I’ve just finished reading one of my Christmas presents, which was Jonathan Pinnock’s Dip Flash. An entertaining collection of quirky, witty and surreal short stories.
My absolute favourite was Ventriloquism for Dummies. I’ve read several ventriloquist-dummy stories over the years, and Pinnock’s version is the best, in my opinion. It was deliciously different, and I loved the ending.
Other stories I liked were Adagio Assai and Around The Block.
I also recently finished reading Stephen King’s The Bazaar of Bad Dreams, which is another collection of short stories. My favourite story was Obits, which was about a writer who can actually kill people off just by writing their obituary. It stayed with me long after I’d finished reading. Just think what it would be like to have that sort of power. I think the world would be a very different place. And what obituaries would I write if I had that power? And would I really use that power? Hmm…
I found Black Hare Press via another writer's website, and was inspired by the submission opportunities there. The anthology Oceans will be full of 100-word drabbles set in or on the ocean. It will be #9 in their Dark Drabbles series.
I was pleased to hear that they will be including my dark story The Artist. It's a great start to the New Year, and I'll definitely be trying to write more drabbles.
I believe publication is due sometime in April this year.
A little story has appeared over at 101 Words today. Language Fun was a fun piece to write. To read, just click here. Hope you like it.
If you want to send in a piece of flash fiction (300-1000 words), the submission guidelines for Flash Fiction Magazine are here.
And here are the guidelines for 101 Words.
If you'd like to read what they've already published, here is a link to a free book. Enjoy!
I just found out that my story To DIY For has made the longlist in the Crowvus Christmas Ghost Story Competition 2019. I'm very pleased to have made the top 20, especially as I've only recently started entering competitions again. My congratulations to the winners!
I had fun writing the story, which was inspired by an idea from the fabulous ideas4writers site.
At the beginning of autumn I had a day trip to Agatha Christie’s former holiday home in Devon. Greenway House is in a stunning location by the River Dart, so it’s a lovely place to visit anyway, but for me it felt almost like a pilgrimage. Let me explain.
I read my first Agatha Christie novel at the age of twelve or thirteen. I was browsing in the school library and found Murder on The Orient Express.
I didn’t dare take it home.
As I was a lay preacher’s daughter, I thought I’d get into big trouble. I'd already read the family's entire collection of Enid Blyton and other children's books, and MOTOE was very different! So the book stayed in my school locker in between reading sessions. We didn’t have any books like that at home (and no TV), so murder mysteries were like a new world to me. I didn’t realise there were such stories out there. I became even more addicted to fiction than I already was.
I’ve read many books over the years, but I always remember Murder on The Orient Express as being the one which started it all for me, firing up my imagination. I was able to escape into books, which provided relief at a difficult time in my life. I'd love to have been able to tell Agatha Christie how much I enjoyed her writing.
Greenway is set within beautiful gardens and grounds. We arrived by ferry from Dartmouth (and saw seals!), but you can reach the place overland as well. Some people travel by steam train from Paignton.
Of course, I had to buy a book from the shop. I chose Miss Marple’s Final Cases, which is a selection of short stories. The lady at the till kindly stamped it with the Greenway stamp, so that made it even more special.
It is looked after by The National Trust, so if you want more info you can check out their site.
I have a story over at CafeLit today, if you'd like a quick read. Irresistible is a flash fiction piece that originally appeared on MicroHorror some years ago. That site seems to have disappeared (sort of - there's just a cryptic message on there), so I wanted to get the story reprinted, as I had fun writing it.
I've always enjoyed reading the stories on CafeLit (and they were kind enough to publish another flash fiction of mine, called Mixing, in 2014), so I was hoping Irresistible would find a home there. And it has! Thank you, CafeLit.
By the way, I have rediscovered just how hard it is to type the word Irresistible at speed. Why did I use that word? Why, oh why? Well, read the story and see.
I love flash fiction and micro-fiction because it's a challenge to write a story in just a few words. You have to be ruthless and cut out unnecessary words, yet still make it flow. And they're so quick to read. Just right for if you don't have much time but still want a bit of fiction in your life!
So I was intrigued to read about the 81 Word Challenge. Once 1,000 stories have been collected they will be published in an anthology and will raise funds for charity.
I was chuffed to hear they have accepted my 81 word story Decluttering, and it is now on the site (story no. 664).
Why not have a go? The details are here.
Welcome to my brand new site! I've recently returned to writing fiction after a longish break, so let's see what happens...
I've a couple of other creative projects in the pipeline (one of which has taken up a lot of time), so writing fiction was on the back burner for a while, but it feels so good to be thinking about characters and plots and settings again, and just letting my imagination run riot.
I've entered a couple of competitions in the last few weeks, so fingers crossed.