An irregular, irreverent, post-modern account of the surreal, the ordinary, and the bizarre happenings on and around the Felia lavender farm in Crete

Monday, October 03, 2005


Ferreting around on Spymac yesterday I spotted an item in the forum Writer's Block entitled 50 Word Fiction. Necessarily, it piqued my interest. Having an affinity with the Oulipo movement writing within constraints fascinates and challenges me. A challenge like this was not to be ignored.

Needless to say by noon when it was time to take young Inge to the beach for her final dose of ultra-violets I had in mind word sketches of an idea or two. Never one to stint, I composed a fairly straight ahead 50 worder to get my writers muscle toned - something with portent and a sombre tone - and then I struggled for the rest of a sun soaked afternoon with two more in the mode of Perec and with an extra constraint larded on. Eventually, I managed to work the titles, or references to those titles, of the progenitor Perec texts into the bodies of these tiny gems.

And so I present for you here 3 small, polished, 50 word fictions in which I am well pleased:


She lit another cigarette; the ashtray overflowing. She ordered another coffee. She unfolded the crumpled note once again and stared, unbelieving, at it.

"Your husband and his lover were found dead this morning. Both men appear to have taken cyanide".

She cried another silent fistful of those cold hard tears.


A gun in his lap Jack thinks about his past. "Without Anna, it all adds up to nothing - a void. Finish it now. Do it!"

A shadow falls across his glass and his hand grasps firmly, involuntarily, to his salvation.

Swiftly and with a loud bang, his brains fly away.


Even when they were seventeen they were, she knew, perfect. He engendered envy even then. They entered Exeter peerless. They left heedless.

She knew the legend. He knew the legend.

Here they were less well sheltered. Every element seemed extreme. Where here were the meek?

Were these then, the lees?

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