Writing Challenge 25th May 2020

The reason I’m posting this prompt because I like writing a little flash fiction. It’s something I treat as going to the gym for my writing muscles. If you want to join in, that’s brilliant, but there’s no pressure. If you want to leave a comment with a link, that’s great, but if you don’t feel ready to share yet, that’s also great. Or you could decide that you had a good session at the ‘gym’ and want to submit it somewhere, or use it as the basis for other work, which would be amazing. It’s up to you how you use this prompt. The only thing I would like to insist on is that you enjoy yourself.

Here is a picture and a quotation. The challenge is to write something that is sparked off by one or both of them. It doesn’t have to be directly related to either, just the story you hear when you see them. It’s limited to 500 words (or less, lots less if you need to, or a little more, and I don’t check), and you should try and finish it by next week. It can be prose, poetry, fact or fiction – just have fun.

People choose the paths that grant them the greatest rewards for the least amount of effort.

David Shore

If you wish, leave a link in the comments and I will drop in, read and comment, and I encourage everyone to do the same. I’ll also be sharing stuff on Facebook and wherever else I can think of. There are no prizes and no end goal, unless it is to have fun writing. I hope I get to see some awesome stuff sparked by this. Good luck!

Wanderer in the Mist

The wanderer couldn’t believe how long he had been walking in the woods. It felt like days. The mist between the silver trees softened the edges of the world and blurred any sounds into a faint hiss. Everything looked the same and the faint echoes of song that tantalised him on the edge of his hearing were impossible to place. He paused and put a tentative hand on the ice cold trunk of a tree. Perhaps he had passed it before. He couldn’t tell. He had tried arranging stones on the paths to see if he was going in circles but when he found the stones again they were not quite the same as he remembered. They had been a little jumbled and he couldn’t be sure if they were the stones he had left there or not.

He regretted taking the dare. Everyone said that the lane led to Fairyland if you went on a full moon on May Day Eve. He hadn’t wanted to go but Harry had dared him and he hadn’t wanted to look scared. He stopped again and leant against a tree. It was funny. He didn’t feel hungry or thirsty, but he was sure he had been here most of the night. He shivered.

He looked around. It felt like days but there was no sign of dawn. Perhaps the mist was hiding it. He looked around. He didn’t remember this fork in the path. Perhaps that was the way out. He frowned. He could hear voices! He finally could hear voices!

“I don’t know, father.” The voice of a young man said. “The signs are mounting up. There is something coming to Leeds and I’m not sure what.”

“I do not wish to believe it, Steve.” An older voice said. “But I fear it is true.”

The wanderer ran towards them. “Hey, hey there! Can you help me? I’m lost.” He ran into the clearing and then stumbled to a halt. A tall, dark man with devilish green eyes was dressed in what looked like Medieval armour and was facing a slim man in a sharp suit.

“I am Lord Marius,” the man in armour said. “This is my son, Steve Adderson. Why are you here?”

“Harry dared me.” The wanderer looked between the two men. “This is Fairyland, right?”

“Yes, it is.” Steve looked at him. “Have you been here long?”

The wanderer smiled ruefully. “It seems like days. Do you know the way out? It’s just that if I’m out too late my mam won’t let me listen to the coronation on the radio.”

“Coronation?” Lord Marius asked, amused.

“Yes, King George VI. He’ll do a better job and at least he’s married to a proper lady.” The wanderer looked between the two men and their suddenly set expressions. “What’s the matter?”

“I’ll explain it.” Steve said. “I’ll meet up later, father.” He turned to the wanderer. “We need to get out of this domain and have a long talk. What’s your name?”

The wanderer stared at him for a long moment. He had come into Fairyland, some time ago. He had come because of a dare from Harry. He wanted to get back to listen to the coronation on the radio and he couldn’t if his mam was cross and he seemed to have been wandering for a long time. Those thoughts had run a track around his mind for longer than it seemed, with nothing else on his mind. “I can’t remember.”

Writing Challenge 18th May 2020

The reason I’m posting this prompt because I like writing a little flash fiction. It’s something I treat as going to the gym for my writing muscles. If you want to join in, that’s brilliant, but there’s no pressure. If you want to leave a comment with a link, that’s great, but if you don’t feel ready to share yet, that’s also great. Or you could decide that you had a good session at the ‘gym’ and want to submit it somewhere, or use it as the basis for other work, which would be amazing. It’s up to you how you use this prompt. The only thing I would like to insist on is that you enjoy yourself.

Here is a picture and a quotation. The challenge is to write something that is sparked off by one or both of them. It doesn’t have to be directly related to either, just the story you hear when you see them. It’s limited to 500 words (or less, lots less if you need to, or a little more, and I don’t check), and you should try and finish it by next week. It can be prose, poetry, fact or fiction – just have fun.

Never make a defense or an apology until you are accused.

King Charles I of England

If you wish, leave a link in the comments and I will drop in, read and comment, and I encourage everyone to do the same. I’ll also be sharing stuff on Facebook and wherever else I can think of. There are no prizes and no end goal, unless it is to have fun writing. I hope I get to see some awesome stuff sparked by this. Good luck!

Being Careful

I reluctantly answered the phone. Kay was my best friend, but I knew what she would say. “Hi.”

“Thank goodness you are safe.” Kay sighed. “One day you will look before you leap. There could have been anything waiting for you.”

“I’m fine.” I said. “And I did a lot of research.”

Kay snorted. “Looking on Google maps isn’t research.”

“It’s just as I expected.” I leaned back against a packing case. “The rented house needs a major clean, the library I’m supposed to sort out is a mess and my employer is sort of a sweetie but hasn’t a clue.”

Kay laughed. “Trust you to fall on your feet. How you have got through life in one piece is a mystery. You just charge at things without ever considering what might go wrong and somehow find things working out.”

“There are some amazing books in the library.” I said. “There’s some volumes that are so rare and antique that I don’t think I’ve ever seen in a catalogue. I’m going to be busy for a while, and the pay is great.”

“I’m really pleased for you.” Kay said. “Anyway, the reason I called was your housewarming present. I know it’s only rental, but it’s a new home. If you look in your blue case, tucked into the top corner, you’ll find a package. Go and get it. And when you find it, please be sensible!”

I found the blue case on the bottom of the pile, of course, and found the small packet Kay had tucked there for a surprise. Wrapped in blue paper, with a long list of safety precautions, was a candle with my favourite scent. I set it on a sturdy packing case, lit it with the matches Kay had included, and sat back. The uncertainty and homesickness slipped away and I spent a few moments appreciating Kay’s kindness before getting on with the cleaning – taking due precautions around the lit candle, of course.

Writing Challenge 11th May 2020

The reason I’m posting this prompt because I like writing a little flash fiction. It’s something I treat as going to the gym for my writing muscles. If you want to join in, that’s brilliant, but there’s no pressure. If you want to leave a comment with a link, that’s great, but if you don’t feel ready to share yet, that’s also great. Or you could decide that you had a good session at the ‘gym’ and want to submit it somewhere, or use it as the basis for other work, which would be amazing. It’s up to you how you use this prompt. The only thing I would like to insist on is that you enjoy yourself.

Here is a picture and a quotation. The challenge is to write something that is sparked off by one or both of them. It doesn’t have to be directly related to either, just the story you hear when you see them. It’s limited to 500 words (or less, lots less if you need to, or a little more, and I don’t check), and you should try and finish it by next week. It can be prose, poetry, fact or fiction – just have fun.

Please give me some good advice in your next letter. I promise not to follow it.

Edna St Vincent Millay

If you wish, leave a link in the comments and I will drop in, read and comment, and I encourage everyone to do the same. I’ll also be sharing stuff on Facebook and wherever else I can think of. There are no prizes and no end goal, unless it is to have fun writing. I hope I get to see some awesome stuff sparked by this. Good luck!

Countryside

“Is it definitely this way?” I was sure I had stepped in something squishy.

“Hmm?” Charles walked forward a little. “Yes, the man in the shop said it was along here.”

The man in the shop was fine with Charles but never seemed to take to me. Conversations paused as I walked in and he asked me if I wanted any ‘special orders, like them olives?’ and looked somewhat disappointed at my purchase of potatoes and carrots. “Did he say how far?” It felt like I had walked miles.

“Not far.” Charles looked around and took a happy breath. “That’s wild garlic over there. We could cook with it.”

I stumbled over a lump in the path. “Only if we get it away from where people walk their dogs.”

Charles laughed. “You wait until I get the garden sorted.”

That was the deal. He sorted out the garden, I dealt with the house. We had moved in too fast. Really the whole place needed to be gutted. The wallpaper was older than me and I didn’t like to speculate about the plumbing. “It’ll be great.”

“Look, it’s just down here.” Charles strode ahead.

I waved away the midges from my face and followed. The dim green tunnel of the lane opened up and then I was in the sunlight and looking over the incredible view. Woodland mixed with patchwork fields and the sun slanted down on the glowing, late spring landscape. I glanced at Charles and the delight on his face was as strong as the sunshine as he took a deep, refreshing breath of country air. The tension in his shoulders had gone and there was a sparkle in his eyes. Moving to the country was definitely worth it.

Writing Challenge 4th May 2020

The reason I’m posting this prompt because I like writing a little flash fiction. It’s something I treat as going to the gym for my writing muscles. If you want to join in, that’s brilliant, but there’s no pressure. If you want to leave a comment with a link, that’s great, but if you don’t feel ready to share yet, that’s also great. Or you could decide that you had a good session at the ‘gym’ and want to submit it somewhere, or use it as the basis for other work, which would be amazing. It’s up to you how you use this prompt. The only thing I would like to insist on is that you enjoy yourself.

Here is a picture and a quotation. The challenge is to write something that is sparked off by one or both of them. It doesn’t have to be directly related to either, just the story you hear when you see them. It’s limited to 500 words (or less, lots less if you need to, or a little more, and I don’t check), and you should try and finish it by next week. It can be prose, poetry, fact or fiction – just have fun.

People say that life is the thing but I prefer reading

Logan Pearsall Smith

If you wish, leave a link in the comments and I will drop in, read and comment, and I encourage everyone to do the same. I’ll also be sharing stuff on Facebook and wherever else I can think of. There are no prizes and no end goal, unless it is to have fun writing. I hope I get to see some awesome stuff sparked by this. Good luck!