Tag Archives: Kellie Elmore

Free Write Friday – Heather

Heather
Heather stirred her coffee slowly and licked the froth from her spoon. Lost in thought, she was oblivious to the bustle around her. The lunchtime rush came and went and still she sat, nursing her drink. Some time in the early afternoon, she was distracted by a customer’s loud rant. He was complaining about rancid milk which is why he caught Heather’s attention. She’d been coming here for years and not once had they served rancid milk. She wondered what he was trying to achieve. Compensation? Hardly worth it for a free coffee. Or maybe he was some kind of mystery shopper.. But would a mystery shopper use such coarse language? She supposed it was possible, after all, they must be told to try and provoke a reaction in the baristas. She was impressed by the girl’s calm manner in dealing with him. He reminded her of that DJ she’d had a fling with last summer. What was his name…? Chris? No, Craig… He worked at Salacious Sounds and she’d met him when she’d gone to buy a record for her brother. It must have been obvious she didn’t have a clue about dubstep but he was so sweet and helpful. He was gorgeous. Bit rough though, not her usual type. She’d suggested he have elocution lessons. That didn’t go down too well. Said she was a snob. Perhaps he was right. She was glad they had stayed friends but they had come back to this argument a few times since.  Heather sighed.
‘Another latte, love?’ The barista smiled down at her
‘Oh, yes please… Can I have a slice of that carrot cake as well? I’ve been eyeing it up all afternoon and I can’t leave without trying a piece!’
‘Of course. Coming right up.’
Heather looked down at her laptop. She only had three articles to write and so far she’d written about 100 words. She cursed herself for agreeing to do the piece for Spark magazine. What did she know about diodes? It was harder than she thought it would be to sound knowledgeable on the subject. The blog piece for 8-track though, would be much easier. Perhaps she should have started with that first, just to get writing. Someone had once advised her to start with the hardest piece of work first to get it out of the way. Well, that wasn’t exactly working for her today. She put her headphones on and switched to the ‘easier’ piece.

A few hours later Heather stopped. She was surprised to see a cup of cold coffee and the remains of a carrot cake on the plate beside her. She barely remembered eating it. She had written all three articles, a blog post and started on her brother’s wedding speech. She closed her laptop and smiled. She’d treat herself to a takeaway tonight. And tomorrow. She always ordered for two as she could never bring herself to say ‘yes’ when asked ‘and is that a meal for one?’ She wasn’t sure why as she enjoyed living alone. What was it her Mum used to say? ‘If you can enjoy your own company you’ll never be lonely.’ So tonight she had a date with a takeaway for two and a dvd of Hitch. ‘I might like my own company but I wouldn’t say no to a fling with Will Smith!’ she thought to herself.
‘Heading homeward?’
‘Yep. See you tomorrow!’
Heather walked slowly out of the coffee shop, hesitating outside Salacious Sounds just long enough for Craig to notice her and wave. She smiled and waved back. ‘Drink?’ he mimed, pointing at his watch to indicate he meant later, he held up his right hand, fingers spread. Heather nodded, ‘Be back at 5 then,’ she mouthed, and half jogged back to her flat. Will Smith could wait.

****

The above short story is my entry for this week’s Free Write Friday challenge. Having read it back, it took some effort not to edit this week’s piece! There is so much I would change and I think it would read better in the first person. But that’s not the point of the exercise so… If you enjoyed this story, please leave a comment below! Constructive criticism welcome as I may expand this one to something at some point in the future.

If you’re new here and wondering what Free Write Friday is all about, click on the image at the top of this post to find out more and read other entries from this week.

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Free Write Friday – The beautiful little girl

I haven’t taken part in Free Write Friday for a while but when I saw this week’s prompt I just started writing…! The prompt was:

Click on the image above to find out more about Free Write Friday and to read other entries from today. Here’s my effort:

The beautiful little girl

Once upon a time there was a beautiful little girl. She was so beautiful that people would stop in the street to stare at her. They had to stop, because, just for a minute, she literally took their breath away. The little girl had no idea of her beauty, she just thought that people always stopped to chat and that the world was a lovely place. She was a kind and loving child, and every day she would stop and talk to anyone she happened to notice stopping in her presence. This happened a lot, what with her breath-stopping beauty, so she spoke to lots of people and many of them became her friends.

One day, halfway through a conversation with a seemingly friendly girl about noodles of all things, the beautiful girl was asked ‘You do know how beautiful you are, don’t you?’ The beautiful girl was taken aback and she just smiled and said ‘Oh! No, but thank you…’ To which the noodle conversation girl replied with a sneer ‘Oh you do know. I thought as much.’ She nodded to herself and walked off, cutting the conversation short.The beautiful girl was very upset. She went home and looked in the mirror. She was too young to understand the concept of beauty, really, but she decided that it must be a bad thing because of how the noodle girl had reacted to her. So, she decided to make herself less beautiful. She started by eating less. and less. and less. Until she was surviving on one carrot and half a celery stick a day. Her face was drawn, her eyes hollow, and her ribs poked out of her bony chest. She looked in the mirror and was satisfied that she was less attractive. But then she started to see women who looked like this in magazines, modelling the latest fashions, and overhear conversations about thinness being desirable. So she decided to make herself less attractive in other ways. Her Mother had told her ‘beauty comes from within,’ so she started to be mean to people. At first she spread nasty rumours about people at her school, then she progressed to being openly nasty to people so that they could see how unattractive she was. Like attracts like, so she started to spend time with people who didn’t respect her, nor she them.

By the time she was in her late 20s, the beautiful girl was in a loveless relationship with a man who isolated her from all her so-called friends (who were no good for her, he said. He was right about that). She believed she was worth no more than this. Every time the beautiful girl looked into a mirror, something tugged at her and she was overwhelmed by sadness. So she tried to avoid mirrors as much as possible. Until finally, one evening as she was brushing her teeth, her mirror image stopped. She started. ‘What the..?’
‘Listen to me. You. Are. Beautiful. Not only that, you are Beauty.Full. For years you have lived your life for someone else. All because of one comment from that stupid noodle girl? Seriously..? You are better than this. You need to eat. Don’t look at me like that, it’s a wonder you’ve lived as long as you have. You need to get rid of that man – yes, you will find someone else but you’re going to have to learn to love yourself first – and start life over with the same kind heart you were born with. That sadness you feel when you look in a mirror? It’s because you know you’re not being who you really are. It’s never too late to start.’ And she reached her arms out from the mirror, and gave the beautiful, beauty-full girl a hug.

That day she left the no-good man who didn’t deserve her. She’s still single, but she’s ok with that. Oh, and her mirror image? She’s now her best friend.

Free Write Friday – Finish the story

Another Free Write Friday entry – this week Kellie’s prompt comes in the form of a picture, and a story beginning…. Click on the image below for more details about Free Write Friday.

‘I should bloody well hope so,’ thought Reever, ‘the advert clearly stated ‘spacious ground level treepartment – all mod cons.’ So it better be bigger inside than it looks.’ Aloud she said, ‘What about the stables?’
The agent gave her a sideways glance. ‘For your.. er.. Camel..?’
‘Yes, for my camel.’ She stared him down.
‘There are stables three trees to your North. They’re pretty spacious, I can show you after we go inside.’
Reevie was used to the sideways glances and whispers ‘She’s got a camel! What’s she doing with a camel, here..?’ She never bothered to explain what had happened. How do you explain that your lover was originally intended for a powerful tree witch who, on discovering that he had instead chosen to be with Reevie, had decided that spending eternity as a camel was a suitable punishment? Reevie was just glad that he was still alive, and had the ability to shape shift back to his original form every full moon. So once a month she had her beloved Zoltir back. She stoked behind his ear and told him to wait outside.
‘I don’t need to be told,’ he hissed, ‘…like I have a choice, anyway.’
‘What was that?’
‘Oh nothing, my camel just sneezed. Let’s go inside then.’ She shot Zoltir a warning look and followed the agent in. He was quite tall, for a Nantap – they were usually shorter than the average wood sprite – but he seemed to shrink as he walked through the opening of the tree, as did she.

Once inside, Reevie took a sharp intake of breath. ‘Oh. My…’
Narrod smiled. He loved to see this reaction. Everyone was different. Some swore, some fainted, some just stood there open-mouthed. This one was curious, though. She stood, her head to one side.
‘But. It’s…’
‘Isn’t it?’
She looked at him. He was grinning ear to ear, the fool. Obviously convinced she was going to buy. She was tempted, but…
‘How can you let this go for just 100 Prevetts?’
‘Well, the owner is hoping for a quick sale…’
Reevie tuned out his bullshit speech about the current state of the market and how no-one could afford finance to buy what it was worth and that the owner was fed up of waiting and wanted to move as soon as possible. Something wasn’t right. The place was already decorated exactly to her tastes, and Zol’s, for that matter. Right down to the deep red rug in front of the faux fireplace. It was just like the one back at Zeenan. They had lay together on this rug five years ago, the night before… Damn it!

Narrod looked at her. She wasn’t listening to him at all. He couldn’t understand it. Why wasn’t she demanding to get back to the office and sign the papers, like all the others? Perhaps he hadn’t done his job well enough. He knew the drill. Get them to sign, and get them in. What happened after that didn’t concern him. That was down to her. A cold chill went down his spine as he thought of her. One more year, he kept telling himself, just one more year and I’ll stop this. But he hadn’t. He grown used to see the Prevetts mount up, and rather than saving them as he intended, he’d been spending more and more on Sap. He needed to kick the habit.
‘Narrod!’ Reevie was standing close to his face. Too close. Wasn’t she taller than him?
‘You were miles away. Listen, I’ve changed my mind. I’m going.’
‘You can’t!’ Reevie was already walking back out of the entrance, back towards Zoltir, with a grin on her face. She stepped out in a mist of stardust and pulled him close.
‘No,’ Zoltir started to protest ‘..not now, it’s not a full moon until..’
Reevie kissed him ‘Zol, it’s ok. It’s over. It’s over.’
Zol looked down. He was back to his original form, and the tears he thought he had felt across his fur, were now running down his chest. Reevie’s tears.
Narrod’s screams started to sound further and further away as the tree started to lose its form.
Reevie and Zoltir stood and watched as it pulsed, trying to retain some kind of life, then disintegrated into dust.

Free Write Friday – Time & Place

Another Free Write Friday entry (click on the photo below for more details):

The image took me to back to any holiday where I’ve swam in the sea, which for me is a form of meditation – it brings me to a place of peace within and I really forget everything around me. It’s also when I feel closest to nature.

Swim

Hot sun
Warm skin
Cool water
Dive in
Swim.

Free Write Friday – Magic in the Backyard

So I’m a bit late to the party what with it being Monday already, but this Free Write Friday post is an entry into Kellie Elmore’s competition, which doesn’t close until Thursday. My entry came to me in the style of the blurb on the back of the book (I realise its a bit long). I know I’m not supposed to punctuate but it was automatic! I find it hard to switch that off but I  didn’t edit once I had finished.

Click on the book cover below for details of the competition and to find out more about Kellie.

Magic in the Backyard

Caitlin and Mike grew up together, spending most of their childhood summers playing in Mike’s backyard. They would take turns in the tire swing and talk about what they wanted to do when they grew up. Caitlin always used to tell Mike his backyard was special, different to hers somehow. When he asked what she meant, she couldnt explain, just said ‘its like that place in between dreams where unicorns are real and faeries really do live at the bottom of the garden. It’s a place where anything is possible.’ Mike wasn’t sure about that but Caitlin was very knowledgeable about these things. And she smelled like cupcakes.

Fast forward 25 years. Three children, two mortgages and one divorce later, Mike is back living at home with his parents. At 34! A successful author, after the success of his second novel, he thought he was set for life but there were no more advance cheques, just rejection letters, and the promised movie adaptation fell through. His wife didn’t understand why he didn’t just get a proper job.

Caitlin is now 33. A successful lawyer, she works long hours and loves her job but thinks there must be more to life than work. This summer, she decided to take a career break and rediscover her creative side. She paid for her parents to go on a cruise, and offered to look after their house while they’re away.

When Caitlin recieves news about a problem witg her parents’ ship, she and Mike are reunited once more. Unable to do anything but wait for updates and hope for the best, they try to tap into the magic of Mike’s backyard once more. This time, they discover just how right Caitlin was all those years ago.

Expect the unexpected from Kellie Elmore’s latest novel – Unicorns, runaway children, a pet lizard and a magic tire swing all feature in the most exciting read of this Spring.