Tag Archives: Flash fiction

What made me become a writer?

The writing seed was planted inside me one rainy Sunday in 2004, while I was relaxing and reading in my ridiculously-small-rented-room in South-East London. I had been browsing the book section of a Croydon charity shop the day before, and had been instantly grabbed by a beautifully dreary front cover, and a sinister title. The book was called ‘Beneath the Skin’ by Nicci French. I had read the premise, test-read a random page (as I always do after plucking a book from the shelf), and had carried it straight to the till.

That Sunday afternoon I had downed numerous cups of tea – the heat of the liquid had fused with the irresistible chill that the pages were breathing into me. I turned page, after page, after page, until I reached the end. My instant thought upon closing the cover was ‘I wish I had written this book.’ Actually, I might have even whispered it aloud into those four walls.

I had fallen asleep that night with the book, the characters whirling around in my mind. The fear, darkness, reality, and loneliness that the book had aroused in me, had had even more effect in the darkness of the night, under the glow of the moon. I knew I would never forget this book. It had created an itch in my heart.

The following day I had been at work. I had clicked Google in my lunch hour. And in the search bar I clicked ‘How to write a novel’.

My obsession had begun.

©2014.alittlebirdtweets

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An excerpt from Goodreads;

“When she laughs, she makes a pealing sound, like a doorbell. If I told her I loved her, she would laugh at me like that. She would think I was not serious. That is what women do. They turn what is serious and big into a small thing, a joke. Love is not a joke. It is a matter of life and death. One day, soon, she will understand that.”

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Scarlett

rose

She handpicked the last rose of summer; watched the petals wilt into a ballet of depression. The ghost of his apology of deceit had bred in her mind for days. She knew that walking unafraid in a world devoid of him could never equal the burning desire of a restored heart. She crushed the rose in her hand. Someday she would visit his office and attempt to rekindle the love of her lover; a man whom she would always believe to be a raw diamond in the earth.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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New York

Crimson rays from the setting sun had stirred life in to the lank, concrete buildings. The glower of taxi headlights had greeted me with their vitality; and had sculpted hopes and dreams inside my heart. I had watched a man limp up Lexington Avenue. He’d asked the world what their dreams were; or had been. I had tried to offer him an answer; but his silhouette had vanished within the towering steam that had emanated from the street’s drains. And, I had known then, that that flash had been my New York minute.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Distraction

Danger had loitered on a street corner that day. It had awaited the collapse of slate clouds, hard rain, and the thump of half-past five. It had awaited her arrival, stiletto-heeled. She’d stepped in the road, whilst struggling to open her umbrella; oblivious to the car approaching the corner at high speed. Metal had struck her legs, forced her body to collapse, and her head to hit concrete. She had laid in a grey sea, as ambulance crew, police, and strangers watched her; like she had been a newly erected sculpture. Voices had asked her questions, prompted answers; but she’d been too stunned to reply. She’d only been capable of crossing her fingers; of praying with her trembling heart, for the chance to see long corridors, fluorescent lights and fresh grapes.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Fragility

Petals, a million shades of rose, lay frozen-in-time, upon the cemetery’s frost-laden grounds. Tomorrow, heartless feet will crush them; turn them into russet particles. Their dying breath will emit rancid vapours into the air, as they succumb to the earth. And, beyond the borders of the cemetery, people will look to the skies; sing the lyrics of summers’ song. Smiling faces, embracing sunlight; unaware that decay is a fraction away.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Frozen

White light dapples the snow through the trees. Winter’s breeze blows at flakes rested on branches, forcing them to chute to the ground like dancing angels. She rests on a bench; allows the winter sun to warm her face. She imagines that she’s sitting in a Christmas card scene; that everything is picture-perfect. But the woolly jumper that she wears makes her skin sweat and itch. She feels uncomfortable and disorientated. She gets up, walks; and decides that today she’ll smile at no one; and that she’ll keep her eyes fixed on frozen paths, which threaten to swipe her feet.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Elm Lake

Elm Lake ©2013.alittlebirdtweets

Whenever there were grey curls in the skies, the lake would awaken. Sinister waves would ripple on its surface, and rekindle a whispered voice that spoke of a past happening. The voice would travel through trees and into nearby cottages, where it was eager to be heard. But, no one would listen. No one wanted to believe that it was the voice of the girl, who had drowned in the lake half a century ago.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Immortal Love

She narrates a passage from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet; and her heart simmers as he watches her lips, with his ancient eyes.

‘A tragic story, my love,’ he says, brushing his fingers over the calligraphic text.

He bends to kiss her. She gasps, and feels blood trail down her neck. She watches it drip onto the page and expand like large ink spots.

‘You’re now immortal; and my death will shortly follow,’ he says.

He falls to the floor; and she watches his face turn pastel.

And on this day, every thousand years, she lights a candle in his memory.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Whitechapel

‘Whitechapel in winter does make me quiver.’ She said, pulling her shawl around her shoulders.

Fog curled lavishly around streetlamps; like smoke from coal-fires had done, in the Victorian era.

‘It’s been said that the ghost of Jack the Ripper prowls these streets.’ He teased.

‘Oh, stop it!’ She grinned, thrusting her elbow into his side.

They walked along cobbled Commercial Road; which was once a market where the rich and poor intermingled and traded.

‘Hey, what’s that?’ She shrieked, pointing ahead into a doorway.

Their mouths fell, as they watched the grim shadow of a knife magnify over them.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Afterlife

My senses are more profound in the spirit world. Today I hover above my gravestone and listen to melodious birdsong. I watch sunbeams saturate the cemetery in ethereal pallor. I suddenly sense the familiar saccharine scent of white carnation, and I turn to see my wife standing before my grave, holding a white bouquet.

“Life is dreadful. I miss you dearly,” she whispers.

She lays the bouquet upon my grave and sobs into a tissue. She walks away. I try to pull her back, to console her, but my hands pass through her. She disappears. And I’m left heartbroken.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Irreversible

I dig my nails into his tattoo, and watch my name Rosa fall to pieces upon his skin. In his sleep, he releases silent billows of air; and I inhale them devotedly, counting one, two and three. I feel like I could consume every part of him. He must feel me digging him, for he awakes startled, tired and bemused. He tugs his arm from my grip, looks at me as though I’m crazy, and rolls over on the bed. His coldness kills me. My head sinks heavily into the pillow. My body shivers with emptiness, and I curl into a comfort ball, pulling my knees, my arms, into my chest. My heart wrings knowing that he’s out of my reach. And my mind cries for just an ounce of his love.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Freedom

Jessica turned on the bath taps and poured bath crème into the running water. Sweet magnolia filled the room and it alleviated the pressure in her head. The past two years had been stressful and unbearable in the office, and sometimes she wished she could fly away to a faraway land, to escape her monotonous life. She brushed her hand through the deep steaming water and turned off the taps. She lit tea-lights that were scattered around the bathroom, undressed, and slid into the bath. The water melted away her aches, and she closed her eyes and began to dream of her ultimate, faraway life. She imagined living in a cottage, in a meadow, surrounded by butterflies and deer. She imagined reading a favourite book as she watched the sunset on the horizon. She dreamed of a husband and children, and a home full of laughter and happiness.

She was suddenly broken from her reverie, when she felt a sensation on her back. She stood up, her heart pounding. Bath water cascaded down her body, over the bath, and across the floor. She grabbed a towel, stepped out, and wiped the steamed mirror with the back of her arm. She looked at her back in the reflection and saw two large red blemishes either side of her shoulder blades. They began to itch and she scratched them with her nails, until she was digging deep into the skin. Blood trickled from them, and she watched as white hairs began to grow from the wounds. She pulled them to try to remove them, but they stretched into long fine wires. And she realised that they were not hairs after all, but long white feathers. She was growing wings. She screamed and closed her eyes with disbelief. After several seconds she braved one last look in the mirror. But upon opening her eyes she saw that it had steamed up again; and in the steam were five scrawled words… five words that would change her life forever,

You are free to fly.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Separate Ways

‘So you think that listening to those bland records over again and drinking yourself into a stupor is a good way to live your life then, Danny? Because it certainly isn’t the life I want to join you in.’

‘Yeah I do think it’s a good way to live my life as it happens, Anna! I enjoy myself, alright?! All you ever seem to do is drift around me like I’m invisible, or nag me with that annoying voice of yours! Why do you think I turned to drink in the first place, eh?! Come on Anna, let’s face it, you don’t enjoy life, do you? You don’t sing or dance or have a laugh anymore! Seriously, what happened to the fun-loving Anna I knew back in the day? Where’d she go?’

‘The Anna you once knew disappeared a while back, Danny; when she realised that her husband would never change and would always choose drink over her. I think that’s enough to stop any woman from singing, dancing and having a laugh, don’t you think?!’

So why don’t you fuck off then, Anna, if I’m that bad?’

‘Oh, I am. I have a cab booked. I’m fucking off today.’

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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‘a little bird tweets’ First Birthday!

Well it is a year today since my flash fiction blog ‘a little bird tweets’ began! Where has the time gone?! It seems like only yesterday I was busy experimenting with template designs, customizing; and trying to get that final website design that I thought would visualize and sum up the genre and theme of my future flash-fictions.

The last year has been a wonderfully inspiring journey. I have met some truly gifted people here in the WordPress community; gifted writers, poets and bloggers with so many different styles and ‘ways with words’. It really is a pleasure to be surrounded by a community that not only enlightens me with their reads, but also inspires me to push forward with my own writing. Without WordPress and its community, my writing would feel very empty. So I truly thank you all for having taken the time to visit, read and provide feedback on my work.

This week I have been reading the latest issue of ‘Writers Forum’; and inside was an article on ‘how to publish your own e-book’. My eyes lit up like candles when I first glimpsed the header, as I had never even given this a thought before. Thoughts such as ‘produce a collection of flash-fiction, a short story, a cover design’ started whirling around my head; and they have now found a comfortable dwelling in my mind; and I doubt they are going to be re-possessed anytime soon! So now I am pondering over the idea of creating a collection of flashes; or may be even developing one of my already published WordPress flashes and turning it into a longer ‘short story’. What do you think?

  • Shall I create an e-book collection of flash fiction. or one short story?
  • If I were to develop one of my flash fictions into a short story, then which one would you like to know more about? Are there any characters that grabbed or intrigued you that you’d like to see ‘come back to life’?
  • Shall I create an entirely new story?

I look forward to being inspired by you. With Thanks!

A link to 23 flash fictions that I have created in the past year.

https://alittlebirdtweets.com/flash-fiction-4/

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The Locket

Annabel encased the ancient locket with her soiled hands; and in the twinkling of a second, a silver luminosity radiated through the gaps in her fingers. It illuminated her pulsing ruby blood, reminded her that she was alive, that she was still capable of loving herself.

She pulled the clasp, opened the locket, and studied the intricate hieroglyphics etched inside. She blew away the seeds of earth that had managed to cling to it; in the years since it had last been dug up, opened.

Her steely breath fired life into the locket, and waves of white light encircled her, warmed her soul. She smiled, closed her eyes, and finally released the self-doubt that had, for a long time, devoured her.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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