Here we are at week 261.
I wonder if anyone realises that we actually put tips into these postings. And don’t worry it’s none of those subliminal messages. If those worked both me and Diane would be drowning in Malt and Nik would be seaweeded out his head. South Africa doesn’t have seaweed, apparently, it’s The Electric Company’s fault.
We even repeat these messages. (Maybe they are a bit subliminal in a bloody obvious way) In repeating we hope that one day those that will, will have read and therefore don’t!
It’s just our way of giving a free gift. We can’t manage a ball of glittery wool and an oversized knitting needle so a wee bit of advice will need to suffice.
We’ve stated before about some NO-NO Doozies, like:
Don’t write a talking corpse story – You know the kind of thing, six pages of preamble finishing with ‘And then I died.’
Follow the guidelines or your work won’t get looked at.
Don’t send us children’s stories.
Use of ‘panties’. Diane wants to remove all panties. (And I know that she is swearing whilst reading this, not because of the image I played with but because of the three times used panties)
We are fed up reading about green eyes.
We don’t care what you are, it’s none of our business so don’t tell us.
Romance I hate, so you’re probably a vote down straight away. (‘Short Straw’ by Louisa Owen is the best romantic story I’ve ever read. That story explains the ideology better than any Mills And Boon ever could! Romance has nothing to do with seeing your reflection in some fuckers green eyes with your potential children floating about in there also.)
And we despise writing that is written for PC sake.
This week we have added another two to our list of things that make it very difficult for us to say yes to.
Firstly – Brexit. We are so fucked off hearing it and reading it in the news, any stories of this type aren’t that welcome.
Secondly – We are working on a two thousand words to one adverb ratio. If your adverbs go above that then we will gently but firmly decline the story quickly and unemotionally but categorically definitely.
Regarding types of submission, there is something else that I would like to address. I need to be very careful what I am typing here as I don’t want this taken in any way that it isn’t intended. (Hah! That’s a first!!)
There are certain subjects within certain cultures where the mere mentioning of them is brave and rebellious. The problem is that these stories are being sent to a site where we want more than that. We have discussed so many times that we would love to see someone go batshit with their inner dialogue. There are situations that we all find ourselves in where we can’t vocalise what we would like but that doesn’t stop the inner voice screaming all sorts at us.
So mentioning infidelity, homosexuality, disrespect, equal rights etc isn’t enough. These are words that we know the meaning of. But what we want to read is the honest opinion and total fanging from the characters in the stories. And if that can’t be done externally, try exploring it internally and let us hear what the characters really want to say.
I advised someone once when they were worried that they were coming through in their writing, that you work to ninety ten or ten ninety. That means it can be ninety percent you, your own experience and outlook with ten per cent invention. Or it can be ten percent you, your own experience and outlook with ninety percent invention – The trick is, the reader should never know which is which.
Okay onto this week’s stories.
We had two new writers, one author who is on their fourth story and two old friends who have over one hundred and sixty stories between them.
Our topics include; Comrades, band-mates, starting over, a transaction and a refusal.
As always our initial comments follow.
There’s no introduction needed for Tom Sheehan. He’s been with us for many a year and it’s a continual pleasure to publish his work.
‘Caught Wearing The Rags Of War‘ began the week.
‘The common ground is a bond that Mr Sheehan puts across beautifully.’
‘This is stunning and very poetic.’
‘This puts into words things that most of us can’t really understand.’
From one legend to another.
The world is a more interesting place for Leila Allison being in it.
The consistent quality of writing and imagination that Leila has is incredible.
‘Paradise Forgiven‘ was next up on Tuesday.
‘Very complex and compelling. There were parts of this you had to hold onto until needed.’
‘A totally enthralling story. So much truth in there as well as sadness and shame.’
‘There was an obvious darkness to this which was ironically understated.’
Our first new writer was published on Wednesday.
We welcome them both, hope they have fun on the site and as always, we want to see more of their work.
Anne Amanda Moore’s, ‘Strays‘ broke the back of the week.
‘There are those situations in life that just don’t get any better. The norm is what people have in common and how they use each other.’
‘The ending was very poignant.’
‘This was brutal, depressing and without much hope, but what the hell, that happens.’
Simon Bell is an author who has worked hard at his craft and we are benefiting from this.
‘Expressway‘ was Simon’s fourth outing for us.
‘The tension builds up very well.’
‘Very visible and smoothly done.’
‘Well constructed and an enjoyable read.’
And we finished off with our second new writer.
We extend the same welcome to Deanne Shiverick.
‘The Day The Music Died‘ was her first offering for us on Friday.
‘Accepting a life that you don’t want is heart-breaking and soul destroying.’
‘Not the happiest of stories! But a very accomplished piece of slice of life storytelling.’
Scripture Union on Wednesday folks!
Please keep the comments coming. It really does make a difference to the site.
And have a go at the Sunday Re-run. Pick an older story that you like and send us an introduction or a spiel and throw in a few questions for the author. We’ll publish exactly what you send us.
To finish off:
I mentioned my dislike of Romance but I would like to mention the best romantic notion I have ever seen in a film.
Just a few days ago, Gwen bought me Tarantino’s, ‘Once Upon A Time In Hollywood.’ Now I’m not going to spoil it for anyone, but the ending for anyone who knows about those events is an absolute belter. It’s a lovely thought to think on. That was what should have happened. And from there, the tie in with the title is absolute genius.
Knickers Hugh – just Knickers, pantaloons, even soddin’ briefs – although no not really – just KNICKERS