"Cold" by Jordan Ryder — Our September 2018 Gold Medal Winner

by - Sunday, November 11, 2018

We are so pleased to announce the winner of our ninth contest! Congratulations to Jordan Ryder for writing a story our judges really connected to!

What the judges had to say:

"This is a powerful and unflinching story. It was a treat to read!"
"Gripping and melancholy. I felt the protagonist's ache and turmoil."
"Really good! I was gripped from the first paragraph."
"Wow! Powerful, heavy, and so emotionally rich."

Meet Jordan:

Jordan Ryder is from Toronto, Ontario. She’s just spent a year in Ireland where she drank loads of Guinness and studied for her Master’s degree in Literature and Publishing. Jordan received her MA with First Class Honours from the National University of Ireland, Galway, and she also holds a BA in Creative Writing from Dalhousie University, in Halifax. Currently, Jordan is working for the Brink Literacy Project and trying to figure out how to be a professional. She writes whenever she can and is adamant that a manuscript is on its way.

The photo prompt:

an excerpt:


by Jordan Ryder

The snow crunched, the icy crust cracking beneath my boots. The air was so cold I could feel the inside of my nose all the way up my nostrils and down the back of my tongue.The tracks from the week before were almost buried. My boots found the dip between the edges of the tires, staying between them, careful not to knock the walls of snow on either side. There were two sets: the in, then the out.

I could still hear the crackle the fire had made long after you’d left. The silence when it had gone cold: the embers fading from white to grey to black. In the space of a breath. In the space of a year. I don’t remember sitting there; just the colours of the shifting fire as it died, the green glare of the clock: 2:47am.

Six weeks.

Everything. Nothing, in the end.

It had been nothing in the beginning: a few too many drinks. An apple martini, because I’d never had one before. Exams were done, what the hell? You’d been a guy at the bar ordering your drink, laughing when you saw mine. When I’d refused to tell you my name you’d called me apple martini, then you’d ordered one for yourself and another for me. The next morning you’d driven me home in your pickup. It had happened again the next weekend, and the weekend after that.

You were nice. You were easy. You called me apple martini.

We laughed. We slept. We fooled around, too. It was easy, and winter break, and most of our friends were gone. I’d travelled home for a week, for Christmas. And then I’d missed my period.

I didn’t know your last name, then. I’m not sure you knew my first.

Nothing had become everything had become nothing again....

to read the rest of this story, 
order your copy of the December 2018 issue of Blank Spaces

[Read the second and third place stories]

Learn how you can participate in one of our Write-Prompt Flash Fiction Contests HERE

Blank Spaces December 2018
Blank Spaces Magazine: Blank Spaces December 2018
Volume 3, Issue 2 - a celebration of Canadian talent, featuring the work of artists—writers, painters, photographers, poets, etc.

Order the next issue of Blank Spaces HERE  

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