The Short, Sharp Shock Which Is Flash Fiction Hits Shrewsbury!!!
Last night Shrewsbury had the honour of kicking off the first ever National Flash Fiction Day. The event in a packed Shrewsbury Coffeehouse saw people of all ages from school-aged to what let's just call beyond school-aged bringing along works of flash fiction [anything from ten to five hundred words of original fiction], flash-writing collaboratively over coffees, beers and tablecloths, dragging their scrolls of stories up to the Open Mic and reading them out. The evening was a first for Shrewsbury, and a huge success.
“A brilliant night here in Shrewsbury, heralding National Flash FIction Day. Bringing, sharing, reading, writing, making new friends, catching up with old ones, firing the imagination, going home buzzing, awake half the night - could flash-sharing really be that good? YES, IT COULD.”
Flash Fiction Shrewsbury was my brainchild, I'm proud to say. For years I've been trying to share my love not just of books but of writing, and to encourage other people - not just the select few - to get writing themselves. Flash Fiction is great for doing this. Everyone can have a go. In a busy world, with little spare time, it's still do-able to read a piece of flash at a bus stop, or dash off a couple of hundred words on the train.
The evening was greatly enhanced by the wonderful R & A Collaborations [Arron Fowler and Richard Foot], who dashed about with cameras, computers and microphones, making a film of the event - an exercise which kept them up ALL NIGHT, earning them the official title, Heroes of Flash. The results can be viewed here. Do click the link. You'll be glad you did. It'll give you a real flavour of the night:
A couple of new initiatives were announced last night. The first is for a Flash Shrewsbury online magazine to be set up, showcasing last night's stories. More about this to follow. The second is a flash-posting initiative that's has been set up by the National Flash Fiction Day people. This is really worth knowing about, whether or not you take part. But if you're interested in joining in, this is what you need to do:
1. Pick a public place to write about - indoors, outdoors, a place that means something to them or just a random location - it doesn't matter.
2. Visit it to get inspiration.
3. Write a piece of flash using it as a setting.
4. Record yourself either by photo or video in your place with your piece of flash.
5. Post you photo/video link to email@example.com along with your writing, its title and your author name. It will then be added to the flashpoints blog.
6. Go to www.nffdflashpoints.blogspot.com and see all the great writing there, and great photos too.
I've dashed off a flash of my own - a piece of Shropshire history and lore, but with a modern twist. But I haven't been back on site yet to record it. When I've done so, I intend to leave it behind, surreptitiously hidden [preserved in a plastic case] for someone else to find. Not that I'm advocating littering, you understand! But if you want a clue, and happen to live in Shrewsbury, head for St Mary's Church...