Overture

C.E. Ayr_22-04-2015 (bc)
C.E. Ayr – Creator of a new genre

C.E. Ayr is a pioneer of a new genre of short story writing.
He has his own name for it – Sound Bite Fiction.

This is an emerging style aimed at the fast-moving time-restricted 21st Century reader.
The descriptive text is pared to the bone, events move at lightning speed.
The intelligent reader visualises an entire scenario in glorious Technicolour.
The tales are short, sparse and to the point, many of them less than one page in length.
His writing takes the reader to the core of the action, the characters, or the moment of crisis.
Like the sculptor who said that the statue exists in the stone and all he has to do is remove what is not needed, this writer prunes everything until he gets to the heart of what is.

This collection of stories by C.E. Ayr, has  been written in his current home on the Cote d’Azur.
Many of the tales are based in and around the place he calls Medville.
Mysterious and enigmatic, served with a splash of humour, nothing here is ever quite what it seems.

Expect the unexpected.
There is always a twist in the tail.
Nearly.

Posted in Sound Bite Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Arrows – Friday Fictioneers

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by the wonderful Rochelle, the undisputed master of what I call Sound Bite Fiction.
She sets the weekly challenge, and the standard.
This week’s photo by J Hardy Carroll made me think of country estates, Southern plantations, wealth and privilege.
But my little tale got away from me again.
The idea, as always, is to write a story of around 100 words based on the picture, below.

© J Hardy Carroll

Click here to hear me read this 1-minute story:
Arrows

The dead are uncounted.
Bodies lie heaped across the field of battle.
I am the only man standing on this side.
I fire the last shell from my ancient cannon, see it explode among the few remaining enemy archers.
Their arrows are already in the air.
I watch as they drop towards me.
I should run, duck, hide, something, but I am too weary.
I remain motionless, gazing upwards.
They rain down around me, on me, into me.
Into my eyes.
I stumble in circles, screaming in pain.
But it is not my time to die.
The dead are uncounted.

Posted in Sound Bite Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 41 Comments

Romance – Sunday Photo Fiction

Sunday Photo Fiction is a weekly challenge presented by my old friend Al Forbes.
The idea is to write a short story (200 word max) inspired by what you see in the picture (below).
Al’s photo this week
makes me think of love and romance, of all the happy times two people can spend together.
So, just this once, that is the story I wrote.

Click on this link to enter your tale, and to see what others have written.

© Al Forbes

Click here to hear me read this 90-second story:
Romance

It has been a turbulent romance.
She is moody and frequently bad-tempered.
And she is stubborn, opinionated, and very quick to express her views.
Usually quite forcibly.
I am a long term born again bachelor, set in my ways.
I am pretty easy going but, I admit, I have my quirks.
Like my fear of supermarkets.
An odd phobia, I grant you, but very real to me.
I don’t even like outdoor markets, the crowds, the sensory overload.
She likes to shop, of course.
She even likes to go to supermarkets.
After the first time I am no longer invited to accompany her.
She takes my credit card instead.
She hasn’t met many of my friends.
I try to spare them.
Those she has met stare at me in horror.
What are you doing with her, they ask.
She is okay, I lie.
She is a horrible, totally unlikeable woman, they all say.
Yes, I answer, but she is my horrible, unlikeable woman.

Posted in Sound Bite Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , | 27 Comments

Circus Parade – Friday Fictioneers

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by the wonderful Rochelle, the undisputed master of what I call Sound Bite Fiction.
She sets the weekly challenge, and the standard.
This week’s photo by Jennifer Pendergast shows an idyllic scene of a park bathed in sunshine, grass, flowers and a child playing hide-and-seek.
What can possibly go wrong?
The idea, as always, is to write a story of around 100 words based on the picture, below.

© Jennifer Pendergast

Click here to hear me read this 60-second story:
Circus Parade

The circus is in town.
We take two very excited kids to see the parade.
Elephants, dancing horses, clowns in ramshackle cars, great trucks with big cats in cages, all trundling up Main Street.
We meet a friend, she also has two children.
The two women chat while I herd four squealing wriggling whirlwinds.
The three-year old stumbles, grazes a knee.
I try to pacify her, call my wife, but the crowd has moved around us.
The others dart through legs, disappear.
I lift her, push people aside.
I see a little leg, a giant wheel.
I hear the screams.

Posted in Sound Bite Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 81 Comments

There’s Something Wrong – Sunday Photo Fiction

Sunday Photo Fiction is a weekly challenge presented by my old friend Al Forbes.
The idea is to write a short story (200 word max) inspired by what you see in the picture (below).
Al’s photo this week takes me down an all too obvious road.
Sorry about that.
Click on this link to enter your tale, and to see what others have written.

© Al Forbes

Click here to hear me read this 90-second story:There’s something wrong

Ground Control to Major Tom…
You owe us money, pal.
In Scotland, when four strangers address you as ‘pal’, you are often in trouble.
I know I am.
I try to keep the shake out of my voice.
How do you work that out, guys, I ask, although I have already guessed.
We were at your show tonight, bit of a disaster, eh?
Your circuit’s dead…
I am a singer in a Seventies Revival Tour, I do Bowie.
Ten minutes into tonight’s performance, during my first number, the power failed.
And could not be fixed.
there’s something wrong…
The tickets were pre-sold, so there was no cash for refunds.
I’m just a singer, I say, knowing it is futile.
You’re a rich rock star, you’re giving us our money back.
I get paid minimum wage by the promoter, I plead, I am broke.
This is sadly true.
Aye, you’re about to be more broke, pal.
Can you hear me, Major Tom?
Can you hear me, Major Tom?
No, I can’t hear anything.

Posted in Sound Bite Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Three Wishes – Sunday Photo Fiction

Sunday Photo Fiction is a weekly challenge presented by my old friend Al Forbes.
The idea is to write a short story (200 word max) inspired by what you see in the picture (below).
This week’s guest photo is by the talented Dawn Miller, whose Lingering Visions consistently deliver writing of the very highest quality.
Great to see you here, Dawn.

Click on this link to enter your tale, and to see what others have written.

© Dawn Miller

© Dawn Miller

Click here to hear me read this 100-second story:
Three Wishes

Ka-boing!
And, just like in all the best stories, a genie appears.
I look at the object in my hands.
I hadn’t even realised it was a lamp.
The genie is not quite what you’d expect either.
She is a lovely lady, clad in what might best be described as a belly-dancer’s outfit.
She smiles enchantingly.
Three wishes, Master, she suggests, handing me a list of exclusions.
Okay, she can’t do world peace, end to famine, or Scotland to win the World Cup.
Just personal stuff.
I am a simple man, with simple tastes, and I already live a happy life.
Okay, I say, and give her some health parameters.
Of course, she beams, good choice.
Then I propose a modest improvement to my financial situation.
Is that all, she asks in surprise, no pots of gold, baskets of diamonds, vast palaces?
No thanks, I say, I’m good with that.
Her smile is even more radiant.
Wonderful, she says, and your third wish?
I ponder awhile.
She waits patiently, dances languorously, gracefully to some unheard music.
I watch her.
A thought occurs.
I grin.
Heck, I’m not that old!

Posted in Sound Bite Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Bang – Friday Fictioneers

Friday Fictioneers is hosted by the wonderful Rochelle, the undisputed master of what I call Sound Bite Fiction.
She sets the weekly challenge, and the standard.
And today she also contributes this sunny photo which takes me immediately to my happy place.
The idea, as always, is to write a story of around 100 words based on the picture, below.

© Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

© Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Click here to hear me read my 1-minute story:
Bang

The explosion brightens the sky.
Just for a split second, it is daylight again.
I stare up at where, moments before, the plane was.
The plane flying my wife back to France.
And her sister, of course, but she is no great loss to anyone.
My wife, however, is – was – a lovely lady.
She did not deserve to die in this way, in what looks like an act of brutal terrorism.
Even with all today’s security checks, it is still possible to get an explosive device through.
And I know how.
Sorry, sweetheart, but I really need the insurance payout.

Posted in Sound Bite Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 116 Comments

Bedside Table – Sunday Photo Fiction

Sunday Photo Fiction is a weekly challenge presented by my old friend Al Forbes.
The idea is to write a short story (200 word max) inspired by what you see in the picture (below).
Al’s photo this week is full of possibilities, from the quite mundane to the essentially enigmatic.
I try to find, as ever, a middle road.

Click on this link to enter your tale, and to see what others have written.

© Al Forbes

© Al Forbes


And click here to hear me read this 90-second story:
Bedside Table

I waken with a start.
I am disoriented, feel a tiny shiver of fear.
Then I realise I am at home, in my own bed.
But I am aware that all is not as it should be.
The room is shuttered.
I lie unmoving in the pitch black, listening intently.
I hear nothing.
But the hairs on my neck are on end.
My mind is racing.
What disturbed me?
I am a light sleeper, trained to be alert at all times.
I do not think there was a noise.
I know my apartment is secure.
So what could it be?
I am rarely so tense, and never when I am here.
I breathe slowly, deeply, until I am fully relaxed.
Then, when I am confident everything is under control, I reach for water.
I always have a glass on my bedside table.
I do not need light, I know exactly where it is.
It isn’t.
I pause, tensing again.
Is it possible I forgot it when I came to bed?
I don’t think so.
It is part of my unchanging bedtime ritual.
My hand moves down, feeling for the table.
It is not there.

 

Posted in Sound Bite Fiction | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 27 Comments