Sally-Anne Wilkinson: No Swimming!

Please have a gander at my new short story over at the Storgy Magazine website. If you’re a short story fan, there’s loads of fabulous fiction for every taste.

Aaron’s attention is caught by a gull rising from the surf out at sea, and I take the time to scrutinise him, grateful to have something to focus on apart from the water. His features aren’t entirely familiar to me, as I’ve only known him a few weeks. If I’m honest, I’ve kept him at arm’s length – but he’s different to the others, and finally, I’ve allowed myself to enjoy his company; accept the attention he gives me. It’s tough for me to admit it – but I like him. A lot. It’s the fact he’s interested in me; really interested. He encourages me, but doesn’t push. On top of all that, my mother’s not keen, which is another reason to keep him around.

My eyes follow the line of his jaw from his ear to his chin, which is unbelievably smooth.   He reminds me of one of the…

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A Language Called Water by Sally-Anne Wilkinson

Hi peeps. Here is my latest Storgy contribution.

A LANGUAGE CALLED WATER

by

Sally-Anne Wilkinson

typewriter

The water is where I belong. It’s where I always belonged: submerged and concealed from the world. I blink and examine my surroundings. I don’t remember my journey. One minute, I was on the ward and the door was open; the next, I was here. I don’t recall ever knowing this place existed. I am wet from the storm, and the wind shrieks, slapping my face. In front of me, a metal ladder leads into an abandoned pool built at the edge of the sea. My feet sink in a carpet of low-lying weeds around the rim. The water is almost opaque and thick with algae. Over the pool’s outer edge, facing the horizon, the ocean crashes against the boundary, fighting to enter. The constant impact of the sea has weakened the barrier, and salt water seeps through, disturbing the glassy surface. I…

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The Kiss by Sally-Anne Wilkinson

Here’s my latest Storgy short story. It’s only a two minute read.

THE KISS

by

Sally-Anne Wilkinson

typewriter love

In this moment, rising out of everything, it’s our first kiss I remember. To me, it’s far clearer than where we met or what we wore – though that’s something we argued about regularly. You said you wore green, but I’m certain you wore blue. And our first meeting? You were on the bench in the park, but you insisted it was a different bench – the one by the river. Your hair, an abundance of curls, was in a topknot that day, but you said no – you wore it down, freshly washed, the morning cold entwined in the damp spirals. I may have it wrong, I may not. It’s not something to worry about now. We have two minds, two sets of memories and emotions, two sets of eyes.

For the longest time, ensnared in rituals of work and family, we lost our…

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Falling in Love with Carla – a Review of Carla by Mark Barry

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This is my first ever review of a novel, so a bit nerve-wracking.

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Recently released from a mental hospital, John Dexter moves to a quiet Peak District town where he lives a solitary life on an income his father provides. His story, both moving and human, is one that remains with me now. John suffers from Borderline Personality Disorder, which negatively affects his relationships with women, and is unable to form any kind of romantic attachment without it turning into obsession. He spends most days drinking and friendless, until he meets Carla who he instantly falls in love with.

I know what you’re thinking.

You’re thinking you’ve been here before… Is there any point in reading on?

Believe me, there is.

What I didn’t expect when I read Carla was how much I would like John. Though why wouldn’t I? He’s an intelligent man, who’s disarmingly honest about his condition. His light, conversational tone is a great foil for the story he tells us: one of tragedy, dark obsessions, personal hatred and violence. It draws you in, informing us about his condition and his attraction to Carla. He also tells us that eventually it all went ‘very, very wrong’. From the very beginning he hides nothing, disclosing everything with beguiling candour and humour. As a reader, you are prepared for the worst, holding on tightly during the entire uncomfortable journey. Yet despite the horror of all he divulges, he is extremely affable and as readers, we continue to want the best possible outcome.

Over the course of two-hundred pages we experience everything John does – his inner battle to control his urges, his knowledge that his thoughts and actions are at odds with his need to be an ordinary person, and his justifiable fears that eventually he will ruin everything during his quest to woo his love. He is a very sympathetic character. Despite his mental illness, he has the same needs and desires as anyone else; he wants to live freely and love freely, and as readers, we can appreciate and identify with this. We can also understand some of his impulses and obsessions – we all go a little mad when we are gripped by love.

Whilst reading Carla, my mind was transported to other fictional characters with whom mental illness was a major theme. In my own personal comparison, John came out favourably. He was certainly more accessible and empathetic than Salinger’s disillusioned teenager Holden Caulfield in Catcher in the Rye. He was also more aware of his own motivations. Jed Parry in Ian McEwan’s Enduring Love, who has De Clerembault’s Syndrome, is completely delusional, and his blind persistence as he doggedly stalks his victims alienates the reader. At times I felt similar fears and frustrations when reading John’s internal monologue. However, despite this, he has many redeeming features and remains sympathetic throughout. Finally, I was reminded of Glenn Close’s character in the film Fatal Attraction. John as an obsessive is far more considered, complex and well-rounded. His thoughts are often irrational and destructive, but he is far from one-dimensional. Barry characterises his protagonist in a rich and multi-faceted way; his compulsions are not purely reactive and hysterical as demonstrated by the Alex Forrest role.

Despite the ‘very, very wrong’ outcome of John and Carla’s romance, the journey there isn’t what I expected. In writing this story, Barry poses the question: given the right circumstances, can someone with such ingrained impulses and urges evolve into a better person? The story is essentially one about self-discovery; trying to step away from a given path when everything around you is signposting disaster. John is certainly open to learning about himself, and from the point at which he meets Carla, he continually attempts to develop and improve. And as Carla responds to her admirer favourably, we see him through her eyes as well as his own. However, as readers, we are almost in a state of suspended animation, as we wait for him to be ‘found out’. Just as John himself – bloated with self-loathing – also waits.

Though I think this is a marvellous book – a deceptively easy read that broaches a range of themes on the nature of love and mental illness; asking where obsession stops and love begins – there are a few issues that meant I could only give it four out of five stars. Firstly, on rare occasions, I found the dialogue didactic and clunky – especially at one point, when John and Carla discuss environmental issues. Secondly, though John is well-developed, some of the other characters feel less authentic (Carla, particularly, seems like she’s been dropped into the novel from another century. John is such a strongly drawn character, I want to see in her what he sees.) Thirdly, though I really appreciate delving into the darkest recesses of John’s mind, his life, and experiences at the psychiatric hospital, there are times when his narrative is a little repetitive. Nevertheless, the descriptions are brilliantly painted, and only enhance the complexities of John’s personality and experiences. Having said that, during a concluding scene at Carla’s childhood home, the author seems to gallop through events. It was such a defining moment in the tale, I wished the author had slowed his pace. Yes, it is an action scene, but the language doesn’t hesitate on any particular image and therefore feels rushed. Finally, there is an episode in the book where John dresses up as a woman to anonymously appear at an environmental event that Carla organises. No-one realises he is a man, though as he is six foot four, this doesn’t ring true.

This is a beautifully written book, where the descriptive passages are sheer poetry, and Barry’s ability to allow us into the mind of a complexly tortured individual is genius. We see the darkness and madness of a tormented mind, but above everything, we see a human being. As individuals, we would never want someone like John to be part of our lives, yet through the course of this book, the reader becomes his friend. We can understand why his family continue to stand by and support him. We want to put an arm around him and lead him onto a different path – all the time knowing that this isn’t possible. He is a victim to himself, and nothing can save him from that – only himself.

(This review can also be found on Amazon http://www.amazon.co.uk/Carla-Mark-Barry/dp/1492159441/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8 and Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18619851-carla).

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Flying by Sally-Anne Wilkinson

My new story on Storgy. Thanks for reading in advance 🙂

FLYING

by

Sally-Anne Wilkinson

typewriter love

Eva side-stepped the cowpat on the muddy path, feeling the warmth of the sun as it penetrated through the cold of the morning.  In the distance blackbirds trilled, but instead of watching them sweep by as she usually would, she kept her eyes firmly on the path in front of her.  She didn’t have long for her walk, but she needed this time to herself to clear her head.  The day would be full of people and full of chatter.  The sort she generally found long and exhausting anyway, but today, more so.  Today was Tom’s day.  Tom’s birthday.  In fact, soon she’d be rushing around, making ham sandwiches and putting cocktail sausages on sticks and laying out miniature cakes with fondant icing.  All the things he favoured.

In the past, Joe complained about her preoccupation with her son. He claimed it was what drove them…

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CLAPHAM COMMON

A bit of unrequited love in my latest short story on Storgy.

CLAPHAM COMMON

Clapham

by

Sally-Anne Wilkinson

From the first moment I see you, that’s it.

We’re on our lunch from work, taking advantage of the dry weather and kicking a ball around the Common, when Mac suddenly stops and nudges me.

‘Jones-y. Check her out.’

I look in the direction he’s indicating – towards you. I’d already seen you earlier, but knowing what he’s like, I purposely show little concern, as my interest will only increase his. He’s always been the competitive type.

He looks at me, raising his eyebrows. ‘Maybe I should go over? Say hello?’

‘Try it,’ I say, surprised by the warning in my voice. I can see Mac is, too.

‘Alright, alright, mate. Keep your shirt on.’

I still half expect him to amble over, but instead he shrugs, throws the ball in the air and boots it over to Pommy.  That’s strange. I’m not used…

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THE BABY by Sally-Anne Wilkinson

Here’s my latest contribution to the Storgy short story magazine.

THE BABY

by

Sally-Anne Wilkinson

typewriter love

If I had a previous life, it’s gone.  All I know is, the baby won’t stop crying.  His wails pierce through walls, as though they’re made of eggshell.  His lungs squall for hours, leeching the oxygen, and leave nothing for me.  Some days it’s hard to gather strength to get out of bed, climb downstairs, or even lift my arms to wash my hair.

Day and night, the baby feeds, sucking me dry.  With each feed, my skin hangs off my bones; bags deepen under my eyes.  There’s a vertical crease forming between my eyebrows, and a small blood vessel in the inner corner of each eye pollutes the whiteness.  Some days I see the dark hollows of my eye sockets and wonder if Halloween is a daily event.

When the baby arrived, Jonah abandoned me for the spare room. The baby is always latched…

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New Short Story – Je t’aime – by Sally-Anne Wilkinson

Teenagers in love with their French teacher? We’ve seen it all before…

JE T’AIME

by

Sally-Anne Wilkinson

typewriter love

Dear Andy,

Oh God, I can’t believe I’m writing this letter!  It’s soooo embarrassing.  I mean, you know I’ve fancied you for, like, ages, and I know it makes things a bit weird for you, you being a teacher and all that, and me just being fifteen.  But when two people love each other, rules and age and stuff like that, they just don’t matter, do they?

That day, when you first started at our school, was the best ever.  Let’s just say French classes got a whole lot better after that. I was in Year NIne, but at the time, you didn’t notice me because I was still pretty small and, really, I suppose I was just a kid.  I’ve changed a lot since then. Grown up. I think you’d only been teaching for a few years, because on your first day you looked…

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My Account of Attending an Author Event (or How to Get Drunk and Make Friends in London in Record Time)

So, recently, I entered a competition with Blinkbox Books, for a chance to win tickets to see Caitlin Moran and Kate Mosse in conversation with Clare Balding, at Cadogan Hall. ( They were all promoting their new books: How to Build a Girl, The Taxidermist’s Daughter, and Walking Home.) My chances of winning were very slim, I knew, but hey, as the saying goes, you’ve got to be in it to win it.  Or is it, win it to be in it?   Well, anyway…  I had to think of a question I would ask one of the authors if I ever had the chance to meet them.  I hadn’t read any Kate Mosse (to be perfectly honest, in the past, if I saw her books in a bookshop, I steered clear of them.  Not because I thought she was a world famous model and therefore bound to be a rubbish writer, but because I thought she wrote old-fashioned romances in the style of Catherine Cookson.  How wrong can you be?)

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So I won a prize in a competition, but I think I may have been the only person who entered.

So, there wasn’t any difficulty in choosing who my question would be directed towards.  After reading Caitlin Moran’s How to be a Woman, I’m a big fan.  I have to say, I’m intrigued by how she has achieved so much personal success so early in life.  My own personality is such that I’m often eaten away by self-doubt, and therefore, many of my personal goals are met with the brick wall of my subconscious telling me I’m rubbish.  Ms Moran, if she had these doubts trying to trip her up, didn’t take any notice of them at all. By the age of 15, she’d already written her first novel, and not long after, was a journalist for Melody Maker.  At the same age, I was dreaming about boys, listening to music, watching a lot of telly, and not much else.  My question to her, if I could ask her, was what gave her the motivation and tenacity to go for the things she dreamt of at such a young age.

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I wanted to be a teenage journalist for a music mag too, but I was too busy watching tv.

I entered the competition through the Blinkbox website and, with my ultra-positive, and totally uncynical personality, expected that would be the last I would hear of it.  I didn’t particularly think my question was original – anyone who’s a fan of Caitlin Moran knows about her early success.  Well, how wrong could you be?  You could have knocked me over with a feather when, a few weeks later, I received an email telling me that I had won a couple of tickets.  At first I thought it was a scam or a trick (Me? Distrusting?  NO WAY!!) , but then realised that no-one but Blinkbox Books knew I had entered the competition.  It was very short notice – four days, which for a very unspontaneous type like me is very short indeed (I was very nearly having change-of-routine palpitations) – and as I’d already arranged a night out with my friend in Manchester, it now had to be rearranged to a night in London (a change of routine and a change in location?  I was pretty certain I was not only going to have to be sponteous, but I might also spontaneously combust.)  Anyway, with not many funds to my name, this would be a discount trip too.  So transport was via National Express, and accommodation was a… er… functional room over a pub. (My husband, when he saw the room, asked if they hired the rooms out by the hour).  Say what you like about me, but I’m definitely high glamour all the way.

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National Express coaches. The only way to travel. And don’t let anyone else tell you any different.

So me and my pal, C, we always treat every night out like it’s our first and our last.  Or we like to imagine that there is a shortage of alcohol and we need to get a stockpile (in our stomachs).  Soon as we dropped off our bags at our prison cell… I mean, hotel room, we were into our going out gear, coating ourselves in another layer of cement… I mean, makeup… and sniffing out where the nearest cocktail bar was.  After a surprisingly uncomplicated trip on the tube, we ended up in Camden and had some very nice Brazilian tapas (only after we’d ordered a strawberry daiquiri and a margarita first, of course).

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It was the heels that stopped us from going shopping, not the massive bottle of wine we wanted to throw down our necks.

 

After the food, we had a bit of time to spare, but going out and looking at the shops was out of the question.  The discomfort of heels, you know?  Or maybe if you’re a bloke, you don’t?  Or then again, maybe you do?  Instead we decided to stay put and order a bottle of wine.  (Let me do an impression here of the Brazilian waitress: *mouth opens in shock*… ‘A BOTTLE!????’  I can only take it she’s not been in Britain long with that reaction.  Does she not realise we’re a nation of binge-drinkers?  Sorry, if I am tarring you with the same brush and you are, as yet, untarred…)

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Before the show, we thought maybe one or two cheeky cocktails to warm us up.

After flinging the contents of our bottle of wine down our necks at record speed, it was time to make our way to Sloane Square.  I’ve never been to Chelsea before but even with the reality-enhancing effects of alcohol, I knew that the people around me wore more expensive clothes and had more expensive hairdressers than the likes of me and C.  There were a lot of shawls, thick knits, and tartan.  For a minute, I thought I’d landed in Scotland.   (Thankfully, the lack of bagpipes gave the game away).  Anyway, before anyone could see that poorer people had landed in town, we legged it over to Cadogan Hall, hoping they’d let us in before they realised we’d travelled down on the National Express bus.  Fortunately, we did get a pass in, despite the fact the guy in the booking office was posher than the Queen.

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No sign is needed here. You know where you are because of all the tartan and shawls.

After we’d got our tickets (amazed that our names were on the guest list and it wasn’t actually an elaborate hoax…  I see conspiracy theories where there are none on a regular basis), we headed straight for the bar (well where else do expect – have you seen the title of this post???)  Fortunately, the girl at the bar was a little less posh than the other people we’d met, so probably didn’t mind that she was serving us a large serving of wine out of plastic glasses (Plastic glasses?  What the hell?  I thought we were in Chelsea?)  She also didn’t seem to mind that we ordered another large (plastic) glass of wine for the interval, or that even before the show had started, that we had finished our first (plastic) glass and were going back for seconds.  I have to say, Chelsea really went up in my estimation when it was time to go into the show and you were allowed to actually TAKE DRINKS INTO THE AUDITORIUM!!!  O-M-G, I was in heaven.  I would certainly be coming back to this particular theatre again, but next time I would wear a shawl (and possibly some tartan) so I didn’t feel such an outcast.  But first, all that wine was going right through me (Sorry – too much information… right?)  I needed the toilet.   Imagine my shock when I was directed to the ‘CLOAKROOMS’.  I couldn’t get my head round it – Chelsea is so posh that bogs are called cloakrooms.  (To be fair – if I have to be – there were cloakrooms down there too.)

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It’s so posh in Chelsea, the toilets are called CLOAKROOMS!

The show itself – through my drunken haze – was absolutely fantastic.  Clare Balding (who was doing the interviews… AKA plugging the second of her autobiographies) did pretty well with the comic banter.  If I wasn’t getting her new book for free (which was part of the prize, along with Kate Mosse’s and Caitlin Moran’s new books) I’d likely go out and buy it myself. Fortunately I don’t have to, though as they still haven’t arrived,  I’m now starting to wonder if that bit was the scam? (No, not suspicious at all.)

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I swear this is a picture of my legs during my teenage years. Even the ladder in the tights is the same.

Well, much as it may surprise you, the non-model Kate Mosse (who came onstage to the tones of Kate Bush wailing Wuthering Heights) doesn’t write romantic fiction.  She writes amazingly (apparently – I don’t know yet, I haven’t read anything of hers yet, but will do… she did a sterling job of selling it to me)  written literary fiction with feminist themes: strong women that go on adventures, that aren’t victims, and that are self-reliant when seeking success (ie. aren’t dependent on men to help them get on).  Themes that are right up my alley.  Oo-er.

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Can’t wait for my free copy to arrive. If it ever arrives!!

I would like to tell you that I remember lots about this interview but as you can imagine, with all the wine in my belly, arteries, and virtually every other part of my body, I was ten sheets gone to the wind.  All I know is that it must have been good, because my friend C, who didn’t have a clue who either of these authors were before the show, absolutely loved it, and wanted to get up and applaud (on several occasions).  At the time, I compared it to seeing the most famous, best band ever in an intimate venue, and C agreed.  But then we had both been drinking for at least four hours.

During the interval, we went back to the bar to collect our pre-ordered drinks.  I don’t know how I was still standing at this point, but I was, and I was coherent too (at least in my head).  I had a brief (blathering) conversation with a woman about thinking Kate Mosse was a romantic fiction writer, but I think I terrified her with my overconfident (drunken) banter, and she made her excuses and left to go to the ‘cloakroom’.  We took our drinks in for the second half (did I tell you YOU CAN TAKE YOUR DRINKS INTO THE AUDITORIUM at Cadogan Hall?) and got talking to the women sitting next to us on our row.  They were both dressed in matching green (they looked very nice, but like they may have been anticipating attending a mermaid’s convention, or were hoping to be extras in a reworking of Robin Hood).  We had a little chat about our misunderstandings of who Kate Mosse was (a recurring theme, it seems – I now feel like sending her a letter).

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The ladies next to us in the theatre shouldn’t have been exercising in the aisle, but they were wearing the right outfits, so what the heck.

Caitlin Moran, (whose arrival was accompanied by a now forgotten soundtrack – my brain, swamped with alcohol by this time, has erased that memory forever) promised us as soon as she arrived on the stage that there would be a lot of swearing and we should excuse her language.   As a result, I got seriously excited, expecting a verbal furore.  Disappointingly, by the end, much as I enjoyed the interview, I felt I didn’t get one.  Maybe it was the wine creating a fog between me and the stage (er, I think this is a given), but the only word that had any potential shock value was masturbate.  (Though it wasn’t really shocking.  Not to us.  We’d all read How to be a Woman and we knew what it was and that women did it.  Everywhere.  Even if they pretend not to.)  I know it wasn’t just me who reacted like this – it was mentioned later by our green goddess neighbours that they, too, were dismayed by the lack of Caitlin Moran induced commotion.

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If i become a famous writer, I want to look just like Caitlin Moran.

You can’t blame Caitlin though – despite the lack of swearing.  During the entire interview she was witty, eloquent, entertaining and frank (I can remember that much).  Probably, the main problem was, we were all already (off our heads and) in love with Kate.  Especially me.  Kate and me were going to go off and get married and have babies together.  Whatever her feminist principles.

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If only they’d let me in at the stage door, I could ask her to marry me.

Well, after the show, it was kind of like ‘What now?”  Nothing was going to live up to the adrenalin high I’d experienced in that auditorium.  Not even another trip to the cloakroom.  Fortunately, one of the green goblins (okay, I’m running out of green analogies) beside us asked us if we fancied going for a drink with them.  They made a vow they wouldn’t allow us to go anywhere with orange people in it (apparently there are lots of these in Chelsea – most of them with tartan shawls).  Probably this was because orange and green don’t mix.   I don’t know why they asked us to go out – I can only assume it was the fact they were as drunk as us, and therefore didn’t notice we were swaying.

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With all the tartan and shawls in Chelsea, they really should combine the two. The look would become all the rage.

Anyway, we both said yes – very eager to drink even more wine, but this time with company.  I was nervous.  Even with a shedload of dutch courage, and a big gob, I’m basically a shy person underneath, so I was wondering what on earth we were going to talk about with these complete strangers once our excitement over the show had dried out.  I needn’t have worried (though I did, quite a lot, when they led us down a very dark back street.  But it was okay, they were simply leading us to an old-fashioned pub that sold very nice Sauvignon Blanc with mad, eye-dazzling, Wilton carpets – and not an Umpa Lumpa in sight), the four of us got through two bottles of wine over the next couple of hours, and found out a lot about each other.  (Funny how much you share drunk that you’d never dream of when you’re sober.)  Trouble is, I was past the point of remembering any of it.

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Shix more bottlesh of Sav Blanc, pleashhh, and we’ll be on our way.

Green Goddess Two accompanied us on the tube, which is a good thing, as by this time my brain cells were melded together into one unusable lump, so I’d forgotten how to read the Underground Map.  Hey ho.  Thank God for green angels in disguise.  Once we left her (in a mad rush at Euston) we then messed everything up by going the wrong way, realising, and heading back to where we should have gone in the first place (which was stay on the train we were on with Green Goddess Two).

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Eventually we got to our destination at about 1am (God only knows what time we set off from Sloane Square), and we decided, unwisely, on some takeaway from the only open place on the street.  It had a picture of a pizza in the window, and we both fancied pizza.   ‘Can we have a pizza,’ I asked.  ‘We don’t sell pizza,’ was the reply.  ‘Don’t sell pizza?’ I slurred (well, actually, in my head, I was perfectly clear, but come on… let’s be honest here).   At this point I leaned out of the door and pointed to the poster, ‘But there’s a picture of one on the window.’  I thought I made a good argument.  Which I won.  But still, didn’t get any pizza.  Or a decent explanation.

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YOU DON’T HAVE PIZZA??? What kind of pizza shop is this?

As a poor substitute, I ordered a chicken kebab and chips.  Now I don’t know what your idea of a kebab is, but mine is greasy meat and salad and sauce wrapped up in a flat bread of some description.  Oh no.  In the pizza place that doesn’t sell pizza, it was some kind of unidentifiable greasy (at least that bit was right) meat strips plonked on top of chips, with a garlic/chilli sauce combo on the top.  You can imagine what it looked like.  If I’d been more sober, I would have complained.  (Who am I kidding?  If I’d been more sober, I wouldn’t have been in there in the first place). As it was, I took the lid off my food trying to examine said weirdness, only to drop half of it on the floor.  To be fair, they wouldn’t let me clean it up.  I don’t know why.  Possibly the fact that I would have made even more of a mess than I’d already made.  If that is possible.  Probably.

Anyway, somehow, we staggered back to our bleak little room in the bleak little hotel (even our drunken haze didn’t rosy up the place), with the duvet covers that looked like they’d come out of the room of a teenage boy from the middle of the nineteen eighties.    I only hope they’d been washed, because if they did belong to a boy from the middle of the nineteen eighties, I didn’t want to imagine what substances might be on them.  It didn’t seem to concern C.  She got into her pyjamas, and fell face down onto her pillow and didn’t move – I’m not even sure she was breathing – till morning.  I was still hungry because I’d lost half of my evening meal on the floor of Kebab House, so made my way through the Cadbury’s Chocolate Eclairs that had been left on our pillow, crunched the contents of a small box of Crunchy Nut cornflakes, and then ravaged the four coffee biscuits left by the kettle.  I also made a cup of tea that had a nice greasy film floating on the top.  I still drank it though.  Obviously, I would.  The whole night was based on drinking everything that was put in front of me.  Why would I end that now?

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I was very suspicious of what might be hidden in that busy blue and green pattern.

So did I learn anything from my author event?

Yes.

If you want to remember anything worthwhile for your writing blog, stay away from alcohol.

 

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New Short Story – ‘The Wedding’ – by Sally-Anne Wilkinson

Here’s my latest story on Storgy.

For some, the urge to marry is strong, regardless of the consequences…

THE WEDDING

by

Sally-Anne Wilkinson

typewriter love

That night, Obsita was swarming, which was comforting for us.  Exhausted after days of patrolling, hungry for food and company, it was gratifying to return to the tribe.   Raids from the vespers and avis were thick in Saltus recently; they stole from our oothecas, murdering our burgeoning young.  Of course, all of us were permanently at threat, and the knowledge of it lay thick amongst us – heavy as approaching thunder – but we were not afraid.  As warriors, we were strong, ready; our instinct to protect.

The sultry night air filtered into the club, leaving a residue of moisture on our flesh.  Strong drinks were required, and hopefully, if we were lucky, something more.  Many of us were experiencing the pressure of the season – of Tempore – which was so much more than our usual urge to defend the tribe.  Our mating instincts…

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