100 Word Wednesday: Row, Row, Row Your Boat

“You really are getting on my tits, McCavity,” Queenie declared with a scowl and snatched the oars from him.

“I…I’m sorry my dear. I…” Lost for words, as always. If he wasn’t telling her how ravishing she looked, he really didn’t know what to say.

They rowed in jerky movements as Queenie yanked the oars towards her and then pushed them out again, growling as she went. The little boat rocked and wobbled, and their expensive shoes soaked up the fishy saltwater from the floor.

“W…What will we find when we get to the island?” McCavity asked, braving a conversation with the tiniest of smiles upon his face. Queenie blew a strand of hair from her red and sweaty cheek.

“How the bloody hell do I know?” she snapped through her teeth. “Mystery Island wouldn’t be so bloody mysterious if I knew, would it?”


Thanks Bikurgurl for the prompt, and Ales Krivec for the photo ūüôā

Queenie and McCavity are characters from my two upcoming comedy fantasy novels, John Sharpe: No. 1,348 and The Queen’s Wrath.¬†

Three Line Tales: The Pasted-On Smile

We rumble and tumble, clop, clap, and clip as we roll down the hill.

The clatter of our hollow heads rings through my ears, and laughter overwhelms us.

As we settle at the bottom, our smiles refuse to shrink and our disingenuous happiness consumes us.


Thanks Sonya over at Only 100 Words, and Carson Arias for the photo.

You‚Äôll find¬†full guidelines on¬†the¬†TLT page¬†‚Äď here‚Äôs the tl;dr:

  • Write three lines inspired by¬†the photo prompt (& give them a title if possible).
  • Link back to this post (& check the link shows up under the weekly post).
  • Tag your post with¬†3LineTales¬†(so everyone¬†can find you in the Reader).
  • Read and comment on other TLT participants‚Äô lines.
  • If you want your post to be included in the round-up, you have until Sunday evening to publish it.
  • Have fun.

Happy three-lining!

tltweek69

100 Word Wednesday: Nana

“I am¬†not¬†joining that queue,” he said. His head moved back into his neck to avoid the snake of people, and his eyes were wide.

“Of course you are,” she said, plodding forward matronly, handbag clasped in her hands in front of her.

“Nu-uh, no way.” He shook his heads and pursed his lips. “No way, Jos√©. It’s not happening.”

“Okay,” she said as she joined the never-ending queue and rooted herself to the spot. “Suit yourself. Do as you wish. See if I care.” She stared ahead, her scowl firm and her narrowed eyes immovable.

He paused, looking at her for a moment with the tilted head of consideration, before sidling sheepishly up beside her. “Or, you know, I could just join the queue,” he shrugged.


Thanks for the prompt and the photo, Bikergurl!

100 Word Wednesday (on a Thursday): Determination

Months she had spent pensively pacing and wringing her hands as her mind whirred at the thought of this day, but she had known without knowing that she’d be ready, when the time came. She had known all along.

A warm breeze tickled her arms, and a calmness washed through her core. The quiet around her quietened her soul and a smile crept upon her lips. This was it. It was now. With her head held high, she marched towards her greatest fear and she knew, finally, that nothing could stop her.


Thanks Bikurgurl for the prompt, and William Stitt for the photo.

Three Line Tales: The Crowd

I stand and await my so-called reward, people buzzing and jumping around me.

I began this journey to stand out from the crowd, to have something different, be someone special.

Now here I am, one among many; we’re all the same.


Thanks Sonya over at Only 100 Words, and thanks Faustin Tuyambaze for the photo. 

You‚Äôll find¬†full guidelines on¬†the¬†TLT page¬†‚Äď here‚Äôs the tl;dr:

  • Write three lines inspired by¬†the photo prompt (& give them a title if possible).
  • Link back to this post (& check the link shows up under the weekly post).
  • Tag your post with¬†3LineTales¬†(so everyone¬†can find you in the Reader).
  • Read and comment on other TLT participants‚Äô lines.
  • Have fun.

Happy three-lining

tltweek68

Short Story: Sally Slug

A bit of a silly one today – thanks for the idea, mum! (Before anyone asks – my mum is not a slug, but she did once compare herself to one.)

Sally Slug slumped down the stairs, leaving a trail of slime behind her. Sally Slug hated mornings. She slimed across the cold, tiled floor, shivering as she went, and ducked under the wooden door. She slid into the kitchen and groaned with the realisation that she was no longer asleep. Her eyes drooped and sagged Рthey were even more slug-like than the rest of her Рand the corners of her lips wilted. She reluctantly raised her slimy head, her sad feelers hanging down like long, floppy ears, and stared up at the table towering above her.

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Three Line Tales: The Power of Music

The wave of music slowed, a relentless pound turning to a gentle flutter of sounds.

His cheeks flushed with the heat of excitement as he pulled the audience away, washing them downstream and leading them astray.

He played his fiddle well and they followed where he went.


Prompt from Only 100 Words

You‚Äôll find¬†full guidelines on¬†the¬†TLT page¬†‚Äď here‚Äôs the tl;dr:

  • Write three lines inspired by¬†the photo prompt (& give them a title if possible).
  • Link back to this post (& check the link shows up under the weekly post).
  • Tag your post with¬†3LineTales¬†(so everyone¬†can find you in the Reader).
  • Read and comment on other TLT participants‚Äô lines.
  • If you want your post to be included in the round-up, you have until Sunday evening to publish it.
  • Have fun.

tltweek67

Photo

Poem: The Reader

They say you only have one life, that this is it for good,
But you can have so many lives, no matter where you’re stood.
This I know with a surety, I’ve had plenty more than that,
All because I am a reader; I’ve donned a literary hat.

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100 Word Wednesday: Escape

She ran her hand through the long grass, each blade thumping against her fingers, and she sighed deeply. It wasn’t meant to turn out like this. It was meant to be¬†good. She closed her eyes and let the warm sun embrace her face. The calmness of the field enveloped her. If only she could make them see sense, make them see how everyone is suffering now but…

She sat cross-legged on the damp earth, the tall grass reaching above her head and she felt safe, if only for a moment, hidden from the world and protected by nature.

Photo credit

Thanks, Bikurgurl!

Three Line Tales: Fisherman’s Friend

“Red sky at night, sailors delight,” he muttered to himself as he glanced up at the sky and pulled tight the final knot of his fishing net.

He sighed and gruffly rubbed the tilted head of his curious Yorkshire terrier.

“Tiger, it’s gonna be a fruitful day’s fishin’ tomorrow, me thinks,” he said to the dog with a bright certainty he didn’t feel. “Here’s hoping, ‘ey?”


Thanks Sonya!

You‚Äôll find¬†full guidelines on¬†the¬†TLT page¬†‚Äď here‚Äôs the tl;dr:

  • Write three lines inspired by¬†the photo prompt (& give them a title if possible).
  • Link back to this post (& check the link shows up under the weekly post).
  • Tag your post with¬†3LineTales¬†(so everyone¬†can find you in the Reader).
  • Read and comment on other TLT participants‚Äô lines.
  • Have fun.

Happy three-lining!

tltweek66

Photo credit

Three Line Tale: Death at River Road

So I was happily browsing WordPress this morning when I came across a post at Only 100 Words¬†with a writing prompt and I thought I’d have a go. Here’s the prompt:

tltweek65
Photo by Clay Knight via Unsplash

You‚Äôll find¬†full guidelines on¬†the¬†TLT page¬†‚Äď here‚Äôs the tl;dr:

  • Write three lines inspired by¬†the photo prompt (& give them a title if possible).
  • Link back to this post (& check the link shows up under the weekly post).
  • Tag your post with¬†3LineTales¬†(so everyone¬†can find you in the Reader).
  • Read and comment on other TLT participants‚Äô lines.
  • Have fun.

Happy three-lining!

And here’s what I came up with:

Death at River Road

It happened as the elders had always warned; all I wanted was some lunch, but what I got was something quite different.

Something sharp jabbed my cheek and I was wrenched through the water – slowly at first then faster and faster until my world whirred right past me and I shot up through the surface into the hot, dry sunshine.

My skin began to crackle, my eyes were sore with drought, and I knew, at last, it was time to meet my maker.


Thanks Sonya – that was fun. I’ll be sure to join in for the next one too ūüėÄ

Short Story: The Taxi Ride

She sits in their awkward silence, handbag on her lap and her shopping bags squashed down by her feet. He’d offered to open the boot for her, but she didn’t want to trouble him and besides, she’s rather keep her shopping close. She didn’t want to lose anything that might roll out of a bag and wedge itself into the corner of his car. Her hair is dishevelled from a day of rushing around, and her cheeks are a deep shade of red as a flustered heat envelopes her. She presses her lips together and sighs.

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Short Story: The Lecture

The noise around her becomes a murmur, words turning into indistinguishable sounds. The room slowly darkens and the sentences merge from distinct to abstract. They distort and and make no sense. They come alive, colourful swirls in the darkness that she leaps up and tries to reach, until…

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Short Story: The Jam Jar

strawberry_jam_on_a_dish

The jam jar fell from the kitchen worktop. She saw it fall, as though in slow motion, but her dive to catch it did nothing to save it. It smashed on the floor with a crash and a splat. The thick, purple lava spread slowly, crawling across the floor and climbing over glass fragments like a predator.

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Short Story: Evry Village Earthquake

See the first part of this story here. 

wp-1479411708493.jpgCrash!

Sir Drink-A-Lot swivelled slowly on his bar stool to face the fallen glass that now lay in a thousand tiny pieces on the floor.

“What the…?” he asked, as though the shattered glass could answer him. He held an empty glass in one hand and a bottle of whisky in the other. Poor Sir Drink-A-Lot didn’t manage to fill it before all the craziness began though, for the fallen glass was merely the beginning. With a low grumble, the floor began to rumble and the glasses on the shelves began to tinkle amongst themselves. Sir Drink-A-Lot stared, open-mouthed, as Evry Pub shook around him.

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Short ¬†Story: The Village


Somewhere far, far away, hidden in the depths of the Earth, is a village that very few people know about. It’s a rather special village indeed, and it has a rather peculiar name. It’s called Evry Village.

It’s a tiny, unassuming little place. In fact, if ¬†you were to accidently come across it – although it’s very unlikely you would – if you were to come across it, you wouldn’t think that there was anything special about it at all. The gardens are well-kept and the streets are well-swept, the neighbours are friendly and the children are happy. The cats and dogs are clean and kind too. If you were to come across it, everyone would behave perfectly normally, as though they were merely a pleasant, simple community. But every Evry inhabitant, from the tiniest kitten to the boys and girls and the oldest of the grown-ups too, they all know the truth about Evry Village. For Evry Village has a secret, and what a very special and rather delightful secret it is.

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Short Story: Hatless Henrietta

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SOURCE: The Telegraph (Credit: John Robertson)

It was raining. Henrietta hated it when it rained. She hated it in that same way that all the hatless hate the rain.

“Eeeek,” she squeaked as the rain pattered onto her soft and downy head. “I’m going to melt!” Her little feet pitter-pattered on the ground, making the cutest, teeny-tiniest slapping sound. She ran here, she ran there, but nowhere could she escape the plops of liquid that quite insisted on landing upon her soft and downy head.

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Decisions, Decisions…

I’ve been stood here for too long, trying to make a decision. I know I’m taking too long. I just know it. This isn’t normal. It’s not. I’m not normal! She’s getting impatient. I thought I’d made my decision but now she’s asking me questions, making me clarify my decision, making me add extra nuances. It’s like time has slowed and I’m having to use all my energy to concentrate on making this one decision. Too many. Too many decisions today. Too many decisions in life. What if I make the wrong one? What if I say yes and it all goes disastrously? What if I say no and regret it? There is so much riding on it. Or is there? Perhaps the rest of my life, perhaps not.

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The Seven Tones of Riley

So I was happily browsing the internet, doing nothing much that was productive, when I came across this image:

tumblr_lz9qvnlzCN1qz4e4a

I almost wrote this based on a normal 9-5 week, but decided against that and went for my week instead. It’s a bit of silly fun (poetry is far from my forte), so laugh with me and not at me ūüėČ

The Seven Tones of Riley

Sunday is ambitious, a girl of many plans,
She is the adventurous one, the one who had no bans.
She loves to shop at brocantes, buying afghans, dustpans, toucans,
In fact, she buys just anything that she could grab with her fat hands!
And after that, to work she goes with a face full of smiles and suntans,
And by the end of her shift, she falls exhausted into sleepy wonderlands.

Monday is a slovenly wench, pyjama clad with straggly hair,
But she revelled in her lazy day, all draped across her chair.
A grin stretched across her tired face and she said with quite a flair:
“Today I shall do nothing, and I will not go elsewhere,
For unlike others who race to work, those with full despair,
Today I begin my weekend, and I do not give a single care!”

Tuesday, she is quite a mover, as productivity  headlined.
She scrubs and cleans and rubs and dusts, blowing cobwebs from both home and mind.
“It’s a day to get stuff done,” she says, “a day I use to rewind,
And undo all the mess I made during my work and lazy days combined.”
She whizzes here, she whizzes there, will oh will she find,
That final speck of dust and then, she can finally unwind.

Wednesday is a writer-type and she’s creative with her prose,
She sits and types and laughs and cries as her characters face life’s throes.
Wednesday is a happy lass, and it most definitely shows,
As she sits and does what she loves most, making sure that everybody knows,
That to disturb her now means the pain of death, a life brought to its close,
Although even she admits, it’s only in her stories that she stoops to these true lows!

Thursday is a Domestic Goddess, or at least she pretends to be!
She cooks treats for all and sundry, although her husband he does plea:
“Thursday, I do love your treats, so keep them all for me!”
Thursday cannot do that though, for she makes the treats with glee,
For all those lovely French-folk who for the treats say “oui!”

Friday’s face is rather saggy, as early she does rise.
She drags herself to work with sleep still in her eyes,
For she does not like to wake so soon, and this she does despise!
But when she starts, it all does change and she starts to feel the highs.
Work gets busy and she doesn’t stop and it’s then she rather thrives,
For then it does upon her dawn that she’s grown quite fond of these barflies!

Saturday is a worker girl, full of life and energy,
She is sprightly, she is active, perhaps she’s like a flea!
She works hard and loves it too, and I’m sure you will agree,
That Saturday is a happy girl with the stamina of three.
She jumps around and moves about, until it’s time for tea,
And then she sits and chills and thinks “how great it is to be me.”