Tried a short story. 500-600 words, submitted it on Reddit's shortscarystories sub's recent contest, got taken down :(. Would love to know your thoughts.
I woke up to my phone’s ping.
“500,000 votes! See your post…”
I gawked at the screen, waiting for the implications to sink in. Once they did, I squeaked excitedly, like the 29-year-old artist I was.
People heard my song. Liked it.
Ten thousand people did!
I dialed Ma- never gave a chance to me, or my music, did she? Well, someone was remiss!
Dialtone. Voicemail. Disconnect.
What was keeping her weekend occupied?
Maybe she was still upset. Always was, what with me dropping college to pursue music. I could picture her, scowling. It upset me.
Hell no, a voice inside me spoke. This ain’t no day to be melancholy! Screw your old, stubborn Ma. You’ve earned this day. Enjoy it!
I looked at the screen. A thousand, unopened notifications awaited my attention. Didn’t need to read- I already knew what they were- appreciation, hate, greetings. I could scroll past ‘em.
But then there’d be one that’d offer a million-dollar contract for my voice- one that’d get me out of this cramped, apartment hellhole! The thought turned my frown to smile. I decided to listen to myself.
I hit the clothes showroom first- God knows how awful my flannel and jeans were smelling! There was this nice, white, satin dress I found- one that I could collect my Grammy in. Cost a fortune- but then money wasn’t no constraint no more.
I grabbed it, joined the billing-line, and waited. The counter-lady smiled. I pulled out some cash- but she didn’t take it. Simply moved to the guy behind me. Didn’t even bat an eye in my direction!
It didn’t end there. No barista took my order, no salesman pitched me their snake-oil- hell, even the roadside beggars didn’t want anything from me! I got mad at one point, and pulled one of ‘em wanderers to answer me.
But they just plain, walked away, oblivious to my touch.
Like I were some ghost.
Their bloody audacity! To avoid a star, like myself…
Vexed from this ignorance, I was heading back home. That’s when I saw him. Sammy. Nice guy, asked me out sometime back- but I was too busy with my song then.
Surely, he wouldn’t ignore me, right? Heck, he’d love my song!
I approached him, coyly whispered, ‘Hi’. He didn’t respond, though. Let out a deep, sad sigh, trashed his newspaper, and left.
This man, who once tried putting a ring on my finger. Left me alone when I needed him.
I was gonna call after him, but his discarded paper flew to my face. I’d have crumpled it, thrown it away, and chased after my Sammy.
But I didn’t. Because in that wrinkled bit of media, I finally heard the applause my ears had so been craving for. My eyes welled.
Out-of-favor musician commits suicide during live-performance to Dark-Web audience; video-footage dubbed ‘sensational’…
I smiled, humming the closing lines of my song.
“…a penny for my thoughts, oh no, I'll sell them for a dollar
They're worth so much more after I'm a goner
And maybe then you'll hear the words I been singin'
I think this is fairly avarage as a story. It's not bad in any way but it doesn't stand out either. The way this ends is pretty predictable but the idea of it all is fairy poetic so I didn't mind it that much. Others might, so beware of that.
There were a few hick ups in the logic, like "Sammy asked me on a date at one point" and then "he tried to put a ring on me" there's a huge distance between those two, well for many people anyway. So I advise changing that.
Maybe avoid mentioning "ghost" specifically and go for "invisible" or something of that sort, make it less standoutish and obvious.
I don't know how I feel about you including the link, I mean, I see the reason, but might warrant some criticisms over anything ranging from laziness to plagiarism.