Word Count Wednesday 9 Jun

Good morning. Yes, it’s that time of the week again. How have you been getting on?

I’ve been cracking on with a collaboration crime novel project and have written 1,008 words this past week (last Wednesday to last night). Not a lot, I know, but it was in one go, yesterday afternoon, so could have been worse.

Do leave a comment below to share your progress, successes and otherwise, and of course anything else that’s happened to you, writing wise, over the past seven days.

For more information About Me as an Author, Mentor, Speaker and my Fiction, Non-fiction, and you can sign up to my Newsletter.

Word Count Wednesday 2 Jun

Good morning. Yes, it’s that time of the week again. How have you been getting on?

Crazy busy with (some unanticipated) work so it’s a zero word count from me this past week (last Wednesday to last night) but it’s okay as my writing buddy and I are planning a crime novel collaboration project so next week’s will likely consist of planning notes rather than content writing. #watchthisspace

Do leave a comment below to share your progress, successes and otherwise, and of course anything else that’s happened to you, writing wise, over the past seven days.

For more information About Me as an Author, Mentor, Speaker and my Fiction, Non-fiction, and you can sign up to my Newsletter.

My review of ‘100ne Hundred’ by Laura Besley

I stopped doing reviews a while back but when I was asked by Saira at Arachne Press to review Laura’s collection, I didn’t hesitate. Flash fiction is my favourite form of creative writing and Laura is a regular, often successful, entrant to my monthly 100-word competition so two reasons to say ‘yes’.

Split into four seasons, each section contains 25 stories, some of which are familiar territory but most new to me.

I love titles, especially quirky ones, and ones like ‘How to be Normal’, ‘Raining Colours’, ‘The Pupa Stage in the Lifecycle of Audrey Brown’, and ‘Housewife 500’ were ones I was especially looking forward to… and they didn’t disappoint.

Speaking of quirky, although I know Laura’s writing well, I challenge anyone (not for money!) not to be hooked on the opening of the first story: Dave carries his girlfriend in the left-hand breast pocket of his shirt. 

It’s a very emotional collection. As a competition judge (for others, not just my own) the best stories tend to be ones where you have a reaction at the end. A ‘huh?’ is not good and it goes from there all the way to ‘wow’. With this collection I soon lost track of how many ‘wow’s I was uttering to the point where my dog had that ‘here she goes again’ look.

The stories take us to various points around the globe but one thing that links them all is humanity. I love characters, and while most stories are understandably plot-led, there is a wealth of characters we can relate to, even if they’re nothing like us, or we’ve not been through what they’ve been through – for that we should be thankful!

Some films started life as short stories (The Shawshank Redemption and Brokeback Mountain to name two) and while Laura’s are incredibly short, many lent themselves to being the start or plot of a larger work. There are unions, reunions, meetings and greetings, thought-provoking pieces, and those simply there to entertain.

Although I read this collection in one sitting, it’s the kind you could dip in an out of and let these stories linger, returning for a second, third and umpteenth read.

I’d love to share with you my favourites but there were simply too many, although one in particular made me chuckle as a character loves his Alexa (Amazon Echo device) even more than I do.

As well as being a competition judge, I’m an editor. While I would have made very minor tweaks had this been something sent to me for editing (e.g. sighing isn’t a dialogue verb so should be a separate sentence to what’s said, some words hyphenated or unhyphenated, a ‘his’ changed to the character’s name where another of the same gender has just been mentioned, I’d have chopped some ‘said’s where the character’s doing something, and some of the ‘just’s 🙂 ), the stories are written to such a tight (100 words exactly) format that losing a word or two would have meant ‘padding’ to return to the correct figure.

I had high expectations and was not disappointed, as I’m sure you won’t be when you read this wonderful collection. It was published on 27th May 2021, so hot off the (Arachne) press! Available from https://arachnepress.com/books/short-stories/100nehundred-laura-besleyand where good books are sold, as the saying goes (ISBN: 978-1913665272). Laura can be found on Twitter and Facebook.

My thanks go to Saira and of course Laura, not only for creating this endearing collection but for being one of the many stalwarts of my competition.

*

Laura

About Laura Besley: Laura Besley writes short fiction in the precious moments when her children are asleep. She has been listed by TSS Publishing as one of the top 50 British and Irish Flash Fiction writers. Her work has been nominated for Best Micro Fiction and her story, To Cut a Long Story Short, will appear in the Best Small Fiction anthology in 2021. 100neHundred is Laura’s second short fiction collection.

 

About 100neHundred: A man carries his girlfriend in the left-hand breast pocket of his shirt. During World War II, a young soldier searches the houses and barns of the families with whom he grew up. An astronaut wonders whether she can adapt to life back on earth.

In her second collection of short fiction, Laura Besley explores a kaleidoscope of emotions through 100 stories of exactly 100 words each.

Word Count Wednesday 26 May

Good morning. Yes, it’s that time of the week again. How have you been getting on?

Another collaboration prompt, this time writing half (one of the two characters) on a date, or more accurately my character waiting for someone who’s late – which my collaborator is writing. 🙂 Done and fairly dusty (dusted) in 984 words.

Do leave a comment below to share your progress, successes and otherwise, and of course anything else that’s happened to you, writing wise, over the past seven days.

For more information About Me as an Author, Mentor, Speaker and my Fiction, Non-fiction, and you can sign up to my Newsletter.

Word Count Wednesday 19 May

Good morning. Yes, it’s that time of the week again. How have you been getting on?

Another collaborative project – writing our own stories but on the same theme, this time ‘stolen from a thief’, which brought back Rick from my novella ‘After Jessica‘ (free on Kindle!) and a total word count of 1,379, which isn’t bad as I wrote most of it last night.

Do leave a comment below to share your progress, successes and otherwise, and of course anything else that’s happened to you, writing wise, over the past seven days.

For more information About Me as an Author, Mentor, Speaker and my Fiction, Non-fiction, and you can sign up to my Newsletter.

Word Count Wednesday 12 May

Good morning. Yes, it’s that time of the week again. How have you been getting on?

I’ve been continuing with the Sunday mornings and have written 1,443 words about a lonely Christmas. I know it’s only May but I’ve been asked submit 1-2 pieces for a charity anthology (deadline end May).

Do leave a comment below to share your progress, successes and otherwise, and of course anything else that’s happened to you, writing wise, over the past seven days.

For more information About Me as an Author, Mentor, Speaker and my Fiction, Non-fiction, and you can sign up to my Newsletter.

Word Count Wednesday 5 May

Good morning. Yes, it’s that time of the week again. How have you been getting on?

I’ve been cracking on with the weekly prompts (‘an unexpected visitor’ this time) collaboration with a writing friend. Although it was a bank holiday, I worked through it so have written a shorter 605 words this past week (last Wednesday to last night). I’m very happy with what I’d written though, perhaps a first chapter of a new novel with an ‘oof’ ending! 🙂

Do leave a comment below to share your progress, successes and otherwise, and of course anything else that’s happened to you, writing wise, over the past seven days.

For more information About Me as an Author, Mentor, Speaker and my Fiction, Non-fiction, and you can sign up to my Newsletter.

Word Count Wednesday 28 Apr

Good morning. Yes, it’s that time of the week again. How have you been getting on?

I’ve been continuing with our Sundayathons, albeit on Monday this time, and have written 1,178 words this past week (last Wednesday to last night). We have different prompts each week and this time we added the proviso that it had to be written in 1940’s crime detective noir. It was fun.

Do leave a comment below to share your progress, successes and otherwise, and of course anything else that’s happened to you, writing wise, over the past seven days.

For more information About Me as an Author, Mentor, Speaker and my Fiction, Non-fiction, and you can sign up to my Newsletter.

Word Count Wednesday 21 Apr

Good morning. Yes, it’s that time of the week again. How have you been getting on?

I’ve been continuing with a collaborative 1,000-word different prompt each week stint and went slightly over at 1,007. The start of something longer, we think, so that’s good. 🙂

Do leave a comment below to share your progress, successes and otherwise, and of course anything else that’s happened to you, writing wise, over the past seven days.

For more information About Me as an Author, Mentor, Speaker and my Fiction, Non-fiction, and you can sign up to my Newsletter.