The sun is a stanza in the sky – a well written first stanza of a poem, or a song. Perhaps, this is a first stanza that bears the misty wings of a dream. Perhaps, that’s why it rises and gently floats off the page, to settle in the azure folds of the sky . . .
My Family Values – Tess Overland
I love my family.
My family is the most important thing in my life.
My family is the wings that keep me aloft.
My family, sometimes, on rare occasions, can be a bit too much for me.
The accumulative effects of dealing with my family can be exhausting.
My family is getting on my last fucking nerve.
This is one of two stories that I’ve been given free gratis with. I really do appreciate that and that is why I wanted to explain why I chose this one.
I was playing around, for so many reasons, with changed perceptions and this is what I came up with.
My fellow editors felt the content was too strong but it had to be for what I was going for. I wanted to see if I could alter a reader’s sympathies and to do that I needed the situation to be so abhorrent that they would need a real change of heart.
I wondered if we always fall down on one side or another with our sympathies or were there situations where, until all was revealed, our initial gut feelings may not be relied on and would be changed not just dramatically but more than once.
Delphine’s teacher cracked a joke. Delphine didn’t smile because she didn’t think it was funny. The teacher said, ‘Oh dear, Delphine. I do feel sorry for you. At the age of seven you ought to know what humour is.’ She brought her out to the front of the class. ‘Now, everyone, let’s show Delphine how we express humour.’
It was the summer that cost us more than we knew. When we atoned for our sins and kept on sinning. When a small part of us died and we fumbled to fill the growing void. When we forgot, in truth, how to ask. The summer Ben slept with Lola, who was loved by Jeremy who slept with Kat who fucked, despite her beauty, like a corpse. And later, when a rash smothered his groin like English Ivy, Jeremy scuttled around the kitchen, poking his member like a cactus.
Foreword: This is a story that I have been given the go ahead with even though it was a split decision and wasn’t accepted as a majority. I am very grateful.
I wanted to explain where this came from. I think this is the best example I have of a state of mind dictating a story. Writing is therapeutic. To go somewhere you would never tread yourself is as liberating as you can get. I’ve always thought when life really gets to you, do something horrific on a sheet of paper. Challenge yourself to write a character that has no redeeming qualities what-so-ever.
You can end up with something dark, ‘passionate’ and an MC that you’ve absolutely no empathy for.
…And its fun to worry those who want to analyse the writer more than the story!
(Last Warning – Very strong language and distasteful adult content / attitude. Do not read if you are liable to be offended.)
Jonathan was out on his front porch swing, engrossed in another vampire book, when he gave a shiver and, looking up, caught his neighbor’s dark eye. Willy was across the street, standing on his own front porch. ‘Okay if I come over?’ he called apologetically.
In my suitcase there were six pairs of knickers. Six was the number I’d need for a week of work, assuming that one night I’d swim or go to the gym and it wouldn’t be outrageous to wash a couple of pairs in the hotel shower.
I’d packed four tops, all of them black. Jackie in Rentals had told me that if you wear all black nobody notices. Once, she’d worn the same black shirt every day for a month and no one raised an eyebrow. Then she wore a yellow shirt twice in a week and four people said don’t you have another top?
Tammy had received her call back from NHS24. She went through the formalities and had been put onto the triage nurse.
She felt a tear as the pain got worse. Explaining herself for the third time didn’t help.
“Can’t you send a doctor out to see me. I don’t mind that.”
“Tammy, I’ve been trying to tell you, a doctor can’t help you. You need to be in hospital. You’re blood pressure needs monitored, bloods taken, medication decided on. We need to do something about the infection. You can’t mess about with it. We need to keep an eye on you.”
She thought for a second, but it was a no-brainer.
The first inkling Frank had of the change that would overtake him came on the drive down. He was in the back seat, his hip aching from hours on the Interstate, listening to a radio show about snow geese migrating from the Arctic, big flocks miles high but always along the same route: migration corridors they called them. And all of a sudden Frank was up there flying among them, mile after airy mile in unison. Who knows how long it lasted before Kathy turned and spoke to him, words he didn’t catch but that startled him back down, into his body? He shook his head, a horse throwing off a fly; he was a practical man, not given to daydreaming. ‘How long till lunch?’ he asked Kathy who asked Tom who wanted to get another hundred miles at least.