Monday, 21 May 2012

Five Sentence Fiction: Foggy

Time for another Five Sentence Fiction post. As usual, every week Lillie McFerrin posts a prompt. The objective? Write a five sentence long Flash Fiction story based off that prompt. It doesn't need to include the word, but just be the seed of the story.

My original idea for this prompt was different, but I couldn't get the idea to work. Perhaps I'll go back to it sometime, and write another story based off the idea. Perhaps it simply can't be told in five short sentences, and needs to be something a little longer. As usual, thanks for reading and hope you enjoy!

This Week's Prompt: Foggy

Despite the density of the fog I knew that something was wrong.

I should have been able to see movement in the cabin’s windows, a shadow pass as my wife laid the table and my son did his best to distract her, but not the porch swing nor the trees dared to move and not a single light shone from within.
I got out of the car, my heart beating so hard I thought it would burst out of my chest, my mind whirring through all the possibilities. As my foot touched the porch step I had almost convinced myself that, just maybe, Sheryl had simply fallen asleep; a short lived lie, and in retrospect my last moment of solace before my world was ripped apart.

My foot slipped on something wet and I had to grab onto the railing to keep from falling; I looked, my heart beating even harder; the porch, the doorframe, and the door itself were soaked in what could only be my family’s blood.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Kreativ Blogger Award

Hey all,
So, I've just been tagged in the 'Kreativ Blogger Award' by Lisa Shambrook (check out her blog...) so here goes...

The Rules:
1. Thank & link back to the person who nominated you.
2. Answer the ten questions.
3. Share ten random facts/thoughts about yourself.
4. Nominate seven worthy blogs for the Kreative Blogger Award.

The Questions:
1. What's your favorite song?
This tends to change a lot, but Josh Ritter's "Wings" gives me chills every time.

2. What's your favorite dessert?
Cheesecake, every time. Honeycomb Cheesecake is incredible.

3. What ticks you off?
Disrespecting another's beliefs, opinion, or way of life. We are, each of us, entitled to our say, unless that way of life directly harms another person or yourself. That and racism.

4. What do you do when you're upset?
You'd expect a writer to say "write", correct? Surprisingly I can't write at all when I'm upset - instead, I play guitar. 

5. Which is your favorite pet?
I have two cats, Selene and Solstice, who I could not be without. I'd probably go crazy with loneliness without them. I'll never forget my last dog though, Shadow. He's dead a year and a half, and was my best friend for a decade. Rest in Peace, buddy.

6. Which do you prefer: black or white?
Would you like a literal or philosophical answer? Can black exist without white? Good without evil? If so, then I'll say black ;)

7. What is your biggest fear?
Losing those I care most about.

8. What is your attitude mostly?
I'm a worrier, unfortunately. I'm quiet, shy, can become quite introverted, and self-conscious, though online I'm almost a different person.

9. What is perfection?
A house by the sea, with two cats and someone who loves me. A few novels published, a comfortable amount of money in the bank, and for one person in the world to finish my novel and think ' life is never going to be the same again'. But does perfection exist? All we can hope for is to get as close to perfection as is possible, with minimal heartbreak along the way.

10. What is your guilty pleasure?
God, there's far too many to even list...

The Random Facts:

1. Beginning from when I was a kid, I've wanted to be everything from an archaeologist, an astronaut, a palaeontologist, a videogame journalist, a psychologist, a teacher, and a writer. I still have no idea what I want to do with my life.

2. I gave up the dream of archaeology because I was scared of ancient Egyptian curses (I was 6, to be fair...)

3. I live in Northern Ireland, which can be nice...sometimes. We have an 800 year old Norman Castle in our town, perfectly preserved.

4. I want, more than anything, to go north and see the Aurora Borealis with my own eyes.

5. I am quick to fear someone will let me down, but equally quick to give people second chances. I place a lot of faith in people sometimes.

6. I've been working on my novel, in some shape or form, for 4 years (from when the initial idea struck me). I have two other novel ideas waiting in the wings.

7. I was vegetarian for ten years until last summer. Since then, I've been trying any kind of meat I can get my hands on. My favourite so far is either Kangaroo or Venison...

8. I struggle to write, a lot, and have little faith in my own writing ability. When someone gives me positive feedback I often disregard it, thinking they are just being nice, and I find it far easier to accept criticism.

9. My favourite movie is still The Shawshank Redemption. Can't get much better than Shawshank.

10. If I was going to change my name to anything, it would be Alexander. I don't know why. 

The Nominations:

No idea if these bloggers have already participated, but here you go! - @angela_goff - @awkwardoptimist - @jean_elaine - @lilliemcferrin - @2CAHummingbird - @AGRMoore - @write_me_happy

Saturday, 12 May 2012

One Year Ago

(Photo taken in 2008, at my Bachelor's Degree graduation)

One year ago today, at 6:52am, my dad left this world after a short battle with cancer. My mum was by his side as he took his last breath, while I never had the chance to say goodbye.
For many reasons this has been the hardest year of my life, so I want to say, while I have the chance, how much I value each and every one of you who have stood by me during this time. Life is short, and it can end so suddenly. So if you love someone, tell them. If you need someone, tell them. Don't waste time. Don't have regrets. We have once chance at this.

I love you Dad, and I miss you more than anything.

Friday, 11 May 2012

A Delayed Update

So, unfortunately it's been a month since I updated - the result of a lot going on in the world of Matt, but not a lot going on in the world of writing. If you're reading this and wondering where I've been, I'm sorry.
Chiefly, tomorrow will be the one year anniversary of my father's death, a date which has overshadowed most of the last few months. Suffice to say, I'm dreading it.
As a result of this, though I would be naive to think this was the only cause, I've barely written this past month. A few flash pieces here and there, though nothing substantial enough to think it could spark a longer story (and not anything that is worth posting here).
I've been preparing The Keeper of Tales on and off for the past month, having a few people read the (almost) final version, with my sights firmly placed on a competition hosted by Fantasy Faction for their upcoming anthology. First Prize is $500, but I'd be happy with simply having my work published in the anthology. The competition seems to be a bit of a career maker, with the winning entries being published alongside several renowned authors. I'd be a fool not to submit, and The Keeper of Tales seems a perfect fit.
Apart from this? A little planning for The Shadow of Death, and a lot of sitting around considering what to do with my novel-in-progress, Lucian (Working Title). This is the big one, and it needs finished. Fast. Before I go insane and set fire to the manuscript.
Before we wrap up, I'd just like to take a moment to plug Eschatology Journal, which I was previously published in. They really are a great journal, specialising in apocalyptic fiction, and are great for aspiring writers to get their work out there. They're currently looking for donations, and I'm happy to say I donated what I could. If even half their readers donated $1, they could raise their payscale from Token Payment to Semi-Professional, so every penny donated goes back to the writers they publish. Just click 'become a patron' if you are interested. I want to see this, and all literary journals, succeed.
I have a few ideas for upcoming entries, so hopefully I'll get them written hard and fast. Aside from this, any writing games, competitions, or updates on my many works in progress will be posted here!

Thanks for reading folks. As usual, any suggestions for blog entries are very appreciated.

Happy writing!