Welcome to my writing portfolio

THERE IS SOMETHING DELICIOUS ABOUT WRITING THE FIRST WORDS OF A STORY. YOU NEVER QUITE KNOW WHERE THEY’LL TAKE YOU.  (Beatrix Potter)

Hi. I am glad that you are visiting my blog site. Some examples of my writing are here for you to enjoy including up to date short stories and flash fiction. Welcome to the bizarre, funny, sad, dark, romantic and other worlds created by my imagination.

I welcome comments and feedback.

All stories are my original work and my copyright and can not be copied or distributed without my express permission.

You can buy my novel Silencio by following the links under the section ‘Buy My Novels’.

If you are interested in the research and background to Silencio or my new work A Life on the Line and/or want to know more about me or listen to my radio interviews why not take a look at my website http://www.laberrynovels.org

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The Language of the Spanish Fan

Ever wondered about the language of the Spanish fan. I refer to it in my novel Silencio. Click on the link for an explanation of this secret language.

http://www.livinglanguage.com/…/03/spanish-hand-fan-abanico/

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Strings – 100 words for Friday Fictioneers

PHOTO PROMPT © Björn Rudberg

PHOTO PROMPT © Björn Rudberg

‘Such a shame.’

Joan didn’t look sorry. If anything, her eyes shone as she put her hand to the side of her mouth. I don’t know why she bothered, none of the others had arrived.

‘Flo told me he waited by the carousel for more than three hours. Imagine. All of those people disappointed, all that money to return.’

‘Couldn’t he borrow one?’

‘He’s a diva! Went off on a rant by all accounts. No one’s seen him since.’ Joan licked her lips and withdrew her treasure from its case. ‘Guess who’s been promoted?’

Why did I suspect foul play?

Thank you to Rochelle at http://www.rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com. She organises the Friday Fictioneers. Authors write a piece of 100 word fiction, prose or poetry based on a photo prompt and exchange comments on their work.  If you are a writer of short fiction, join us and see where your imagination takes you.

 

 

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Whispers – Writing inspired by Art

Oil by Fabian Perez

Oil by Fabian Perez

 

We shared secrets once upon a time, our thoughts fused, harmonious as though we were one soul, not two. I never asked your opinion; rarely did it differ from mine. We played our games at the expense of others – everyone knows that children can be cruel, and the weak suffered when we sharpened our tongues. Our beauty and youth protected us; no one dared to mention the word ‘bully’. You were my world and I was yours.

Then Maria arrived. At 15 she was already a woman, with Latino eyes that glowed with promises of passion and with a shape that drew hungry stares from all of the boys. Your loyalties shifted and suddenly I was invisible. From the side-lines, I watched as this witch cast her spell and I had no power to warn you of the danger. The remainder of my school years were not easy – victims do not forget or forgive. Your new love rallied their support and I was made mute. Friendless, I left those school days behind me but the lesson was not lost.

People say that I have grown into my looks. My once willowy figure has swollen so that curves accent my tiny waist and shapely legs. At great expense, a surgeon softened my face. Illicit earnings paid for the changes (but that’s a secret you aren’t allowed to share). It isn’t hard to get lost for a while – I didn’t need forever.

‘So, here we are again. Who would have guessed that we would run in to each other? Do I know what you do now? Please tell me, I want to know it all.’

Are you able to read my mind? Can you detect the plan? Of course not. You are enticed by my shape, and my eyes, and the messages I imply.

‘Two children within two years. That’s a lot of work for you. Yes, I understand. You must be so tired. Why doesn’t your wife understand? No, I don’t have children, life is too good. No husband either.’

Do you know that I am reeling you in? Tantalising you. I know you. You were my soulmate. You still are. Let me in again and I will show you dimensions of my personality that you never knew.

‘Yes, I have a wonderful career. My job takes me to exciting places. I do meet interesting people. Things are never dull.’

Are you envious? Is that a spark of desire I spy? If I move a little closer, will you be able to resist – the swell of my bosom, the scent of my perfume? Not too fast, it’s better to wait for what you want. Can you feel the heat of my hand against your ear, the warmth of my breath?

‘Can I let you in on a secret? Are you able to guess what it is? Something to do with lust. Keep trying. You’re close.’

The bulge in your throat moves as you swallow and a sweat is dampening your brow. I pretend to stumble and your arms reach out. We are a perfect fit, my dreams have not misled me.

‘This wine is going to my head. Time for bed. Would you? I may not get there on my own.’

Everything is ready upstairs. Two wine glasses half filled, one stained with the print of my lips. A rumpled bed. The camera. An envelope addressed to a tired mother.

 

 

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Progress – a story for the Friday Fictioneers

 

Photo prompt © jean-I-hays

Photo prompt  © jean-I-hays

 

Once, businesses thrived on Route 66. Our community worked to supply the passer-by.

That was years ago, before scheming developers forced the decision to divert the traffic away from our town. Now, thousands of cars use the super-highway to go to a recently built shopping centre. They say that you can buy anything there. Even if I had the cash, I couldn’t bring myself to use it.

My father couldn’t pay the bills, opting for a quick, but bloody ending.

Our inheritance crumbles as the earth reclaims what it can; hand-outs feed my mother and her children.

Thank you to Rochelle at http://www.rochellewisofffields.wordpress.com. She organises the Friday Fictioneers. Authors write a piece of 100 word fiction, prose or poetry based on a photo prompt and exchange comments on their work.  If you are a writer of short fiction, join us and see where your imagination takes you.

 

 

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Wedding Guest – A Halloween Ghost Story

No vacant pews remain in the front half of the church and so, Rose chooses one near the back, content that at least she will be one of the first to see the arrival of the bride. A few stragglers come in afterwards and hurry to take their seats. Fred’s place at her side remains empty; a couple do consider joining her, then the woman shivers and, with a comment on the chill, they move forward.

The prospect of watching her cherished granddaughter walk down the aisle with the man of her choice had kept Rose going during the recent dark days. The expression ‘drowning in grief’ has meaning now and she wishes that she could apologise to her late mother for her impatient words.

Is Mother’s spirit is here today?

Known for her gift of ‘the sight’ and what Fred called, ‘her uncanny ability to look into the future’, Rose scans alcoves and window ledges; there is not a wisp of ghostly presence.

The vicar shakes the young groom’s hand and glides towards the back of the church. His smile widens when he notices the regulars; otherwise, he maintains a regal, and somewhat aloof, expression. Rose has met his kind before, sniffy about non-believers. She could tell him a thing or two about the afterlife.

‘Hello old girl.’

‘Fred. You made it. Just in time as well. Listen.’ Rose reaches for his hand and they smile at each other as the organist plays the same music that had accompanied her procession down the aisle all of those years ago. ‘There she is. Oh Fred, look at what Jenny’s wearing. It’s my veil.’ Her hand covers her heart, expanding in her chest, and she gasps at the memory of the pain.

‘Don’t cry my sweet. You’ll spoil your pretty face.’ He tries to gather her to him but lacks the strength so they make do with an air-kiss. An order of service flutters to the ground as she pretends to smack his hand. It rests beneath their feet and they watch the lace-clad young woman march with her father past the end of their row. Rose’s hand extends to stroke the lace but the fabric floats like a cloud of mist through her fingers.

‘Sam looks smart in his penguin suit.’

A woman in the next row turns to stare. When her neighbour asks what’s wrong, she pauses for a second, a quizzical expression in her eyes, then shrugs and mumbles something about whispering.

‘Shush Fred. If you get caught, they’ll make us leave and we’ll miss the ceremony.’

From that moment, they are as quiet as church mice as her mother used to say, listening carefully to their son as he gives away the hand of his daughter and later, to the young couple as they exchange their vows. Rose holds back her sobs, all the while trying to ignore the pressure in her chest. The sermon is about family love and a number of handkerchiefs come out when the vicar mentions the names of those who can not be with them.

‘At least I got a mention.’

‘How could she forget you my love? Every year, those special weeks at the seaside, and not every girl gets a car for her 18th.’

‘Aye, we did what we could for them.’

The organist pounds his keys and the radiant couple float down the aisle. Rose and Jack stay behind until the last guest has passed them and then, they smile sadly at each other and rise.

‘It’s time. I will love you through eternity,’ she said but he had already faded into the cool atmosphere and her words went unanswered. Drifting outside of the church, Rose has time to see a glimpse of white at the side of a newly dug grave and she leaves with the words of her granddaughter comforting her as she ventures into the unknown.

‘You and Gramps showed me how to love. I know he’ll look after you wherever you are.’

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Does Price Dropping Work?

The ebook version of Silencio has now been discounted to £.99 for 9 days. At the end of the 14 day period, I will evaluate the impact of price on sales. I am not sure how sensitive pricing is in the debut novel market.

Have any of my readers put their own books in to a price drop situation? How successful was it at driving sales? I will enjoy reading about your experiences.

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Poetry Day – A Poor Offering

If I had a lot of time

I would offer up a rhyme.

Poetry is not my strength

My plots and thoughts need more length.

Forgive this poor attempt at prose

To the novel, this writer goes.

 

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