My Weekly Writing Challenge

Last week I set you the challenge of writing a story or poem on the themes of ‘Party‘, ‘Quirky‘ and ‘Race‘. I have to admit I wondered what on earth you would come up with. I wasn’t disappointed. It’s fantastic how each person can take a theme and come up with completely different ideas. I love it! Read the results below.

Naturally, we’re now moving on to S, T and U. So your themes are ‘Spy‘, ‘Trapped‘ and ‘Uppity‘. Well, it wouldn’t be a challenge if it was easy, would it?! If you’re in need of a helping hand or some motivation, click on the following link for my blog post on ideas for these themes:

https://esthernewtonblog.wordpress.com/2014/08/11/monday-motivationsthe-abc-of-short-story-ideas-part-seven/

Here are the results of last week’s challenge:

Keith Channing wrote a very entertaining topical story. If Scotland had voted the other way, could this have been a reality? Could it still??!!:

“Do you reckon we can still do it, Don?”

“We’ve come this far, Jim; don’t start having doubts now. Go and give him hell.”

They had, indeed, come a long way. When the campaign started, five short weeks earlier, the pollsters had initially written them off as no-hopers. How things had changed. Who would have expected that from the first straw polls, when support for them was at a mere 3%, they would have risen to second place, and be knocking at the door of the Tories.

Starved of support from the now-independant Scotland, Labour was on a downward slide, the like of which hadn’t been seen since John Major’s famous rout decades earlier. The revived Conservative Party, with Boris at the helm, has been holding on to their lead throughout, but were clearly concerned by the advances being made by HRE, Home Rule for England.

Close to the election date, Boris and Jim were face-to-face, debating in front of the television cameras.

“Do you have any idea, Boris, how much resentment there is around the country, and not only amongst HRE supporters, at the concessions you offered to the Scots in your desperate attempts to prevent the secession?” Jim asked, “and do you have any concept of the level of public disgust at the way you and your coalition partners have kowtowed to the Scots since their vote, giving them everything they have asked for, then asking them if they’d like more?”

“Now… now… now, Jim. Don’t you think you’re exaggerating a little?”

“Not at all, Boris. You’ve given them a currency union; something all the parties said they would never do-”

“We had some very good, solid reasons for doing that-”

“But you then gave them a seat on the MPC”

“So they could have some input on interest rates”

“So, Boris, you are happy that a foreign country has the ability to determine UK interest rates.”

“Hardly a foreign country, Jim.”

The audience, an equal mix of invitees of the Conservatives and of HRE, with more than a smattering of representatives of the press corps, clearly took umbrage at that last remark. The level of heckling from both sides, and shouted questions from sections of the press was enough to halt the debate.

The following morning’s newspapers were unanimous in awarding the debate to Jim and HRE, and all the polls gave HRE an overall lead of between seven and thirteen percent.

The future starts here.

Jason Moody tried his hand at poetry for the first time ever last week. I think he’s got a talent for it as the following poem shows:

Is a pigment, yes, a colour
The way that we define a soul
Be it white, brown or other
Why must we pigeon hole?

Two eyes, two ears, a hooter
Arms and legs and more
Be it English, Russian, Eskimo
Perhaps you’re rich? Or poor.

Is a person lesser?
If he or she has different hue
Do they deserve your hateful words
Unfound, unjust, untrue

Is a pigment, yes, a colour
The way to define a soul
Refrain from skin tone prejudice
See the person as a whole.

Jasdeep Kaur starts off her story with her usual intensity. You’ll love the ending!:

Unprecedented Blast

I was sipping on my favourite cappuccino, when David, the birthday boy, came scampering.

“Friends, stay where you are,” he announced loudly, “I’ve got information of a bomb in this hall.”

“Bomb!” everyone gasped and started moving towards the door.

David shouted, “I asked you not to move. The bomb could be anywhere.”

We looked back. He was sweating. His fearful face sent jitters to my stomach.

He said, “The detonation squad will be here soon. Till then, friends, please try to keep calm.”

The callous room was quieted. The only things we could hear were the clock ticks and our heart beats.

The door flung open. Two men, in uniform and helmets, darted in. As soon as the door slammed back, a shrill beep was heard. The clock ticks were suppressed with louder ticks. They were coming from the table where the cake was.

“The bomb has been activated,” one of them said, “ask William to stay outside. We must not open the door again, or the bomb may blow.”

The second man signalled the third man with his finger movements. Then he walked with sloppy steps towards the first one.

Both fiddled with the wires. After a pause, the second one asked his comrade, “Can we do it without William?”

The first one said, “We have no other option.”

There were worried voices all over the room.

The first man severed a wire. The bomb started ticking faster.

His comrade screamed at him, “You have cut the wrong wire. You should have asked me.”

“I know what to do,” came the reply.

The comrade said, “Don’t deem yourself as William.”

I could not see their traumatizing clash at this moment and said, “Please leave your ego and think of saving us.”

There was no response from them.

I rushed towards the door to call William. The men shouted in chorus, “Don’t do it. The bomb will explode.”

When I looked at them, they were cutting another wire.

I froze.

A bullet came out and hit the ceiling triggering the blast. I felt no pain, but the hall was full of small bits.

The door behind me opened shoving me ahead. William was in. The three men removed their helmets and along with David they said, “Happy Fool’s Day!”

“Guys, I am sorry, but it was my fate to be born on April 1st,“ David said laughing, “and from now on, I think, you’ll not call me the biggest fool.”

We, still flabbergasted, could not come out of the shock, but when we did, David got the hardest birthday bumps ever.

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14 Responses to My Weekly Writing Challenge

  1. Before I left John’s house, I knew I’d be in trouble. I was still smarting from last week’s tirade; John had been making ginger beer in his house, and he gave me some of the germ in a bottle, so I could make some, too. I brought it home with me, topped up the bottle, and put it in the airing cupboard to develop. Mum found it the next day.

    “What’s this?” she asked.

    “Ginger beer,” I said, “John’s making it in his house, and he gave me some of the germ, so I could make some, too. It’s ever so nice.”

    “Well, you can take it straight back to him,” she instructed, “I don’t know about his mother, but I don’t want any germs in my house.”

    So that had to go back.

    I dreaded to think what would happen to me today. It was a Saturday and I’d been playing with John, at his house, all afternoon. Just before tea time, John’s mum asked if I wanted to stay for tea. I told her Mum would worry and be cross if I wasn’t back for tea, so she said she’d send Timmy, John’s little brother, to ask Mum if it would be OK. John’s dad worked for the GPO and they had a phone in their house, but we didn’t, so we wouldn’t call her. It’s only about a hundred yards up the road, so Timmy could be there and back quite quickly and it was still light. When Timmy came back, nobody thought to ask if he had passed the message. It wasn’t until I was ready to leave, well after dark, that we found out that he had forgotten what it was he had to ask, so he didn’t go to my house; he just hung around for a couple of minutes and came back.

    “And where do you think you’ve been?” Mum shouted, as I opened the back door to go into the house.

    “At John’s,” I replied, in all innocence, “Timmy came to tell you, didn’t he?”

    “NO HE DID NOT!” came the reply.

    “Well, that’s not my fault, is it?” I asked, “his mum told him to, and he didn’t say he didn’t, so we thought he had. What else were we supposed to do?”

    “Your dad’s been worried sick, too; he nearly went to the phone box to call the police.”

    “If he’d done that, he would have had to walk past John’s house and he would have seen me playing in their front garden!”

    How could parents be so stupid?

    “Don’t you get uppity with me, young man,” Mum said, “get to your room.”

    I sloped up the stairs to my room, Mum so close behind me I could feel her breath on the back of my neck. I went into my room and pushed the door closed behind me, sulking in that special way only I knew how. When the door closed, I heard the key turn in the lock. I turned to the door, and I could swear I saw Mum’s eye in the spy-hole, as she said, “Get your weekend homework done, then get to bed. I’ll see you in the morning.”

    “But what if I need the toilet?” I asked, fearing above all else that I would be trapped there all night.

    “You’ll have to hold on to it,” she replied.

    “All night?”

    “If need be; either that or use the pot that’s under your bed.”

    “But pots are for tiny kids; I’m fourteen.”

    “Then maybe you should start acting it, and showing some consideration for your parents.”
    How was I supposed to make it through the night; more than twelve hours locked in my room. Sure, I could do my homework. That was never a punishment, I enjoyed that, but that would only take me until about nine. That would still leave ten hours. I had no choice but to use the pot. Of course, as soon as I realised that, I needed to go straight away. Would the pot be big enough to last all night? And would I be able to carry it downstairs to the toilet, without spilling any?

    This was horrible.

    “Best friend’s brother or not, Timmy’s gonna get it next time I see him,” I promised myself.

  2. Ayo says:

    He looked down on her.
    Obviously seeking attention,
    She isn’t very pretty
    So he can understand why.
    She wants the guys at her beck and call,
    And wears the clothes that make them pant.

    Now they’re alone.
    She’s right in his face.
    He tries to pretend she doesn’t exist,
    Didn’t want to talk, didn’t want to look.

    She speaks a name,
    He catches his breath,
    It catches his attention
    He has to look.
    Her eyes are brown.
    Brown, beautiful and speaking to him.
    He cannot imagine himself with her
    He turns away but he can’t let go.
    Her eyes draw him and then the name
    The name that only he and someone else should know.
    She winks at him and says, “I’m the one.”
    The one with the message he’d been waiting for.

    He’d paid an Agency to do some work
    And they send this one to bring his report.
    He can’t believe she is an Agency staff,
    With dressing like that and such a loud voice.

    They spend two hours talking
    And another two when she’s showing him where,
    Where this and that from her report.

    Her eyes won’t let go when he closes his in sleep
    And even the next day and the week that follows.
    Finally he realizes he’s trapped by the eyes
    The eyes of that not so pretty lady
    The one he had paid to spy for him.

  3. Jasdeep Kaur says:

    Trapped

    Plush possessions; alluring affluence;
    unmoved uppity; combusting contempt;
    envious entreaties; venomous wishes.
    Are we trapped?

    Prying peeps; nosy neighbourhood;
    bleak blether; scrumptious slander;
    parching prejudice; ruined relationships.
    Are we trapped?

    Howling hunger; continuous chase;
    broken bonds; spiteful soul;
    haltered Humanity; malicious maze.
    Aren’t we trapped?

  4. Jasdeep Kaur says:

    Thanks for your lovely words.

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