, holding a miniature disco ball that glittered in the early morning light. Determined to draw all the attention to himself and away from the woman, Stud moved into action.
Using his Lite Hunter powers, he summoned music to cover the noise of the confrontation. A heavy disco beat filled the air as the Bee Gees started belting out Staying Alive. He ordered the woman to run, then turned to face the hoodlums. Muffin stepped away, her face pale.
With the lights pulsing to the music, Stud flung himself into a solo exhibition of dance moves. He Hustled, he Bumped, and tossed punks as if they were partners on a dance floor. The strobe lights slowed each move to a time warp of lethal beauty. In a move so smooth, he pulled the Afro pick from his curly perm, tossed it overhand, and caught one of them in the throat. As the rest tried to circle around him, Stud crossed his arms over his chest and began the Kazachoc Slavic dance, squatting and kicking each one squarely under the chin, knocking them out instantly, until the last one hit the dirt.
Muffin moved closer to get a better look at her hero and was impressed by the numerous gold chains hanging around his neck. He smelled of BRUTTM and polyester. The intoxicating combination invaded her senses and all but knocked her off her feet. Awestruck Muffin panted, "Who are you?"
"Stud, atcha service." He answered with a heavy Brooklyn accent.
"You're not from around here. Are you illegal?" Muffin mused.
"Only my moves - sweet thang, only my moves!"
He demonstrated by taking her hand and twirling her in close, dipping her over his arm. She raised her free hand to his chest to steady herself. His solid-as-granite pecs felt rock hard beneath her hand. His gold chains had shifted during their impromptu dance revealing a yellow smiley face tattoo just below his collar bone.
"That's an interesting tattoo you have." Muffin commented, tracing it with her finger.
"Dat means I'm a Lyte Hunta." He said proudly, "I serve the gawddess Heferina to protect mortals during the day."
"How did you become a Lyte Hunta?" she asked.
"30 years ago, I was da hawttest danca around." He turned his head; a look of pain crossed his handsome face. He shouldn't reveal his secret. She was a jogger, he was a Lite Hunter.
"You can tell me anything." Muffin comforted. It was like she could see right into his heart.
"I was outta sight!" he exclaimed. "The night of da dance competition, my best friend betrayed me! He wanted to win, so when his cigarette cawght my hair on fire, he just watched. Between my groovy polyester threads and AquaNet hairspray, I was a real Disco Inferno. As I lay dere with flames engulfing my bawdy, I cried for revenge. The gawddess appeared, and the rest is shall we say Hi-sto-ry."
"Oh, you poor man!" Muffin cried, tears swimming in her eyes.
"It's ok now, I had help from Cinder. He's my boss, and he's .. , well., BOSS!, he tawght me to use my moves, and let go of da past. Now, let's tawk about you and me." Stud flashed a wicked grin. Cupping her face in his hands, he lowered his lips to touch hers. Muffin moaned at the first taste of her Disco king. Stud's body was on fire again, but this time the only thing in danger was his heart.
Suddenly, there was a deadly calm to the atmosphere. Then it became charged with a powerful energy. An enormously tall man appeared at the other side of the bridge. Dressed from head to toe in black leather, his shocking pink hair was a colorful counterpoint to his black "Disco Sux" T-shirt and biker boots. He emanated raw power. By his side, was what appeared to be a petite woman with long black hair wearing a black leather bustier and miniskirt with hot pink leggings. Small pink horns peeped out from her hair. Sparkling bracelets adorned her arm. The music changed to Sweet Home Alabama as they approached. Stud and Muffin turned to meet them. Stud acknowledged the tall man with a grin, extending his hand.
"Hey Cinder, slide me some skin! You missed some outta sight action! Kimi, you foxy lady!" Stud said smiling at the young woman.
Kimi leaned to Cinder and whispered loudly, "Heferina, she make big screw-up! That funky chicken so bad, not even barbecue give him good taste!"
His lip quirked to one side, Cinder seemed almost amused by the situation.
"Stanley, Kimi's right. This is so bad, that I'm here to end the parody." Cinder responded, shaking his head. Stud/Stanley looked embarrassed by use of his true name.
"I thought your name was Stud?" Muffin gasped.
Cinder removed his sunglasses and turned to Muffin, tilting her chin until she looked at him.
"Little human, luckily for you, you won't remember anything about this morning. Now, it's time to finish your run," he commanded. Muffin woodenly moved onto the path and started running in the park, never looking back. In agony, Stanley watched her go.
"I'm going to send you someplace where you'll be appreciated." Cinder revealed.
Stanley grumbled "I hate it when you get all mysterious on me."
"Stanley, you are really outta sight."
With those words, Stud/Stanley vanished. Cinder raised his hand. The bodies disappeared, and everything returned to normal. Kimi laughed with pleasure.
"Where you send him?" she asked.
Cinder rubbed his chin and smiled. "To cure his Boogie Fever. At Disney World he can win the dance competition every night at 8-trax."
"D'Akqri, we're in New York?" Kimi asked. Cinder nodded affectionately.
"The Kimi wants to see that Travis Fimmel billboard, can we go?" she pleaded.
"Whatever you want Kimi." They walked away humming Taking Care of Business.
These events are fictitious, some of the characters are real. The names have been changed to protect the mad, bad and immortally sexy.
Purple Prose as written by Robin Steward:
A Virginal Victorian Quandry
As the aging yet virginal Lady Agnes writhed in pleasure, and not a little pain, upon the estate's northernmost knoll, known far and wide for its harsh, biting grasses, her alabaster buttocks protected by a crisp, clean apron thoughtfully brought along on this tryst by her very first lover, Allistair, the manse's head Cook, a kind, patient man whose features quite unfortunately bore an uncanny resemblance to those of the Jack of Clubs, one thought and one thought alone flashed suddenly and not unhorridly to the front of Agnes' mind: "Good God, I've finally lost my virginity and now I don't quite know what to think---why, I feel almost as though I'm caught between a smock and a card face!"
An homage to the Western Historical as written by Alicia Aho:
Missionaries, Missionaries, We're on Top!
"I could never want you, you hear me? Never!" Marcus cried out.
Narcissa's jade eyes narrowed to angry slits, and with fierce fervor, she placed one hand on the wall next to his head and pressed the curves of her body along the trembling length of his. Against his will, Marcus felt himself respond to her thrilling nearness. The wild heat of her femininity seared him, and to his shame, he felt lust rush headlong into his own randy thorn of desire.
Narcissa, well aware of her effect on him, grinned with savage triumph and profoundly lascivious undertones. "Never?" she purred mockingly. "Oh, I think not. In fact, I'd say you want me – right now."
"No!" Marcus gasped, or at least tried to gasp, but any sound he made was muffled has her mouth slanted punishingly over his. Her tongue thrust itself into his mouth like a hot knife through butter, leaving only a tepid yellow oil in its wake. Marcus moaned and felt himself submit to her pitilessly gentle seduction.
"That's better," she growled in triumph, "but not quite better enough ..." Reaching out one slender hand, she grasped the collar of his shirt and ripped it open to the waist, baring his smooth, soft chest to the raging perusal of her greedy, ravenous, slavering lust. Marcus had one brief moment in which to feel embarrassed before her mouth seized one of his nipples and laved.
He moaned, and arched his back. Narcissa growled in primal satisfaction and turned her attention to the other ruched love button on his quivering masculine chest
Tentatively, Marcus' trembling hand slid inside her bodice and hesitantly caressed her pink puckered peak, pebbly with palpitating passion. The effect on Narcissa was faster than instantaneous: she moaned harshly and bucked her hips against him, sucking on his nipples like a two-year-old on a sugar stick. Marcus felt the last of his resistance melt in the face of his desire, like a snowball kept secret in a freezer and then exposed to the sizzling summer sun.
"Narcissa," he whispered, "take me."
"Now." Narcissa growled. It was not a question.
"Now," Marcus agreed on a sigh, as she laved the one tiny part of his chest she'd missed in all the other lavings.
Growling again in satisfaction, Narcissa took a step back and shed her clothing with splendiferous efficiency. Marcus knew she'd done this a thousand thousand times before -- the consummate seductress -- and as he surveyed the unbridled feminine power of her naked form he felt himself tremble. "I've – I've never ..." he said.
She grinned triumphantly as she reached for him. "I know," she said, and there was triumph and victory and maybe even a little bit of smugness in the saying of it.
Gripping the waistband of his trousers, she pulled him forward. Away from the sturdiness of the wall. Towards her, and the headlong pleasure that only she could offer him.
A Merge-matic homage to Chick Lit, and Indian and Time Travel Romance as written by Lynn McCreadie:
My Sweet Savage Shoes
Kylie Snarkleman sat up, rubbing the bump on her head and blinking against the stars of pain dancing in front of her eyes. Whoever had put the huge rock right in the middle of an ancient Indian burial ground was clearly one smoke short of a full pack. She’d known this wilderness adventure vacation was a stupid idea. She could have broken an ankle.
Holding her breath, she examined her feet. She’d downgraded her morning Venti half-caf-half-decaf no-fat-sans-aspartame latté to a miniscule Grandé in order to get the cash for the camel-suede Manolo moccasins. If there was a single scuff on the dark orange 3-½-inch stacked heel pumps with black whip-stitched trim which tied in a bow on the pointed toe, she’d have somebody’s head. She’d paid full price. Full. Price.
Thankfully, her shoes had suffered no irreparable damage. She stood up, adjusting her black Cosabella Papillon underwire camisole and brushing the dirt from her beaded-pocket kerosene-wash Rock and Republic micro-mini.
“Did you see that?” she said over her shoulder to her best friend, JessJess. “I about got killed in this freakin’ graveyard.”
“You do not belong here,” a deep, decidedly non-JessJess voice replied. “This is sacred ground.”
Kylie whipped around, gasping at the very tall man standing before her. He was naked except for a scruffy looking rag tied around his waist. His skin glowed bronze, every muscle in his body-by-Gold’s chest defined by an artfully applied sheen of body oil. Black hair in serious need of some product flowed down his back, eyes a deep, piercify-ingly blue glaring at her. Cute enough, but the dude could totally use a visit from Queer Eye’s Kyan and Carson even if that rag did hide some interesting looking piece of beefcake.
“Who are you?” Kylie asked, glancing around for JessJess or anyone in their tour group. They must have ditched her for the snack bar, leaving her alone with Mr. Fashion Victim.
“I am Son-Of-Captive-White-Squaw-Who-Was-Adopted-Into-The-Tribe-When-My-Mother-Died-Tragically-While-Saving-
The-Chief’s-Troublesome-Son-From-Drowning,” he said, crossing arms the size of small tree trunks. His gaze traveled the length of her body, stopping when they reached her feet. His gasped loudly, his eyes taking on a lustful glitter.
Kylie rolled her eyes. “God. Not another foot-freak. I am so outta here. If you could just point me towards the Visitor’s Center?”
“Visitor’s center?” he echoed. “What is this visitor’s center, Woman-With-Very-Little-Clothing-To-Cover-Her-Milky-White-Breasts-And-Long-Legs-That-Go-Very-High?”
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