All Stories, General Fiction, Writing

Week 218 – Casserole Dishes, First Submissions And Mutant Eyebrows

Back to normal this week although we do have another two Saturday Specials waiting in the wings.

We are doing very well with submissions and it is interesting to see that sometimes we get a common theme. Diane reckons that there must be a writing site that does prompts. I can think of a few stories about boxes and retirement for example and they came in roughly at the same time. We have no problem with this and every one is treated the same way. It’s just weird reading three stories about a box that turns up at a house. The box is always interesting and not like the box containing shite casserole dishes that my neighbour sent for and didn’t receive because they ended up at my door. I’m sorry I kept them. I mean, white dishes patterned with brown tulips are very fucking ugly. I don’t even think that you can get brown tulips.

I think we also get fads and that is becoming very annoying. If I read of green eyes once more I will scream. And don’t get me started with the word ‘stoic’.

Maybe words and descriptions are fashionable. But if they are, they are as annoying as young women’s painted eyebrows. Is it just me or are they ridiculous? Drawing attention by drawing eyebrows is just weird. Maybe they are *stoic and the marker pen eyebrows enhance their green eyes.

The other thing that has really annoyed me is folks who try to sneak some Christian Fiction in. They are either idiots or they have never even looked at the site. I think it is pretty obvious that we don’t publish religious messages.

Not looking at the site is another thing that is so apparent when we receive a first submission. If our guidelines are completely ignored, I would hope it would be some sort of rebellion rather than the more than likely couldn’t be arsedness.

What really gets on our goat is if we point this out and then they send the same story in the same way with a different font. Especially if the font was the only fucking correct thing in the first place.

It’s different once we get to know the writers, the folks that we have a rapport with. Those guys, we know their work and them and we love to shoot the breeze. They have earned that right. They have supported us and continue to be involved. We look at those writers as old friends and we have the sort of relationship that makes it comfortable for us to advise, reject or accept in equal measure.

But the first timers really should take heed of any site’s request as they are just asking for their work to be ignored. Not by us, I might add. We’d have a look to see if it is any good first! Although I would say, don’t count on this as any really discourteous submissions, may be treated in kind.

OK, onto this week’s stories.

We had two new writers, a returning author, an old friend and me.

Our topics this week include; a foodbank, four bites, an involved cat, mortality and exciting feet.

As always our initial comments follow.


On Monday we had Lauren McGarrity with her first story for us, ‘Tin Folk‘. We know that Lauren worked hard at this and we are delighted to welcome her to the site.

‘The story addresses a number of preconceptions and leaves you feeling rather uplifted.’

‘There was a refreshing sense of kindness throughout.’

‘This is a very good story that flowed beautifully.’


I was next up on Tuesday.

I have been wanting to write a ‘monster’ story for ages and I came up with Piranha. Maybe being bitten and eaten isn’t that unique but after about five years thinking, it was the best that I could do!

As always, I need to thank Nik and Diane for all their help and everyone who has followed my work.


Our returning author was Lauren Bilsborough. Two for two so no pressure on the next one!!

Town‘ was published on Wednesday.

‘To intertwine all the characters is a difficult discipline. Lauren has no trouble with this.’

‘There is some understated emotion in Lauren’s work.’

‘You are left with an interest in all of the characters.’


On Thursday we had James Hanna. James has an extensive back catalogue of fourteen stories. Have a look if you wish to see excellent character driven stories.

Little Miss Twinkle Toes‘ was our next offering.

‘If this had become too gratuitous, it would have taken away from a very interesting and delightful MC. James judged this perfectly.’

‘The feet exploits were amusing and the end was very funny.’

‘This had a Natalie Wood ‘Gypsy’ charm to it and that tied into the film references.’


And on Friday we had our second new writer Andrea M. Jones.

We welcome both of them, hope that they continue to send us their work and have a long association with us.

‘Are We There Yet’ finished off the week

‘I enjoyed disliking both the characters.’

‘The panic and tension built up brilliantly.’

‘Dark, great writing and overall, done very well.’


Well that’s another week done.

After I finished this post I looked up ‘words to use when writing.’

There was a site that stated there were 595 power words.

Fucking ‘Power Words’. We’ve had power walking, power naps, power suits and now power words- I think they are all tools for power wankers!!

Surely a story is about the plot first?

Does anyone think, ‘I’ve got no ideas but I will use that specific word? So from there I looked up complicated words for simple meanings. And using what I found I came up with this. If anyone can tell me that I have used these in the wrong way or in the wrong context, you are probably correct but I will judge you:


To end with I wanted to show my funambulism even though the message is ectomorphic and filipenulous.

This posting was actually nudiustertian and in that time I have realised my floccinaucinihilipilification.


(What’s wrong with a simple ‘I was pish’?)



*I refuse to look that word up and I ignore trying to work it out when anyone writes it.

And yes, I have mentioned this on many an occasion but we are still seeing it!!!


You have to admit he’s nothing if he’s not stoic in the face of dissent!! – snigger – dd


Eyebrows from Pixabay – please note greenish eyes also – we are nothing if not thorough in the image department.

8 thoughts on “Week 218 – Casserole Dishes, First Submissions And Mutant Eyebrows”

  1. Hugh – I always look forward to your Saturday musings! You make me smile! As a long time submitter, I consider all of you (editors and fellow writers) friends. I love, love, love it when you publish one of my stories, but you let me down so nice and soft when you reject me, that I keep coming back for more. And no matter what, you warm my heart!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks so much for your kind words Sharon.
      The rejections are a bit weird to do. Sometimes I may be sending out thirty a week. I will say that the first time writers receive a fairly standard reply unless they have engaged with us in some way and we will try to answer relevantly. For our regulars I will always type off the cuff and that is why I hope that those rejections come across as nothing personal. And to be truthful, it gives me an excuse to shoot the breeze which I enjoy so much!
      Thanks as always.


      1. Hi Peter,
        Great to see you having a look.
        Ach, and words making sense is a bit overrated so if the font looks cool, fair doos!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Dave,
      I’m definitely not sure about wisdom. Normally when I write anything it is more bitterness and inadequacy that floats to the top.
      I miss Wingdings, that made my plots so much clearer!
      Thanks as always for all your input!


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