Saturday, 15 November 2014

New story (of a sort) by me: Haven

This one is a little unusual: it was written for Contest #11 in the Weekly Contests group on FimFiction. This one was a flash fiction contest: the maximum word count was 100, the prompt was "Lighthouse" and the extra challenge was to use coloured text. I may have gone a teeny bit overboard with the last one, but none of the colour was added entirely gratuitously. Ask me why such-and-such a word is such-and-such a colour and I'll have an answer. Anyway, here it is: spot on 100 words, not counting the title:


It’s not always fun being famous, you know.

Sure, I like ponies to admire me – what pegasus wouldn’t? But if it burns too brightly, a star becomes blinding to look at. 

You want me to explain? Well... back in Cloudsdale, there’s this big lighthouse. Only inland lighthouse in Equestria. I worked there when I was just out of school. Didn’t stay long. Couldn’t...

It’s at the top of the Weather Factoryyou know why it’s there? Simple: to make sure weak fliers stay safe around rainbows. 

I learned something important the hard way up there: that lighthouse works both ways.


  1. I'm very impressed! Honestly, to fit so much *effectively* into 100 words is pretty impressive. I wouldn't know where to even start with something like this. I'm going to assume that it's written from Rainbow's point of view, especially bearing in mind the second sentence, but I could be wrong.

    I think I know why most of the colours have been chosen. "Fun" is an obvious one, and the "burns too brightly" made me think of a certain Twilight's firey transformation in "Feeling Pinkie Keen." And the various purple "you" colourings are presumabely hinting that they're talking to Twilight? I wasn't quite sure about the pinkish red for "Couldn't" and "hard" though, or the blue and yellow in the final sentence.

    And personally I think it's a fascinating little story too. I couldn't quite be sure what had happened at the lighthouse, but it seems to be that it's kind of open to interpretation, to some extent. But I haven't quite been able to grasp exactly what the meaning is *at the moment.* I'll have to give that some more thought, I think.

    Still! I hope it'll do well in the contest, and with a bit of luck I hope it'll win! :)

    1. You're most of the way there. :) Yes, this is Rainbow talking to Twilight. Exactly what happened is supposed to be left to interpretation, but the pinkish red could represent embarrassment, let's say. As for other things, "school" being in brown is obvious and represents Rainbow Dash's opinion of classes, while "Equestria" being in green is an even more obvious reference to it being a green and pleasant land.

      A couple of other things: "pegasus" is in blue, a less brilliant shade than the cyan that represents Rainbow Dash herself, to show that Dash has always felt that she shines out even among her own kind. "Cloudsdale" is grey because my headcanon has it as a tough, industrial city. And "Weather Factory" is the same colour because it's the reason why Cloudsdale exists in the first place: the city is a company town, effectively.

      The blue and yellow? Well, that's actually cyan, Rainbow's colour, while the yellow is that of a certain other pegasus. The point is that Dash discovered that while the literal lighthouse helped weak fliers (eg 'Shy) stay safe around literal rainbows (at the factory), Fluttershy herself -- said weak flier -- could also act as a figurative lighthouse who kept Rainbow Dash safe from overdoing it. Note that in the word "rainbows", I've included the six colours of the Equestrian rainbow and the middle two letters in cyan to represent this specific rainbow, Dash, to show its double meaning.

      And the final two words? One goes one way, one the other, representing this... and it also looks like a hug between two ponies we know became best friends. :)

      The "burns too brightly" sequence is one I rather like. It's supposed to show that Rainbow became more and more and more obsessed with showing off, to the extent that she started really annoying people, just as light is good but a camera flash to the face isn't. The word "blinding" was made barely readable for that reason.

    2. Ooh, missed one: "hard" is in red, not the pinkish-red of "Couldn't...", so it's a different thing. "Hard" is blood-coloured, so it could represent either an accident Rainbow caused through carelessness, or an occasion when she had a rush of blood and upset somepony.

  2. Well! First of all, thanks very much for taking the time to give such a detailed explanation there. That certainly helped fill in all that I'd been wondering about, including what the actual ending was implying. Even more so though, this all goes to show just how cleverly this story has been put together, so far as I'm concerned. To pack that much into exactly 100 words is something I think you can be extremely proud of. After all, with the help of those extra colours, which are all there for good reason, this story has got goodness knows how many layers to it and that is definitely very impressive!