U Got The Look #3linetales

Honestly, what did I do before I discovered writing prompts??  It’s great, I never have to think about what to post anymore.  Mind you, it does mean that I haven’t written much about all the incredibly exciting things that have been going on in my life recently…exciting things like work (ugh), cooking (ugh), washing-up (ugh), shopping (ugh).    Hmm, maybe not writing about them is a good thing.  Here’s a Three Line Tale instead:

Lost in the mass of teenage girls screaming along to The Style’s biggest hit, I’m All Hers, I gaze at Pete, their heart-throb lead singer: I stare at his carefully tousled hair framing his perfect face with its chiseled cheekbones, piercing blue eyes and soft lips, his muscular body displayed to perfection in a tight t-shirt and ripped skinny jeans.

I make sure he is looking at me, before I mouth, ‘Do you want me to mend those for you?’

He glares at me, shaking his head and rolling his eyes, ‘OMG, Mum! You’re so embarrassing!’

 

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Another One Bites the Dust…Worst Honeymoon Ever #FridayFictioneers #flashfiction

‘I knew those bloody snails were a mistake,’ croaked Benjy’s new stepfather from the ensuite before vomiting again.

‘I had them and I’m fine,’ said Mum. ‘Maybe it was all that brandy?’

Benjy bounced out of bed and grabbed a book. ‘Read me Wimpy Kid!’

‘Wow, you’re hyper. Did you take your meds?’

Benjy nodded.

He needed to calm down if Mum wasn’t going to get suspicious. It was another three weeks until his prescription was filled.

A heavy thud came from the ensuite.

‘Terry?’ said Mum. Silence.

Benjy smiled. Now it would just be the two of them once more.

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A 100 word story using the photo prompt above for the Friday Fictioneers.

A is for Award #AgghStopThat

The best thing about the A-Z Challenge is finding new blogging pals, such as Outside Perception who has nominated me for the Mystery Blogger Award. Thanks very much ☺

As part of the award, first I have to reveal three things about myself:

  1. I was part of the team who developed the Poking Tunnel™
  2. My favourite breakfast is cold pizza with a cup of tea (PG Tips/Redbush blend)
  3. I suffer from misophonia so there’ll be no apple eating in my vicinity

Then answer five questions set by Outside Perception:

Tell us about something that you used to believe only to find out it was incorrect? I thought that guerrilla warfare was gorilla warfare.

If given the choice between Cake or Deathwhat would it be?  Ooh, death please. No, no, I meant cake. Definitely cake.

What was your imaginary friend’s name and what special skills did they have? I already had two brothers, a sister, a dog, cats and a rabbit. There wasn’t room for anyone else to move in, imaginary or otherwise.

What is your all time most watched movie? Those Glory Glory Days’. It’s about a group of teenage girls growing up in London in 1961 who are obsessed with Spurs as they become the first team to win both the League and the FA Cup. My sister and I watched it almost every day during the summer holiday of 1984. I’m not into football at all but that doesn’t matter. ‘Those Glory Glory Days’ is a funny, sweet film about the friendships and frustrations of growing up.

When you have downtime…(Laugh.. yah I know) Ok, If you ever had downtime… What would you do?  Drink prosecco/G&T/beer with a huge bowl of crisps/nuts/antipasti (yes, it’s pretentious but I lived in Rome for three years…and saying that probably makes me even more pretentious ☺) whilst flicking through aspirational magazines, with articles such as How to Enjoy A Walk in the Rain, Discover Your Dosha (no, not, as I thought, how to locate coins you’ve dropped down the side of the sofa but how to determine your body-mind type) and Look at Us With Our Perfect Life (‘Interior designer Arabella – ‘Well, I picked out the drapes for my friend Figgy’s study’- and banker Flynn invite us into their beautiful beachside home, full of treasures they’ve picked up on their travels.  What is their secret?  Flynn: ‘I get paid £250k a year.’  Look, here’s a picture of them with their children, Bobby and Fisher, enjoying a trip to the local organic/gluten free/mercury laden fish stall.  ‘Oh mother, how scrummy!’ says Bobby’) where I hate literally everyone in there whilst secretly envying them and wondering why I don’t commute to my garden studio each morning to create artisan pottery for two hours before taking a break to drink herbal tea as I walk my French bulldog along the beach.  Yes, I’m bitter.

Favourite post of mine?  Hmmm. Either this story based on the lyrics to Hotel California or this post about the time my friend and I had our clothes stolen during a illicit midnight skinny dip. Funnily enough, the only time I’d venture into a swimming pool now (naked or otherwise) is at midnight.

Next I have to nominate other bloggers (Jeez, there’s actually quite a lot to do for this award…) I’m going to choose some of the new bloggers that I met as part of the A-Z Challenge:

Baby Gates Down Working full-time with two girls, Louise moved online because there was no space left at home.  Intelligent, funny and thoughtful – what more could you ask for??
Iain Kelly works as an TV editor and has hundreds of short stories under his belt.  His A-Z was particularly creative, utilising a children’s poster as the basis for an exciting 26-part thriller.
Ramblings of K writes about her experiences of new countries and cultures.  I’m impressed with how many countries she’s ticked off on her world A-Z list.
Weekends in Maine Activities, tips and trivia about life in Maine; from childhood memories and spontaneous trips to adventures and family life.
Rochelle Wisoff-Fields An published author and illustrator, Rochelle is also the host for Friday Fictioneers, where a picture prompt inspires bloggers to create a complete story in 100 words or less.

And here are my five questions for them:

1 Happiest childhood memory?
2 Tea or coffee?
3 Which ‘Friends’ character would you be and why?
4 If you could go back in time, what would you do differently?
5 Summer or winter?

Don’t worry if you don’t have time/don’t want to participate.  I’m free and easy like that 🙂

Rules: 1. Put the award logo in your post and link back to the creator of the award. 2. List all the rules. 3. Thank whoever nominated you and leave a link to their blog. 4. Tell your readers three things about yourself and answer the questions set by your nominator. 5. Nominate readers and notify them. 6. Ask your nominees any five questions of your choice.  7. Share the link to your best/favourite post of yours.

Z is for Zythum #AtoZChallenge #AncientEgyptians #TimeTravel

Phew, made it to the end. It’s been quite frazzling and a couple of posts may have been a tad below par (Happiness, anyone?) but I still managed to cover every letter. Even if there were an awful lot of TV related posts. Hey, I like TV.

Zythum is a beer drunk by Ancient Egyptians.  You only need to know this because it gets a mention in my book.  Which I have ACTUALLY finished and starts its final edit/proofread tomorrow!!   TIME Agents (working title) is about two ordinary sisters who discover that their missing dad is a time-travelling secret agent.  They train to become TIME agents so they can travel to Ancient Egypt…will they manage to save him before the Pharaoh sacrifices him???

It’s a children’s book which is a genre I (and many other adults) enjoy reading enormously, and apparently sales are a lot higher than for adult books (even if David Walliams and other celebs account for most of those sales).  Once it’s been completely proofread, I’m going to try a few agents to see how I get on.  Wish me luck.

The A-Z Challenge has been great for rekindling my love of blogging and I will try to post again before next April.  I’ve discovered some fabulous blogs: great writing, funny bloggers and interesting posts, along with new writing prompts.  Which I obviously need!

Now, I’m off to edit my NaNoWriMo novel: a Christmas murder mystery.  There are a few plot holes which need filling…can you kill someone with a candy cane??

 

 

Y is for (Best of) You: Why I love Dave Grohl #AtoZChallenge #FooFighters #DaveGrohl

Reason 1.  Just because:

Reason 2.  The music, man:

Reason 3.  Dave doesn’t care about looking ridiculous:

Reason 4.  Dave loves his mum.  And she’s just written a book all about how to raise a rock star:

Reason 5.  Even after he breaks his leg on stage, he carries on playing – whilst they plaster his leg:

Reason 6.  The Foo Fighters played a concert in Cesena, Italy, after 1,000 fans invited them with this amazing performance of Learn to Fly:

Reason 7. He’s officially the nicest man in rock:

Reason 8.  This video and this protest against the Westboro Baptist Church:

Reason 9.  Been in a legendary rock band.  Twice:

Reason 10. Oh, so many reasons:

 

 

X is for eXhausted equals eXisting Content: Summer of 83 #AtoZChallenge

I was struggling to find a post for X.  It’s been a busy week at work, I’ve been unwell and I was knackered.  So I decided to cheat.  You’ve got an defective title and an old piece about the local pool that I dug up from a writing course.  Enjoy.

The summer of 1983. No rain for two months and the temperature was hitting 100 degrees. I was only fourteen at the time and it’s been over thirty years, but I still remember it like it was yesterday. Although, for my generation, there was nothing like the summer of ’76 and we still bring it up every summer.

‘Phew, it’s a scorcher today.’

‘You’re not wrong there.’

‘Not as hot as ’76 though.’

‘Hell no, that was the summer to beat all summers.’

This particular day I was slumped on the edge of the kerb, moulding melted tarmac into balls to flick at my brother, when my best friend, Anna, shouted across the street from her bedroom window. ‘Oy! D’you wanna go down the pool?’

The local outdoor pool was possibly the only place to escape the relentless heat. Throwing the last of the tarmac balls at my brother, I ran inside to slip my bikini under my shorts and t-shirt. With rolled-up towels under our arms, we headed off to the pool; hugging the shade of walls and fences, our flip-flops either slapping against the scorching pavement or crunching the sun-bleached grass.

At the pool, a carpet of beach towels was crowned with bodies toasted and burnt, long ribbons of skin peeling off noses and shoulders like strips of masking tape.   Sun cream in the ‘80s was a mere afterthought; we’d maybe go for some Factor 4 Hawaiian Tropic, its exotic coconut smell conjuring up locations visited by Judith Chambers on Wish You Were Here…?

We found a spot in between a family who’d brought all the trappings for a full day at the pool (deck chairs, radio, windbreak, knotted hankies, and a proper picnic with egg sandwiches, pork pies, bottles of cherryade and coconut macaroons), and a group of teenage boys who’d just brought themselves.   We lay out our towels, tucking our purses underneath, confident that they were well hidden from thieves, even though everyone else at the pool had hidden their valuables in exactly the same place.

I peeled off my shorts and t-shirt to reveal my new white bikini. It was almost identical to one I’d seen a photo of Jamie Lee Curtis wearing on Malibu Beach. Anna was wearing a red one piece with a very low cut halter neck. Flicking our hair back and pushing our chests out, we surreptitiously looked to see if we’d caught the attention of the boys. Success. The boys’ eyes followed us as we made our way to the edge of the pool, sashaying from side to side in what we imagined was a seductive manner.

The water was full of screaming kids and old ladies wearing flowery caps but it still looked inviting and refreshing. We counted to three and leapt in. The unheated water was freezing and we screamed as we came up for air.   A couple of minutes were enough before we climbed out of the pool.

The lifeguard, up high on his lookout chair, grinned widely and gave us a thumbs-up.

We shyly waved back. ‘Ooh, he’s lush,’ said Anna. ‘I’ve been trying to get him to notice me for weeks.’

As we made our way back to our towels, the group of teenage boys leapt to their feet, whistling and clapping our arrival.

‘Looking good,’ shouted a tall, blond boy, whilst a chubby boy barked, ‘Honk honk!’ as he made squeezing motions with his hands held out in front of him.

Anna turned to me, a puzzled look on her face, which quickly turned to horror, the whites of her eyes enormous, as she gaped at my bikini. ‘OH MY GOD!’

I looked down to see that my bikini – my glamorous, celebrity endorsed bikini – was now as substantial and see-through as tissue paper.

‘Nice nerps,’ winked Chubby, ‘don’t need to ask if you’re smuggling peanuts.’

I grabbed my towel and wrapped it around me, tears streaming down my burning face. The whistles and shouts pursued me as I sprinted to the exit, Anna stumbling behind with our clothes and purses clutched to her chest.   We ran through the gates before crouching at the back of the car park to put on our clothes.

‘Was it really bad?’ I sobbed, attempting to pull on my t-shirt without revealing a single inch of bikini.

‘Nooooo.   It wasn’t that bad,’ said Anna, patting my shoulder. ‘I mean, you could totally see your nipples. And your pubes. But apart from that, it wasn’t too bad.’

‘That’s it. I’m never coming here again.’

And I didn’t. Not for the rest of that blistering summer anyway. When my friends were all heading off for a cooling, revitalising swim, I stayed at home. I might have been hot but that was a hell of a lot better than flashing to the whole town.

When I finally did return the following summer, I made sure my swimsuit was made out of the thickest, sturdiest material I could find.   And if I heard low whispers behind my back (Heh heh, that’s her…totally see-through…saw everything), I just held my head high and remembered that old Mae West quote: ‘It’s better to be looked over than overlooked.’