Sarah Ann Hall

Reporting on writing in progress or, more probably, not; practising flash fiction.

#FridayFictioneers – 17/8/18 – Spot It, Gotcha

with 6 comments

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.

This week’s prompt had me thinking of before and after photos, once grand houses falling into disrepair, and then I returned to observing differences.

Thank you to Rochelle and Yvette for this week’s photo.

 

© Yvette Prior

 

Spot It, Gotcha

(Genre: crime fiction; 100-words)

As a child I played spot the difference and achieved perfect scores in seconds. I moved from pictures to words, found fault in text and layout, and lost the joy of reading. With film I was a continuity assistant’s nightmare, and frequently frustrated.

I watch moving pictures all day now, observe crimes play out and track perpetrators in masks and hoods. Their eyes betray them, their shape and slant. Sometimes an earlobe, the position of a mole. I follow until the boasting phone call; the satellites triangulate; provide a home address. Police arrest, take photos. I play spot the similarity.

 

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Written by Sarah Ann

August 17, 2018 at 1:17 pm

OLWG#63 – Morning Misunderstanding

with 6 comments

Please find below a short story as my response to this weeks New Unofficial On-Line Writer’s Guild prompts. I’m not sure the title of my short story fits, and I wish I had more than 25-minutes to develop these characters. I’m intrigued to know what Spencer has done so may have to work with him again.

Thank you Thom for the prompts.

 

Morning Misunderstanding

Maisie Grainger spots a young man she hasn’t seen in the district for a while.

‘Good morning Spencer. You’re up and out early.’

‘Yeah. Got things to do.’

‘You out running before breakfast?’

‘You know me, Mrs. G. I’m always on the run. I’ve just got to pick up a few things.’

‘You’re such a good boy. I was talking to your mother just the other day and she was telling me how you’ve been away doing good things. Africa was it?’

‘Something like that. Look I –’

‘Oh don’t let me keep you. Me and my gassing. I just wanted to let you know how much we all think of you. Keep up the good work.’

 

Spencer watches Mrs. G toddle towards the newsagents. His energies drain, shoulders relax. He looks at Mrs. G’s house, full of riches he knows having been spoiled there as a child with ginger cake and home made strawberry ice-cream. He looks at her retreating back and knows he can’t do it.

He was only supposed fly in, say hello Mum, and be off again before they started looking for him. But Mum had insisted he stop the night. ‘It’s years since I’ve had you under my roof. You know how much I love to watch the way you sleep.’

And he had given in, because that’s what good boys do. But she hadn’t had any money to give him so he’d scoured his memory banks wondering where he might gain enough funds for the next leg of his adventure. If only Mrs. G. had still been in bed, he’d have been able to creep in and take the silver tazza her husband got as a retirement gift. But she’d been up and she’d treated him nicely, dammit.

Time to say goodbye to Mum and head-off before the wooden-tops arrived and carted him away yet again.

 


This week’s prompts are:

  1. you’re early
  2. always on the run
  3. the way you sleep

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need.

Have fun

Written by Sarah Ann

August 16, 2018 at 6:49 pm

#FridayFictioneers – 10/8/18 – In Plain Sight

with 28 comments

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 looked at this week’s prompt and wrote a story, which was pants, and then wrote a second, which I would have loved to have re-edited. I’m sure the below has many holes – let me know.

Thank you to Rochelle and Ronda for this week’s photo.

 

Ronda Del Boccio

In Plain Sight

(Genre: general fiction?; 100-words)

I’m a killer queen, I sing at the top of my voice. Not that I need to draw attention. I come from central casting of the Village People: leather waistcoat, shorts, cocked hat. I dress to fuel the stereotype. People look at me as we cross paths, but they do not see, disregard my bulging groin.

On a busy city street preparing for a ceremonial parade I add colour, an incidental to talk about if they don’t observe the main attraction. The singing poof fondling himself in the street. Never the assassin reaching for a weapon. Never the queen killer.

 

Written by Sarah Ann

August 10, 2018 at 10:09 pm

OLWG#62 – 100-word stories

with 5 comments

For this week’s New Unofficial On-Line Writer’s Guild prompts I’ve gone with the tried and tested and written 100-word stories to each prompt.

Thank you Thom for the fun 🙂

 

Mad Jack

Sylvia arrived at her brother’s house expecting to go to lunch to celebrate his birthday. The door was opened by his flatmate.

‘Jack’s gone to Brighton to play Jacks.’

‘What?’

‘There’s currently an international Jacks’ competition on there.’

‘And?’

‘He’s a champion.’

‘Jack told you that?’

‘Yeah.’

‘Do you believe everything he tells you?’

The flatmate shrugged. ‘Don’t you?’

‘I’m his sister. What do you think?’

‘He said they used to play Jacks in Egypt with a wooden ball and the toe bones of sheep.’

‘Yeah, I read that online too. But then I was expecting a good lunch today.’

 

Conversation In the Piazza

‘What’re you lookin’ at?’

‘You.’

‘Why?’

‘Can’t I?’

‘You’re obviously physically able to. I asked why?’

‘I don’t suppose saying you’re an attractive woman is the right answer.’

‘Is there a right answer?’

‘There must be something you want to hear.’

‘Only ever the truth. I am tired of people second-guessing what they should say. What happened to answering a straight question with an honest answer?’

‘People got hurt.’

‘Lies hurt more.’

‘You’ve been hurt before?’

‘You have to ask?’

‘I’m looking at you because you’ve a very attractive female figure.’

‘You’re a very perceptive and gracious pigeon. Thank you.’

 

Childhood Reflections

Grandpa and grandma were the best. Most kids say that I’m sure, but mine truly were wonderful. Gran baked constantly. I would wake or go abed to the smells of scorching butter and sugar. I use her recipes daily. Grandpa taught my sister and I how to turn wood, to work with the beauty of grain. I learnt everything from him and so became the cabinetmaker I am.

But every perfect carpet has a flaw. They taught us to fear the dark, with vivid, arresting stories of bogeymen, phantoms and ghouls.

I’m 47 and still sleep with the light on.

 


This week’s prompts are:

  1. Jacks
  2. what’re you lookin’ at?
  3. they taught us to fear the dark

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need.

Have fun

 

Written by Sarah Ann

August 9, 2018 at 10:20 pm

#Friday Fictioneers – 3/8/18 – Sensuous Healing

with 33 comments

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.

Thank you to Rochelle for hosting and Sandra for this week’s photo. My initial thoughts went to collecting and hoarding, which I decided was too obvious, so I thought a little harder…

© Sandra Crook

Sensuous Healing

(Genre: general fiction; 100-words)

She started collecting when she went out to play, coming home with feathers and broken birds’ eggs, stones that imitated potatoes. Her parents allowed it, ‘twas a harmless activity after all.

She graduated to gathering seed-heads and cultivated a wild flower garden. Then it was herbs, and hours spent in the library to learn of their properties. She considered becoming a doctor, briefly, before her oneness with nature triumphed over an innate need to control.

Now she hears the song of the winds, observes the behaviours of beasts, smells the condition of soil, and heals all-comers in her own way.

 

Written by Sarah Ann

August 3, 2018 at 3:49 pm

OLWG #60&61 – micropoetry – #amwriting

with 4 comments

I struggled during July to keep up with my writing commitments, and my responses to the New Unofficial On-Line Writer’s Guild prompts have been slow in coming. There is a way of combining the last two sets of prompts into a story, but I’m not up to the challenge, and have opted for ease and brevity with micropoetry. As I write that, I realised I am not prepared to reveal the number of agonised minutes spent to come up with these.

Thank you to Thom for putting up with my tardiness.

 

 

Broken

When delivered.

Phone customer services.

‘You’re call is important to us.’

Liar.

 

‘Switch off

And on again.’

‘I’ve done that already.’

‘Jiggle it a little bit more.’

Useless.

 

 

Well damn.

He didn’t know

She loved him all that much.

They both enjoyed their week away.

Surprised.

 

 

Fast for health reasons.

Made weak by summer’s wild heat

Hunger pangs abound.

I just want something to eat.

Reconsider decision.

 

 

Getting old,

Losing his senses.

‘Speak up, boy

Shout louder.

It’s important what you say.’

Learn from each other.

 

 

You are never going to believe this. I won last night’s lottery.

 


 

This week’s prompts are:

  1. you are never going to believe this
  2. well damn
  3. jiggle it a little bit

 

Last week’s prompts were:

  1. I just want something to eat
  2. Speak up, boy
  3. your call is important to us

 

Go ahead and dive in, set your imagination free!
Write something
Ready, Set, Go – you have 25 minutes, but if that is not possible, take as long as you need.

Have fun

 

Written by Sarah Ann

August 2, 2018 at 6:10 pm

Project 10K – August – modesty is the word

with 6 comments

My workload in July went up and writing went down. August has less work scheduled and there is time for writing. However, my other half is working from home all month so trains of thought will be interrupted and periods set aside for writing are likely to be kidnapped by different priorities.

Attempts to find an agent for my finished novel are on hold until after the summer. Having received detailed feedback from the agent who requested to see my full manuscript, I am now looking for an editor, as feel I could do with their insight in how to be ‘more show less tell’ in the later chapters. That search will begin in earnest in September.

I have signed up for the Iowa How Writers Write Fiction MOOC because I know I need to improve my writing, but have only completed Week 1 and the course is already at Week 3. I hope to be able to catch up and keep up. To wit, my goals for August are modest and nowhere near 10000-words.

 

© Flights of Fancy

Goals for August

  1. Contribute to Friday Fictioneers prompts – so I get one win.
  2. Post responses to OLWG Sunday prompts by Thursday.
  3. Keep up with Iowa HWWF MOOC.
  4. Have fun and gather thoughts for an autumnal push.
  5. Put up goal measures/ to do list on the sidebar, to remind myself what’s to come, as I tend to mislay hardcopy versions.

 

 

Achievements/ not from July

  1. Give up writing goals. FAIL – I wrote some.
  2. Pull self together and write some goals. WIN – here they are.
  3. Contribute to Friday Fictioneers, as that’s an easy one. WIN
  4. Respond to OWLG prompts by the Thursday after a Sunday post – already a fail as today is Thursday and I don’t know what last week’s prompts were. FAIL
  5. Continue editing Nano17 and Nano14 as time allows. MASSIVE FAIL – no words were read let alone written.
  6. Finish the ‘just started’ short stories and edit them once. FAIL – ditto as above.
  7. Put up some bars over there on the right to show my progress and motivate me, because it’s a fun avoidance activity. WIN – we all need a bit of fun.

 

Thank you to Gabrielle for hosting this challenge each month. P10K is a great motivator for me, and I do have fun setting goals and keeping track of my writing. Goal achievement is a little more difficult and very patchy.

 

Written by Sarah Ann

August 2, 2018 at 11:02 am

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