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Week 296 – A Journey For A Gentleman, A Sign For The Ridiculous And A Sore Arse For A Pensioner.

Before we start I want to advise that we have updated Tom Sheehan’s Author CV page.

He’d actually sent in a piece about his life and writing journey as a submission but we wanted to have it somewhere where it was always available, hence the idea of putting it onto his page.

It’s worth a look to give you an understanding of our most prolific writer and who he is, where he came from and what has inspired him over all these years.

A few things came up this week.

One is style of writing.

This should be individualistic and consistent. If you go for a certain style and can’t stick to it, it simply comes across as being wrong. If it’s consistent, with no variation, the reader considers it as style.

The problem with style is once some fuckwits see this and decide to copy, it then becomes a fad and that’s very annoying.

Always be true to yourself. Of course we are influenced but if you find your own way first, then any influences will be subliminal.

Fads are style that have been pointed out or realised and then copied.

Style is what has been pointed out or realised and then copied.

I wonder how many writing classes start with:

Okay class, today we are going to read from a non-binary, liquid, personage who identifies as a toaster as they do not use the pronoun, they use description of the nondescript to allow us to open our minds to the possibilities of who or what the protagonist is.

This is inspirational and I would suggest that you explore this style.

If anyone is nodding their head and agreeing, you should just fuck off and smell the realism of a world that isn’t complicated but has been made so by labelling the very essence of what is supposed to be unlabelled.

We never prompt any writing but here are my three wish-list submissions.

1. A fanging satire or just a fanging on millennials.

2. A chilling Illuminati story regarding royals and child sacrifice. (This may be non-fiction)

3. A true account of an oppressed woman’s inner thoughts and feelings regarding her culture and those who oppress her. With no mention of acceptance or simply listing of the issues.

I wish I could write any of those but I can’t for the following reasons:

1. I actually don’t understand their world to be able to satirise it.

2. I couldn’t write this without a record amount of the descriptive phrase, ‘Privileged, haven’t a Scooby about the real world cunts.’ (I suppose I could start a fad by using that as the pronoun!)

3. No joking here, it is an insult for anyone to try and imagine what this is like without any experience. Unfortunately those with experience are unable to express these feelings due to restraint from wherever.

Diane – Have you any????

Someone asked us for some statistics this week and it reminded me that we have a helluva lot of writers who are one-offs.

That ties into the idea that we all have one story in us.

But I was wondering on those who hit an idea, write it beautifully and from then on can only come up with stories that are way below that standard.

Those that give up due to whatever reason is fair enough, but it’s those folks who continue to write but can never reach the standard that they had that I wonder about.

Did they just get lucky?

I honestly don’t think so. I do believe that they still have it in them. Maybe they are just trying too hard to emulate their initial work.

I think it’s like playing golf. If you haven’t played for a while and you go out just trying to hit the bloody thing, you’ll do okay. But the next time, since you did okay, you get cocky and start to try things that your ability won’t allow.

That’s my point. Instead of just going where the writing takes them, they have conditions within. They want it smoother, the plot more complex, and a twist at the end.

They over-complicate their thoughts. Their own expectations strangle their ability.

So if you have had one story accepted wherever, forget about it and the next time just try and write the story that you want to tell!

Okay onto this weeks offerings.

We only had one new writer, a second, a third and a fourth timer as well as a legend.

Our topics this week include; taking a stand, a pub, weight, life consideration and a dream.

As always our initial comments follow.

We started of with Anuradha Prasad.

This was story number three for her.

Stretch‘ got us up and running.

‘Very well put together.’

‘The MC was horrible – What a superb piece of character writing!’

‘The descriptive sections were excellent.’

On Tuesday we published ‘Only A Jellyfish Would Live Forever.’

This was the wonderful Leila Allison’s seventy first story for us.

‘I wonder if Leila put in her writing bank the reference about Hazel Court from Doug Hawley?’

‘You need to read this at least twice. Or more. And every time gives you something else!’

‘What can I say, multi-layered and complex, which, as always, leaves you with much to consider.’

E.F. Hay was next up.

This was Evan’s second story for us.

Reverie‘ broke the back of the week.

‘The references add to the ride he takes you on!’

‘There is some excellent cutting commentary throughout.’

‘Satirical and quite damming.’

Cutthroat‘ was our offering on Thursday.

The writer was the no-holds-barred Alex Sinclair for the fourth time.

‘Gritty and dark with a great tone.’

‘This is one of those stories that make you sympathetic to someone you shouldn’t feel sympathy for.’

‘The back-story is brilliantly judged.’

And our new writer was Tim Frank.

We welcome him, hope he has fun on the site and we want to see more of his work.

Tim completed the week with ‘Dodging Traffic.’

‘This was quite poignant.’

‘I like the melancholy and how it doesn’t evolve into self-pity.’

‘The thought of him being older and looking back is quite sad.’

That’s us for another week.

I need to go back to Miss Anderson, she’s not been mentioned for a while!

Please comment guys. I can’t tell you the difference it makes.

Have a go at the Re-Run of a Sunday.

Just pick an older story that you’ve enjoyed and write a spiel or an introduction.

Throw in a few questions for the writer. We’ll publish exactly what you send us.

And lastly…

I have a great love for comedians as not only do they make me laugh but I normally learn something.

My two go to guys are Frankie Boyle and the God that is Billy Connolly. But I do have respect for most of them. Sarah Millican, Richard Prior, Joan Rivers, Bette Midler, Bill Hicks, Mike Harding and Bob Monkhouse to name but a few. I like them all for very different reasons. I watched Ed Byrne for the first time this week and enjoyed his show.

He taught me something and that was the BSL / ASL’s sign for Donald Trump. I don’t laugh out-loud very often but I did on this occasion. (Check it out) I am now hoping to see this sign being used in one of those late night news reports where there is a wee sign language person at the bottom right hand side of the TV screen. I am praying for around twenty repetitions of Trump.

I’ve always wondered why the sign language is there late at night. Who knew that deaf folks were all insomniacs??

That also reminded me of another good comedian, Jasper Carrot, who stated that the most complaints he ever got into regarding content of his shows was when he covered his mouth with his hand and said ‘I don’t like deaf people.’

Who was it that complained??

That was many years back and I honestly think that may have been the start of the PC Nazis.

My last laugh out loud moment which went on for about fifteen minutes and still happens when I think on it was Madonna being half choked and pulled back off the stairs at The Brits in 2015.

What made it funnier is how folks went on about her professionalism. Fuck that! She was up her own arse and nearly ended up up her own arse. I would have had more respect if she had been a bit more reactionary and waved for the music to stop while screaming – ‘My fucking hole! I fell on ma hole!! Sack that bastard! And the bastard that tied this fucking knot!

…Is there a stair-lift in the building?


I used to be part of a group that had a little competition weekly using writing prompts. – it was quite fun and led to my first short story which was published on the other site we used to all meet up in. I reckon they can be useful when you have the desire to write but nothing will pop into your head. I have never set one though – hmmm

As a crime writer I am drawn to the dark and dastardly

  1. The night before I hang (or whatever form of execution ) (this has always fascinated and repelled me in equal measure – how the bejassus do you stay sane in that situation)
  2. The moment you realise you have become a murderer (That’s something else that fascinates me – what could it feel like in that moment when you can’t go back and you have done the dastardly deed – Of course much will depend on the why, the how and the who.

Sorry – as I said I am drawn to the darkness – I’d better stop now before this gets too ‘black’


Image – Sign for Trump – Google Images

13 thoughts on “Week 296 – A Journey For A Gentleman, A Sign For The Ridiculous And A Sore Arse For A Pensioner.”

  1. The final pronoun is “it.” No one can rightfully be insulted by it as long as it is applied evenly. The possessive use will be it’s. Only a chowderhead will confuse the contraction of it is with it’s. As an added bonus “its” will become archaic in the written form.
    I think we spend waaaaaaaaaaay too much time on crybaby semantics. Anyone who thinks I should not get the Nobel for this is out of it’s mind.
    Also, on another topic, I agree, Mr Hawley is a leading authority on Hazel Court. I imagine he knows some about Barbara Steele and the late great Ms. Rigg as well.


    1. Hi Leila,
      I call animals by their name or the name I give them whether they like it or not.
      Young children I call It. Until they can have a conversation with me and accept a beer off of me, I have no interest in humanising them. After a few beers I then know what type of human I’m dealing with and may still have reason to call them It!
      It really is a good job I didn’t have kids!!
      Thanks as always!


    1. Presupposes and certain state methinks. Right at this moment I am not sure I am human. Perhaps part donkey, part monkey, part slug and part orang utang – it’s been a hard morning


      1. Hi Diane,
        I understand feeling like most you have mentioned with maybe sloth, dinosaur, lemming and dodo thrown in but the slug reference has me stumped!


  2. Dear Hugh:

    May I combine all three elements into a single story?

    i.e., A fanging satire or just a fanging on millennials, including a chilling Illuminati story regarding royals and child sacrifice (possibly non-fiction) combined with a true account of an oppressed woman’s inner thoughts and feelings regarding her culture and those who oppress her. With no mention of acceptance or simply listing of the issues.

    Inquiring minds wish to know…



  3. Hello Hugh… I have seen your prompts for the Subliminal MK ultra Messages they truly are and I now feel the uncontrollable urge to write something horrible and send it over like a ransom victims ears… Mind control is real!


    1. Hi Alex,
      I really do hope I’ve not opened a can of worms here but I doubt it. (At least the stories would be worth a look!)
      We have been inundated with Trump, Brexit and Plague stories and that was without a prompt!!
      But for the few folks that read this nonsense of a Saturday, I think any inspiration will be minimal!!
      My interest always peaks when I read stories about bars, music, darkness of soul, addiction, bigotry, racism and any genuine realistic pain. I feel like giving up with stories of romance, trying to conceive, the ‘cute’ things that toddlers do, sexual tension, older people trying to be hip, dictated faith, children’s ‘wisdom’ or conversations whilst drinking tea.
      The reasons are very simple. The first lot have a high percentage of stories that have been brilliant and the latter group have a high percentage of stories that have been shite.
      Awww Fuck – I hope no-one looks at that last lot and tries to change my mind!!!
      Thanks as always for your comments!
      All the very best my friend.


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