Tag Archives: flash fiction prompts

Flash! Friday – ‘Checking In’

Image: The Beggar. CC 2.0 photo by Image_Michel. Image sourced: flashfriday.wordpress.com

Image: The Beggar. CC 2.0 photo by Foto_Michel.
Image sourced: flashfriday.wordpress.com

Checking In

I settle, cross-legged, on the pavement, my sleeping bag furled beneath me. I hold out my empty cup, trying to remember coffee. I run my dry tongue over my film-coated teeth.

But, I remember: I chose this. There’s no going back.

They clip-clop past me in their heels and polished brogues, with their suits and their pretence. I feel like sticking my leg out and tripping someone, just to see. Just to see if they’d see me, then.

But I’ve worked hard to be invisible.

She stops unexpectedly. Smiling. Tall. Expensively slim. She smells good. I don’t know her, yet I know. How has she found me?

‘It’s time, Agent,’ she says, crouching.

‘Pardon, love?’

Her smile tightens. ‘Enough. You’ve been recalled to active duty. Report to Control by oh-eight-hundred, tomorrow.’

I give her the full benefit of my teeth. ‘Dunno what you’re on about, darlin’.’

She says nothing. Her gaze skewers me.

‘But I left,’ I tell her, my false grin dying.

‘Nobody ever leaves the Service,’ she replies, not unsympathetically. Then, she wrinkles her nose. ‘And do something about that smell, won’t you? Decorum.’

As she walks away, I gaze into my still-empty cup, and sigh. I suppose a small advance would have been too much to ask?

***

This week’s Flash! Friday challenge was to create a mini-tale from the prompt image, above, which also had to include a spy. Well, I included two, even if one was off-duty (though, as the story asks, is one ever off-duty if one is a spy? Anyway). I wrestled with this piece of flash, just a bit, and I’m glad to see that I beat it into submission, even if it’s a bit of fluff, really, which doesn’t say very much. At least, dear readers, I wrote it, and for that alone I’m glad. By the by, have you ever thought about entering a Flash! Friday challenge? Well, if you never have, this might be the week. There’s a special prize on offer today – as well as being in with a chance of winning, you might also win one of two Golden Tickets to take part in the next FlashDogs Anthology. I already have one, so you’d be joining me and a host of other wonderful folk in a great celebration of all things flash, and indeed, fiction. Give it a go.

The weekend is nearly here, and I hope a good one awaits you all. May it be wordy and bright!

Brainfreeze

It’s Friday, which means Flash! Friday is going on. I heartily urge you to go on over and take a look, and throw your name in the ring if you can. This week’s writing prompts are ‘Janitor’, and this fine photo:

Coliseum in Rome. CC2,0 photo by Vlad. Image sourced: flashfriday.wordpress.com

Coliseum in Rome. CC2,0 photo by Vlad.
Image sourced: flashfriday.wordpress.com

For some reason, I find myself unable to create a story from these prompts just at the moment. My thoughts are scattered in a million directions, and no matter what I try to do, all the stories I come up with based on these prompts seem old, and dull, and done to death. If my mind was a telephone exchange, all you’d get when you dialled the number for ‘Flash Fiction Inspiration’ would be an engaged tone.

So, I’m going to step away from it, for now. Perhaps, if I’m lucky, I’ll come back to it in an hour, or three, or five, and a story will suggest itself which will seem beautiful, and perfect, and true, and if it does then I’ll write it.

And perhaps (shock to the horror) it won’t.

And as I’ve finally learned? That’s all right. It’s all right not to have inspiration strike you between the eyes every time you see an image prompt. It’s all right not to feel happy with the story you write. It’s all right to choose not to post up work which you’re not sure is representative of you at your best. It’s all right to do your work justice and not share it until it’s ready.

I am a busy person at the moment. It’s all good; I like to be busy, and it can be a lot of fun to just buckle yourself in and hope for the best. There’s some stuff going on which I can’t share yet (though don’t worry, I’ll get to it soon-ish), and it’s all very exciting. Stay tuned…

But, until then, I’m off to try to find ways to focus, and with any luck we’ll have a piece of flash fiction by close of business. In the meantime, what are you going to write today?