Posts Tagged ‘short story


Short Story: Dementia Pugilistica

flat,550x550,075,fI wrote this one back when I was doing that creative writing course at about this time last year. The assignment was to write a character in action and make him or her compelling enough to make the reader want to read more.

The big catch was you had to show and not tell who your character was through their actions and their surroundings. So I wrote this short piece and it’s one of the few that, reading back over it now, I still like.

That’s the problem with writing, you end up hating at least 90% of your own work, if not more, which makes it difficult to stay motivated.


Short Story: Steering Lock

Dance.4Thick plumes of smoke churned from his wheels as Lenny popped the clutch, geared up to fifth and braced for impact.

He came to in the lobby in a mess of twisted steel, broken glass and people screaming. His was sheeting blood from a broad gash across his forehead. He wiped the mess from his eyes, grabbed the steering lock from under his seat and shoulder-barged the driver’s side door until it came loose.

The crowd parted like the red sea around him as he lurched across the dancefloor, his face inhuman with rage. He kicked the door to the back office open in a shower of splinters and stood framed in the crimson light.


Short Story: The Grindstone Cowboy

mqdefaultI mentioned a few weeks back that I’d enrolled on a 10 week long Creative Writing course run by Getsmarter in the hopes that it would light a fire under my ass to finish my first manuscript by August.

Good news is the course has definitely taught me a few tricks that will be seriously helpful over the next few months. Bad news is with all the course assignments, I have no time to actually write my manuscript.

Same goes for this blog, which is why I came up with the genius idea of posting some of my writing exercises on the site and in this way, killing two birds with one stone – SPLAT!


Short Story: Vesuvius

volcano13-iceland-lava-aurora_22340_600x450So I tried my hand at another writing exercise, I get them monthly in the All About Writing newsletters, you should hit this link and subscribe as well if you’re an aspiring writer.

The word limit is 250 per story so you have to keep your writing as lean and mean as possible, which is a great exercise in creative limitation.

Oh and I forgot to tell you guys that my last submission won! I got a R200 book voucher that I donated to The Shine Centre, a place where they teach underprivileged grade 2 and 3 kids how to read.


Short Story: A Visit From Lenny

Lenny came creeping in the bar in a gigantic coat with the collar up and an old baseball cap pulled down so low I barely recognised him.

His head jerked awkwardly as he scanned the room like it was attached to him with a series of gears that were grinding and cracking under the strain.

For a second he looked like he was about to turn tail and bolt back into the street, half the bar was already staring at him, trying to catch a glimpse of his face and see if it looked anywhere near as dirty and destitute as the rest of him.


Guardian Angels

By the time you see the blue lights flashing, it’s already too late.

Thursday night we get pulled over, I’ve had two tequilas and about five beers so basically I’m up shit creek and I fucking know it.

They run through the usual pleasantries of “Have you been drinking, sir?” and “Please get out of your car sir” and all the while all you’re thinking is, “It’ll be fine. Everything will be fine. Somehow everything’s going to work out. Just be cool.”

They make you check the nozzle, check it’s freshly sealed in plastic and no one’s tampered with it before they open the plastic and attach it to the breathaliser.


Afrikaans Porn

Dit was n koue Maandag aand en Karel Bester was in sy gunstelling bar met Charnelle, genieting n bitjie brannewyn en coke terwyl Kurt Darren het op die jukebox n lekker leidjie gespeel het.



“Weet jy wat die fokken probleem met Marikie is?” het Karel gese as hy n lank suip van sy brannewyn gevat het, “sy is glad nie adventurous nie.”

“Nie adventurous nie?” het Charnelle gevra, haar oe darting tussen Karel se gesig en sy krotch, “wat beteken jy Karel?”

“Wel, die ding is, ek en Marikie is nou amper vyf jaar getrou en moenie my verkeerd vat nie ek fokken lief haar stukkend.”


Short Story: Ending

She takes my hand and leads me down an impossibly long passage. The light everywhere is murky, oozing out of dimmer-switched skylights, the carpets are a pale mustardy colour and rooms branch off to the left and right of me, there must be at least 20 coming off this passage.

The two beers I downed nervously at the ‘bar’ are doing nothing to take the edge of what I’m doing and though I’m trying to act cool, trying to enjoy this, I think what’s really happening is I’m crapping myself.


Short Story: Animals In Love

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the years I’ve worked here, it is the universal truth that no matter how they might try to dress it up and pretend otherwise, humans are messy creatures and that is a fact.

Some of them loved a good, hard party and they’d leave the rooms smelling like a bar the next day, beer pooled in sour patches on the carpets, cigarette butts spilling out of ashtrays knocked to the floor, that kind of thing.

The Higgs brothers were crazy like that – Joe kicked the TV in one night when they were good and wasted, and Mike got a mean gash on his forehead because he was jumping on the bed and got whacked by the ceiling fan.


Short Story: Smooth Baby

He couldn’t wait to go home. In all seven years of being alive, he couldn’t remember ever being so excited before.

His heart hammered relentlessly inside his tiny chest and his mouth felt cotton-dry as he fidgeted and squirmed in his chair, bursting for a pee and not paying one scrap of attention to anything going on around him.

In his mind, all there was, was THE TOY.

He’d first seen THE TOY in a flea market when his mom was shopping for some black dog to grill for supper. Amongst the chaos and the noise and the thick clouds of oily smoke that mingled and moved like dragons through the narrow, dirty alleyways, he’d spotted it.