Tag Archives: Short Story Collaborations

Hot Potato! Short Story Collaboration #2 Gail Aldwin

13 May


Hot Potato

Welcome to Hot Potato!

8 writers over 16 weeks writing 1 short story

 The Potatoes: 

Ben Cooper, Gail Aldwin, Aksania Xenogrette, CJ Sullivan, AK Anderson, Laura Besley, Gwendolyn Salzman, Natalie Elizabeth Beech

Here’s the second fortnightly instalment of our collaborative short story this time featuring potato/writer GAIL ALDWIN who is taking Ben’s ‘beginning’ and continuing the story however she likes….. In case you need a reminder of how our story began you can find Ben’s great beginning here. Here’s Gail’s contribution: 

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Sitting on the beach, the stones lumpy underneath her, Chloe took another lick of ice-cream. The Mr Whippy slid down her throat, cold enough to choke her. Dad pelted pebbles at the empty can. He said the first drink of the day always brought him luck. Clonk, clonk, clonk. Being patient wasn’t in Dad’s nature and Chloe realised she didn’t have long to finish the cornet. Twisting her tongue and swallowing focused her attention. When she was done, she rubbed the sticky remains from her fingers onto her jeans.

That’s my girl.’ Dad flung his arm around Chloe’s shoulders and gave her a shake so that her head flopped from side to side. She giggled, it was his way of being friendly. When the sun peeped around the clouds, Chloe enjoyed the warmth. It wasn’t often that Dad brought her to the beach. Sunday’s usually involved trailing after him as he did the round of pubs to see his mates. She got a packet of crisps at each place and by the end of the day, she’d tasted the whole range of flavours.

Can we go on the pier?’ She hoped to make the most of this good mood.

If you like. I’ll give you a ride on the dodgems.’

But I don’t want to go on that pier.’ Chloe remembered the last time. Dad had spun the wheel one-handed and driven the wrong way around the track. He’d collided with every other driver and Chloe was so jolted by the end, that her head ached and her legs wouldn’t work properly. ‘I want to go on the other one.’

No-one goes there. It’s all broken and it closed down years ago. Look at it, one big wave and the whole thing will go under.’

That means we should go now. I could find a gap in the fence. It’d be much more fun.’

Not likely.’ Dad took a second can from the pack and springing back the ring, it hissed. He took a few glugs then turned his face to the sun and he closed his eyes. ‘Think I’ll have a little nap.’ He flopped back onto the stones, and the beer spilt.

Chloe stared at the old pier, hunched above the waves and she listened to the rattle of her Dad’s breathing. It’d be hours before he was ready to move, so Chloe made a plan. Dad wouldn’t mind if she checked out the pier. He might even be pleased if she discovered a secret entrance. He couldn’t complain then. Not that he usually minded jumping over barriers. He did it often enough at the train station to avoid paying the fare. Turning Dad’s wrist, Chloe read the time on his watch. If she came back within the hour, he’d never know she’d been gone.

The stones crunched as she walked towards the promenade and she skipped along the path to the pier’s entrance. Squeezing between the struts of fencing, Chloe wiggled through to the other side. She took pigeon steps along the planks and headed for the first building. With the door swinging off its hinges, it gave a sort of welcome.

 
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Writer’s Biography:

Gail Aldwin enjoys writing short fiction as relief from the slog of completing a novel. In What the Dickens? magazine, she has a regular column that answers writers’ questions. Thanks to a competition win, her collection of flash fiction titled Four Buses is available now. You can find Gail at http://gailaldwin.wordpress.com/ and @gailaldwin

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Gail's text was passed to aksania xenogrette on Friday. The next
 instalment of our short story will be on Monday 27th May. 
It will be exciting to see where aksania goes with what Gail has set up!
FYI. The writers are progressively taking up the structure of beginning,
 middle and end. The writers can take the story wherever they want. >>

Hot Potato! Short Story Collaboration #1: Ben Cooper

29 Apr


Hot Potato

Welcome to Hot Potato!

8 writers over 16 weeks writing 1 short story

 The Potatoes: 

Ben Cooper, Gail Aldwin, Aksania Xenogrette, CJ Sullivan, AK Anderson, Laura Besley, Gwendolyn Salzman, Natalie Elizabeth Beech

Today’s first fortnightly instalment, features writer Ben Cooper.…who is starting the whole project off! 

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The robo-girl sat on the greyed splintered bones of the pier. Rivulet of rust stained her face ‘n sand had settled in her innards. Something in her stirred, something silently called, urged her forward. Time had sanded away her eyes, but her memory banks held. The carousel horses lay on their sides, but to her they still galloped ‘n happy music circled them. For the robo-girl he had been gone for a nano-second, she could still taste his warm lips, but paths bit into the ancient broadwalk from her feet. The sea had faded her color, but her metal ‘n Flesh held. She leaned against the remains of the Ferris wheels where a tree once stood ‘n sang. Keep it down the Raccoon growled from her nest in a seat. Why do you even bother a Squirrel chattered from a rooftop, she never listens. The robo-girl wandered away ‘n her holograms painted the sagging walls of the pavilion with life . Robo-hallucinations. A hundred years since a human voice heard. The robo-girl could hear him, “Step right up, knock down the bottles ‘n win a prize!” The bottles still stood ‘n he was a skeleton buried. The People of Blood, left long ago to spread the stars when their world held no more amusement for them, the fool stayed. That’s what they called Tom, but he was happy ‘n wasn’t alone, he had his girl ‘n a whole world to call his own. They were happy. The Robot-girl walked through the funhouse, through the shards ‘n sand her feet ground the mirrors into. Is she dreaming or is she remembering the Swift wondered. Is there a difference the Swallow cheeped from the rafters. Back when her memory banks were pristine, she smashed all the mirrors of the funhouse after he said goodbye to her with his last breath. With no updates for her head it was full of glitches ‘n bugs. She had forgotten he had left her ‘n she lost her name long ago. Her creaking limbs echoed through the cave that was the arcade, it once sung with pinball machines ‘n children’s shouting. Now the Rat children giggled at the silly clumsy creature crashing through their home. The Owl hooted them into silence ‘n bowed at the Robo-girl. Owl’s memory was long, but Owl Legend was even longer. She was the last half of The Lovers. The Robo-girl walked through the beginning patters of rain, through the softening mud. To her it was a fine summer’s day. She picked a non-existent flower ‘n breathed in deeply ‘n smiled. The Robo-girl gently swayed to music only she could hear, crashing through bramble up to a windmill to recharge. The Seagull cawed with laughter at the broken toy. The Dove squawked at him to shut it ‘n cooed with regret, she had lost her mate. Full the robot girl wandered back to her haunt ‘n the birds resumed their discussion of The Wind. Why doesn’t she leave for another world the Crow child wondered. The past has blinded her, she can’t see us the Crow said to her chick. When the People of Blood left ‘n flared across the universe like a virus, the world they left behind took wing.

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Writer’s Biography:

Hi I’m Benjamin A. Cooper, okay at writing, terrible at writing bios ‘n very happy to be a part of this project.

>>B

Ben's text was passed to Gail yesterday. The next instalment of our 
short story will be on Monday 13th May. It will be exciting to see 
where Gail takes us! The writers are collectively and
progressively taking up the structure of beginning, middle and end. 
The writers can take the story wherever they want. 

>>
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