Welcome to 81words

How short is a story?

The challenge is to write a complete story in exactly 81 words.
You can see how other people have done and rank their stories. Can you do better?

Why 81? It’s just long enough to allow for a story to develop but short enough to mean every single word needs thoughtful weighing. Mostly though it’s just a nice number, ask a mathematician.

Scroll down to read stories, or register / log in to vote and submit your own stories.


Tim finally wakes up, his temple was throbbing. It was pitch black the catacomb and freezing. Tim searches his pockets for a lighter. The catacomb lit up, it was filled skeletons chained to the walls. Then suddenly the silence was broken by animalistic eerie sound. Tim was frozen with fear. The noise got closer, Tim could feel it’s breath on of his neck. The lighter flame blew out. Tim screamed for mercy. John and Peter were getting to explore the catacombs.

The Dress

“Buy me!” the gorgeous dress in the little boutique seemed to say again as she walked past, but she had nowhere to wear it. She sighed as she continued on to the bar for a much needed glass of Pinot Grigio. She noticed he was here again. He looked nervous. As he passed her table he slipped her a piece of paper. She read it and smiled, leaving the bar and practically skipping back to the boutique to claim the dress.

Live, Love, Laugh

“What is love for you?’’ Micaela asked. “Love is when other people- those whom you know and those whom you never meet yet- have future plans for you yet you have nothing for yourself. That invisible one keeps me alive until now”, I replied. “I prayed to God that He would give me a good friend and I met you”, Micaela said. I was definitely sure she was one of the chains who would die if I had chosen Death promises.

The meeting in my head

‘Hahaha’ she laughed which means im surely half way there, half way where? Maybe it was a pity laugh a rouse? Aaaaa quiet in there low self esteem! She definitly laughed but oh fuck now shes just staring i was thinking to long quick say something!

“I was just having a meeting with the voices in my noggin
and we think you are awesome” she looks down at her drink and stirs it slowly with her straw then she laughs again

Posted in Humour on
The meeting in my head
  • 2.20 / 5 5
10 votes, 2.20 avg. rating (45% score)

Donkey Peasant

I wanted the girl. I get lonely too. I just stand here waiting for ‘Him’, I refuse to say his name.
” It’s a me, jump man”
It’s not even a real name! It’s mart-yo something It annoys her too she visibly cringes when she sees him, I try to put her at ease though i doubt the bloke who keeps taking her forcefully up a sky scrapper isn’t the best person to share mutual distaste with. Screw it. Barrel time.

Posted in Humour on
Donkey Peasant
  • 1.89 / 5 5
9 votes, 1.89 avg. rating (39% score)


My heart; burning. I was sprinting through the field, the sweat dripping into my eyes. Do not look back.
Behind me was a black figure, sprinting just as fast as me. Its hands were trying to grow around my legs and take over my body.
There it is. The warm glow of safety. I threw myself through the door, a puddle of terror and sweat.
“Mum I was chased”
I take her outside to show her.
“Darling, that is your shadow”

Posted in Humour on
  • 3.77 / 5 5
13 votes, 3.77 avg. rating (74% score)

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