#NaPoWriMo Day 12 ‘Powerful Gibberish’ #poetrymonth #April #Poems #Tanka #Haiku #FridayFictioneers

NaPoWriMo

National Poetry Writing Month is a poetry writing challenge to write a poem a day, which takes place every year in April. Follow the link to find out more, be inspired, get daily prompts and meet other poets!

For Day 12, I’ve included a haiku and a tanka within a 100-word piece of flash fiction, inspired by Rochelle Wissoff Fields weekly flash fiction challenge photo prompt at Friday Fictioneers. Check out this inspiring and supportive writing challenge!

I’ve been contributing with an ongoing story about Alice and her family. Today, Alice is asking her parents’ opinion about a poem she’s written.

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

Powerful Gibberish

“Which one do you prefer, mum, the haiku or tanka?”
Sharon slides on her glasses and reads both poems aloud.
Weathered, cobbled path,
Lined with overgrown bushes.
Ancient cloister sighs.
****
Weary wanderer
Pursues answers to his prayers,
Chasing fleeting shadows,
Swaying with voiceless monsters,
Screaming in his tangled mind.

****

“The first one’s descriptive, but the second one’s powerful. What do you think Kevin?”
“Let’s have a look at the picture prompt.”
“Here dad,” says Alice.
Kevin shakes his head. ‘Neither. Cloisters don’t sigh and the second one’s gibberish.’
Sharon coughs. ‘Powerful gibberish, wouldn’t you say, darling?’
‘Of course, dear.’

****

Kevin doesn’t quite understand that writing poetry is like walking through a doorway into your mind and soul. It’s the place where conscious and subconscious images and thoughts melt into rhythmic words and suggestive lines…

So, which of Alice’s poems do you prefer?

#FridayFictioneers ‘The Escape’ #FlashFiction

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story featuring Alice Pendragon and her family!

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge and for this week’s photo prompt.

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

The Escape

Alice looked up at the starry sky, not daring to look down at the street, four storeys below. She held on to the window ledge and moved slowly towards the next balcony, climbed over the railing and slipped inside the apartment.

Silence, although someone must have put the freshly cut leaves in the glass bowl on the kitchen table.
‘Can I help you, dear?’
Alice turned. A grey-haired lady wearing a woollen shawl smiled pleasantly.
‘Your neighbour kidnapped me. Could I use your phone?”
Her kidnapper burst through the door.

He nodded at the elderly lady. ”Sorry boss.

Then he pointed his gun at Alice.

****

To be continued…

My ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are!

A quick recap of the three previous episodes: Alice and her mother, Marsha, caught Kevin on a date with another woman. When Alice confronted her father, she discovered the woman was her father’s half-sister, Clara, who was in serious trouble. Three weeks ago Alice was kidnapped, and last week the kidnappers made their demands. This week Alice tried to escape and failed.

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#FridayFictioneers ‘The Ransom’ #FlashFiction #100words

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story featuring Alice Pendragon and her family!

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge, and to Courtney Wright. for submitting the photo prompt by a photographer who prefers to remain anonymous.

The Ransom

‘Alice! Are you alright?’

Alice held her throbbing cheek, too dazed to speak, and heard her father’s distorted voice coming from the kidnapper’s phone.

‘Her pretty face is still in one piece, for now, Kevin,’ said the kidnapper.

‘What do you want from me?’ asked Kevin.

‘My boss just wants to see his girlfriend.’

Kevin watched Clara wipe her tears.

‘Clara drowned,” said Kevin. ‘We all saw it on the news.’

The man laughed. ‘We found the pair of worn shoes by the cliff, but we know she faked her death.’

Clara gasped.

‘My boss wants his money back.’

****

To be continued…

I’ve made a few minor changes to clarify where the speakers are, as a result of a few comments: Alice and the kidnapper are together and Kevin and Clara are on the other end of the line.

My ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are!

A quick recap of the two previous episodes: Alice and her mother, Marsha, caught Kevin on a date with another woman. When Alice confronted her father, she discovered the woman was her father’s half-sister, Clara, who was in serious trouble. Last week Alice was kidnapped, and this week the kidnappers have made their demands.

Follow my blog so you won’t miss next week’s episode!

Follow Luccia Gray on Social Media:

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Check out Luccia Gray’s Books on Amazon

#FridayFictioneers ‘Brooklyn Heights’ #FlashFiction #100words

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story! 

Last week, Alice and her mother caught Kevin on a date with another woman. When Alice confronted Kevin, she discovered the woman was her father’s half-sister, Clara, who is in serious trouble.

This week something dreadful will happen to Alice as a result… 

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge, and Jill Wisoff for today’s photo prompt, which led me directly to this weeks’ 100-word story.

PHOTO PROMPT ©Jill Wisoff

Brooklyn Heights

 

Alice pulled her bound arms and stretched her neck towards the window.

The last thing she remembered was meeting Clara, hers father’s step-sister. Then came gunshots, cries, darkness and finally silence.

‘Who are you?’ She screamed as a masked man pulled the duct tape off her mouth and freed her arms.

‘Where are my parents?’

‘Right here,’ he said handing her the phone. ‘You have ten seconds to tell them you’re alive.’

‘Mom, Dad, tell Bill I’m on the top floor of a low-rise in Brooklyn Heights.’

The man grabbed the phone. ‘That was mistake,’ he said, as his fist smashed into her face

****

To be continued…

All my ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are!

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#FridayReads ‘The Good Girl’ by Mary Kubica @Audible #BookReview

Blurb

I’ve been following her for the past few days. I know where she buys her groceries, where she has her dry cleaning done, where she works. I don’t know the color of her eyes or what they look like when she’s scared. But I will.”

One night, Mia Dennett enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when he doesn’t show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. At first Colin Thatcher seems like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia’s life.

When Colin decides to hide Mia in a secluded cabin in rural Minnesota instead of delivering her to his employers, Mia’s mother, Eve, and detective Gabe Hoffman will stop at nothing to find them. But no one could have predicted the emotional entanglements that eventually cause this family’s world to shatter.

An addictively suspenseful and tautly written thriller, The Good Girl is a propulsive debut that reveals how even in the perfect family, nothing is as it seems.

****

My Review

I’ve had this novel on Audible, waiting to be read, for a few weeks. I was looking forward to reading it after reading the blurb and reading the first few pages. The 4.2/5 stars on 4,300 reviews on amazon.com and over 14,000 on Audible, also convinced me I couldn’t go wrong! I was not disappointed.

The Good Girl is about a rich and dysfunctional American family whose dissenting daughter, Mia, is kidnapped by a ruthless gunman who is subcontracted for the job.
Everything goes haywire when the kidnapper, Colin, decides to save Mia by kidnapping her from the kidnappers who recruited him, because he believes their ultimate aim is to murder her.

Mia and Colin, two of the narrators, spend months in hiding in a remote and freezing cabin, with barely enough to eat, while her mother, Eve, and Detective Hoffman, the other two narrators, try to find them.

The story is told by four narrators in two time periods, before and after the kidnapping, so we know from the beginning that Mia was recovered. In spite of this, I was intrigued to find out how she was able to escape, who had ordered her kidnapping her and why.

It may seem that the author included a spoiler or that going  backwards and forwards in time would be confusing, but it isn’t, quite the opposite, the narrative is greatly enriched by these alternating perspectives.

The first and final thirds are the most gripping, while in the central chapters, I did wonder where the story might be going, but as I read on, I realised it was all part of the suspense.

The four narrators were believable. My favourite was Colin, because, in spite of his reserved and sometimes evil nature, I felt I knew him better than the rest and because his character developed the most throughout the novel. Colin is the real protagonist. His decisions guide the plot. He’s the catalyst and the most interesting character.

I didn’t care much for Mia or her mother. I thought they were too full of self-pity and too self-righteousness. The father was the archetypal villain and the detective, was the proverbial honest and thorough investigator and good guy.

The climax was unexpected and devastating, and the end, narrated by Mia in the epilogue, was surprising and sad, but plausible and satisfactory. I’d recommend it to lovers of psychological thrillers and I’ll definitely be reading more by this author.

By the way, the audio version with the four different narrators was fabulous.

Link to The Good Girl on Audible

****

#FridayFictioneers ‘Clara’ #FlashFiction #100words

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story. 

Kevin has been behaving strangely since he  was kidnapped and rescued by Alice and Billy.

Last week, Alice and her mother caught Kevin on a date with another woman. This week he has some explaining to do… 

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge, and Yarnspinnerr for today’s photo prompt, which led me directly to this weeks’ 100-word story.

PHOTO PROMPT © Yarnspinnerr

Clara

“I’m listening, dad. Explain.”
“Alice, this is Clara. We met many years ago, before you were born.”
Alice folded her arms over her chest and stared at her father, ignoring the stylish woman by his side.  
“I was in Mexico, with my mother, looking for my father.”
“Nice try. Did you forget your father died when you were a baby?”
“The truth is he left us and returned to his native Mexico.”
Alice shivered. “Mexico?”
“He had another family there.”
Alice’s arms fell to her side. “What?”  
“Clara is your aunt, my stepsister.”
Alice’s head spun.
“Clara needs our help, Alice.”
****

 All my ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are!

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#FridayFictioneers ‘The Lie’ #FlashFiction #100words

It’s Friday, time for another Friday Fictioneers Flash Fiction story with adorable and creative Alice, her parents, Marsha and Kevin, and her best friend, Billy.

Kevin was kidnapped and rescued by Alice and Billy, but since his return, he’s been behaving strangely…

Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting the challenge, and Dale Rogerson for today’s photo prompt, which led me directly to this weeks’ 100-word story.

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

The Lie

“Mum, what are we doing here?”
Alice scanned the floor below, where the concert attendants were having a drink during the intermission.
Her voice trembled. “Your father is seeing someone.”
“Who?”
“I don’t know her name,” she said pointing at a woman standing by a table. “She’s waiting for him.”
“But dad’s visiting Uncle Ben.” He’d said he needed space after the ordeal.
“He’s lying.”
Kevin strode across the hall with two wine glasses.
Her mother grabbed her arm. “Where are you going, Alice?”
“To find out what’s going on.”
Kevin’s face paled as she approached.
“Alice, I can explain.”
****

 All my ‘Alice’ flash fiction written for the Friday Fictioneers Challenge can be read as standalones, but if you’re interested in reading previous stories of Alice’s adventures, here they are!

Follow Luccia Gray on Social Media:

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Check out Luccia Gray’s Books on Amazon