Not a Pheasant Plucker

This is Day 20 of the Blogging University course I embarked on, 20 days ago, called #everydayinspirations and the topic for this final day is, well, open ended. In fact, it has been suggested we reflect on what we've learned. Since I can't speak for anyone else, I'll say it has been interesting and, occasionally,…Read more Not a Pheasant Plucker

Nothing’s ever what it seems

Miss Brown’s daily preparation began with a sweeping entrance as she crossed the classroom to the dais in five brisk paces. She plonked her handbag – usually one of the black patent variety that were then so de rigeur – on the seat and in one elegant turning motion, began the morning prayer with a…Read more Nothing’s ever what it seems

What makes a Story? Guest Writer: Tanya Cliff

Dermott Hayes challenged me with an open-ended prompt: Define what I think makes up a good short story and pull a work of his apart against that measure. My definition of a good short story is simple: Does the story hold my attention? By that definition, a good “short” takes many forms: six-word staccatos, elegant…Read more What makes a Story? Guest Writer: Tanya Cliff

Whiskey Fire in The Liberties

Day 17 of the Everyday Inspiration course by Blogging University requires that I use 'A Map as my Muse', so I've chosen to repost, here a poem I wrote about a fire that occurred in the district where I live in The Liberties, Dublin. The Whiskey Fire occurred when a fire in a bonded warehouse…Read more Whiskey Fire in The Liberties

Glitch in the Matrix

Two blind sisters sitting on a train carriage wearing matching mirror shades stop him in his tracks. An inexplicable fear grips him. He misses the Gatwick train. It’s early rush hour on a Monday morning in London. The city’s awake and in full swing. The suburbs pile into the metropolis and the trains run on…Read more Glitch in the Matrix

A Life in a Day

6.05am Woke up... fell back to sleep. 7.30am Woke up...check my phone. It's very early and it's Saturday and I don't want to be awake at this hour. Have to get up now, must pee. I don't 'wake up, fall out of bed, drag a comb across my head,' for a whole bunch of reasons.…Read more A Life in a Day

Day 13: Play with word count

This one almost got past me, as in I didn't get the email with the prompt so I went into WP Resources to find out if I'd missed some homework. But, in an odd moment of synchronicity or symbiosis, Richard Ankers' Six Word Stories came to my rescue. Richard's six word story for the…Read more Day 13: Play with word count

Thoughts on the novels of James Lee Burke

James Lee Burke's Dave Robicheaux novels are never 'typical' crime novels. First, there's Robicheaux, a disgraced, former NOPD Homicide lieutenant turned sheriff's detective in Iberia Parish. Robicheaux is a good man with a chequered past; a Vietnam veteran and recovering alcoholic who carries traces of post-traumatic stress disorder and an unspecified, but lingering, guilt from…Read more Thoughts on the novels of James Lee Burke

The Brutal Truth

#everydayinspiration Let the scene write itself is the prompt on Day 10 of the Everyday Inspirations course on Blogging University so let me do just that, except this time it's not fiction, it's mundane daily fact. The neighbourhood I live in is gripped by the terror of an imminent bloodbath between rival drug gangs, the…Read more The Brutal Truth

What a day, what a meal

It's a warm day so I got up, really early, don't laugh, about 7.30am. Did my usual thing, medicine, shower, dressed. Then, coffee and some toasted germagrain, smeared with beetroot hummus and half an avocado. I know, get him. Then I sat down and tuned in, got Cab Calloway going on the stereo and, coffee…Read more What a day, what a meal