…into the first fiction presented on the Foley’s Forum website…
Wanting to keep my new Foley’s Forum website simple and uncluttered, I decided to limit the number of stories, articles & poems on there at any one time. For my first batch of short stories, then, I selected ones with a range of lengths & shades of writing. And if you want to know ‘the story behind the stories’, then read on…
The Intrepid Adventures of Ralph Ingleton… At 4,500 words, this is probably my favourite story. It was long-listed in an international competition some months ago and its main character, Ralph, was loosely inspired by a fictional ‘alter ego’ of someone I know (although that’s a long story in itself). Ralph is a traveller at heart and has a pretty vivid imagination. It gets him into all sorts of trouble – and there are a few twists along the way to look forward to.
A Real Old Dragon… is a shorter tale about a refined lady who turns into the most awful dragon when she’s messed with; and, as with many of my stories, it has an edge of humour.
Writing this story for a local competition – my first ever – happily won me third prize. I heard about the competition at Fowey library, the remit being that stories had to contain the word ‘dragon’. I went home thinking I’d never be able to write anything, but the next morning, I awoke to find a story writing itself as I lay there in bed. And so, infused with inspiration, I jumped out of bed and started scribbling away.
Soon after, the winners were invited to read their stories on Radio St Austell Bay and I appeared one morning in front of Marjorie James – and the community at large – on her Friday morning radio show.
That was a few years ago, and when I look back now, I have that story competition, and the lovely library ladies, to thank for catapulting me back into writing short stories. Up until then, I’d been working for some time on my first book, The Jacaranda Trail. And, whilst I enjoyed writing it, short stories can offer welcome relief from the long-term ‘slog’ of longer projects.
Moving on from these lighter tales are two very short pieces which are darker in tone…
Living with the Enemy… is a snapshot in the life of someone with a horror of the unseen world of germs that lurks about us. This is another one of those ideas that just popped into my head, and I don’t even think it was sparked off by anything in particular.
Love Changes Everything… is about one man’s rather sad dealings with cupid, written in response to a set title for a Brighton COW (Community Of Writers) competition. I would recommend any writers or would-be writers to check out their website – they seem very much into encouraging people to put pen to paper and their approach is light & inspiring, which is very refreshing.
Technically, these two pieces aren’t stories, since they don’t have a beginning, middle & end – they’d probably come under the ‘vignette’ category – if one existed. Unfortunately, as far as I can tell, there doesn’t seem to be an established niche for such fiction in the world of writing (yet!)… However, there was also a time when ‘flash fiction’ didn’t exist as a category either. But times change!
In any case, I do hope you’ll enjoy reading my ‘fictional works’. To have a read, click on the direct link to the Short Stories page on my main website at www.foleysforum.co.uk/short-stories.
And, don’t forget, the titles will be refreshed periodically, so if you’d like to know when this happens – along with any other Foley’s Forum news – you can sign up to receive the blog via the Subscribe Here box to the right.
If you enjoy reading the stories, feel free to leave a comment below…