What They Say: Flash Fiction #Blogbattler Week 50


What They Say: Flash Fiction

“The only time I want to see a whole lot of red inky letters on paper is when Jesus is talking in my Bible, not when I have to hand you back your manuscript!” Mr. Hopeheld drummed his fingers on his desk, the frustration in his eyes melting in to compassion.

“Don’t look so chewed up. You and I both know you can do better than this. This,” He stabbed his pointer finger into the tome upon his shiny desktop. “This was a distracted effort of lifeless words and that just isn’t who you are.”

The tempered rebuke from Lloyd’s publisher  a week ago had nearly given him an ulcer. The sad thing was Mr. Hopeheld was right in all he said. The only problem was that him being right had not helped Lloyd one iota. He’d only told him what he’d already known.

Lloyd didn’t believe in writer’s block. The truth was he always had something to say, always had some character whispering in his ears, flashing pictures of their questionable misadventures before his eyes.

But the sudden fearful indifference that had wrapped tight hold of him like sodden leather was what made him shrink back from his laptop. Even now he felt his pulse thrumming in his ears as he stood looking at it from across the room.

Last thing he wanted to do-again-was write thousands of words of garbage fit for nothing more than the lining of a chicken coup. But the moment his love for storytelling had turned into something akin to tree kicking he just couldn’t bring himself to do it…not like he should.

Problem was he had signed on to write what he was told by others; by his critics and naysayers, by blog reviewers who did nothing but spew acid upon the written attempts of those who’d actually stuck their necks out to accomplish their dreams. Those hacks could only trash others while building themselves up on platforms of how they would have done it better. And the readers were eating it up.

Lloyd had even eaten it to his own demise.

Rolling his shirt up over his head he turned from the desk again and screamed. He’d done this to himself. Even Mr. Hopeheld had said so.

“Lloyd, who cares what your critiques say. It’s your fans who matter. When they start ripping you apart on their blogs then you know you have a problem. But these guys, these soul-suckers who always know how to ‘do it better’ never ‘do it.’ They are irrelevant.” He picked up Lloyd’s manuscript, all 350 pages worth, and tipped it in the wastebasket.

Lloyd felt the color drain from his face. Hopeheld took hold of his shoulders. “You get your behind back to that condo of yours and you write again, but this time you write from your heart, you write it for you first, with your audience in mind second. And when you write your story, let your words be pure, true, engaging. If you don’t like it. If you’re not moved, we won’t be either.” He clapped him on the back for good measure as if he were his coach. “Go move us, son. Do what you were created to do. Move us!”

Pulling his shirt back down over his chest, Lloyd put on his game face. He’d written a great story before. He was going to do it again. No matter what his critics had to say. Who were ‘they’ anyway?


I hope you enjoyed this weeks entry of the blogbattle! The Keyword: PURE and my Genre: CONTEMPORARY...I think. To read more stories from other battlers, please click HERE and head on over the the fab blog of Rachael Ritchey!

Dream. Imagine. Believe. Do. CONQUER!


21 thoughts on “What They Say: Flash Fiction #Blogbattler Week 50

  1. you had me at the opening line

    The only time I want to see a whole lot of red inky letters on paper is when Jesus is talking in my Bible, not when I have to hand you back your manuscript!”

    and these some wise words

    you write from your heart, you write it for you first,

    I was nodding in agreement, I should remember all that…..

    P.S. who are They anyway

    1. 😀 Do remember that! You are such an amazing story teller. When we start trying to fill a niche, not because we hunger for the need to be filled, but because someone tells us we should i.e writing what is ‘popular’ we lose our power. There are lots of trends out there I’m noticing and with them comes this nudge to fit in. I’d rather be true to my creativity and the story within me than to fit in. And who are They indeed 😉

  2. Lovely. You have to write the story that’s inside you. There’s nothing wrong with trying something in a popular genre, but eventually, we all have to learn that there’s only so much critique we can incorporate and still have the tale be ours. 🙂

    1. Exactly! It so easy to sleep into what others expect of you rather than what is true of you creatively. I am struggling with that with my other creative en devours. But the struggle only makes for stronger muscles 😉

  3. I absolutely love this. It is such an important message. Write fr you, not to please the critics, or anyone else for that matter.

    1. 🙂 I so happy to hear it moved you. I think we all struggle with this in our art, but those who make the greatest impact, I think, are the ones who stayed true to their art. People call them rule breakers but I think they stayed true to the greatest rule of artistic creation; authenticity.

      1. I completely agree. The whole point of art is to express yourself, not to please someone else. If someone else likes it, that’s good, but it should never be the point. In my opinion, anyway.

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