Sad Old Man - this story won second prize in a Writing Magazine competition. It began life as a 500 word dialogue for an exercise from an Open University short course on creative writing. The inspiration for the setting was a local second-hand bookshop run by a friend, although Doncaster Books soon evolved into a much more formal place and the bookseller was entirely fictitious.
It was published online by Writing Magazine, and can be read here and is also published in Greenacre Writers Anthology, Volume 3.
Leaving - was inspired by the death of my friend and the effect it had on so many of us. A flash fiction, it was first published online by Cafe Lit the Creative Cafe Project. All stories are classified as drinks and this is Espresso. It is now published in The Best of Cafe Lit 2012
The Depths of Memory - the beginning of this story is based on memories of a holiday with my daughter in beautiful Kefalonia some years back. I have always said she was a mermaid in a past life because of her love for swimming in the ocean where she feels no fear. Have we lived past lives? Perhaps...
This story was published in Greenacre Writers Anthology Vol 1. (2012) and is available on Alfie Dog. Read the opening paragraphs for a taste.
Chocolate in Summer - my mother-in-law was a classical pianist who never achieved her potential but the resemblance to Margot, the mother-in-law in the story, stops there.
This story was published in Greenacre Writers Anthology Vol 2 (2013) and is available on Alfie Dog.
The opening paragraphs give a taste of the story.
Beneath the Arches - a flash fiction piece which won third prize in Words With Jam shorter story competition 2013. You can read it here. It is published in An Earthless Melting Pot.
No Mirrors - another flash fiction began life some years back and has been reworked into about half its original length. It made the long-list of Reflex Fiction's Spring 2017 competition and can be read here. Its inspiration came from an incident many years ago that also led to the conception of the story above.
The Night Father Christmas was Confused - began life as a Christmas story for a local magazine, The Greenacre Times. A slightly updated version was published on my blog for Christmas 2013. You can read it here.
The Importance of Shoelaces - originally intended for the women's magazine market, it got nowhere. I reworked it but didn't feel it had a home anywhere. Then came a call from the editors of the Stories for Homes anthology for stories with the theme of home to be donated for the new anthology. After a few tweaks I sent it off and was incredibly surprised to be informed it had been selected. What better place for a homeless story! I learnt on the publication day that one of the anthology's proofreaders said it was the best short story she'd ever read. Even if not strictly true that's got to be one of the best things that can be said about a story!
Still Life - possibly my favourite story. It began life many years back and has been lengthened and shortened quite a bit! I had sent it to competitions but it didn't get anywhere. I wrote a blog-post when I was feeling a bit disheartened with yet another rejection. I received some very helpful and supportive comments on the post and I added my own comment when I said I'd given my story another outing and then another to say it was shortlisted in Hysteria's 2017 competition. It then won! I was thrilled. The moral of that post is don't give up.
I have had other flash fiction published in Mslexia, and Writing Magazine, and on several competition websites.