Tag Archives: twitfic

Very Short Story – Hot Chips as a Sustained Metaphor

For the full title: The Use of a Common Takeaway Comestible, Hot Chips, as a Sustained Metaphor for the Defining Characteristic of a Relationship


They pooled their meagre resources, enough to buy hot chips; an impromptu first date. Their fingers touched reaching for the last chip.


What do have last period?

Maths. You?

Study. Let’s skip it.

And do what?

Get some hot chips.

She hesitated.

Come on.

Yeah, ok.


He watched her fresh from the surf, scoffing hot chips. The salt from the sea & chips crusted on his lips. Did her lips taste the same?


The 3am kebab gurgled ominously in his stomach. He reached for the communal hot chips.

“Bad idea.”

“Nah, I’m right.”

An eruption ensued.


Wedding dress and suit hung over the backs of chairs. Seated in underwear they quietly ate from a bowl of hot chips.
“To Mr and Mrs.”


A Saturday night family ritual: paper for crockery and fingers for cutlery, eating fish’n’chips from the centre of the table, licking salty fingers.


Wearing Sunday best, seated in the corner of the takeaway, they shared a meal of fish’n’chips with plastic cutlery.

Old times, he said.

The Communion of Saints – TwitFic

This collection of twitfic came out of sitting in church during Communion (or Eucharist, depending on your denominational preference). In  the book of Hebrews, the writer says “we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses…” (12:1) and in the Orthodox churches, there are often depictions of saints and regular people painted in the frescoes and iconography, as representatives of the witnesses.

Communion (Eucharist) is a significant aspect of the liturgical service and is a time for reflection on the sacrifice of Jesus. I wanted to extend the idea of the communion of saints into aspects of the everyday; times, places and situations where the extended kindness of humanity is shown in ways that best represent the ideal to “love thy neighbour” in a way that demonstrates an understanding that we do these things “for the least of these.” Most involve food and/or drink; a fitting reminder of the simple elements on the table used during the Last Supper.

Note: some of these are shorter than my normal twitfic because I used the hashtag #communionofsaints which takes up a large portion of 140 characters so I have edited some in places for clarity.

And as usual, I am keeping with my tally of seven twitfic.

The Communion of Saints

“We have the same lunch box.”
“What’s in yours?”
“Vegemite sandwich. Yours?”
“Falafel roll.”
“Go halvesies?

He balances two takeaway cups and two paper bags while shuffling back into the passenger’s seat.
“Got you a sausage roll and sauce.”
“Cool, thanks.”


The abrupt call of the telephone.
You ok?
A pause.
Honestly shithouse.
Meet you for coffee.


While balancing her handbag, schoolbags, and thumbing for the key, the gift of bags of groceries on the back step give her pause.


The froth slid down the inside of two empty schooners. Each man held the base of the glass, thinking.




The rhythm section locked in, punctuating the horns, dancing around the guitar lines, watching the front row pulsate.


Twenty years of correspondence collected in a single embrace after having never spoken. Neither wanted to let go.

Have You Read A Very Short Story Today? Part 5

In between pontificating on aspects of creativity, living a creative life, and putting edits on my novel or throwing words at my novella, I like to continue playing with the very short form of fiction.

Here is this week’s round up of twitfic. And yes, there are not one, but two, fart jokes (I’m so mature).


“Every time you slam the door a fairy loses its wings,” her mother yelled. She leant against the door and waited for the wings to float down.


Beneath the starry expanse she placed a mirror on the grass; a square of sky on the ground. “On Earth as it is in Heaven,” she intoned.


“Check out this view of Earth!”

They crammed into the small viewing port.

“You called me over ’cause you farted?”




Cuddled on the couch the stench wafted up nostrils.

“Romance is dead,” she said, shifting away.

“I tend to think of it as foreplay,” he said.


Putting a pen into the cassette’s cog he respooled the mangled tape. He wanted to hear her voice one more time before it was erased.


The day her hair began falling out she pruned the roses; denuding it to a thorned stem and waited for the first hint of regrowth.


He selected his favourite brown paper bag containing photos, Lego pieces, textas and a marble.

“I am the collector of broken things.”


He collected the sacred writings from public toilet walls and began to preach, “Today is the bidet of salvation.”


“We are all competent liars,” she said. “The truth lies in the one you believe in.” She leaned in and sealed her lips to his.

Light My Way – 7 Very Short Stories

Creativity is a significant part of my life, and I hope to encourage others to pursue creativity in their own way (there are lots of posts here on the site to read about the creative life). 

My creative life is focused on writing: novels, novella, short stories, bad poetry, and twitfic. Currently I have had to put my WIPs: a collaborative epistolary novel (edits almost complete) and a novella (first 4K is down), on hold due to work commitments.

But I can spare brief moments to compose short pieces of twitter fiction to keep my creative well filled and enjoy playing with language. 

These seven pieces of twit fic were inspired by a radio interview where the interviewee, an actor, talked about the presence of cameras and flashes. I wanted to explore different ways of seeing light, from the whimsical and playful to existential and reflective but based on my focus on the ennui and minutiae of life as the basis for my stories. See if you can spot the Star Wars reference (it’s pretty obvious). The last piece is a nod to my collaborative epistolary novel, Post Marked: Piper’s Reach.

There is no narrative thread here, unlike other twitfic series Polaroid Memories and A Thought’s Reliquary (I like the number 7 as  a form, like Jacques speech from “As You Like It”). They are lights strung in a sequence like lights on a Christmas tree.

I hope you enjoy it.

Light My Way


“Let there be light,” he said flicking the switch.

“Daaaad,” was the groaned reply.

The Christmas tree exploded in colour, their groans silenced.


As the camera flashed she closed her eyes.

“Stop ruining the photo,” yelled Mum.

She wondered how many pieces of her soul remained.


The dust motes floated in the tractor-beam like shaft of light on the desk. She splayed her fingers and wished, “Teleport me off this rock.”


Beside the pillar of empty milk crates, he studied the shadow’s patterns; his own stained glass windows. He went inside the milk bar to worship.


His first digital watch enthralled him but it was the ability to see the numbers in the dark kept him awake at night. It deterred the monsters.


Each boy shone his torch through the smoke of the bonfire.

“Light sabres!” one yelled.

The melee started, dying with the fading smoke.


He held the mirror fragment and reflected the beam from the lighthouse across the bay onto the notepad on his knees.

“I will light your way.”

Have You Read A Very Short Story Today? Part 4

A smorgasbord of twitfic from the past couple of days, and a bonus poem. The content ranges from absurdist romance, existential contemplation and a nod to childhood games and Indiana Jones.

On Friday I will post a bonus themed set of twitfic based on the idea of light.

Today’s Menu


He pegged his clothes in semaphore, glancing over the fence to see if the neighbour responded. The following day her own code answered.


He patted the black dog sprawled like a blanket over his feet making it hard to get up. “I think it’s time to go, Old Yella,” he said.


The handwritten note taped to his bedroom door read, “Teh floor iz lava.” “This will make getting to bed a bit tricky,” he said.


The thin shaft of light from the curtains divided the lounge room in half. He prepared to cross, wondering if there were poison arrows.


“It’s a matter of perspective. Are you coming or going?” he asked.

“From there to here or here to there?”

“Wherever your feet lead.”


Their connection sparked as they reached for toilet paper. But he knew it wouldn’t work; she reached for 2-ply while he grasped 3-ply.


Koi circled over, under; a universe expanding, contracting as their tails flowed like comets and mouths as black holes consumed food.

And today’s bonus poem.

While I sit on my bike
At the level crossing
The bells sound ding-da-ding
Red and white arms crossed
Then open and beckon
A thousand paths

Have You Read A Very Short Story Today? Part 3

Why write twitfic? I like the immediacy of the form.

Even though it lacks the depth of a short story and the carefully structured nuances of a novel, twitfic captures the essence of forward momentum in a given scene.

My preferred genre to write in is suburban realism, a term coined for me by a friend. I don’t write spec fic, sci fi, fantasy, horror, romance, historical or *insert genre here* (although I do like reading some of them).

I write about people in the current moments of their life. This for me, is the charm of story. Little moments of every day, when seen as a whole, is like a daisy chain of memory or a rosary to be recited.

These moments can be whimsical, humourous, reflective, serious, ones of regret, loss, pain, sorrow or love.

These moments are what I attempt to capture in writing twitfic.

Today’s Offerings:


Every day of his 20s he wrote himself a note, sealed it and waited sixty years. Every day of his 80s a new revelation awaited.


Others sat absorbed in books or papers; he with the view outside the train window. “It’s never the same story,” he once answered.


Standing midst the blackened skeletons of once proud trees the ash turned her sandalled feet grey. She spotted the first green spark.


He took the new pair of underpants from the packet and put them on. In the mirror he twisted and squatted. “Ladies undies do fit nicely.”


The gaping maw of the steam engine’s furnace harnessed the fury.
“Oi, son, where the hell you been?” roared his father.
He recoiled.

Have You Read A Very Short Story Today? Part 2

Whether or not you subscribe to the idea that you can write a complete story in 140 characters, there is a challenge to compose a piece of writing that can be loosely termed a “story,” something that has a beginning, a middle and an end.

I see Twitter fiction (twitfic) as capturing a moment, a breath, a held thought, but one that has movement and momentum both forward and backwards.

The power of the story relies on the choice of imagery and sentence structure by the writer to paint the broadest picture with the fewest brush strokes.

It does rely on you, the reader, to fill in the gaps and create the character, using your knowledge and understanding of story to join the dots and create your own meaning to the story.

Here is my latest collection of twitfic.

The coins gratefully absorbed the warmth of her hands. Placed on his eyelids they tried to give back warmth where there was no life.



He stood watching the town’s first set of traffic lights order the comings and goings. After the third set of changes he went on green.


He played every game show, answered every question, took home fabulous prizes but his biggest regret was losing Monopoly to his nephews.


He collects the whispers like butterflies; pinned to mounting board and labelled. When he has sufficient they burn and float as ghosts.


She replaced every mirror in the house with a funhouse version to imitate the reality she saw. One day someone offered her a hammer.


Fold, crease, fold again as the water lily took form in paper. She dropped it into the gutter’s surge and wished as it sailed away.

Do you have a particular favourite? Which one and why?

Raining Arguments – Very Short Story

Behind her the argument continued as she watched two rain drops run parallel down the window, merged, then broke apart again.

Car Park Symphony

Car Park Symphony

Friday Flash

Opus 39


He pulled into the car park as dusk gathered her skirts and rustled them like autumn leaves around the gutters and across the playground.

First Movement

With the keys removed from the ignition the radio ceased its duet with the engine. The keys jingled quietly until muted in his palm.

Second Movement

The staccato squeak of swings and the arpeggio laughter of two toddlers formed the opening prelude as he walked to the boot of the car.

Third Movement

In the open the boot he rigged a music stand, attached a light and pegged down the music before opening the case and taking out his violin.

Fourth Movement

Cradling the violin under his chin he plucked the strings to tune midst an abrasive chorus of screeching lorikeets roosting.

Fifth Movement

He rested the bow against the strings, pausing to listen to the sounds surrounding him. A smile formed on his lips as he added his own song.

Sixth Movement

His song finished as the orange and red blended into velvet blue. The lorikeets were silent and the swings had ceased their metronomic pulse.

Seventh Movement

The toddlers stood hand-in-hand, eyes focused on the violin. He bowed and they ran back to their mothers. The music echoed in their footsteps.

A Thought’s Reliquary

A Thought’s Reliquary

Friday Flash 19 July, 2013



He opened the notebook, the creak of cracking cardboard a writer’s melody.
“I see you have yourself a reliquary,” said Grandfather.




Proofs of holy writ, held within the ink of the pen, waited for the opening incantation. He paused and found no words. Was he a heretic?



The first words were important and they rushed from the pen; not so much writing as scribbling random thoughts in search of a repository.



Shuffled sheets in a lectionary of unrequited (or unsent) love letters, parables of adolescent anxiety and beatitudes of pop song lyricists,



Scratched sonnets and ambling discourses with a hip-hop feel competed for space between the lines. An epistolary apocryphal gospel at best.



He rested the pen between the pages in the crook of the hymnal’s spine, a genuflection, as the last sentence dried in the valley’s shadows.



As the cover of the notebook closed it murmured, sighed through paper exhalations, as one who held their breath waiting for the benediction.