Friday, January 15, 2010


The conversation about story and storytelling continues unabated over at the Literary Lab and an incredible converation it is. Go on over and check it out.

For me, I keep coming back to honesty and respect in my storytelling. When all is said and done, when I've pared down my words, when I've found my theme, when the dialogue and action are sharp and clean, in the end is it honest? Not happy, but true to the story and the characters?

Because there is nothing worse for writer or reader to invest heavily and in the end to feel cheated.

Anyway, when all is said and done, right now I'm ready for the weekend. So I'll leave with a snippet of something else.

But before I get to that, Sara is having a contest for reaching one hundred followers. Go check that out.
The working girls are working. Sharp eyes and bodies in colorful dresses cut low and tight cruise the crowd.

Garish faces plastic and painted with gilt-edged smiles whisper words promising pleasures carnal and venal to keep the fear and the cold and the lonely away.

She smells the desperation on them; knows the tricks of the trade. It’s just like old times, watching this dance.

She leans forward, arms crossed and resting on the table, runs her eyes around the room as the barmaid buzzes the table dropping off drinks.

She thinks they might have been pretty once, back in their other lives.

She settles back in her seat, knocks back another swallow.

She doesn’t remember when she started to feel so old, so empty and hollow, but she remembers pretty.

She misses it.

A young-old girl with fire-red hair piled high on her head slides into the dealer’s lap, fuck-me-red lips whispering in his ear.

She leans back, tilts her head, watching him through her lashes; sees hard, hungry eyes, a mean mouth; cheap clothes.

All this time and she still finds it hard to believe that someone with that much money in that many hidden places still has such a taste for the gutter.

She thinks this time she’s got a better hand.


  1. Is this what Simon refers to as 'flash fiction'? Just a small snippet of a scene? I have yet to uncover the definition of it.

    As usual, you have stunned me yet again with your writing Sarah. This is such beautiful imagery. I'm so glad we write in different genre's *giggle* I'm envious enough as it is.

  2. This is only my understanding, and I'm not sure it's right, but flash fiction is an entire story in a small package, aka a thousand words. Two thousand? I'm not sure where the upper cut-off is.

    My post just before this had flash fiction, which is what I tagged it, a story in two hundred words. There's a longer version of it in my files at about fifteen hundred words.

    This post I tagged as a snippet, because it's a scene from a longer piece. The original piece was about four thousand word, if I recall correctly. There's also a version of this at two thousand words.

    I don't know if that answers your question or if I just confused things even more. But I'm glad you stopped by to read. It means a lot to me.

    As for writing in different genres, I'm pretty sure your work has a better shot at publication than mine. :)

  3. Love the snippet! (want more, though... yessss, we is greedy, precioussss... LOL)

    As usual you can film a scene with words: in this case it's complete with ambient noises, cigarette smoke and the smell of despair.
    Did I already tell you I'd like to see the rest, didn't I?

    there is nothing worse for writer or reader to invest heavily and in the end to feel cheated
    Amen to that!
    We've spoken often of respect, so you know how I feel about that... #nods sagely# :)

  4. Yeah, I know I've been a bit of a broken record going on and on about the idea of respect. :)

    But you get it and I know that it informs your writing as well.

    It seems a simple enough idea, and yet I'm amazed at those that seem to not understand it at all.

    Maybe I'm the one that's slow. :)

  5. love the ambience you created, somewhat languid yet sensational, very vivid and `visual'.

  6. Thank you so much for those very lovely words. And thank you for stopping here to read.