How I wish I’d taken my camera with me to my writing course earlier today. Not to photograph any of the beautiful people that I share this time with but, for some of the sites in and around Bristol, with all the flooding that’s causing havoc around the south-west of England! Driving in to the city, it was only ever ‘raining’ and nothing more. By the time I parked up and left my van though, I could see it was falling sideways and at some speed. There was a part of me that wanted to hide away in the parking lot for the next two hours but, having previously missed two sessions thanks to anxiety, I realised that I had come this far and, after a walk less than five-minutes in length, I was soaked right through my new jacket and jeans. Spending two hours sat indoors with soggy socks and wet shoes wasn’t that pleasant.
But, I had a story to read – or, at least, that was the idea…
In a couple of evenings, I’d managed less than two paragraphs of words – the second of which, was only completed after I arrived home this evening; minutes before leaving the printer and joining me on a journey in to the city! There’s no title and I don’t know if I’ll ever work on this again but, I thought I’d share it with you now, as my tutor had some pleasing words to say.
Our assignment was to find a story within a newspaper and use that as a ‘prompt’ to write from.
Click here to a see a full-length report of the story I selected. While browsing through my mum’s ‘paper (I don’t read them), this was the first one to jump out at me, directly underneath a few images of Girls Aloud (not that I was looking – honestly, they’re not my type).
Martin’s life always ran like clockwork. Each day, he’d be up at the crack of dawn and would always arrive home by the time dinner was on the table. This was the way life way for many years, until one evening, when his wife sat down to eat with their two children but, the father of the household hadn’t returned.
Almost ninety minutes late and his car remained absent from the drive. There were no messages on the answer phone as the world outside become lost to the darkness of winter. As the rest of the family sat down together in the living room, they heard a gust of wind pass through the kitchen, followed by the sound of keys crashing on the worktop. Martin was home but, without warning this time. Where were the headlights passing the bay window? Perhaps the weather had disguised the familiar sound of four wheels on gravel. As he made his way through to the living room to greet his family, it looked as though he’d walked home through a downpour, with water running literally from head to toe. His briefcase had survived but, it looked as though the man was close to breaking. The kids just sat and stared at this unfamiliar man stood before them. Before his wife could utter a sound, out came the words, “Don’t ever rely on public transport!”.
Where I take it from here, I wasn’t quite sure, which is another fear that I feel was holding me back. I knew how I wanted it to start, with a build up to the announcement and realisation that he’d lost his license and, if I could just find an ending, I felt that I could somehow connect and link the two. But, I didn’t have that. I couldn’t see one clearly and I do appreciate the importance of always having an end in sight when you’re writing a short story.
It’s got some good points. Several ‘hooks’, early on, that could encouraged a reader to want to continue. Apparently, the line about an ‘unfamiliar man‘ adds intrigue.
Yep, that’s me for the night, as I sit here, trying to dry myself off and reheat my chilled body.
Next week’s homework is to write a poem and no amount of anxiety or fear could prevent a genuine smile from breaking through in the class when that was revealed. This excites me! I’m not sure if I’ve ever written a ‘positive’ poem or even something whilst in a positive mood but, already, I’m thinking of it as a way of sharing my adventures in the rain this evening.