Friday Flash – A Gentle Nudge

The writer sat at the small table she used as a desk. She hunched over her laptop, conscious of the dull ache in her lower back. The Word file was open, calling to her every few minutes or so. She tried to ignore it – she had missions to complete on Frontierville, and blog posts to write, not to mention knitting patterns to track down. Besides, she couldn’t possibly write now – she was listening to Skid Row and she could never write while listening to glam. No, she would get to her work in progress when she was done. The stuffed dog on her table seemed to adopt a look of reproach.

“Oh great, even Aston is a critic. Look, I said I’d write 2000 words this week and I’ve already done half of that!” said the writer.

Aston said nothing.

“I’m going to the loo. I promise I’ll do some actual writing when I come back.”

The writer left the room.

* * *

The writer pushed open the door, one hand curled into a ready fist. She’d left her laptop playing Youth Gone Wild and now it was midway through Haydn’s Cello Concerto in D. She looked around the studio flat but saw no intruder.

“Don’t be daft, who is going to let themselves into your flat just to change the music?” she asked aloud. Aston held his own counsel.

She realised she’d left Facebook open, but now the screen displayed her work in progress. Only it wasn’t quite her work in progress. A line of text interrupted the sixth chapter of the supernatural YA novel.

“My dear, you know that I admire your eccentricities, but would you kindly cease procrastinating and GET SOME WORK DONE?”

The writer gasped, before bellowing a single name.


* * *

I’m in the process of rewriting my Fowlis Westerby novel and I get the impression that one day, he will actually do this to me. I’ve already written the story of my editor, Aston, which you can find here.

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33 thoughts on “Friday Flash – A Gentle Nudge

  1. Helen says

    Hehe – he really wants you to get on with it! I think Aston sees all and says nothing, that way he doesn’t get the blame.

    Helen – helen-sribbles.

  2. Cathy Webster (Olliffe) says

    Icy, I love what you’ve done to the place. Gorgeous blog!
    I could use a lad like Fowlis to push my derriere in the direction it needs to go. When he’s done freaking you out, would you mind floating him across the Atlantic for a bit?
    Loved this, btw; an absolute charmer of a flash.

  3. Tony Noland says

    I thank God that my characters stay safely asleep on the hard drive in between novel writing sessions. I my mind, not so much.

    Loved the funny take on this, Icy.

  4. Icy Sedgwick says

    Sam – Aston’s staying awfully quiet on the subject!!

    Helen – Yeah, Fowlis prods me if I ignore him for too long.

    Cathy – I’ll have a word and see what he can do.

    Janet – And Fowlis gets cranky in the most delightful way!

    Tony – I would actually be incredibly freaked out if this actually happened!

  5. FARfetched says

    Fowlis has a wicked funny sense of humor, doesn’t he? But it can’t be worse than two horny teenagers in my head, telling me all sorts of stuff I really didn’t need to know along with things I did…

  6. Stephen says

    Hi there Icy — with Aston and Fowlis on your case no wonder you’re getting the words out. How can a stuffed dog be so reproving, or a disembodied ghost so charmingly insistent? I’m afraid, you’re just going to have to get on with it 🙂


  7. Michael A Tate says

    Aston is in cahoots with Fowlis is my thinking.

    Actually, I think I need to get an editor that can channel the supernatrual to give me a kick in the butt once in a while.

  8. Icy Sedgwick says

    Julie – Thanks!

    Tim – Aston’s paws are too big for the keyboard.

    John – He gets awfully cross with me when I neglect him.

    Lisa – Thanks!

    FAR – Fowlis is a bit of a cheeky devil but he’s lovely really – I wouldn’t be without him for anything!

    Stephen – Yes, they leave me little choice!

    Laurita – He’s less pushy and more persuasive!

    Michael – I wouldn’t at all be surprised if they were in cahoots!

    Sonia – He does indeed!

    Matt – See, I could have gone mad and just not even noticed.

    Steve – He’s lovely really.

  9. Chuck Allen says

    I love this because it makes for an entertaining story while also giving us a glimpse into your life. (Or at least another picture of Aston.) 🙂

  10. Maria A. Kelly says

    You should always listen to your muses, especially when one if them is a Cavalier ghost and the other an adorable stuffed puppy! They only want whats best for you, dear. Yay, Fowlis and Aston!

  11. afullnessinbrevity says

    I can’t wait to read Fowlis when he makes his full length debut. He’s so gentlemanly, yet knows when to insist upon the commencement of forward momentum.
    And Aston seems to be a tough critic and editor.
    Adam B @revhappiness

  12. flyingscribbler says

    Aston needs a story of his own. This just confirms my belief that stuffed toys have a level of intelligence we can only dream of. (Ever see a worringly strange film called ‘The Last Mimsy’?)

  13. Icy Sedgwick says

    Mari – Fowlis is lovely to have around.

    Chuck – Yeah, Aston worms his way into a lot of photos!

    Maria – Yeah, they don’t really give me much of a choice.

    Adam – Well it’s in the rewrite stage at the moment…

    Justin – Aston’s had one. It’s here.

  14. brainhaze says

    Its great when characters pop into your life when you’re not writing, but this just goes to show how much influence they can have in a writers life – nice one Icy, your stories are always top of my list for #fridayflash – they never disappoint 🙂

  15. KjM says

    Yeah, those characters have a habit of being pushy, don’t they? Have to admit, I’d be fairly freaked out discovering one of them had taken over the writing in such a forthright fashion.

    Fun read.

  16. Donald Conrad says

    This line of thought is akin to me finishing something in the wee hours and becoming suddenly aware of a new noise in the house. Imagination is truly wonderful. Thanks.

  17. Magaly Guerrero says

    It is lovely to know that I’m not the only one who gets mildly bully by her characters! Fawlis sounds like charm, and I love the way the name sounds when I say it aloud!

  18. cambronwriter says

    Skid Row is one of my favoirte bands. They are not glam! Hair, maybe lol.
    I actually like the irony. A writer writing about a writer w/ writers block. Next I’ll find a painter that painted a picture about a painter who can’t paint.


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