SHORT STORY ENTRY: Write Invite, Saturday 23rd April
Luckily for me, this entry was shortlisted this week! Which is very nice. I didn’t win but being shortlisted in the top three for the first time was a rewarding feeling, even if I didn’t think this was my best piece, yet it gives you the spur you need every now and again.
As a reminder, this is a weekly competition where the online entry opens at 5.30pm and closes at 6pm giving you thirty minutes to think of, write, edit and submit a short story from one of three given word prompts. £4 entry and £50 first prize. Here is the link to the site: http://www.write-invite.comThey also have other competitions and services that may be of interest.
The man in the white shirt with long grey hair and thin, sharp features had been walking ahead of them for at least half an hour.Ron and Tony were stewing in their hot, sweaty seats. The work van's cabin was full of empty water bottles, crisp and biscuit packets which were all cracking loudly in the humid air. Both windows were fully open but it was one of those summer evenings where the pollution of city roads and low clouds combined to make it feel like the air had been sucked from the atmosphere. Ron was fidgeting more, shoving his feet amongst the piles of rubbish to try and get a decent stretch. Tony was fiddling with the radio.'Where do you think he's going?' Ron asked. Tony looked up from the dashboard.'The hippie?''Yeah,''Pfff, who knows. Looks like he's scrabbling about for butt ends and pennies to me,''We've been behind him pretty much all this road and he ain't stopped once, just keeps traipsing along like he's stoned or something,''Maybe he is, looks like he knows how to roll a fat one,'The van crept along. The car in front was a new looking Mercedes with an average fifty something suit and tie tapping on the steering wheel to Magic FM. Ron and Tony had the luck of a pretty young thing for a few side roads, low cut top in the heat and small round sunglasses. They didn't quite manage to get her attention despite their heads bobbing up and down and left to right to catch her in the mirrors. Now it was the suit and they had turned their attention to the man.'It's funny, he sort of looks like he's got money, you know what I mean? Hair's a bit, like, ageing rock star, don't you think?''Yeah, he does a bit,' Tony was still messing with the radio and wasn't paying full attention.'Sad really,''Eh?''You would have thought someone who looks like that would be doing well at his age, he's sixty at least I reckon,''How d'you know he's not doing well?''Well, just look at the clothes. And the way he walks,''Leave the poor bastard alone, maybe he's just had a hard day, he don't need you going on!'The traffic let up and they managed a good spurt forward. A minute of constant movement and they had nearly caught up with the man again.'Nah, look at him, unshaven, rough as mate,''You're being a bit bloody harsh, let's see how your doing at his age,'The man's pace hadn't altered. His face had kept front and the occasional beeping from frustrated drivers and pedestrians passing him hadn't bothered him.'He's gonna make it to the junction before we do, bloody traffic,''See, there you go. He knows what he's doing,''Hope I have better things to do than wander the streets when I'm older,''Give it a rest, you don't half go on. What's got you so interested? He's just a normal bloke walking up the road,''Something different about him,''When you've got as many miles clocked up on the road as he has, the last thing you want is some young cocky bastard looking you up and down. How do you know he ain't a rock star walking back home after a three day bender? Huh? He could be a millionaire, how would you know?''No chance, he's a scruffy drunk who's been kicked out the bookies,'The last section of road before the traffic lights cleared and Ron and Tony speed up and past the man. They took a quick look in their mirror before a convertible BMW with two women drew up next to them waiting to turn at the lights and they forgot all about the man. The lights turned green and Ron and Tony talked about the attributes of the BMW driver and never saw or thought about the man walking and minding his own business again.
Have a great week,