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Saturday, 31 December 2011

Last Word

As 2011 draws to an end, I've decided to keep this post brief. A few days ago, if I'd of written when I originally intended to, then yes, I would have penned much more, but time is getting on and we'll soon be ringing in a new year, so let me tell you what I've learnt.

I have lots of lovely friends out there, people who are ready to offer advice when needed, folk who have the same interests, and hopes and dreams. This last year, I have felt part of a much bigger community.
And I feel I must give a lot of the credit to twitter, the social networking service.
I have made many friends, who have laughed with me, cried with me, and generally made life very interesting and sometimes quite comic. I have done word sprints with people all over the world, during the month of NaNoWriMo, exchanged views and even met up with twitter pals for tea and cake! Something I want to repeat, again and again next year.

From a casual conversation only a few days ago, I have, in partnership with Rosalind Adams set up a twitter list for UK writers using the hash tag #UKwriters. You can read about it on her blog here. We can share news on what's happening, inform each other about writing competitions, events and conferences, as well as any book signings or anything else that a writer might be interested in reading. The response has been truly overwhelming.

Its early days. The idea is to get the hash tag working for us all, so we can spread news quickly to each other. We should never underestimate the power of twitter. It will be interesting to see how it develops.

I leave 2011 feeling happy, looking forward to 2012.




Sunday, 18 December 2011

Twinkle and Sparkle

Yes, I'm going to mention the 'C' word. Christmas. Thought I'd ask you a question. I understand we all have things to do, and people to visit etc, but what will you be writing over the holiday break? Or perhaps you won't be?
Maybe you're drawing a line under 2011? And feel you have done enough this year. I dare say you've all done your own review on the past twelve months.

I've spoken to a few of my writing buddies over the last few weeks, and most have made definite plans. Some will be working on novels they started this year, others are editing. One will be writing lots of individual scenes for either radio or screen.

Personally, I'm going to look at the novel I wrote for this years NaNoWriMo, as I'll be beginning draft 2 in January 2012.  So I need to know where I'm going with it.

I'll also be filling in my diary with dates for writing events and workshops I've earmarked next year. Its always good for me to get out and about and meet other like minded people.

What are your plans? Is your writing going to twinkle and sparkle over the holidays?

Sunday, 11 December 2011

A Better Plan

I've been incredibly tired for a while now. Overwhelming so to be honest. Whether Nanowrimo upset my system, more than last year or whether its something else, I don't know. One thing I do know though is I can't let it beat me! Like a runner, (I imagine, because I don't run) who gets terrible cramp in the marathon, he'll run through it, and that's exactly what I need to do now.

December is always a busy month. At work, its coming up to our year end, so there is lots more to do, and its harder to find people, even in this age of communication. They tend to take days off possibly to use up the years quota of holiday. And then we do a stock take the week before Christmas. Total madness, and completely out of my hands, but it involves working into the late evening for at least three or four nights. I have that joy tomorrow.

Family matters seem more intense. Children have parties, adults have parties, and places to go, things to do, people to see in readiness for two days of family celebrations.

I constantly have this battle with sleeplessness, progressively getting worse as the years pass, and this year if I look back its deteriorated further. How do I cope? I keep writing through it. That's how I cope. I almost have to give myself permission to just write! Knowing it may not be my best stuff, but its better than no writing at all. Which, if I don't write at all, I feel grumpy and awful about myself.

Usually, after a few good nights sleep and some deep relaxation, I can shake the feeling off for a while, I get a temporary reprieve, and get some more words down on my WIP or whatever else I may be working on, then off I go again. Until it builds up again, and we have a repeat of the same.

This is why I need a better plan, I need to have a definite schedule which is manageable. Something I am looking at right now. Options are, should I choose a word count then plan it into my week, each week?
Perhaps, I should vow to have two early nights every week? Or should I opt for writing out a 'To Do' list each Sunday for the week ahead, and try and complete it. Knowing if I don't, its not so bad as I will have at least done some of the stuff on the list.

Ideas please. What do you do? Do you make lists? When do you find the time to write? Does anyone else suffer from tiredness, if so how do you cope?





Thursday, 1 December 2011

NaNoWriMo All Done


I am delighted to announce, I've completed NaNoWriMo, Yay! I made it across the finish line a day early.  It's been a marathon of words, there have been many highs and lows along the way. Congratulations to all the other wrimos out there who are most likely lying down, taking a well deserved break now.

Some of you will know its my second attempt at the challenge, I won last year, although it was a very different experience to this year. Things have been very intense, and finally I think, I can say I've switched off my internal editor, as well as learning to write through particularly difficult times.

I've had a few days when I've been bone tired, and rather than fall asleep over the keyboard, I've caved in, packed the laptop away, and gone to bed. Catching up wasn't nearly as bad as I expected either, as I overwrote quite a bit in the early days. Hindsight, is a wonderful thing, so I knew what to expect this year..

I tracked my progress, and kept statistics on words per day, per hour, and even had a column for mood. Which is really important. To keep my energy levels high, I tried to keep a healthy selection of snacks to hand, such as apples, satsumas and popcorn! Drinks were either tea, or cider. 

Interestingly, I did all my words at home this time, where as last time I moved about quite a lot. It wasn't easy, but in the main, I enjoyed writing this novel very much, and now the skeleton is written down. There is a lot to do on it without a doubt, but I have something I can work on, and develop.

It won't be done this month. December will be spent catching up with real life stuff - I have neglected!

Sunday, 20 November 2011

My Poor Neglected Blog

Friends, I've not deserted you. I'm heavily investing my time in NaNoWriMo as discussed in the previous post. Its been tough. However, I've created a character who is leading me through the story and making things happen. I'm purely recording them on her behalf, and while she tries to make  some sense of what is going on around her I'm taking notes for later.

Most of the time, I'm bone tired. I did the challenge last year, so I knew what to expect. I'll admit, I don't find it easy, I know some of you do, and I envy you! Anyway, I'm still cooking for the family, running the house, although its a bit wobbly, here and there. I'm shopping, and going to work each day.

Throw in several appointments at the dentist, hospital and my daughters school for parents evening, and it doesn't leave a whole lot of time for writing. Surprisingly though, I've managed to still get to yoga, go out for a few social events during the evenings, and at the weekend I've had 'me' time at the pool, and still found time to write the 1667 words a day required. Well, maybe I didn't manage the word count on two of those days, but I have caught them up again now.

What I'm trying to say is, I've had all the stuff going on in real life, yet fingers crossed I'm here on day 20, with 35,000 words written. Which means I have 15,000 to go. I'm over the other side of the hill. The hill that seemed like a mountain back on day one.

I even had time to take this picture on the lovely long walk I went on yesterday.

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

NaNoWriMo

This blog has been a bit quiet of late, truth is I've been busy doing other stuff. Real life has been difficult, with family birthdays, tough days at work, and the dreaded sciatica a few of you will know I suffer from on and off.

So what news do I have? I'll keep it simple. After a meet up with two writing buddies at the weekend, I've decided to do NaNoWriMo again this year. I don't have a plan, I wish I did, I was a panster last year, and it looks like it'll be no different this time. There was no time to get a plan together.

Yesterday was the first day, of the madness, the flurry of activity that is scary, exciting, and maddening all at the same time. I got off to a good start and managed to write more than my daily target of 1667 words. At the end of the month I'll have a 50,000 word manuscript, all being well.

All I need to do is sit down at the keyboard. Yea right...

P.S. That's me and Nicola above, and she's doing her first NaNoWriMo this year.

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Writer in the Window


Saturday saw the beginning of the second Everybody’s Reading Festival in Leicester, a celebration of books, reading and live performances that aim to get the people of Leicester reading.  Over nine days there is much going on, and ‘Writer in the Window’ is one of many events taking place all over the city.

So what’s it all about? On Saturday I caught up with talented Leicestershire Playwright, Keith Large, the first of several writers to sit in Waterstones window, penning prose for two hours over lunch time each day. I asked him what on earth he was doing wearing a kilt, sporran and t-shirt emblazoned with ‘Laughs from Leicestershire’ here is his response.

‘I was invited to launch the festival ‘Writer in the Window’ in Waterstones Highcross shopping centre, and thought I’d better dress up!’

‘Why a kilt though?’

‘I bought the kilt in Edinburgh earlier this year, when my play, ‘Everything But an   Astronaut’ ran for eight shows and performed to a full house, it brought me great success. I wanted to write a new play, and thought I’d sit here in style.’

 ‘Were you given any prompts on what to write?’

‘Only a single word - I wanted my session to be live and spontaneous, hence why I started with a fresh new writing pad, a stack of pens, and a decent supply of chocolate to keep me motivated.’

‘I imagine you attracted a lot of attention?’

‘Yes it was fantastic, a lot of people wanted to talk about books, but also about writing.’



‘Do you think you got a new play out of it?’

‘Very much so, I soon got into the zone, and the words flowed.’

‘And will it lead onto anything?

‘Possibly a return to the Edinburgh Festival, we'll have to see.'

‘I must ask, what was the word?’

‘The word was ‘Road’ inspired by a famous actor I worked with a couple of years ago. He informed the cast and myself in a rehearsal, ‘what happens on the road, stays on the road’ I thought, I can’t guarantee that, but it had to be the title for today’s two hours ‘Writer in the Window’ slot.’

‘Finally Keith, have you got any words of wisdom for writers out there?’

 ‘I was given the following advice by Bead Roberts, my favourite writing tutor. I’ve never forgotten. ‘To make it in writing you need the three ‘T’s’ Timing, Talent, and Tenacity.’

‘Thank you Keith.’

Everybody’s Reading Festival continues for the rest of this week in Leicester. Details of the events can be found here.

For more information about Keith and his many successes go here.

Maybe you’ve written in unusual situations, or perhaps ‘Writer in the Window’ has inspired you to try something different, please let us know by leaving a comment or a question.

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Finding Markets For Your Speculative Fiction

I'd like to welcome, Colin F. Barnes who very kindly agreed to do a guest post for me on the subject of markets for the speculative fiction writer. First a little about my guest.


Colin F. Barnes is a dark fiction writer from the UK  specializing in Science Fiction, Horror and Thrillers. He likes to take the gritty edginess from his surroundings and personal experiences and translate them into his stories. He is currently working on an anthology of horror stories in his 'City of Hell Chronicles' setting after recently debuting with a crime anthology titled 'Killing my Boss' that he co-authored with best selling author Mark Yoshimoto Nemcoff.





Dark fiction and speculative fiction in general tends to go in cycles. Certain genres, or subgenres become popular, rise to the top and stay there for a period of time while others languish not doing so well. Trying to time this and write for the market is difficult unless you are either especially good at spotting trends ahead of time, or get some inside information from agents/publishers who are looking for specific types of stories.

Speculative fiction, and especially that of the darker edge is going through somewhat of a transformation. During the 80s horror was the biggest genre, selling millions of copies by authors such as Stephen King, Clive Barker, James Herbert et al. But during the 90s and the 2000s horror and the darker genres slipped down. Urban Fantasy, and Paranormal Romance has seemingly taken its place in the charts and the consciousness of readers. This is mainly due to the successes of the Twilight, True Blood, and Vampire Diaries types of books/shows.

So, as a writer of dark fiction, how does one go about marketing their work? And what markets are left open?

The bad news is that all out horror and some of the darker sub genres still aren’t selling all that well in the mainstream publications. Most of the magazines that serve horror no longer exist, or if they do, they are relegated to a small audience as e-zines. Even traditional publishing houses aren’t putting a lot of stock in horror. Sci-Fi and Fantasy are seemingly grabbing the lion’s share of publishing capital within dark genre.

However, bad news aside, there is still a lot of hope and a lot of opportunity for the dark fiction writers.

There are two main ways of publishing your work. The first being the small independent presses. There are a numbers of these (list of a few below) that actively seek out the darker work. Being a smaller press has both its advantages and disadvantages for the author.

Advantages:
-          Easier to approach.
-          They are usually quicker to react to changes within the industry
-          They have closer relationships with their authors
-          They often make limited runs of exclusive editions

Disadvantages:
-          Don’t pay as well as the big houses
-          Often can’t cope as well with slush piles
-          Lack resources to really push an author

However, disadvantages aside, it can be a great experience working with a small press, and for first time published authors it makes sense to approach these first. You’ll learn about publishing and you’ll get that all important publishing credit on your CV. Some of these small presses have a big name and carry a lot of weight, so definitely don’t discount these out of hand.

The second way of getting your work out there is to self-publish. Now, I’m not necessarily saying paying thousands of pounds to have printed copies made and you sell them door-to-door. No, in this day and age, ePublishing has become a great leveler. With a little time and effort you can have you book on Amazon, iBooks, Barnes and Noble and Smashwords.  As with anything, there are advantages and disadvantages to this too.

Advantages:
-          Freedom to write what you want
-          Freedom to solicit your own editor, designer, formatter
-          You keep all the profit
-          You keep the rights to your work
-          Sense of achievement

Disadvantages:
-          You have to do everything and are responsible for everything.
-          Your sales might not be what you expect
-          The promotion takes up a lot of time, and requires diligence
-          Some authors rush in too quickly with material not ready

The best way to mitigate the disadvantages is to seek out a good freelance editor to work on your book/story. Also, if you belong to a writing group (and you really should), have them critique or beta your work to iron out any main issues. You only want to publish your best work. Don’t be cheap and stick up anything, it will reflect on you and damage your sales/reputation.

In terms of promoting your work, that’s a huge subject and you can find lots of useful information by researching marketing, but a few easy(ish) ways to promote your work are:

-          Use twitter to connect with other writers and readers. Get to know them, but don’t push your work too much, the sales and interest will come naturally.
-          Post sample chapters on your website. You absolutely have to have a website, there is no getting around that.
-          Blog regularly. Talk often about your book’s characters, any interesting information you’ve found during research and personal anecdotes.
-          Setup a Facebook page and posts snippets of the artwork, and sample chapters. Again, add people, talk to them, and get to know them.
-          Join the various Kindle forums. They are full of great people looking to help you and promote your work (in return for your help – collaboration is what the internet social networks are all about.)
-          Send ‘advances reader copies’ ARCs to book bloggers. You have to research these to make sure the blogger reads the kind of book you have written and like any submission, include a covering email introducing yourself and your book. Be professional and be polite.

If you love your work, and are prepared to put some effort in, there’s no reason why you can’t see your dark fiction in print or ebooks. Good luck.

-    
Thank you Colin, if anyone has any questions, or any market news they would like to add, please leave a comment.









Monday, 26 September 2011

Second Campaigner Challenge


Rachel has set our second campaigner challenge.

The Challenge is:
Write a blog post in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be in any format, whether flash fiction, non-fiction, humorous blog musings, poem etc. The blog post should:
  • include the word "imago" in the title
  • include the following 4 random words: "miasma," "lacuna," "oscitate" "synchronicity,"
If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional and included in the word count), make a reference to a mirror in your post. For those who want an even greater challenge (optional), make your post 200 words EXACTLY!

I have managed to do all of the above, amazingly! Please do have a read.
 
Project Imago
    The cocoon had been buried deep in the earth for centuries. Undisturbed, not a soul had known of its location, I do not count the undead blood suckers who clawed the soil away to bring it to the surface. They have always known this time would come.
 
    Miasma hung in the putrid green tinged air, making breathing impossible. I wore an oxygen mask, and heavy gauge rubber gauntlets, I could barely turn the pages of the ancient book they had forced me to work from, the lacuna, which they hoped I could work out, was the reason for my presence. Synchronicity was vital. I knew they would kill me afterwards.
 
    The pod cracked and tore, the blood-suckers writhed and worshiped on the ground. I saw nothing, so when the creature stepped out of the trench, I knew to oscitate now would be fatal - I couldn’t help it.
 
     ‘Pass me a mirror,’ she barked. I did as she asked, knew she was checking for a reflection. Heard her sigh, ‘it hasn’t worked’, she screeched, lashing out fiercely with her tail, I ducked as two of the undead flew over my head, crashing onto the ground behind me.

    The metamorphosis was incomplete.
***
GLOSSARY:
imago— n

Insect in its sexually mature adult stage after metamorphosis

miasma— 

a dangerous, foreboding, or deathlike influence or 
atmosphere

lacuna — n

a gap or missing part

oscitate— v

to gape; to yawn

synchronicity — n 

an apparently meaningful coincindence in time of two or more or similar or identical events that are causally unrelated

I welcome your comments, and if you like my entry, then please go here and vote for #97, thank you, for taking the time to read.



Monday, 19 September 2011

A Walk in Calke Park



I love walking, and on Sunday decided to make the effort to get out and enjoy some fresh air. There are many benefits to walking. Health wise its good for weight loss, lowering cholesterol levels, reducing the risk of stroke, and in particular for me, easing the backache that plagues me from time to time. Its the easiest form of aerobic exercise and just about anyone can do it. I walk the streets close to home. Which is a town,  it has its good and bad areas like everywhere else. There is no doubt these walks are beneficial, however there is nothing quite like getting out into the countryside.


Being out in big open spaces, surrounded by nature is the best tonic for body and mind. So on Sunday I took such a walk over at Calke Abbey in Derbyshire. You can read more about the property here. On this occasion I didn't go into the house, preferring to walk in the 240 hectare Calke Park, of which 80 acres is a National Nature Park.

I took my camera to record the things I saw, its been a while since I've had both the time, and the energy to walk, and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience.


There are many red and fallow deer in the park, and on Sunday I was lucky enough to get up close to them and take some pictures.

A lot of the trees are over 400 years old and two are around 1000 years old, and are amongst the oldest in the country, they were once part of the ancient wild wood of the area. Many insects live on
them, especially those associated with decaying wood as is found all over the park.



There are also several types of fungi to be found amongst the oak, lime and beech trees, I spotted a few  varieties on my walk as you can see here. The weather  remained good all morning, and I missed the showers that happened later in the afternoon.



After four and a half miles of steady walking I was ready for a drink, I really should have remembered my water container, as after a couple of hours I found myself in need of something to quench my thirst.  Fortunately, there is a good restaurant at Calke Abbey, serving a variety of delicious hot and cold meals made with  ingredients that are sourced locally. I settled for a pot of tea, and a home baked scone with jam and butter which I fell upon like someone who hadn't seen food for a month!

Walking has enabled me to get out and about and discover a variety of surroundings in different seasons. It clears the mind, and allows you head space, which comes in handy when you're a writer, living in both the real world, and the fictional one you visit regularly.

I have learnt things about nature I thought I would never be interested in, like the fungi that grows in abundance in Calke Park or the trees and plants I have seen in their natural habitat.

I felt tired afterwards, I've recently had a virus that refused to relent, and haven't felt able to go out and about much, so the walk was all the more welcome.




Sunday, 18 September 2011

A Fifteen Minute Writing Exercise


Following on from the last post, this is the result of the 'on the spot' exercise I did yesterday at my writing group. As promised, I've only used spell checker, and therefore typed it up as I wrote it down in my notebook.

I can see where it can be improved, expanded, and played around with, but the point I want to make, is that its amazing what you'll come up with when faced with a challenge. I now have something I can work upon to improve should I wish to do it. 


A reminder of the four randomly generated words used to create this piece.


Character - Fortune Teller
Setting - Supermarket
Object - Torch
Emotion - Hope

               ON THE CARDS

     There had to be hope. Nancy wheeled the trolley up and down the aisles, stopping to gaze at the shelves laden with packets and tins, declaring 2 for 1, buy one get one free, or some such offer.

    She ignored everything; there was nothing in her trolley other than the torch. He’d asked her for it, said he wanted to read. The only pleasure he had left nowadays. She had hoped he wouldn’t linger, had read it would all be over quickly, but somehow it hadn’t worked out like that at all. Angus languished, growing weaker yes, but not at the rate she’d been told. Matter of days the information had said.

    Aisle five - tinned fish, salmon, tuna, sardines, pilchards – he liked pilchards, used to eat them on toast with grated cheese melted over the top. She remembered those days.
Nancy placed a tin of tuna into her trolley. She liked it mixed with chopped onions and mayo on wholemeal bread; she’d get a loaf now.

    Time had passed quickly between them, Angus had become distanced over the years, she’d been lonely for a long time, and now at the end, she realised she would miss him. The fortune teller had been right, you never knew what cards life was going to deal you, but when she’d turned over that last card, all the others paled into insignificance. All the years of pain and loneliness didn’t matter anymore.

    She found the bread on aisle seven, she wanted thick cut. Angus would have insisted on thin sliced, but he couldn’t eat it now. She placed the loaf into her trolley.

    All done, she pushed it towards the till, she’d let him have the torch.  After all, it would come in handy later – when she buried him in the garden.

Phoenix Writers' Group

Yesterday was a fun morning of writing, and critiquing, spent with my buddies at the Phoenix Writers Group. Its hard to believe we meet up for two hours, the time whizzes by, as we read and critique each others manuscripts.

The format was slightly different this session, we still read out our 100 word challenge, which was set last week, and we celebrated successes and commiserated over rejections.  We shared news of forthcoming competitions and additionally we tried out a fun writing exercise.

The rules were simple enough, our leader had prepared four envelopes. Each marked with Character, Setting, Object and Emotion. We randomly selected a card from each one, then we had fifteen minutes to create a story including all four of them. I picked,

Fortune Teller
Supermarket
Torch
Hope

I wasn't too alarmed, although there was much giggling about some of the combinations. Afterwards, we read them aloud to the group, warts and all - yet there were very few warts.The pieces of flash fiction that had been created were amazing. Quite unbelievable, given the short amount of time we had to perfect a micro tale.

Later, I'll type mine out, as I wrote it straight into my notebook, and I'll add it here for you to judge for yourselves. I won't cheat, I'll not change anything, other than running the spell checker over it.

Happy Writing








Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Liebster Blog Award

Wow! How lucky can a girl get? I've been awarded the Liebster Blog Award from both Cherie Colyer and Lesann Berry Thank you ladies. Readers do go check out their blogs.

 “The basic idea of the Liebster Blog Award is to showcase bloggers with less than 200 followers.” When you get the award, you keep the love going by giving it to 5 other bloggers who have less than 200 followers.

This was difficult because there are so many great blogs out there, many of which I've recently found because I’m a part of Rachael Harrie’s Platform-Building Campaign. Others I've been following and enjoying for a while.
To share the love and pay it forward, my list of awesome blogs are:

 Writing: A Conversation Without Interruptions  - This is the blog of Ileandra Young, her writing career is only just beginning and she wants you to be part of it. She has gleefully been penning smut, vamp - fiction, fantasy and comedy since 1997.

A. E. Martin - A writer of both Adult and YA Fantasy, she penned her first novel at fourteen, also an artist in many mediums.

My Road to Freedom - Janina is a woman who loves words, a Chicago freelance writer, who sometimes designs jewellery too.

Fabulosity Nouveau - Wendy is from Johannesburg, South Africa, and in her words, "I am a Blogaholic, Bibiophile, Avid Reader, Reveiwer and Lover of all things Quaint and Eclectic."

The Nut Press - Kathryn Eastman resides here. Reviewing books, tasting chocolate, drinking tea and telling us tales about squirrels when she's not scribbling short stories, articles, and poems that is...

All very interesting people, be sure to visit them soon.

 Awardees, this is what you need to do after you've chosen who you're going to give the award to:

  • Show your thanks by linking back to the blogger that gave you the award
  • Notify the folks you pick to receive the award by twitter, email, etc
  • Post the award graphic on your blog
  • Check out the winners, their blogs and websites, and most of all enjoy!

Monday, 12 September 2011

Do You Know Enough About Your Characters?



To make our stories believable, we need good character development, and apart from knowing what motivates them, we should know more about them than we ever tell our readers, we need to be aware of every little thing they do.

A physical description helps us to see how they move through the world, and allows the reader to believe in them. Even their name provides a lot of information, indicating age, background and social class.

Who else is in your characters life? Who do they interact with? How do they interact? Personality is often determined by background. What sort of parents they had can play a big part in how they shape up in life.

I'm always asking myself what my character wants from the situation, or the scene they're in, its important to know how your characters will behave. Creating a well rounded character takes time. Not only what they look like, and where they live, but how they  will react to the situations they find themselves in.

How do you create your characters? Do you start with a picture? Or an object, and think who might have owned it, worn it, played with it? Perhaps you make a character study?  Or do you develop them as you go along, without doing any planning in advance? How do you create an intriguing and credible character?


Wednesday, 7 September 2011

First Campaigner Challenge


As you already know if you're following my blog, I'm taking part in Rachael Harries Writers' Platform - Building Campaign. Here is the first challenge Rachael has set for us.

Write a short story/flash fiction story in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be any format, including a poem. Begin the story with the words, "The door swung open" These four words will  be included in the word count.

If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional), use the same beginning words and end words: "the door swung shut" (also included in the word count) 

For those who want an even greater challenge, make your story 200 words EXACTLY!

Here is my response.


Breakdown

     The door swung open.

‘I can’t believe you didn’t fill up last night?’ he said, drumming his fingers on the dashboard.

     ‘I can’t believe you didn’t check your fuel gauge this morning. And for your information I did fill up last night - only it was my car, the one I usually drive.’

     ‘Oh so it’s my fault is it,’ he shouted.

     ‘What’s done is done; let’s just wait for the AA.’ Karen folded her arms; she couldn’t be bothered to argue with him.

     ‘I never wanted to make this journey in the first place. We saw your Mother at Christmas.  You’re always on the phone gossiping to each other, I should make you pay the bill, then maybe you’d have less to say.’

     ‘Let’s have it disconnected then…get rid of the internet connection too. Perhaps I’ll see more of you.  But I’m not sure I want to do that anymore.’

     ‘What’s that supposed to mean?’ he snarled.

     ‘Here’s the break down truck,’ she said fumbling with her door handle.

     ‘KAREN!’ Where are you going?’

     ‘Home, to Mums...you pig!

    The AA man looked on, somewhat bemused as he watched the brunette step out of the car. The door swung shut. 












Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Ten Random Things About Me


I've been tagged by the lovely Erica and Christy, and have to reveal ten random things about myself. Here we go then folks.



1. I’ve seen ‘The Lake House’ so many times I’ve lost count. There’s just something about that film that stays with me.


2. My first car was a navy blue, 1966, Mk 1 Ford Cortina, it cost me £60. Yes, really!




3.While waiting to begin training in the Queen Alexandra's Royal Army Nursing Corps, I met a   boy, and that was the end of that.



4. I love books more than cake. (I think!)





5. I’m a fully qualified massage therapist, although this is not what I do nowadays for a job.




6. I didn’t learn to swim until I was an adult.






7. I try to make people smile every day. 



8. Did I mention I love cake?





9. When I was fifteen, I got a Saturday job at the local Wimpy bar, earning 75p an hour!




10. I don’t have a dog, but if I did it would be an Irish Red Setter, or a Labrador.


    Now it’s your turn, you've been tagged! 

You’re it Rosalind @ http://rosalindadam.blogspot.com/

If you've already been tagged ladies, apologies, I can hardly expect you to do it again.