This is a story that I wrote for one of the recent Bath Flash Fiction competitions. The criteria for the competition is any genre or topic within 300 words. Trying to tell this story, which is quite emotive was difficult to do.
I think the lesson I learnt is that some stories cannot be chopped and dissected so much without losing the heart of the story. It is much better to submit a story that feels finished around 275-300 words. Maybe that was a reason why I didn’t win. No, it’s not the reason. There are many fantastic flash fiction writers around at the moment and I am still learning my craft.
Today, I wanted to share with you the full version of this story. I may on another occasion share the abridged version.
What a day! I needed a stroll by the river.
The raft of ducks didn’t know the tossing of small dried bread was free therapy.
As the sun lowered, shadows caused by the bowing silver birches made the bread bits look like stones.
The mallards oblivious towards my mood focused on claiming superiority, always first to the bait as it hit the water. Catching bread bombs mid-air equalled life threatening. The bread, so dry, may lodge in its neck and turn his plumage from green to blue.
The hens looked for equality. Each time a mallard ate first, the hens would pull at the preen feathers of the male as if to quack “Oi! You greedy so and so!” Continue reading
Little did Richard know that one small, everyday decision would for the first time make him genuinely fearful for his life.
The scream came first. Richard couldn’t see who or from what direction it came from. It was loud enough though to cause Richard to take immediate evasive action.
The second noise which followed was that of the plastic coming into contact with the highway surface. The bike slid for 10 metres or so, parallel to Richards small Toyota 4 door car.