341 to 350

October 23, 2016
TECH: Hi @apple? I saw a creepy viral video last week and now a ghost girl crawled out my phone. She’s only 6 inches high and very sad, help

PROG ROCK: The album went gold. Carl Sagan brought acid to the party. Next morning the record was gone, and Voyager 1 was heading to Saturn.

SOCIAL MEDIA: Tell me a more annoying structure for a tweet. I’ll wait.

MYTH: Narcissus stared at his reflection until he drowned. Not because he loved himself, but because he couldn’t stop obsessing over a zit.

BUSINESS: He gave up music when he became a secretary, but held on to some of his old stage swagger. Putting the punk into punctuality.

CONSPIRACY: “Weave the tapestry of deception. Smother the Facebook posts of all who defy us,” intoned the dark cultists of Snopes.

HISTORICAL: Genghis Khan surveyed his army. It spread to the horizon. “I shall paint the world red,” he said. "Damn I’m adulting hard."

CYBERPUNK: “No one holds me back! I can do it and I WILL do it! Yeah! Woo!” said Google’s new car, being maybe a little too self-driven.

LINGUISTICS: To dogs, the phrase “The carrot and the stick” has the exact opposite meaning.

WAR: “No Guts, No Glory” was the motto of the regiment. They were strangely proud of having neither guts nor glory.


331 to 340

June 9, 2016

LITERARY: He found a white hair, and sighed. It had to happen some time. You can’t escape a wizard’s curse turning you into a polar bear.

EROTICA: She was turned on by statistics. It wasn’t uncommon. In the world of mathematical fetishes, it was a standard deviation.

SHLOCK: Anyone know a quiet place in the city? Secluded, private, no witnesses? Asking for a fiend.

COMPLIMENT: “You’re one in a million. That’s your rating. One out of a million.”

ETIQUETTE: End a statement with “just saying” if you’ve run out of things to say but you still need people to hate you.

HISTORY: Archaeological evidence shows that the Great Pyramid Of Giza was constructed by a workforce of 100 000 unpaid interns.

MEDICINE: “Back, fiend!” he yelled, holding out an apple. The doctor hissed and retreated into the shadows.

BIOPUNK: “Heeeey! Who has seventeen thumbs and a surgery addiction?"

BUREAUCRACY: Due to a clerical error, millions of dollars of genetic research funding were accidentally granted to the Human Gnome Project.

BIOLOGY: When rabbits see approaching headlights they become paralysed because they mistake them for deadlines.


321 to 330

August 12, 2014

ARMY: “Follow me, you maggots!” shouted the drill sergeant, and they did, leaving the food more edible.

CHILDREN’S ENTERTAINMENT: “Oh gosh, my suit is giving me just the hugest rash!” said Barney, over-delivering on the gift of sharing.

HOLLYWOOD REBOOT: Dorian Gray looks great. But on a forgotten phone in his ex-girlfriend’s cupboard is an increasingly rough-looking sext.

DOMESTIC DRAMA: Aggressive passion to passive agression.

LIFE COACHING: Before committing to self-actualisation, do a quick check as you might already actually be yourself.


TRIBAL MYTH: Primitive people believe that you're stealing a piece of their soul when you photograph of one of their federal buildings.

ASTROLOGY QUIZ: Every sign is linked to particular characteristics, so this simple quiz can predict your sign! 1) What’s your birthday?

POP PSYCH: Random questions can have deep and revealing answers. For instance, If you ask me what superpower I’d like, I'd say the USSR.

SCIENCE: Brain parasites can make ants climb grass blades. Tequila makes people climb on tables. Tequila, with a worm in it. Coincidence?


311 to 320

July 15, 2014

SCI FI: Max tried to impress the new girl in the lab with his Quantum Translocator. It malfunctioned, trapping him in The Friend Zone.

FAILED RESOLUTION: Stop with the lame puns, and write a serious story about dockworkers joining sheets of metal together. Riveting stuff.

FANTASY: "This wand can erase people from history. I've never used it, though, because I don't have enemies. At least, none I can remember."

MYSTERY: The axle on our carriage broke, and we were forced to spend the night at Clickbait Manor. What happened next will shock you.

EXPLOITATION: The creators of “Girls Gone Wild” didn’t reclaim their success with the follow up, “The Elderly Gone Feral”.

CRIME: The body was found, aged 87, surrounded by grand kids. Detective Duke winced. The Entropy Killer was back.

LITERARY: The writer sat at a bar looking for a metaphor. But the classy ones were taken, and the rest were only good for a one night tweet.

FABLE: “...Then, as mother warned, the wind changed and the young troll's attitude got stuck that way forever! And he got tazered by a cop."

EXTREMELY NERDY JOKE - “Three Boromirs do not simply walk into a bar.”

HORROR: In 1994 she was bitten by a Trekkie. Now, once a fortnight, she attends conventions as a WereWorf.


301 to 310

March 3, 2014
BIOPUNK: Decades ago, our brains were infected by a linguistic virus. Now dormant, it can be reactivated by the phrase “Dashing and Daring…”

AFFABLE RAP INTERVIEW: "Please. My FATHER is Mr. T. Call me Ice."

ROMANCE: They swapped love notes after church. He thought their love was pure. But when she wrote "XXX" she wasn't referring to kisses.

FABLE: The violinist won the contest, and the devil gave him a golden fiddle. Which is a euphemism for a sex act, because, y’know, the devil.

MEDICAL: The surgery left her hollow and oval. She should never have asked the plastic surgeon to give her a ball-park figure.

MATHS: Facebook Minus Twitter Minus Instagram Plus Your Boss Equals LinkedIn.

MEDICAL: "Look over here. Tell me what you see.” She points at a picture of a half-full glass. Never get your eyes checked by an optimist.

BIBLICAL: The Meek Shall Inherit The Earth, But Won’t Cause A Fuss When The Brash Contest The Will.

PLATITUDE: A poor carpenter blames his tools. A rich carpenter blames excessive taxation and regulation in the carpentry industry.

SCI-FI: In the future, tech will be gesture-based. You’ll play music, change channels, and mail your parents, every time a wasp flies in.

FANTASY: Torod-Mur owed fealty to Omon during the Western War. Look, if you’re having trouble following this, imagine I’m having sex on HBO.


291 to 300

January 26, 2014

EVERY TRAILER: He was the best at crime. He stopped because he was cool. But now, someone nice will die unless he crimes again. COOL CRIME.

BEHIND THE SCENES: In the movie xXx, under his neck tattoo, Vin Diesel had more X’s and 0’s in a grid on his back. The man played hard.

GRITTY REBOOT: Tin Man wanted a heart. Scarecrow wanted a brain. Lion hid from them, cradling a gun, praying for courage.

HEIST: He got the old team together: Safecracker. Tech wiz. Seductress. Master of disguise. Acrobat. Lion tamer. Three clowns in a tiny car.

FANTASY: Although he was undeniably rugged, muscular and virile, very few kidnapped princesses were ever rescued by Onan the Barbarian.

CLASSIC: An arrow struck Achilles’ ankle. He screamed and cursed the heavens. Why did it have to be his heel? That was his… Death Star vent.

SUPERHERO: Spiderman’s enemies finally defeat him with a giant glass and a large piece of cardboard.

CAROL: On the thirteenth day of Christmas, my true love was arrested for animal endangerment, noise pollution and kidnapped aristocracy.

NEW YEARS RESOLUTION: Proofread every tweet I right.

SPORT: MIT’s soccer team wanted a Mexican Wave from the fans, but, since only Tim was watching, they had to make do with a Mexican Particle.


281 to 290

January 17, 2014

FACT: Youtube was first invented in the 80’s when someone played a home movie and then wrote out Mein Kampf underneath it in crayon.

HORROR: The results of the pre-mortem were conclusive. Death by dissection.

PROVERB: When life gets you tired, make tirade.

FACT: Lightsabers are silent, but attract wasps.

DRUNK PLATITUDE: Make a man self-sufficient, and you feed him for a lifetime. TEACH a man to self-suffish and you… you… also... do that.

ARCHAEOLOGY: Dig through the strata. uncover the past. Pottery shards. Bones. Ash. An unused flier for a service to clean your dorm room.

RELIGION: Sadly, dinosaurs were only on Noah’s stretch-goals.

EDUCATION: In an attempt to make Shakespeare relevant to today’s youth, the drama dept put on “Timon of Athens” performed entirely in sexts.

EPIC: “My first word is a donkey. My second is an opening.” Hercules frowned. It was surprisingly easy to solve the Riddle of the Sphincter.

RELIGION: And God said, Let us make man in our image. And Adam was the selfie of the Lord.


271 to 280

January 17, 2014

SEQUEL: After the loss of the 2nd Death Star, the Empire wrote patriotic country songs and made everyone take off their shoes at spaceports.

CRIME: He thought days were going faster because he was getting older. After his death, police discovered cut brake cables in his calendar.

SCI-FI: The Nostalgia Gun made people look back longingly, and think how much better life had been before they were shot through the lungs.

YA PUBLISHING MEMO: 1) Relaunch old movie franchise. 2) Try to recreate Twilight craze in new demographic. 3) Avoid title "Blackula High".

FILM: Hollywood grittily reboots itself into Detroit.

ADVICE: Follow your dreams. Eat broken glass and go to school naked.

CRIME: The boss accidentally told his thugs to make the cop "swim with the dolphins." The cop came back spiritually healed and, like, shwaa.

ART HISTORY: As leader of the impressionists, Claude Monet was always being told to "do Arnold Schwarzenegger, then".

SPY: The cryptologists spent years trying to decode enemy messages, until they took peyote and realised that the hidden meaning… was love.

WORLD'S WORST JOKE: The taxidermist wanted to create a shell-less tortoise, and he made no bones about it.


261 to 270

October 24, 2013

AUTOBIOGRAPHY: With deadlines looming and pressure mounting, @GenreStories decided that now would be a fantastic time to start up again.

URBAN VIKING: Sven Svenson had an axe to grind with Olaf the axe-grinder, who didn't grind Sven's axe when Sven axed him to.

HISTORICAL: The young president-to-be declared "I cannot tell a lie," which was the first of many.

SCI FI: The Internet collapsed. With no other outlet, gangs roamed the city, cornering strangers and assaulting them with opinions on Dr Who.

CLASSICS: Zeus fathered the Muses, source of all inspiration - Coffia, Deadlineus, Guiltia, and BrokenWiFia.

CLASSICS: Nation after nation submitted, until Thermopylae. The Empire Of The Mouse never recovered from the fiasco of Disneyland Sparta.

REBOOT: "Brutally murdered by the mob. Rebuilt as a machine to uphold the law. Part man. Part machine. All inspector. Gadget."

SLICE OF LIFE: "Sideways breasts, eight, a couple not sexually gratifying each other, ninty-six..." it was Doug's last day calling bingo.

AFFIRMATION: There is no "I" in "dyslexia".

FOLKTALE: By the 850th night, Scheherazade was padding things with dream sequences, on-again-off-again love plots and endless guest stars.


251 to 260

March 15, 2013
COMIC: "Finally! I have learned HeroMan's greatest weakness, and shall defeat him! According to this job interview, it is: 'Perfectionism'."

FACT: 14% of the population of Victorian London were time travellers who were there either for the steampunk or the chauvinism.

FANTASY: "This ring brings love. But beware its fearsome curse! For thou shalt be bound to monthly dinners with the in-laws, forever."

HISTORICAL: The guillotine blade dropped and the crowd cheered, except for a guy at the back who DID kind of want cake.

FANTASY: Wishing wells are portals. Now and then, someone on the far side says "I wish a sucker would throw me money." They get THEIR wish.

HORROR: They took a shortcut through MySpace. Next day the browser was found, abandoned, on an acoustic folk band page. No bodies recovered.

MARKETPUNK: "I couldn't date anyone who doesn't own a Ferrari," she said. Mike sighed. The spamdroid was out of his league.

CULTURAL APPRECIATION: The kid tagged the lower righthand side of the building, accidentally turning the gallery into art.

URBAN FANTASY: 4am. The psychic hammered on the wall. His neighbour was playing a loud song on repeat in his head.
DRAMA: Their relationship lasted years, until one night, a bender released their hidden desires and tore them apart. The seven beer itch.

241 to 250

September 18, 2012

Domestic Drama: "You are my rock," he told her. Picturing a trapped arm and a penknife.


Myth: Sisyphus sat writing at a desk in Hell. His attention kept slipping to the browser again, and again, and again.

Porn: A chiseled delivery guy appeared at the door. No one had ordered pizza, but the ladies weren't going to turn down a Deus Sex Machina.

Theology: The world was made in 6 days. On the geological timescale that's a last-minute rush before a deadline. Which explains everything.

War: "I'll break you down, and build you back up from the rubble!" screamed the drill sergeant. Which naturally led to some unstable houses.

Sport: The chess grand master found one of his knights in his bed. The next day, he threw the game. The Sicilian Defence never fails.

Spiritual: "You dream of horses every night," said the guru, and the skeptic became a disciple, forgetting he'd posted that on his blog.

Political: Men with bagged heads were forced to sit through the 1st graders singing Abba. 3 confessed. It was an Extraordinary Rendition.

Business: A few years ago he'd been a simple banker. Now, with champagne in hand, he looked down on the rioters below. From Zero to Nero.


231 to 240

July 4, 2012

Eulogy: Tim died in a fire. His dominatrix gave a touching speech at the funeral. "Tim died doing what he loved: screaming in pain."

Crime: Dozens of Joggers were mugged. Police were baffled. No one suspected the local gym, where membership tripled.

Biblical: "Go Forth And Multiply," God told Noah. And, being human, Noah assumed he was talking about sex. Not maths.

Religious: The cleaner found a card in the confessional. It had a grid of sins on it. "What's this?" she asked. "Bingo," said the priest.

Film History: April 1 1950: Kurosawa releases many different versions of Rashomon, freaking the critics when they read each others' reviews.

Biography: She wandered around with gin and a sword. "Majesty," said the butler, "You can't knight a toaster." "Sir toaster," she corrected.

DIY: Screws are alive, and breed when exposed to light. The offspring will appear just after you put whatever you were fixing back together.

Biography: The televangelist had many sleepless nights in his mansion trying to redefine the words "rich", "camel" and "eye of the needle".

Geeky: He took his car in to have the alignment of his wheels fixed. They came back Lawful Good.

Proverb: A phrase that rhymes and feels nice / Isn't always the best advise / I prefer sayings more concise / Like: "Don't Be A Twat."


221 to 230

July 4, 2012

Romance: The men at the party were all taken, except for the grinning guy in the Battlestar shirt. She sighed. Her worst-case Lothario.

Superhero: "Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it a fish? Is it a house? Is it a shoe?" Captain Indescribable was getting really tired of his power.

Sci-Fi: The cops burst in. Nothing but broken lab equipment and dust. "Damn!" said the Lieutenant. They'd never win the War on Precognition.

Fable: From his new tower, the king surveyed the glittering empire below. "Foundations!" said the builder behind him, slapping his forehead.

Sequel: "Um... 3... 7... is that an H?... squiggle... K..." The replicant was sweating. The old ways are always the best, thought Deckard.

Life: "We need realistic people to face reality, and unrealistic people to make the alternatives," he said. The imaginary crowd cheered.

Memoir: "There are fewer years in a life than letters in a tweet," he mused, but only because his bank balance was a bit low that morning.

Inspirational: if you love somebody, let them go. If they don't return then that was really bad advice. I'm so sorry. Please stop crying.

Crime: "Wanna get high?" said the paraglider dealer. Brad was tempted. It had been a while. But he knew the product would be cut with tent.

Political: At the UN were 120 interpreters and Juan, who was translating speeches into the international language of love.


211 to 220

July 4, 2012

Adventure: "I'm gonna literally wipe the floor with you," said the GI. "I doubt that," said Hans, who was literally a Grammar Nazi.

Self-Help: Help yourself. To pudding. I can't solve your problems in one tweet, but pudding is delicious.

Revisionism: The plagiarist Shakespeare stole and renamed the plays Sir Michael o'Bay: rIIIch-Hard, 2 Gentlemen 2 Verona, and ShrewTamer.

Crime: All the victims were the same: Perfectly healthy and alive, with one tiny paper-cut. This was the the work of a psychohomeopath.

Music History: 1976: US weaponises Disco Fever. 1983: USSR drops Da Bomb.

Fable: The Billy Goat Gruff convinced the troll that a more gullible goat would soon be on the comment thread.

Family drama: He enjoyed his daughter's enthusiastic tales of spring break, and assumed she was listing Disneyland rides. Not sex positions.

Political: He was always vocally dismissive of the sheeple. Until he met the wolfple.

Crime: The police had no trouble catching the Dyslexia Killer. He'd written detailed descriptions of his murders in a dairy.

War: The Sergeant respected the General's command of the tactical map, but worried about the "Brrrm!" sound he made when moving the tanks.


201 to 210

July 4, 2012

Legal: The music industry released a track about how copyright law stifles free speech. Protestors were then sued for infringing the lyrics.

Horror: "You'll sleep like babies," said the innkeeper. Which was true. They spent half the night screaming, and the other half throwing up.

Palindrome: These are easy, as long as you don't mind the second half going gniog flah dnoces eht dnim tnod uoy sa gnol sa ysae era eseht.

Slice Of Life: In the interview he claimed he was a workaholic, but arrived drunk on the first day. He had his own definition of "Workahol".

Music History: The punks were bored. They needed a new genre that would REALLY get up people's noses. And call-centre music was born.

Scripture: "G-O-L-D!!!!" "FRANKINCENSE - Cheap!" "Myrrh - For Men. FREE SAMPLEZ!" Mary was getting suspicious about her son's new followers.

Adventure: That awkward moment when you discover that the light at the end of the tunnel you were so relieved about is lava.

Erotic: "Who's your equal?" he growled respectfully.

Action: "Extreme sports always have two extremes," said the winner of the shortest triathlon, lowest bungee and least flips on a skateboard.

Occult: He marked the back of the carriage with a rune: A red "L". A curse to summon lamp-posts and pedestrians out of nowhere.


191 to 200

July 4, 2012

Modern Fairytale: the Wicked Witch gave Snow White an apple, and cackled as the helpless princess drove up a massive debt on the app store.

Epic: The Thousand-Year War between the Thirty Tribes and the Dragoneers of Crya was brought to a sudden, devastating end by writer's block.

Legal Drama: "I find the defendant..." coin arcs, lands in palm, slapped onto back of other hand, revealed, "...not guilty!" Mistrial.

Horror: The outbreak of vampirism amongst the walruses went completely unnoticed by everybody.

Time Travel: dox but couldn't, because the past had already happened, so he tried to make a para

Trailer: The nihilists wear the symbol of the naught. If the priests don't stop them, it's Game Over. NAUGHTS AND CROSSES- THE MOVIE. 2012

RomCom: He caught her speeding, but blew it again. As she drove off she wished he'd just ask her out. This was costing a fortune in tickets.

Autobiographical: Hypocrisy is an absolutely terrible thing unless I'm doing it.

Social Drama: He listened to new music and hung out with new people. He told his old friends that they just didn’t get bald culture.

Spiritual: “Only by shutting down all thought can you achieve happiness,” said Michael Bay.



181 to 190

July 4, 2012

Somnambulist Detective: Idunnit.

Horror: My soul haunts the spot I died, cursing those who enter the building. But someone turned it into a Home Affairs, so no one notices.

Fable: The prince climbed the tangled hair and heard swearing from above. Legend said Rapunzel’s hair grew long. It never said which hair.

Drama: His tattoos were stretching. His piercings got caught on his wife’s doilies. He had lived fast, but was bad at following through.

Dickensian: “I may lack fancy clothes, but helping strangers gives me something more valuable.” The stranger’s pocket-watch, for starters.

SciFi: “Laugh at me?” said Dr Zarxo. “I’ll show them! I’ll show them all!” So he did a double-blind study and got the results peer reviewed.

Sequel: All things considered, a spoonful of sugar wasn’t the wisest way to encourage Jimmy to take his insulin.

School Memoir: “Think quick!” his friend shouted, so he did a differential calculation and got hit by a cricket ball.

Apocalyptic: Meteors. Explosions. Lava. It was a terrible day to have (a) drunk lots of coffee and (b) worn white trousers.

Action: “Is anyone on board a pilot? Or played Flight Simulator? Or had flying dreams on absinthe?” Philipe stood. His hour had come.


171 to 180

July 4, 2012

Drama: Moral dilemmas are like birthdays. Even if you ignore them, they add up. He sighed, and blew out the candles on the skull-cake.

Fantasy: Gromud raided the ruby mines of Xethi and foiled the Greed Kings. This alienated his friends, who worked in finance.

Creepy: Hundreds of dead butterflies, each labeled with the name of one of the girls who’d seen his collection and left him forever.

Political: “Well, I didn’t WANT to be grand dictator for life and exulted father of his people anyway.”

Crime: The museum paid the consultants millions to install laser sensors and pressure plates. Minutes later they were gone with the diamond.

Mild Horror: Biologists studied the outbreak of zombiedom in the turtle population with interest, but not alarm.

Hedonistic: The pills kicked in. The music filled his mind with joy. He raised his hands up towards the lights. And crashed the ambulance.

Drama: She thought he called her “Lightswitch” because she turned him on and lit up his life. Actually, it was the on-again-off-again thing.

Apocalyptic: “At least I’ll get thin now,” thought Bob. He hadn’t counted on the stress-eating.

Tragedy: Swimming at night. The riptide was strong. He had been drinking. He even kept his shoes on. He didn’t die. Darwin wept.


161 to 170

July 4, 2012

Chick Lit: She stood on her own two feet. She didn’t want to get swept off them. High-heels.

History: Isaac Newton made an important discovery in that orchard: Birds sitting in apple trees don’t always control their bowels.

Fantasy: The spell took him to a strange world. The ground was pink and covered in fine hair. It was unfamiliar, like the back of his hand.

Horror: “Bind Them Forever!” chanted the eyeless ones, holding a rusted needle. And the couple began to regret having a themed wedding.

Coming Of Age: He learned a lot that year. Laundry won’t do itself. Deodorant is not a bath. And scurvy is still an actual thing.

Modern Romance: “Why do you still sell AA batteries?” he said. “What devices still use them?” The cashier’s blush gave her away.

Fantasy: The scientist uncovered the wires that the mystic used to fake levitation. And Tlazotl the God of Skeptics grew powerful.

Medical: For years the doctors thought he had Tourette’s, until they found out that he was just surrounded by arseholes.

Philosophical: His motto was “Live every day like it was your last.” He spent the final 37 years of his life screaming and crying.

Fable: The Late Bird came home after an all-night bender, and ate the worm. When the Early Bird woke up it had to reevaluate its priorities.



151 to 160

July 4, 2012

Uplifting: The tattooed man looked into his newborn baby’s face. His heart melted. “I’d Fuckin’ KILL fer yew,” he said. “KILL!”

Drama: She married him at his ultra-orthodox church. “I declare you Man and Disfigured Rib,” said the priest. And she had second thoughts.

Culinary Historical: It was a disaster, but he had to brazen it out. “Voila!” he said to the shocked dinner guests. And the flambé was born.

Cautionary: Alone in the blizzard, he wondered what had compelled him to check whether his tongue would stick to the snowmobile.

Mob: The cops watched the rookie heading out of the station. When he was gone, the desks flipped and the place turned back into a speakeasy.

Adventures In Cliché: After base camp it was a seven-day hard climb. 

When they got to the summit they saw the mole and felt ashamed.

Circus Drama: She always tagged along whenever he went to unicyclist conventions. She always got in the way. His second wheel.

Business: He’d finally made it. A corner office with huge plate-glass windows. His own wheelie chair. But the two didn’t go well together.

Twitter – The Musical: It seems his stream’s become a flood / of dull banality / I wonder why they follow / Twits likes him, and never me?

War: The recruit sat in a circle of candles. The others got scared. “Satanist!” said the major. “No Sir! Scared of spiders, sir!”


Genre Stories (@genrestories) is an ongoing Twitter account where I post twitter-length short stories in every genre I can think of.

This blog collects them into easy-to-read batches.