F is for Flash Fiction

california

Number 6 in The A to Z of the Writer’s Affliction, part of the A to Z blogging challenge.

As I’ve already mentioned, my first novel, French Sally, was long. 301,587 words, to be exact. So when Matt at the TheBookBlogger2014 created a Flash Fiction Foray event (now suspended, I’m afraid), setting the limit at 100 words, I thought, now there’s a challenge! The prompt was the song California Dreaming, to be used in any way you want.

‘Here it is.’

‘Where?’

‘There. In front of you.’

‘That?’ Sharon stared at the shoddy scrap of plastic, barely bigger than her IKEA futon, that Jimmy was expecting her to admire. ‘You’re joking.’

‘What?’ He looked offended. ‘Why?’

‘Well, it’s not what you described last night.’ She’d had a bit too much, sure, but she clearly remembered, between the last drink and the sex (lousy, but hey, for a first time together…), the vision of luxury he’d conjured.

‘No, then I was joking. You didn’t get it?’ He held out a hand. ‘Cheer up, babe. Welcome aboard the California Dreaming.’


But why stop at 100? Since the challenge of brevity is such fun, I think I’ll reduce it to 80.

‘Here.’

‘Where?’

‘There.’

Sharon stared at the shoddy scrap of plastic, barely bigger than her futon, that Jimmy was expecting her to admire. ‘You’re joking.’

‘What? Why?’

‘Well, it’s not what you described last night.’ She’d had a bit too much, sure, but she clearly remembered, between the last drink and the sex, the vision of luxury he’d conjured.

‘No, then I was joking. You didn’t get it?’ He held out a hand. ‘Cheer up. Welcome aboard the California Dreaming.’


Ah, I’m enjoying this. Let’s continue:

Sharon stared at the scrap of plastic that Jimmy was expecting her to admire. ‘You’re joking.’

‘Why?’

‘It’s not what you described.’ She’d had a bit too much, sure, but she clearly remembered the vision of luxury he’d conjured.

‘No, then I was joking. You didn’t get it?’ He held out a hand. ‘Cheer up. Welcome aboard the California Dreaming.’


 A step further? Why not?

‘You’re joking.’

‘Why?’

‘It’s not what you described.’ She’d drunk too much, but there’d been a vision of luxury.

‘No, then I was joking. You didn’t get it?’ He held out a hand. ‘Cheer up. Welcome aboard the California Dreaming.’


And now that we’re in the swing of it…

‘You’re joking.’ She’d drunk too much, but there’d been a vision of luxury.

‘Cheer up. Welcome aboard the California Dreaming.’


One final push…

Drunk.


I think French Sally could benefit from this treatment. I’ve started already, in fact – brought it down to 180,000. But I feel a lot more could be done. Would anyone like to help? Somewhere in the region of 25 words would be fine.