#Writespiration #52Words in 52 Weeks @Sacha_Black ‘Who Called?’ #FlashFiction

This flash was written in response to Sacha Black’s challenge to write a 52-word flash based on her weekly prompt. 

This week’s prompt is to write about a character who is terrified Isn’t it amazing what can be done with just 52 words? Why not join in?

Who Called?

A gush of chilled fog pushed open the sliding door.

The dark shadow morphed into a cloaked figure.

You sent for me?” The voice was a hollow echo.

I shook my head fiercely.

He smiled, blood dripping from his fangs.

“Then who?” he asked looking around the compartment at the sleeping passengers.

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Was that chilling enough for you?

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#Writespiration #52Words in 52 Weeks @Sacha_Black ‘First Night at the Museum’ #FlashFiction

This flash was written in response to Sacha Black’s prompt to write a 52-word flash based on the weekly prompt. This week’s prompt is to write about the night you accidentally  spent in a museum  Isn’t it amazing what can be done with just 52 words? Why not join in?

My First Night At The Natural History Museum

My reflexion stared back from the polished, marble floor. Dead animals watched me from their glass displays.
A dog barked. I’d been discovered.
A guard approached. “lost your way, pet?”
I tried to run, but he walked past me towards the dog. “Yes, mate, it’s an ugly exhibit. First human, arrived today.”

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I always imagined scary and spooky things would happen in Museums in the dad of night…. I find Natural History Museums, especially the one in London, very inspiring. Here I am on a visit with my son. Fortunately, during the day, with plenty of other visitors!

Also unforgettable, the film A Night at the Museum, a comedy starring Ben Stiller.

WRITESPIRATION @sacha_black #107 52 WEEKS IN 52 WORDS WEEK11 ‘Romantic Words’ #FlashFiction

This post was written in response to Sacha Black’s weekly prompt for 2017 (52 weeks in 52 words).

Sacha will post one prompt a week for 52 weeks, and the challenge is to write a story in just 52  words exactly. The value of conciseness for a writer is invaluable, as Sacha herself reminds us: ‘The art of being concise is nothing if not a muscle flexing ‘write’ bicep curling device’. This weeks’ prompt ‘The distance between,,,’ 

52-words

This week the challenge is to write the most romantic 52 words you can, to turn Sacha’s black coal infested heart into mush! She needs some love to keep her going under the pressure. Bonus points if anyone makes her weepy!

I hope you enjoy this Flash about love beyond the grave. Inspired by: ‘And I shall but love thee better after death.”

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Love After Love

We were five when you pushed your fingers through mine,

Eleven when you crushed me in your arms,

Fifteen when we sealed our first kiss,

Seventeen when we made love,

Twenty-two when we promised our vows,

And sixty-four when I left,

But you still bring me flowers,

And I blow you kisses while you sleep.

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I hope that’s romantic enough and sad enough for Sacha!

It is love which brings us the greatest joys, and consequently, separation, betrayal or death of a loved one, which brings us our greatest sorrow, and unfortunately it’s inevitable. Even if our love  has no imperfections, it cannot overcome death, or can it? That’s up to the reader to decide…

The title of the poem is another small tribute to the great poet from Saint Lucia, Derek Walcott. His short poem with the same title ‘Love After Love’ is one of my favourite, all time poems. Here is this gem if you’d like to read it

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WRITESPIRATION @sacha_black #106 52 WEEKS IN 52 WORDS WEEK10 ‘The Big Birthday’ #FlashFiction

This post was written in response to Sacha Black’s weekly prompt for 2017 (52 weeks in 52 words).

Sacha will post one prompt a week for 52 weeks, and the challenge is to write a story in just 52  words exactly. The value of conciseness for a writer is invaluable, as Sacha herself reminds us: ‘The art of being concise is nothing if not a muscle flexing ‘write’ bicep curling device’. This weeks’ prompt ‘The distance between,,,’ 

52-words

This week is a rather significant week for Sacha because it’s her birthday, so the theme for this week, the prompt is: 

The Big Birthday

Thirty-five years of drama, stress, gratitude and joy. I stand by my students, the ones I’ll miss forever, staring at a huge cake, covered in white icing and topped with sixty tiny candles.

They clapped and I cried.

Make a wish, they said and I did, on my last day at work.

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I love birthdays, even my own!

They represents a new beginning, another chance to move on and start innovative projects, much like the 1st of January.

On the other hand, there’s always something sad about a year ending. We remember the people and events we’ve left behind, and may never recover, although we carry them in our hearts.

And yet, we can’t even begin to imagine all the people we’ll be meeting and the marvellous things we’ll be learning…

Happy birthday Sacha. Make a wish and watch it come true next year!

WRITESPIRATION @sacha_black #105 52 WEEKS IN 52 WORDS WEEK 9 Describing Feelings

This post was written in response to Sacha Black’s weekly prompt for 2017 (52 weeks in 52 words).  Join in here!

Sacha will post one prompt a week for 52 weeks, and the challenge is to write a story in just 52  words exactly. The value of conciseness for a writer is invaluable, as Sacha herself reminds us: ‘The art of being concise is nothing if not a muscle flexing ‘write’ bicep curling device’. This weeks’ prompt ‘The distance between,,,’ 

52-words

This week, Sacha wants us to describe how we’re feeling, without mentioning the word, and she’ll try to identify the feeling. Sounds like fun!

Here’s my 52-word take:

I’ve started two novels in Spanish, but they’re on the shelf. I’m preparing my Victorian trilogy for a box set, and I’m writing a prequel and a sequel. I’m busy with a contemporary psychological thriller I’m plotting, and I’m seriously thinking of finishing the novel my sister had started when she died.

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So, Sacha, or anyone, tell me how I’m feeling, because I don’t know how to describe this xxxxx state!

 

WRITESPIRATION @sacha_black #103 52 WEEKS IN 52 WORDS WEEK 7 Jack and Jill #FlashFiction

This post was written in response to Sacha Black’s weekly prompt for 2017 (52 weeks in 52 words).  Join in here!

Sacha will post one prompt a week for 52 weeks, and the challenge is to write a story in just 52  words exactly. The value of conciseness for a writer is invaluable, as Sacha herself reminds us: ‘The art of being concise is nothing if not a muscle flexing ‘write’ bicep curling device’. This weeks’ prompt ‘The distance between,,,’ 

52-words

The distance between words and meaning

Part I: Jill

‘Coffee?’

I cringed. ‘Sorry, busy.’

‘What about a film tomorrow?’

God, he’s slow. ‘Working late.’

‘Let’s drive down to Brighton for the weekend.’

Why doesn’t he get it? ‘My sister’s visiting.’

‘Something wrong?’

At last! ‘No, just busy this week.’

‘Let me know when you’re free.’

Never for you. I smiled. ‘Sure.’  

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Part II: Jack

‘Coffee?’ I offered

‘Sorry, busy.’

Let’s try again. ‘What about a film tomorrow?’

‘Working late.’

She needs a break. ‘Let’s drive down to Brighton for the weekend.’

‘My sister’s visiting.’

Family problems. ‘Something wrong?’

‘No, just busy this week.’

‘Let me know when you’re free.’

She smiled. ‘Sure.’

She’s worth waiting for.

 

The difference between words and meaning or semantics (linguistic meaning) and pragmatics (contextual meaning) is a favourite subject for many linguists, and let’s face it, they have plenty to investigate!

We actually rarely say exactly what we mean, mainly because social etiquette values politeness over honesty. That means we expect people to understand what we mean, without saying the words we really feel because they would be considered impolite or inappropriate.

not-quite

What we say and what we mean in translation!

Fortunately, there is usually a mutual understanding in a shared culture, but even then, there are some serious misunderstandings, as shown in my two flashes above.

Why is Jack insistent? Why doesn’t Jill want to go out with him? Why doesn’t he get the subtle message?

What if they’re both more honest with their intentions?

 

Part III: Jack and Jill.

‘You look lovely today,’ said Jack.

‘I’m busy,’ replied Jill.

‘Have dinner with me tonight.’

‘Don’t want to.’

‘Come to Brighton for the weekend.’

‘No way. Not again.’

‘What’s wrong?’

‘It’s over.’

‘Why?’

‘We work together. There’ll be gossip, Mr. Smith.’

‘And if I weren’t your boss?’

‘Fire me and find out.’

****

I could go on, the possibilities are endless, but I think I’ll stop here, for now. 

Jack’s intentions are pretty clear, but what about Jill’s? Any guesses on what Jill means by that last line?

WRITESPIRATION @sacha_black #102 52 WEEKS IN 52 WORDS WEEK 6 The Stroll #FlashFiction

This post was written in response to Sacha Black’s weekly prompt for 2017 (52 weeks in 52 words).  Join in here!

Sacha will post one prompt a week for 52 weeks, and the challenge is to write a story in just 52  words exactly. The value of conciseness for a writer is invaluable, as Sacha herself reminds us: ‘The art of being concise is nothing if not a muscle flexing ‘write’ bicep curling device’.

52-words

This week’s prompt: That moment you see your ex with their hot new bit and you look like a turd.

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The Stroll

Two weeks’ wages, but it’s totally worth it.

God, he’s gorgeous. Thirty, tall, muscular, wavy, chestnut hair, and dressed to kill.

‘What can I do for you?’ he whispered in his sexy voice. I almost succumbed.

Instead I said, ‘Let’s take a walk.’

My sixty-year-old ex’s face as we stroll past? Priceless.

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Today’s prompt reminded me of a book I read recently, by Spanish author, Rosa Montero.

la-carne

 

La carne, or Flesh, is about a sixty year old successful art dealer, who lives in Madrid. Soledad, which means literally solitude or loneliness, wants to make her ex boyfriend jealous. In order to do so, she hires a very expensive and gorgeous escort to accompany her to certain social events where her ex will be present. She hires the escort repeatedly, to such an extent that she gradually develops feelings for him.

It’s a fabulous novel about aging, loneliness, love, and relationships.

Unfortunately, it hasn’t been translated into English yet, but I hope it will be soon, because it’s the best Spanish novel I’ve read in a long time.

rosa-montero

Rosa Montero, author of La Carne (Flesh)