Fiction

#vss365 – August 2020 – #51

23rd August 2020 — 0

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Fiction

#vss365 – August 2020 – #51

23rd August 2020 — 0

Week 51 participating in the very popular #vss365 challenge on Twitter. The aim, to write a daily Very Short Story in less than 280 characters, a single tweet. Yes, that’s characters! Not words.

The prompts themselves are seemingly random single words, the whim of this month’s challenge setter. This months mathematical fun is organised by @49JDBlood in August. I’ve taken some liberties with formatting simply because WordPress is not Twitter and to make it easier to read. Bit of a reminder, I’ll only be doing two more of these #vss365 posts. Once I’ve bagged my 365 I’m going to mix it up a bit.

This week’s cover photo is of Archer derping out. This was taken last year but I used in a vss365 post below and it’s one of my favourites, especially with the rainbow in the background. The British summer is back on track with high winds, rain and a ten-degree temperature drop. I’m not complaining, I’ll take rain over insane heat any day of the week. It’s easier to run in the rain. The news this week has been dominated by the complete disaster of exam results. The thing about it for me was not that the algorithm was wrong. I’ve written enough myself to know solving for complex problems is difficult. It was the fact the government tried to bluff it out, in spite of knowing 6 weeks ago there was a problem and having the benefit of seeing the horrific roll out a week earlier in Scotland. I can’t help but feel, this government feels it only needs to manage the perception, not the country.

Writing this week has been fruitful. I’ve received acceptances for a number of stories from the fantastic team over at Black Hare Press:

  • Tick Tock (time travelling 500-word anthology)
    • When Tomorrow Comes
    • Payforward
  • Wetware (sci-fi short story)
    • The Collective
  • Sci-Fi Lockdown (short story)
    • The Mysterious Mr Man

In addition, I’ve had acceptances for the last two of my twenty drabbles for Iron Faerie Publishing’s four horsemen drabble collections. All in all, I think I can say I’ve had a good week. I’m particularly happy about the collective story as it went through several revisions to get there. Stories aren’t like children, and this is one of my favourites. I think in part because it was a testbed for concepts in my WIP novel. So very rewarding to see this brilliant promo blurb:

Actual writing this week – I’ve finished a short story for Eerie River’s Monthly Competition. The theme this month is technology, something I should know a little about. I’ve gone with a bit of a dark comedy for this one. I also managed to knock out a few drabbles for a collection coming out later this year. Talking of Eerie River they have a giveaway on at the moment be sure to pop over and check it out:


Sunday 16th August – One

#One thing followed another and before I knew it there were two of them sat there at the end of the bed staring at me, four unblinking black eyes full of mischief. I knew what came next and who’d get the blame.
“Dad! The rats are out of their cage again.”
“Likely story!”


Monday 17th August – Group

Of course, I tried #group therapy many times. It was chaos. Everyone talking over each other. So I returned to the only thing that ever worked, the bottle. No one ever talked over me when I brandished the jagged receptacle. Some days I regretted becoming a therapist.


Tuesday 18th August – Morphism

Times were tough at the college and the board had to make cuts.
“This person here. It says their role is #morphism. What’s that?” asked the principal.
“Oh, that’s a structure-preserving function,” said the head of math.
“A what?”
“A janitor,” said the head of English.


Wednesday 19th August – Morphism

Once upon a time you’d have called me a doppelgänger. I look like you. I act like you. The difference is doppelgänger’s don’t have a choice. I do. That’s why I prefer the term #contravariant. I’ve consciously chosen not to be different. I’ve chosen to be just like you.


Thursday 20th August – Commute

I used to #commute into the city. 7:52 to Cannon St and if I was lucky the 18:46 back. Year after year; rain or shine. Not that I felt the seasons pass staring from the air-conditioned carriage. Now I commute to a field to pick up poop, rain or shine and I thank my stars.


Friday 21st August – Triangle

Someone had to play the #triangle, and I always seemed to get that short straw. While the other kids switched and changed their instruments every week, I mastered mine. Now I’m a world-renowned virtuoso, proof that the length of the straw doesn’t determine your success.


Saturday 22nd August – Integer

“Okay, I’ll give you a chance for freedom,” said the Devil. “All you have to do is count to ten.”
“Ten?” asked Tom.
The Devil nodded.
“Okay. 1.”
“Good.”
“2”
“Whoa, slow down cowboy. 2?”
“Yeah. 1… 2.”
“Oh, not by #integer,” grinned the Devil. “I’m all about the detail.”

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