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National Flash Fiction Day 2016

Saturday, 25 June 2016

To celebrate National Flash Fiction Day 2016 I have been writing  flash fiction to prompts from readers. Though I'm glad I don't have to do it everyday, it's been great fun. Each prompt has taken me off into different directions and I've often ended up in unexpected place. 

I enjoyed grappling with finding a story behind each prompt.  I could see the first, 'Turning Japanese' had multiple possibilities, but the more I thought about it there was only one ending I wanted to write. 'A budgie named Pat' came to me the minute I had an image of a yellow bird flying into the night. 'Up on the roof' was really difficult, because I couldn't see my way into it, until I worked out what my central character was doing up there. On the other hand, 'Horror Stories' was obvious the minute I read  'wicker basket'. Whilst 'Vote Leave' was a heart on my sleeve response to the depressing onslaught of racism in the wake of that referendum. 'Parallel Lines' was easy, the minute I understood the relationship between the characters and I loved writing it. The final story 'Lazy Afternoon' was inspired by my own prompt, watching a  woman run over from a pub, put something in a bin and run back again. It took me all week to work out why, and may need a bit more work, but I do like the end result.

In case you missed the stories, I have collected them here, so you can read them all at once. I hope you enjoy them!

1. Turning Japanese.

2. A budgie named Pat.

3. Up on the roof.

4. Horror Stories.

5. Vote Leave.

6. Parallel Lines.

7. Lazy Afternoon.

And today, to celebrate National Flash Fiction Day, I am very excited to be Writer in Residence at the fabulous Albion Beatnik Bookstore, 34 Walton Street, Jericho, Oxford where I will be writing flash fiction to order. I will also be selling copies of my collection of flash fiction 'Rapture and what comes after' and the 2016 National Flash Fiction Day anthology 'A box of stars beneath the bed'. If you are in Oxford do come down between 12 and 4 and on condition you buy a book from the store (doesn't have to be mine!), I'll see what I can do. It's also Independent Book Week and independent bookshops like Albion Beatnik are very precious, so please support if you can. (And if you can't make sure it is in your lists of shops to visit when you are in Oxford).

Finally, you will notice this post is on my Unbound page. Please do take a moment to have a look and pledge! I am a third of the way to my target it would be wonderful to get to 51% by my 51st birthday on the 15th July.

Thanks for reading, happy flash fictioning everyone!

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Publication date: November 2017
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