I shared a story I’d written in a book I bought having given a copy to a friend for his birthday. The title says it all ‘The Very Short Story Starter: 101 flash fiction prompts’. Flash fiction is “a type characterised by being very short, typically consisting of only a few hundred words.”
Here is the prompt: a homophone is a set of words that sound the same but have a different meaning and spelling, such as hear/here, idle/idol etc. Incorporate some homophones into a story of 300 words or less.
I have no idea how long this is, but here’s my attempt:
The Irish wind blew gently round the eave as the family gradually awoke. It was cool in the bedroom and the children, usually up so early, stayed under their blankets for once, still tired, maybe from their long journey on the previous day. A tedious drive, a ferry and more than enough miles across the midlands of the beautiful country.
Brie crept out of bed and went to look out of the window, out over the farmyard which had been in darkness last night. It was wet and it was empty, the yard a dark mix of brown and grey. She turned back into the room Max had pulled the covers completely over himself and was snoring slightly. She bent over the children; Eve’s hair was a fuzz of gold and was all she could see of her child. Ray had thrown his covers off and her son lay with his arms above his head in his usual sleeping pose, wearing his favourite red t-shirt – would there be the usual battle to get him to relinquish it and wear a clean one? Well, they were on holiday, did it really matter?
She went back to the window and looked out. The sun was beginning to make an effort to pierce the clouds. Maybe she should make tea for max and find the squash to make drinks for the children. She looked down at them, sharing the bed, her daughter snuggled under the blankets as usual, her son throwing them off – as usual.
Maybe she would spend a few more minutes at the window.Beyond the farmyard were fields, meadows of grass and as usual there was the fairy thorn – a single tree left standing, crooked and alone, no farmer daring to cut it down or even damage it.
In a unique moment the sun broke through the clouds and sent a ray down to brighten the small green leaves of the thorn in the near field. How come she never had her camera at such a moment.
There was a movement in the yard and two small chocolate brown dogs walked tentatively across empty space. Where had they been to and what had they been up to because they did look as if they were wary of who they might meet.
“Oh my goodness!” Brie exclaimed so loudly that Max threw off his covers, Ray opened wide his eyes and even Eve pulled her blankets down to look at her.
“Quietly, come and look, quick, quick!” Brie whispered.
The children bobbed up in front of her and Max rolled out of bed to stand behind her and look where she pointed into the yard.
“I thought it was a dog, but it’s a hare, and then I saw the other, look – two black hares!”
This was just an exercise, and I don’t particularly like my story, it really is not my usual style or content, and I won’t be continuing with it. However, it was a fictionalised account of a true incident when we were on holiday in Ireland with our children, and we saw these two chocolate brown/black hares crossing the farmyard of the farm where we were staying.
The homophones are hair/hare, wear/where, ferry/fairy, ray/Ray, see/sea, sun/son, where/wear.