Sarah Ann Hall

Reporting on writing in progress or, more probably, not.

#FridayFictioneers – 19/5/17 – Fixtures and Fittings

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Every Wednesday Rochelle Wisoff-Fields publishes a photo prompt to inspire writers to write 100-words of flash fiction or poetry.

At any point during the following week, the Friday Fictioneers post their 100-word tales. Read the other stories by clicking below.

As usual, it took a while for any ideas to form, and then I came up with the below. Is this a story? Perhaps more of a vingette. Does it work? Let me know.

Thanks to Rochelle for hosting and Roger Butolt for this week’s photo.

© Roger Butolt

 

Fixtures and Fittings

(Genre: general fiction; 100-words)

‘Why do we always come here?’

‘It’s where we had our first date.’

‘And our last.’

‘They know us.’

‘We love the food.’

‘They leave us alone and don’t mind us poring over paperwork.’

‘And the coffee’s good.’

‘And the coffee’s good!’

‘We should try somewhere else.’

‘It wouldn’t be as comfortable.’

‘Which is why we should make the effort.’

‘Maybe.’

‘You’re too non-committal.’

‘You’re too rigid.’

‘Here we go.’

‘And that’s another thing going for his place; they don’t mind our arguments.’

‘There’s something I need to say.’

‘Me too.’

‘I don’t want us to get divorced.’

‘Me either.’

 

Written by Sarah Ann

May 19, 2017 at 2:14 pm

Slotting it in – #amwriting

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With clients moving on I thought I’d fill my time with writing. However, new clients have arrived and time home alone to write has reduced. My one free day a week is now Thursday, during which the morning is taken up with work-related report writing.

In order to make sure I do write, I am carrying around hard copies of short stories in progress. On Monday, in the 10-minutes I had between clients, I edited 600-words of a still very rough, but complete, short story. I was able to do the same at lunchtime today. And this morning, I started this blog post before work, planning to get down the bare bones before posting this evening. Squeezing it in, using tiny snippets of time to write, is working… so far.

Last week, on my day at home, I read through chapters 1-3 of my out-with-agents novel and decided Chapter 1 needs re-ordering. There is too much introspection and not enough grab. I think I might also swap Chapters 3 and 4. I like Chapter 4. It introduces a new and loveable character that agents might prefer to the one who arrives in Chapter 3. Because the chapters follow a detailed timeline, I have yet to work out how much work re-ordering might take, and that’s tomorrow’s job, when I have the afternoon free to play.

 

Priorities for the next fortnight: re-order/ tighten first chapters of novel; re-edit short stories.

Ongoing projects successfully met: chapters 1-3 of novel were read and found wanting.

Ongoing projects partially met: two short stories have been edited; my online Italian course has been accessed once more, even if not much learning has occurred; crochet progresses, I’m looking for new stitches to try.

Ongoing project fails: the piano gathers dust.

 

 

Written by Sarah Ann

May 17, 2017 at 10:47 pm

#FridayFictioneers – 12/5/17 – A Moment in Time

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Every Wednesday Rochelle Wisoff-Fields publishes a photo prompt to inspire writers to write 100-words of flash fiction or poetry.

At any point during the following week, the Friday Fictioneers post their 100-word tales. Read the other stories by clicking below.

I really struggled coming up with something that wasn’t obvious/ boring this week, which is why I’m posting so late. I’m not sure this works. I tried to go funny using characters from a previous post, but misery took over my muse.

Thanks Rochelle for hosting and the prompt this week.

 

© Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

A Moment in Time

(Genre: general fiction; 100-words)

‘How is it my fault?’ I say looking at the hanging wing mirror.

‘If I hadn’t been picking you up, it wouldn’t have happened,’ Colin screams.

‘You won’t let me drive myself.’

‘I worry,’ he whines, ‘about you being out alone.’

Since turning seventy-five, Colin had become safety obsessed.

‘I’m hardly likely to be kidnapped by slavers.’

‘I want to do it,’ he says. ‘It gets me out the house.’

Colin’s becoming more reclusive, relying on my friends for company.

He won’t explain how the lamppost jumped across the pavement.

I think of his mother and fear for our future.

 

Written by Sarah Ann

May 14, 2017 at 7:24 pm

#amwriting – honest, I am

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It’s difficult to blog about writing when one isn’t doing much. I have (mostly) written a weekly flash and am tweeting haiku most weekdays. I’ve also been doing a bit of reading about writing, but still have a big pile to work through, and there hasn’t been much progress on short stories or other move substantive works.

On the advice of a new, and proving to be dear, writer friend, I am heading back to my currently-with-agents novel to look again at chapters 1 to 3. These are the ones that need to hook and grab and sink in claws that cannot be removed until the remainder of the manuscript has been read. I have never been happy with the opening lines of my book – they stink. So with Lou kicking my backside, I will be tightening, shaping, and giving these opening 7000-words a perfection makeover.

As clients fall but the wayside I have lost 11-hours a week of paid work and will have more time to write. I have divided this week in to days on which to complete different tasks, and subdivided in to mornings/ afternoons/ hour-long windows. For example, today (Tuesday) I wrote up my work reports in the morning and scheduled writing this blog post for the afternoon, as well as catching up on emails hanging over from the weekend. Wednesday morning I will re-read chapters 1-3 of the aforementioned novel before getting out my red pen. At some point during Thursday or Friday I will revisit the short stories I plan to have finished by the end of July. However, I feel that with the lack of progress made during the past month, that deadline might slip by. I have even timetabled an hour of Italian practice for later in the week. I need to master, or at least revisit Italian personal pronouns if I am ever to move on.

 

Priorities for the next fortnight: read and sharpen chapters 1-3 of novel; edit and write short stories based on friend’s picture prompts; prepare more agent submissions.

Ongoing projects successfully met: Friday Fictioneer stories have been posted; I’ve crocheted some flowers.

Ongoing projects partially met: blog posts about writing and blog reading are both too sporadic.

Ongoing project fails: learning Italian and piano practise have been non-existent.

Written by Sarah Ann

May 9, 2017 at 1:21 pm

#FridayFictioneers – 5/5/17 – Dwell Not

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Every Wednesday Rochelle Wisoff-Fields publishes a photo prompt to inspire writers to write 100-words of flash fiction or poetry.

At any point during the following week, the Friday Fictioneers post their 100-word tales. Read the other stories by clicking below.

I stared and stared at this week’s prompt and couldn’t muster anything. Then I began to think about decay, and this strong female character turned up.

Thank you, as ever, to Rochelle for hosting and Sandra for the photo.

Copyright Sandra Crook

 

Dwell Not

(Genre: historical fiction; 100-words)

The hall’s fading splendour cuts Elsa deep. She once thought to reign here. Old Edward had favoured his cousin umpteenth times removed. Until the housemaid begot his brat. None fully believed; Edward was too proud to deny.

Elsa married a different cousin, strengthening the line with six healthy children.

The housemaid died of pox. Her brat is barren, however frequently and forcibly he humps; he ages speedily. None wish to bear his scion, or bind themselves to a house that rots while he gambles.

Soon Elsa will return as widow, residing while her sons restore grandeur to house and name.

 

 

Written by Sarah Ann

May 5, 2017 at 5:40 pm

#amwriting – Agents, here I come.

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My novel to pitch is now with eight agents. While I hoped this would take a day, it took two, as submissions were adjusted to meet agency specific requirements. Some require a query letter instead of a cover letter and synopsis. Most want the first three chapters as attachments, although one preferred the first chapter pasted into the body of an email. And there are agents who want submissions via hardcopy only, which I will approach once I have a new toner cartridge for my printer.

I realise submitting to agents should be an ongoing process until I find representation. However, it has been an energy-sapping couple of days and I am looking forward to writing again without strictures.

 

Priorities for the next fortnight: edit and write short stories based on friend’s picture prompts; prepare more agent submissions.

Ongoing projects successfully met: novel has been submitted; Friday Fictioneer stories have been posted regularly; piano practice has taken place; crochet projects have been completed.

Ongoing projects partially met: blog posts about writing and progress have been sporadic; blog reading is improving.

Ongoing project fails: learning Italian has taken a back seat.

 

 

Written by Sarah Ann

April 22, 2017 at 11:35 am

#FridayFictioneers – 21/4/17 – Septuagenarian Adventure

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Every Wednesday Rochelle Wisoff-Fields publishes a photo prompt to inspire writers to write 100-words of flash fiction or poetry.

At any point during the following week, the Friday Fictioneers post their 100-word tales. Read the other stories by clicking below.

With thanks to Rochelle for hosting and Magaly Guerrero for this week’s prompt.

I can’t quite believe I’ve managed to post this on a Thursday, but life gave me an in this week – I will be following my protagonist’s example next Wednesday.

 

PHOTO PROMPT © Magaly Guerrero

© Magaly Guerrero

 

Septuagenarian Adventure

(Genre: humour; 100-words)

‘Frances, you’re 75.’

My husband is a master of truth.

‘And?’

‘It’s undignified.’

‘The woman who runs the sessions said there are lots of beginners like me.’

‘You’re not as fit as you were.’

‘That’s why I signed up.’

‘What about equipment?’

‘I only need shoes.’

‘You’re….’ he paused.

There are occasions when Colin trips over the truth.

‘There’s more of you than there was,’ he attempted diplomatically.

‘You mean is the floor reinforced?’

‘I didn’t say…’

‘I’m fat, Colin. I need to lose weight and enjoy it. That’s why I joined The Marvellous Tapping Heffalumps. Come jiggle with me?’

 

Written by Sarah Ann

April 20, 2017 at 3:23 pm

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