Welcome to the twenty-first in the 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 was to write a dialogue between two friends where one is trying to quit smoking, so here is my 166-worder.
Having something in your mouth
And what do you get for that?
The whole thing: a big starter kit with the machine, case, refills, liquids…
Nicotine, or something like it… herbal, I think.
Do they work?
It’s the having something in your mouth isn’t it?
No, I mean… like I am with food.
I know, but you’re not that bad.
You’re the skinny one.
Because I smoke.
Why don’t you just give up?
You’d save a lot of money. I have to eat, I just need to…
Be more sensible.
Like you with smoking. £70… fourteen packets ish…
Sounds a lot, doesn’t it.
Maybe speak to the chemist?
Although she’ll be biased because she’ll want to sell it to you.
Alright, back in a minute.
What did she say?
Oh. What did he say?
I don’t need it.
He told you that?
I didn’t ask.
Why not? You need something, don’t you?
His phone number.
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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 fortnightly episodes, usually released on Sundays, 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.