UPDATED WITH WINNERS - LitReactor's Flash Fiction Smackdown: Kanye West—Reanimator Edition

Flash fiction: A style of fictional literature marked by extreme brevity

Welcome to LitReactor's Flash Fiction Smackdown, a monthly bout of writing prowess.

How It Works

We give you inspiration in the form of a picture, poem, video, or prompt. You write a flash fiction piece using the inspiration we gave you. Put your entry in the comments section. One winner will be picked and awarded a prize.

The Rules

  • 30 words, tops. No more. 
  • It can be any genre.
  • Give it a title. Please keep it to 10 words.
  • We're not exactly shy, but let's stay away from senseless racism or violence.
  • One entry per person.
  • Editing your entry after you submit it is permitted.
  • LitReactor staffers can't win, but are encouraged to participate.
  • All stories submitted on or before October 29th will be considered. We'll run the winner on October 30th.

This Month's Prize

The internet is full of mash-ups, but the bookshelves are not. Enter LitReactor's own, Joshua Chaplinsky. Somewhere in between his day job and harassing tardy columnists about getting their shit in on time, Josh had the time to re-write H.P. Lovecraft's classic horror story, Herbert West - Reanimator, starring Kanye West! No, really, HE DID. It's called—wait for it—

Kanye West - Reanimator

Of Kanye West, who was my friend in college and after he dropped out, I can speak only with extreme sadness...

So begins this epic cautionary tale of ambition and hubris. A bizarre mix of Lovecraft and hip-hop history, Kanye West—Reanimator reimagines the classic story "Herbert West—Reanimator" with everyone's favorite petulant genius cast in the titular role. In it, Kanye West attempts to reanimate a moribund hip-hop scene, only to come to the conclusion that his music is so powerful, it should be used to reanimate the dead. And who better to reanimate than those two legendary titans gone before their time—Biggie and Tupac? Hilarity and carnage ensue.

Two winners of this month's contest get a limited edition t-shirt of the modern day Narcissus bringing Hip Hop back to life, courtesy of Sam McCanna and SkurvyInk.com. Check out their website for tons of bizarro related shirts from your favorite authors. You know you want to. 

Your Inspiration:

Welp, Josh gone done it: He brought Kanye West AND H.P. Lovecraft back to life. (What's that you say? Yeezus Lives? Well, I'll be darn-tootin'!) And I can't come up with anything wackier than that, so let's ride this pony all the way to the barn. 

Give us your best 30-word flash fiction story that mashes up classic horror and hip hop. Josh will be the judge this time, so it'd better be good. 

And the Winners Are...Joe Golden & Thuggish

[JOSH HAS SPOKEN] (imagine that is a booming God voice), and he thinks these two entrants are worthy of a KW: Reanimator shirt. I wholeheartedly agree. 

Joe's Entry:

Bram Stoker's Drake-ula

I'm a monster in the bedroom;

One look from me, and you'll be doomed.

My bite will end your life so tragically,

But girl, I'll grant you immortality.


Thuggish' Entry:

Snoop Krueger, Slicin' Snooze

Rollin’ down Elm street
Woke in blood-soaked
PJs and torn up sheets
(Laaaiiiiid back)
With my mind on my murder and my murder on my mind

Congrats, guys. Wear them with pride!

Taylor Houston

Column by Taylor Houston

Taylor Houston is a genuine Word Nerd living in Portland, OR where she works as a technical writer and volunteers on the marketing committee for Wordstock, a local organization dedicated to writing education. She has a BA in Creative Writing and Spanish from Hamilton College and attended Penn State's MFA program in Creative Nonfiction. She has taught writing at all levels from middle school to college to adult, and she is the creator of Writer’s Cramp, a class for adults who just want to write!

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Grant Williams's picture
Grant Williams from Wichita, KS is reading Friday October 1, 2015 - 11:11am

What Happens in the Beat Lab...

Dr. Dre dropped an ice cube into his crunk juice and
mixed it a lot. He secured himself with two chains.
Soon he would become the notorious Mr. Mathers.

Christopher Peterson's picture
Christopher Peterson from Illinois is reading the tea leaves... October 1, 2015 - 12:49pm
Beastlie Boys, or N.W.A. (Necromancaz Wit Attitudes)

Eazy-E drops the body
Ad-Rock drops the beat
Cube drops the hammer
D’s got the street
Dr. Dre’s got the knowledge
MCA’s got the soul
Bonham’s resurrected
Cue the drumroll

mehrad's picture
mehrad from Tehran, Iran is reading Shatter Me October 2, 2015 - 8:44am

A lot of people ask me...

"Do you actually kill people when you say you do in your records?"

Shit, I don't know. I only remember that I've blacked out again.

BMF's picture
BMF from PA is reading Two Plus Two by Alan Cochran (AKA the amazing Ken Grimwood) October 2, 2015 - 9:17am

Hip Hop Undead

All stitched up. Tupac's torso, Biggie and MCA's legs. Big Pun's vocal chords. ODB's head. Big L's hand grips the mic. Lightening cracks the orb.Hip Hop's alive. IT'S ALIVE!

Wendy44444's picture
Wendy44444 from California is reading The Strange Library October 29, 2015 - 7:36am

Silence!  Silence!  Silence!

Now watch him whip
Watch it neigh
Watch him rip, drip
Watch him play cray

Gunpowder’s stanky legs
But watch Crane Superman

Watch him lop, lob.  Plop

Leigham Shardlow's picture
Leigham Shardlow October 13, 2015 - 9:27am


Unholy worship, God of the light in the dark.


Twisted mouths, chants to the deep denizens.


The waters churn.



MrNizz's picture
MrNizz October 17, 2015 - 3:36pm

Cadavers Rule Everything Around Me

“There is method, man, to this madness!” he bellowed, as the professor zapped the corpse of the old, dirty bastard again.  “How can he stay dead if Wu-Tang is forever?”

Thuggish's picture
Thuggish from Vegas is reading Day of the Jackal October 20, 2015 - 9:05am

Snoop Krueger, Slicin' Snooze

Rollin’ down Elm street
Woke in blood-soaked
PJs and torn up sheets
(Laaaiiiiid back)
With my mind on my murder and my murder on my mind



James Matterhorn's picture
James Matterhorn October 27, 2015 - 6:38pm


"You go on in two."
"I'll be ready, just one minute."
The door is shut. A small man draped in an oversized tee uncaps a dark vile.
"One last show."

Joe Golden's picture
Joe Golden from Clarksburg, WV is reading The Big Sleep October 23, 2015 - 10:28am

Bram Stoker's Drake-ula

I'm a monster in the bedroom;

One look from me, and you'll be doomed.

My bite will end your life so tragically,

But girl, I'll grant you immortality.

Cams316's picture
Cams316 from Wichita,KS is reading The Dead Hearts series October 26, 2015 - 8:13pm

Once Upon A Time in Suburbia

There was a little girl that didn't want to wear pink, didn't want to be a princess. Then one magical day Spin-da-rella came into her life and brought her friends Salt'N'Peppa. 

Nicholas Anderson's picture
Nicholas Anderson from Denver is reading Necessary Stranger October 27, 2015 - 6:17pm

He's Not Dead 


Something surfaced like A Rose That Grew From Concrete. Hands like the night gripped my- 

"Jeez, what happened to you?" Said God. 

Long story short Tupac ate my brain.