Image courtesy of J Hardy Carroll
Shadows loom from all corners of my room as daylight fades like hope. Insects scratch-scratch-scratch, scuttling under my creaky metal bed frame. I’m trapped in a spider web of shattered memories.
Fluttering. A moth. Gossamer wings translucent in the moonlight. Fragile. We’re all so fragile. Easily broken. I should know.
Footsteps thud outside my door.
‘This place is so cool.’ The excitement in the boy’s voice is palpable. ‘Are you sure it’s deserted?’
‘No-one’s lived here for years.’
‘I’m here,’ I scream. But they don’t hear me. No-one ever does.
Oh that scratching. The endless scratching.
Help me. Please.
I had SUCH a great publication day yesterday for my third novel, The Surrogate which you can find over on Amazon here. Yesterday evening I took part in a live Facebook chat with Kim Nash, the publicist of Bookouture, which you can now view here if you missed it. We chatted about the writing process, how I approach novel writing, editing and getting published. Of course I gave Friday Fictioneers a plug as it’s often the highlight of my week.
‘Daylight Fading’ was written for Friday Fictioneers. A weekly 100 word flash fiction challenge inspired by a photo prompt. Do join in over at Rochelle’s blog here.
Image courtesy of CEAYR
Sometimes I wonder if it would have made a difference if you’d told me somewhere else. Somewhere beautiful. Whether sitting cross legged next to the bubbling stream, sunlight dappling the water would have softened the blow. Do you remember our picnic there? Warm breeze kissing our skin, your lips kissing my neck? It was perfect until we opened the picnic hamper. Wasps buzzing around our sandwiches, ants marching towards the jam jar.
Sorry, I’m drifting. That always did annoy you, didn’t it? But did the ugliness of our surroundings coax those ugly words out of your mouth? I still wonder. Sometimes.
It’s been a week for celebrating! The Gift was listed in Amazon’s half yearly trends report as the third biggest selling ebook of 2017 so far and Sphere (Little, Brown Book Group) shared the exciting news they will be republishing The Sister on August 24th and it will be available in retailers for the first time. You can read my post about that here. It’s been an incredible year and I’m so grateful. I wouldn’t have honed my writing without Friday Fictioneers.
‘Sometimes’ was written For Friday Fictioneers. A weekly 100 word story challenge inspired by a photo prompt. You can join in over at host Rochelle’s blog here.
Image © J Hardy Carroll
My feet crunch on broken glass, tears rising quickly.
‘Why…’ I begin, but the choke in my throat holds back the rest of my words.
Afternoon sunshine streams through the window, the upended tables and chairs brushed bronze, shards of glass glint gold.
The air is heavy with dust. With loss. But underneath there is something else. Love. We fall silently into our roles, a human chain, stronger together, clearing out the rubble. At first I think nothing is salvageable but then I realise there is. Amongst the splinters of wood, the twisted metal, it is there. A tiny kernel of hope.
We stand together.
‘We stand together’ was written for Friday Fictioneers. A weekly 100 word story challenge inspired by a photo prompt. This week’s prompt is topical as we all try to make sense of the senseless. My heartfelt condolences for everyone affected by the atrocities in Manchester.
Join in with the challenge over at host Rochelle’s blog here.
Image courtesy of Sandra Crook
Dampness seeps through a hole in my shoe as I trudge one exhausted foot in front of the other. There’s no-one to rush home for.
I’m so tired.
On the bridge I pause, staring down into the crashing water below. Would anyone miss me?
I’m so lonely.
A soft mewling breaks my thoughts. A wriggling sack next to the railings. I tug it open and lift out a shivering kitten, bones protruding. He licks my hand. My heart swells. It’s been a long time since I felt needed.
“I’ll call you hope.” I whisper as I tuck him inside my coat.
I thought nothing could top 2016 professionally but appearing on TV last night, albeit briefly, to talk about writing, being published & mindfulness was such a great experience and an amazing start to the year. You can watch the 3 minute clip here. Or read my blog piece about it here.
Hope was written for Friday Fictioneers. A weekly 100 word story challenge inspired by a photo prompt. You can join in and read the other entries over at Rochelle’s blog here.
Photo courtesy of Jan W. Fields
It’s been five days since I buried you. A thin film of dust covers the piano I’ve inherited with your estate. Moonlight Sonata slices through my mind.
Shut up. Shut up. Shut up.
I smash the axe down. Wood splinters and keys squeal. Still, I hear music.
The tyres of the Jag screech as I speed from the mansion. Away from your memory. But I still hear you playing.
Please stop. I didn’t mean to hurt you.
My foot squeezes the accelerator as I approach the cliff, and I’m flying, falling, screaming.
But still the music plays.
Written for Friday Fictioneers. A 100 word story inspired by a photo prompt. Pop over to host Rochelle’s blog and read the other entries here.
Picture courtesy of Scott L. Vannatter
The kitchen window is ajar and I leap inside. My feet plunge into something soft and hot. I hop from paw to paw until my pads stop burning and I sit and lick them clean, staring at the pie I’d landed in. Chicken. Mmmm. I pick out the meat, a little salty but it fills a gap, and nudge the dish with my nose until it clatters onto the floor. I’ll share with blame the mutt. He bounds over, ridiculous ears flapping and slurps up the gravy.
Footsteps approach. I dart behind the bin – I am a ninja.
Humans – nearly as stupid as dogs.
A light-hearted entry this week for Friday Fictioneers. A 100 word story inspired by a photo prompt. Read the other entries here.
Photo – Luther Siler
‘I hate you, Dad.’
‘I needed a job, Ella.’
‘There are loads of other jobs.’
‘There aren’t. And it’s Christmas. We need the money.’
‘I don’t care about Christmas. I care about the poor animals being tortured.’
‘They’re not tortured. They’re helping us find cures. They’re very well looked after.’
‘How could you hurt them?’
‘I don’t. I’m just security.’
‘Just a puppet. Don’t you have any morals?’
I think of the plan. The welfare group will arrive at midnight. I’ll leave the door unlocked. I wish I could tell her, but it’s better she doesn’t know. Safer.
‘I’m sorry.’ I whisper as she turns away.
Written for Friday Fictioneers – a 100 word story inspired by a photo prompt. Read the other entries here.