Welcome to the one hundred and forty-third in this daily series that is ‘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 monologue with the following keywords (taken from http://creativecopychallenge.com, their #142): odd, receive, drum, announced, rub, plant, issue, adhere, computerize (or in my case computerise, I’m English), and dig. Here is my 533-worder.
Doing a job I love
It had felt a little odd. Being given something like this for doing a job I love. And you couldn’t really call it that. Playing in a band a job? To receive an award for playing the drums was an added bonus. I’d been given a single drum, just a cheap thing, when I was very young, my mum says two but I think I was younger than that because I don’t remember getting it, just it being there.
When my name was announced I hadn’t been expecting it so it took Bondie digging me in the ribs for me to realise that they’d said my name. He’s stronger than he thinks. I was rubbing my ribs for weeks after that.
I think he’d been on something; weed, blow, or some such. He was always more rock ‘n’ roll than me. It hadn’t been an issue until that night, when he’d insisted on joining me on the stage. He could play the drums and had never received an award so I thought, “what’s the harm?”
If only he’d adhered to the rules; walk up the aisle, to the podium, say ‘thank you’ to the celebrity who hands you the statue (in our case it was the teen pop sensation Jimmy Penn) but his brain just couldn’t computerise that. I don’t think it computes anything these days.
He had to go up there didn’t he and dig, dig, dig. OK, so we’re not a fan of the weak pop music that climbs the charts faster than we ever did in our heyday but he’s still sore that Jimmy beat us to the top of the album chart when we released our Greatest Hits. A term I use loosely as the record company in their limited wisdom to make it a double CD when we’d only had half a dozen ‘hits’ (top 40) so the rest were more fillers than a tub of sandwich spread. That’s one thing I hadn’t noticed; that he’d not been eating, Bondie, just drinking, picking at his food, fork never reaching his mouth, although it’s big enough.
So there I was, mouth open to say a few unrehearsed words and ended up goldfish-like while Bondie spouted.
Bondie’s real name’s James… Bond, but he hates that. His mum was a real fan and we all reckon that she married a Bond just so she could have a son with the right name. Had the boy straight away, stroke of luck really, then the two of them left when he was still young. Probably why he is the way he is.
Anyway. He’d said his bit and I thought we were going to leave… he’d said plenty for both of us, what was I going to do, apologise? Pretend it didn’t happen? But then Jimmy called him by his real name, don’t know how he knew, Wikipedia I suppose, and well, Bondie flipped and went for the jugular, Jimmy’s jugular. Did enough so the damage was done. Only temporary, thankfully, but he had to cancel his tour. Bondie received so many “thank you” letters after we could have wallpapered our bus… the one we toured on not long after the awards ceremony.
Photography courtesy of morguefile.com. You can sign up to receive these blog posts daily or weekly so you don’t miss anything. You can contact me and find me on the internet, view my Books and I also have a blog creation service especially for, but not limited to, writers.
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.