Lisa stared up, yet again, at the sad and decrepit house she passed every day. She’d wondered for years why anyone would allow a house to die like that.
Inside the house, looking out of the attic window, he watched, yet again, the sad looking woman who stopped, every day, and gazed up at the house.
He’d wondered for years why she hadn’t come in. The house was alive with dead souls just like her, partying, laughing, enjoying themselves.
He decided he’d introduce himself and ask her if she’d like to join their party.
I came across a post today which resonated so fully with me. You can find it here at https://nhwn.wordpress.com/2015/12/05/weekend-edition-writing-is-my-real-job/
I’ve always wanted to write, ever since I was a very young girl. Unfortunately I lacked in self-confidence and anything and everything would knock the stuffing out of me. It’s taken me many, many years to overcome this ridiculously crippling and self-defeating issue. I really needed to get out of my own way.
I came to the realisation, some years ago, that I am perfectly capable of writing, and that I had a very good imagination. However, it has taken me until very recently to find a medium through which to test the waters, so to speak. For the past six months I’ve been using this blog to find my writing voice, to try out different writing styles, to stretch myself and discover what I enjoy writing.
Then, wonder of wonders, I came across numerous posts mentioning NaNoWriMo. Well, I thought I ought to try and see if I could manage to keep up with the demands of writing a 50,000 word full draft in just 30 days. It was daunting but also kind of exciting. No-one would be there to tell me what I was writing was rubbish, only me, and I was quite happy with my efforts. Now I have a first full draft which I will start working on after Christmas; a number of short stories; a whole raft of poems which I will be adding to; ideas for a series resulting from another short story (currently in 2nd draft), and plans for further short stories and novels in a notebook I take everywhere with me.
Whilst I can’t afford to give up the day job, I can afford to follow my dreams and write.
A short story for Halloween: The Feast
It was 11pm at night, the night of All Hallow’s Eve. Dan and Amy, both 18 years old, were walking hand in hand towards a derelict old house. Dan had thought it would be fun to take Amy to his favourite place, somewhere where they could be on their own, alone, without any worries that ‘The Parents’ would walk in on them just as they got their clothes off.
Amy wasn’t so sure that the idea was that great to be honest, she’d never really had any desire to visit the house, it was far too old and decrepit for her, and she was quite sure that this particular evening was not the night to be walking into the old building. She turned towards him, slowing him down, and voiced her niggling doubts: ‘Can’t we find somewhere else Dan, I’m really not wanting to go there in the dark, it’s creepy enough when it’s light but right now it’s kind of spooky’. Dan looked at her and kissed her on the nose. ‘Don’t be daft love’, he said, ‘it’s the one place no-one’s going to bother looking for us and I’ve been in it loads of times – nothing’s ever happened’. Amy shrugged and carried on walking up the windy drive towards the house – a drive which by this time, Amy noticed, was enveloped in floating curls of mist just to add to the creepy ambience of the whole adventure. She didn’t find it at all romantic, seductive, or anything but scary though she didn’t say anything else to Dan. He’d gone to a lot of trouble to make everything perfect for her, so he’d said.
A lone wolf stands at the top of the pass looking down onto the small town below. He can smell the stench of burning meat, it fills the air and is carried on the breeze straight towards him. He salivates, drool running down his throat and dripping off his mangy fur. The wolf hasn’t eaten for days, but he makes no attempt to get closer to the food he knows is there for the taking.
He’s afraid of the flames – the flames which have engulfed the small town – the flames which are cooking the slaughtered inhabitants of the once thriving community. He’s afraid of the humans who are left alive, the ones who have mastered the art of creating scorching, searing, murderous heat.
In his younger years he was the leader of his pack, his job to protect and to provide. He knew no fear. Now in his old age he has no pack, he is responsible only for himself, and his strength has gone.
His legs give way and he slides onto his side. Too weak now from hunger, he knows he won’t last another day. He settles down to die. Another victim of the marauding horde.
Meet Charlie. Charlie is a little boy of almost four and a half and is about to start school. Charlie is almost ready for school. He can dress himself, tie his shoe laces, count very well and loves to make things. Unfortunately Charlie doesn’t want to learn how to read even though his parents had tried and tried to get him interested in stories – reading to him every night from when he was just a few months old.
The trouble is, Charlie cannot imagine the story as it is being read to him, so he can’t ‘see’ in his mind the creatures, strange lands, magical people and strange animals they’re talking about. His parents are really worried as they’re sure that he will struggle to keep up at school if he doesn’t start to read very soon. One Saturday, about two weeks before he is due to start his first day at school, his parents decide to take him to an old bookshop in town. This bookshop is a wonderful place, full of old books, magical books, with words that are just desperate to get out of the pages and live in the real world. One book, in particular, captures Charlie’s attention. There is an image of a large but friendly looking dragon, on the front whose name, Charlie’s father tells him, is Ernie. The man who owned the bookshop looked at Charlie and bent down so that he was at the same height as the little boy and said ‘This book is a magical book. If you listen very carefully to the stories that are kept within it you might even find that Ernie the dragon takes you on his magic book to visit the stories themselves. Would you like that’? Of course Charlie simply had to have the book, so his father paid for it and they took it home.
That night Charlie’s father asked him to pick whichever story he wanted and they would read it together. Charlie picked a story about a magical land full of magical creatures and listened, intently, as his father read to him. After he had finished, Charlie’s father tucked him into bed, kissed him on his forehead, and wished him sweet dreams. Charlie was asleep before his father even left the room.
OBSERVING MURDER: PART 5
I should have said that I swapped phone numbers with both Jeremy and Jennifer before I left the restaurant the previous evening. This morning, at 7.30am, I had a phone call from Jeremy. It went like this:
Jeremy: ‘Naomi, thank you so much for agreeing to see me last night, and for being so positive and helpful. My mother is so pleased that you’ve agreed to help us and is already ensuring your room will be ready for you’.
Me: ‘Well that’s…..’
Jeremy: ‘Mother has asked me to arrange for your luggage, etc., to be collected. If that’s ok, can you have them left with the receptionist and they will be collected around 2pm’?
Me: ‘Oh, I …..’
Jeremy: ‘Brilliant. Call me whenever you’ve finished and wherever you are, and I’ll arrange a taxi to collect you and take you straight to the house.’
Me: ‘Thank you but that’s not really necessary, I’ll …….’
Jeremy: ‘No, no, we won’t take no for an answer. Mother’s already arranged with grandmother to gain access to the attic so we should have something to look at when you arrive – after dinner, of course. See you later then. Bye.’
Then he hung up. Fait accompli.
I wasn’t at all sure how I felt about having my next few days organised so comprehensively. I was pleased that I was going to be able to have access to some primary source material but, on the other hand, I was also aware that I didn’t know what use they might turn out to be, nor was I entirely sure that actually being based in the family home was necessarily a good thing. I’d just have to wait and see on both counts.
OBSERVING MURDER: PART 4
By 6.30pm I was dressed to kill, perfumed and immaculately made up. I was pleased with what I saw in the mirror, apart from the slippers – I so had to remember to put my heels on before I went out. I had folded up the piece of paper on which I’d listed my questions I wanted to have answered, together with some idea of how I was going to find those answers. If I could persuade Jeremy to help me with at least some of them, then that would surely prove a great help.
I thought I’d share this site with you today. It has a number of links to short and very short stories which is something I’m interested in taking further. I’ve found I like writing short stories, never having been something I’ve ever tried before. The site has some very useful hints and tips.
Read short short stories by our contributors, and publish your own. Here are some tricks to help you write successful flash fiction or very short stories.
Source: Short Short Stories – Very Short Stories
The assignment for Writing 101 today has been to write a post based on a comment posted concerning a post my blog. One comment that sprang immediately to mind came from Calensariel who had suggested that a short story I had written, in response to one of Shafali’s cue art prompts, might lend itself to being re-created as a full-length novel.
I would love to know what you, my readers and followers, would like to see more of on my blog. To this end I’ve created a little poll to find out what type of writing you prefer to read, based on what you’ve already read of my little musings and longer pieces.