I wrote yesterday’s post as a cathartic rant about my continued failure to succeed in the writing business, which was triggered by me not making the long list of the Bath Flash Fiction Award . I will write some more about that when the wounds are less fresh. Needless to say that will feature a spicy shower scene with my best acquaintance.
However, I thought I had cartharted enough to enter another Faber Academy Friday #QuickFic competition. It turns out that I hadn’t vented enough spleen and now I’ve lost another competition. Which means I’ve mired myself deeper into the swamp of Self Pity, located somewhere to the north of Petulant Anger.
This was the prompt:
“But why pumpkins?” Josh said.
Janet grinned at him. He asked the question every year. She wondered if he was old enough to understand the truth yet.
“Because of the miracle.” She said.
Jan nodded. “Of course! Jack O’Lantern sacrificed himself to save us all.”
“Yeah, but why do we have to scoop his brains out?”
“Well that’s what the witches and demons did to him when he was helpless.”
Josh frowned. “But that’s a really bad thing. I wouldn’t want my brains to be scooped out.”
“That’s why we’re all so thankful to Jack for saving us all. That’s why we celebrate Halloween.”
“Mum?” Daisy said. She stopped hacking at her pumpkin with the finger severing knife traditionally used. “What’s a demond?”
“Well, he’s one of Satan’s little helpers, darling. A demon,” she made the ‘n’ a separate syllable, “is a being who goes around doing Satan’s evil work.”
“Like the opposite of an angel?” Josh said.
“Josh!” Jan looked around the garden, hoping nothing was listening. “You mustn’t talk about those sorts of creatures. It’s bad luck.”
“They can’t hurt you though, can they?” Daisy asked, smearing a little pumpkin flesh over her forehead as she brushed her hair out of her eyes. It looked like she was playing rituals.
“Demons?” Jan said.
“No.” And the little girl leant forwards and whispered. “Angels.”
“Don’t be silly. They’re not real. It’s just superstition. Like when someone says ‘Curse you’ after you’ve sneezed.”
The winners are here