Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Wednesday Write-In #8

This is my second Wednesday Write-In. I'm very excited about it and hope to be able to do it regularly. Please read on to find out more about it! 

CAKE.shortandsweet runs a write-in every week to writers to practise their skills, and get chatting to each other about their work. Everyone is welcome to join in, and the more people you tell, the more everyone will get out of it.

This week's Prompts

benefit  ::  lollipop  ::  grip  ::  hardwood  ::  glaze

On Foreign Shores

“But is ’e entitled to benefits?” Silvia shouted down the phone. 
“We will have to review your case, Mrs Underwood,” the girl said slowly, “and phone you back.” 
“I’m not stupid. You don’t have to talk so slowly!”
“But nothing! I’ve lived in this country probably longer than you ’ave been born!”
“My manager is looking into your son’s case. We will-
“Timo is not my son! Don’t you people ever listen? He is a Japanese student staying with me for six weeks.” 
“I’m sorry. I forgot.” 
“Did you also forget that his appendix burst? And that the doctor told him it was an ‘upset stomach’?” 
“No, Mrs Underwood. I have all the information here now.” 
“Well, maybe you could get that manager of yours to take a look at it!”

Silvia snapped her phone shut and stormed into the nineteenth century red-brick building that housed St. Margaret’s hospital. She knew the way to Timo’s room without hesitation as she had visited him every day since he’d been admitted a week ago. 
“How are you, darling?” Silvia asked. She put the bag of shopping onto a chair by the bedside and took his hand in hers.  
Timo’s face was as white as the sheets he was lying on. “Okay,” he replied. 
“He’s always okay,” the Jamaican nurse said. “Such a good patient.” She pushed the heavy trolley, with orange and green lollipops on it for the younger patients, out of the room. 

Driving back on the busy Kent roads, Silvia thought about all the work at home that wasn’t being done. She gripped the steering wheel so hard her knuckles turned the colour of Timo’s pale face. She had rows and rows of clay pots, plates and bowls sitting on her hardwood counter in her garden workshop waiting to be glazed and fired. 

But for now her priority was Timo, and getting him the support he needed for a mistake that wasn’t his.  
L. Besley


There are no hard and fast rules, but here are some brief guidelines:
  • You can use the prompts as inspiration or try to work them into your story somehow. Use as many as you want.
  • When your story is done, post it online (your blog/twitter/in a comment here), tag with #wednesdaywritein and comment with a link so we can read it. You can write as many stories as you like.
  • Please take the time to read and comment on as many other stories as you can.


  1. Hi Laura. Once again another great story where your dialogue shines. I can feel an accent coming through. It flows so well. I can feel her frustration at the system and how much she cares about Timo. Well done!

  2. yes, very nice dialog, palpable frustration and an interesting narrative. Well done.

  3. That's an interesting piece, I think this line: 'She knew the way to Timo’s room without hesitation as she had visited him every day since he’d been admitted a week ago', doesn't flow. I think it would be possibly more interesting and show more vulnerability if she actually gets lost momentarily, and is staring at a blank white wall, slightly grimy. Or rewrite the line to show that she is familiar with the route, such as, she pauses and stares at the closed office door, always closed, every time she's visited. To suggest the dead ends she is facing. I would also find another potential plot development in the ending, great image of these pots all waiting to be glazed. Why not have her overheat one and smash it? That can achieve the destruction latent in Timo's situation without needing to close your piece with a definite statement.

    Great use of the prompts. I can never write dialogue easily the way you have!

    1. Thanks for your detailed feedback and suggestions - all great! I've got ways to improve the piece now! :)


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