Sarah Ann Hall

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

#FridayFictioneers – 28/7/17 – Hanging on the Telephone

with 41 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.


After being late last week, I’m early this. Two things immediately popped into my head when I saw this week’s prompt: (1) why is there a telephone in a toilet? (it’s the tiles and window), and (2) a song from which I’ve borrowed my title.

Thanks to Rochelle for hosting and J Hardy Carroll for this week’ photo.

This will be my last FF entry for a while as August is earmarked for decorating. I’m going to be up to my elbows in paint and sawdust with nowhere to sit and work.


© J Hardy Carroll


Hanging on the Telephone

(Genre: reportage/ humour; 100-words)


(Between events Eva paces flat, reads, hoards writing materials.)

Day 1. Eva skips to the post office; sends novel submission; skips home, grinning.

Days 29, 56, 72. Repeats of Day 1. Skipping and grinning reduce.

Days 133, 175, 212. Eva emails agents first three chapters.

Day 248. Eva receives ‘near miss’ response. Small smile.

Day 329. Eva receives request for full manuscript. Grins and dances.

Day 396. Eva, busy reading contract from agent, rushes to answer phone, trips.

Day 414. Police find Eva with landline phone cord twisted around neck.

Day 596-onwards. Eva’s posthumously published novel a best seller.





41 Responses

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  1. Dear Sarah,

    I almost hate to click like here. Who among us who writes can’t relate to this? Brilliantly written.



    PS Best wishes on your decorating endeavors. 😉


    July 27, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    • Thank you Rochelle. This one was easy and quick to write once the idea came. As you say, it came from experience, although the latter requests for manuscript and contract were of course all imagined.
      I’ll let you know about the decorating when I return. Have a great summer.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2017 at 9:22 am

  2. Oh no! Poor Eva. Dangerous things, phones. Good luck with the decorating!


    July 27, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    • Phones are indeed dangerous. They invariably impart bad news. But Eva has to take some responsibility for being so untidy and rushing.
      Thanks for the good wishes re: decorating – I need all the positive energy I can gather.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2017 at 9:19 am

  3. Great tragedy. If only she could know what a success her novel had become! Well done.

    Iain Kelly

    July 27, 2017 at 4:19 pm

    • Thank you. Perhaps she’s looking down form the other side with another one of those grins on her face. Or a scowl for missing out?

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2017 at 9:16 am

  4. Now there’s a dilemma! Is it better to be successful, or to be alive


    July 27, 2017 at 5:13 pm

    • Indeed. I’d think I’d choose alive, but others may well go for posthumous fame.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2017 at 9:15 am

  5. one more reason to reason to go wireless and ditch the landline.


    July 27, 2017 at 10:55 pm

  6. Sometimes, the tragic back story behind a movie or a book can push it from a hit to a super hit. Poor girl.


    July 28, 2017 at 9:46 am

    • Indeed, and sometimes it isn’t how well you can write, but who you are, or who your friends are. As writers we just have to hope and carry on.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2017 at 3:15 pm

  7. What rotten luck. Had me grimacing. Great take on prompt.

  8. Oh, Sarah, this was DASTARDLY! Greatly written, inventively executed.

    Five out of five Jacqueline Suzanne’s.


    July 28, 2017 at 10:16 am

  9. Oh my God! That’s tragic , so tragic. Such an innovative story craft here. Wonderful!


    July 28, 2017 at 10:33 am

  10. Your unique style of writing perfectly suits this tragic tale. Brilliant.

    Click to visit Keith’s Ramblings

    Keith's Ramblings

    July 28, 2017 at 10:36 am

    • Thank you so much. This was a different approach, and enjoyable to write despite the ending.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2017 at 3:12 pm

  11. Nearly 2 years in 100 words – that must be some sort of record. Loved your imaginative format.


    July 28, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    • Thank you for your comment and for noticing. I was scribbling on paper counting the days – probably the most research I’ve ever done for a FF story.

      Sarah Ann

      July 28, 2017 at 3:10 pm

  12. And bam! So not cool. This was brilliantly done, Sarah Ann!
    Good luck with the August busy-ness!


    July 28, 2017 at 3:42 pm

  13. I immediately thought of (2) Blondie Songs – Hanging on the telephone and CALL ME I almost posted about that too.


    July 28, 2017 at 5:03 pm

  14. Talk about “Life is cruel”! Oh well, there are a lot of authors and artists whose works made it big after they were gone.
    Great tale! Memo to self: watch out for cords.

    Christine Goodnough

    July 29, 2017 at 5:28 am

  15. I thought it was funny–in a dark humor sort of way. Poetic injustice, I suppose, if there is such a thing. Like Rochelle said, we can all relate to the roller coaster of emothions associated with submitting our work for publication.


    July 29, 2017 at 1:18 pm

  16. Oh dear. Been there, done that. Still breathing, though 🙂 Good job!


    July 29, 2017 at 7:21 pm

  17. Ouch! Nice bit of dark humor there. She was hung up on success in the end.


    July 31, 2017 at 1:49 am

    • 🙂 Indeed she was, just slightly the wrong way. Thank you for reading and commenting.

      Sarah Ann

      July 31, 2017 at 4:05 pm

  18. I was thinking it’d be more like “Hanging BY the Telephone”! Great Blondie reference, BTW. Well done!

    Miles Rost

    July 31, 2017 at 10:59 am

  19. This could be read as a comedy, a nightmare, or a modern fairy/morality tale – or all of these at once. The tone is so nicely balanced – more so than our heroine, sadly :S


    July 31, 2017 at 6:15 pm

  20. I’m a bad person, I laughed out loud. This is great, love the irony. Good luck with the decorating. 🙂


    July 31, 2017 at 6:36 pm

  21. Interesting take on the prompt 🙂

    Click Here to see what Mrs. Dash Says


    August 1, 2017 at 4:57 am

  22. Sounds like my luck! Great job.


    August 6, 2017 at 3:22 am

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