Category Archives: Writing

Nosiest People in the World #writing #peoplewatching #fictionprompts #janedwards

One of the most frequently asked, and for me at least, one of the most frustrating, questions for a writer is: ‘Where do you find your inspiration?’ One of the answers I am always tempted to give with my horror audience, but not yet used, is ‘imagining what I shall do with the next person to ask that question.’ I dread having to field this particular one because for me at least there is no straight answer. Continue reading

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Christmas is coming! #givebooksforchristmas #books #christmasshopping

I don’t usually include outright adverts here… but… if you happen to be looking for a Yuletide gift I can recommend 🙂

XMAS_edited-3

All titles available in paper and kindle formats in UK and USA:

Winter Downs US  / UK   /  AU 
Indie Bound
Book Depository
Wordery

Sussex Tales US / UK
Fables & Fabrications US  / UK
Leinster Gardens & Other Subtleties  US / UK

horrors-vol-1-ver-3cAnd with my editing hat on…
The Alchemy Press Book of Horrors
Amazon :  US / FR  / AU /  UK  

Indie bound
Book Depository
Waterstones
Foyles
Barnes & Noble
Wordery

 

Count Down to Nothing #crimefiction #flashfiction #writing

Count Down to Nothing

(Awarded a Highly Commended in the Potteries Prize for flash fiction)

Related imageSadie lifts the lid on the creaking, stuttering, kettle to stare in at the scant half cup of water at its base. Flakes of beige limescale-confetti dance around the looped coil in a maelstrom of bubbles and steam, and as all motion ends there is a vague waft of electrical burning.

‘Our fourth kettle.’ She nods, pleased that her instincts are correct. ‘A four-kettle marriage. Three cars. Two houses.’

She pauses to listen to her neighbour putting out the bins. ‘It’s too early. Time for tea.’

Sadie taps each of the mugs that dangle from the dresser hooks, ‘three … four … five … six…’ and picks her favourite; a rotund affair with speckled white glaze. From its belly a pair of slinky painted cats stare back at her through slitted purple eyes. Their gaze is all knowing. Tacit approval, as reassuring as the daily tallying that bolsters her perspective.

Scalding kettle dregs are emptied down the sink and Sadie wishes it were so simple to wash away the detritus in her life. The back-up kettle is humming a gentler tune from the gas hob. As metal expands with the rise in temperature she keeps the running total of each tink and pop with her forefinger against the worktop edge, ‘ten … eleven…’, and longs for dusk to drift into night.

The steam whistle is calling time. Tea is made and drunk in the wait for salmon tinted clouds on the western horizon to fall into a purple dark. She washes the cup and sets it on the drainer, giving the sun a minute more to take cover – counting down those slow sixty seconds on her watch before she moves out to the garden.

One shovel waits its turn beside a footing trench that measures a precise one metre wide by one deep, elegant in its balanced proportions. Seven steel rods traverse the body at its base. Six bags of ready mixed cement are waiting to meld for eternity with five large buckets of water.

‘Four kettles. Three cars. Two houses. Per husband.’

(c) Jan Edwards 2018
Not to be copied or reprinted without prior permission.

The brief was to write a 350 word flash fiction.

 

Potteries Prize #flashfiction #potteriesprize #writing

Saturday saw the long anticipated presentation of the “Potteries Prize for Flash Fiction,” in which I was awarded a Highly Commended in the Most entertaining category.

This is a prize for pieces of fiction of less than 350 words and is run by Stephanie Hutton and Liz Kay of the Writing Kiln project in conjunction with Stoke on Trent Libraries and Ellipse Magazine.

The winner of the four sections were:
Most Entertaining: ‘A Haunting’ by Lisa Culligan
Most Beautiful Use of language: ‘A Story of the Bird People’ by Jacoby Hayward
Best Character if Voice: ‘Second Chance’ by Mary Bennett
Best Line: Beryl Crawford, for the last line in ‘The Cat Came Back’

 

The Overall Winner this year was Jacoby Hayward.

 (L-R) Mary, Beryl, overall winner Jacoby and Lisa.
Photo courtesy of Writing Kiln

The full list of winners is available on the Stoke Libraries site HERE

There are many flash fiction writers in the city who regularly gain prizes in national competition so I was rather stunned to gain a highly commended in the Most Entertaining category. Flash fiction is not my usually sphere, in fact I can probably count the number of flash fiction pieces I’ve written on one hand, but decided to give it a shot this year purely for the challenge.

The morning’s celebration at City Central Library was a great deal of fun with readings from fourteen pieces picked from the winners and runners up.

This included my own entry was called ‘Countdown to Nothing’, and bijou take of obsession! I was rather amazed to be able to come up with an entire crime story in 348 words, and yes, before you ask, I may use it a basis for something far longer.

Many thanks to the organisers and judges for all their work.

 

 

Nosiest People in the World #authorselectric #writing #fiction

My Authors Electric blog is up for reading HERE 

This month I am talking about inspirations and where to find them.

“Nosiest People In The World – Jan Edwards

One of the most frequently asked, and for me at least, one of the most frustrating, questions for a writer is: ‘Where do you find your inspiration?’ One of the answers I am always tempted to give with my horror audience, but not yet used, is ‘imagining what I shall do with the next person to ask that question.’ I dread having to field this one because for me at least there is no straight  answer.”

To read the rest follow the link above.

The Importance of Being ‘Earnest’ #blogging #archiving #winterdowns #bunchcourtney

Featured Image -- 22249In the process of revamping my blog in preparation for the  In Her Defence campaign  I realised that I had not archived the various blogs and interviews carried out for Winter Downs.

Gathering all of those guest blogs and interviews and Q&As was a long-winded task and it appears that in the 2 years since the pre-publication Winter Downs campaign was first begun several have been lost forever as sites went down or else archived old posts so that they are no longer accessible.

Now I realise that in the great scheme of things that may not be all that important – and had I been more earnest in my publicity I would have already done it – but for my own interest at least it would be rather useful to archive those blogs in one place; if only to ensure that I don’t repeat myself.

It took most of an afternoon but eventually I managed to smoosh all that I could rescue into one long page (I still have a few reviews to track down). Scrolled into one document I was taken aback to realise that the document was 12.5k long!

So many words set down in the process of spreading the word!

You can read all of those posts here. 

Bruised Lilacs Are Not Ready To Wilt #inherdefence #winterdowns #crimefiction

In Her DefenceAm I the only person who has trouble getting their plots to stand still long enough to be written? Do some titles – titles that you love – get set aside time and again because something more pressing gets in the way?

As the final edits of my next Bunch Courtney book is snatched from my reluctant hands by stern-faced editors and the layout process is set into motion I was forced to look at the title of next book in order to list it in the prelims. Continue reading