Welcome to the fourth in the new series: 5pm Fiction.
Late April 2011 I discovered http://StoryADay.org and the project that is to write 31 stories in 31 days. Anyone who knows me or follows this blog, knows how passionate I am about short stories so my clichéd eyes lit up at this new marvel. And just a few days later there I was, breathing life into new characters. This went on to become (with some editing of course) my 31-story collection eBook Story A Day May 2011.
I was nearing completion of the 2012 project when I decided that I didn’t want to stop at the end of May so 5PM Fiction was born. I put a load of prompts on the 5PM Fiction page and today’s prompt was to write a story starting ‘As Amy ran down the hill…’ but I cheated and changed the sentence round. So here is my 266-worder. Short and sweet with no bodies.
“Don’t let it in, don’t let it in!” Amy begged but then saw a cream Mini slow down, its flash of lights reflect on the back of the bus.
She knew if she waited for the next one she’d be late and if she was late on her first day she’d not be sure if there would be a second.
The traffic lights ahead changed to red and whilst drivers cursed the new roadworks, they had bought Amy valuable seconds. She caught up with the bus and went ahead a little, waving in an attempt to catch the driver’s attention. He nodded and opened the doors.
“We’re not supposed to pick up between stops.”
“I’m…” Amy said struggling for breath, “sorry. I…”
“Late for work?”
Amy nodded. “First day.”
Amy smiled. She’d not had to catch the bus for her old job but now she was working in the town centre she’d either have a longer walk or take public transport and having spent too long deciding what to wear had only left enough time for the latter.
“Nice suit,” the driver said as she took the ticket.
“Thank you. It’s new.”
“First impression counts, hey.”
Amy blushed then realised that the driver was younger than he’d looked from the front of the bus. A little older than her but with a heart-melting smile. “So they say.”
Now, as she sat on the bus, she had another reason to look forward to going to work.
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Unfortunately, as I post an interview a day (amongst other things) I can’t review books but I have a feature called ‘Short Story Saturdays’ where I review stories of up to 2,500 words. Alternatively if you have a short story or self-contained novel extract / short chapter (ideally up to 1000 words) that you’d like critiqued and don’t mind me reading it / talking about and critiquing it (I send you the transcription afterwards so you can use the comments or ignore them) on my ‘Bailey’s Writing Tips’ podcast, then do email me. They are weekly episodes, usually released Monday mornings UK time, interweaving the recordings between the red pen sessions with the hints & tips episodes. I am now also looking for flash fiction (<1000 words) for Flash Fiction Fridays and poetry for Post-weekend Poetry.