Thursday, 26 January 2012

Thursday @ 3 - 'HOLD THAT THOUGHT!'

After what seems a very long time (over three months) I am pleased to announce the return of my 'Thursday@3' series. This started last Spring, with a story called 'Fat Lady Singing'

The premise of 'Thursday@3' is to post a piece of flash fiction with a connection to the number '3' - it could be three sentences or paragraphs; or something with a three-word title; or perhaps '3' in the title itself. Each piece has a word-count limit of 300 - the only exception for going over that is to craft a story with exactly 333 words. Each story is scheduled to appear on Thursdays, at 3.00pm (UK time) - thus, 'Thursday@3'!

For several months I dutifully rose to my self-imposed challenge, until life's events got in the way and so, mindful of that 'hiccup', this time around I will just say that the stories will appear regularly, maybe not every week, but certainly on a Thursday.

Without further ado (and with many thanks for encouragement, esp. from Cathy Olliffe-Webster ) here you go with this week's treat! At 333 words, because I really couldn't cut it any further from the 400+ original draft, this gives an odd twist to the notion of dealing with writer's block!

Comments, as usual, are life-blood to me so please leave your thoughts (good or bad) - or even better, perhaps, pen your own 'Thursday@3' story and share it with us! :-)


“Use your imagination. Trust me, your life is not interesting….” Funny what comes to mind at a time like this, as I find myself hanging out of a window on the 18th floor, fighting the urge to look down. The old adage of ‘Write what you know’ seems at odds with Kinsella’s quote and when writer’s block kicks in I find myself oscillating between both options, but today was perhaps not the best time to try a walk on the wild side.

As I pry open one eye I succumb to the view and for a Nano-second I’m intrigued by the sight of what looks like millions of ants; ants walking, running, some driving cars, buses weaving their way through armies of ants in their relentless commute. Of course, they aren’t really ants and that’s when vertigo challenges gravity and I snap my eyes shut.

“Just hang on, help’s coming!” Celia from the outer office is giving me a barely-concealed hysterical rundown of progress from the rescue service but I’m only half listening, my mind’s already occupied in a ‘they’ll never believe this' story being woven together in response to the blind panic that’s threatening me.

Leo’s starting to get really heavy, now. Leo; my some-time friend, mentor, bully and agent. He’d called in on a carefully engineered whim to see how the re-writes were going and decided to hector me as he leaned with his back against the window. Even as I vaulted forward I’d seen the look of resigned horror etch its way across his face, realising too late that the latch was disengaged.

His screams had died swiftly as the shock quickly blocked the oxygen to his brain and now he hangs like a limp ragdoll as I cling to his legs in counterbalance to his deadweight.

“Your life is not interesting…..” The quote echoes in my mind along with a descant of discordant sirens and I guess, if we survive this, Leo will take the credit for inspiration.

(The inspiration for this piece came from a link on Twitter, yesterday, to a quote by Canadian novelist W.P Kinsella: 'Use your imagination. Trust me, your lives are not interesting. Don’t write them down.' I sure used my imagination with this! ;-p)



  1. Pffft! What does 'ol WP know anyway?

    This was AWESOME, Sue! Cleanly-written. Each paragraph more loaded with suspense than the paragraph before. You wonder, WHAT is going on here, but each sentence reveals more truth. Really funny ending, too.

    Welcome back! MUSH!!!! ox

  2. Cathy - it's good to be back in the 'flow'! (although the sled-harness feels a bit lop-sided :-p)

  3. I loved this too. Really good.

  4. Ok I want MORE! :O) Great post!
    Blessings, Joanne

  5. That was awesome. I'm surprised more agents don't end up like this. :)

    Also, I'm now following, and here I thought that I was following you all along.

    1. Glad to have you aboard, Laurita! :-)
      And thanks for making me question - did Leo fall or was he pushed....? (he fell, in my imagination, but I like the idea of him being pushed!)

  6. Nicely done. Were you tempted to put them on the 33rd floor? [BTW, I think 3 should be spelled threee. Are you with me on that?]

    1. Tim - Looking at the picture I stuck on this post - it may well have been the 333rd floor! :-)

  7. I read your story three times and found it at least three times more interesting than my life has been so far this morning. May I please borrow your imagination?

  8. Madam Z - I'm afraid my imagination has now been freshly laundered, folded and put away for next time...... ;-p

  9. Nice dark humour, I think the last thing that will be crossing their minds right now is... "my life is boring"

  10. when you have so few words to play with it takes real talent to make them count - and that is here and then some. Love the way it starts at the end -s o to speak.

  11. The nonchalance of the gravity in the opening reads almost like spy-work. Very neat.

  12. Great piece, SueH.
    It reminded me of of a novel - thought I'd remembered it as a Nick Hornby one, but maybe not...
    Anyway, it's about people meeting each other on the top of a high rise building where it's notorious for jumping off.
    Your story was on par with that,or better.
    Might try my hand at Thursday@3 now that I have found you.