Tuesday, March 26, 2013

I Present: Chris Shawbell, Author, Gentleman...

 Almost every week for the past six months or so, I've participated in a weekly writing exercise. The rules are simple. A picture is posted on a website along with five randomly-chosen words. The goal is to create a story using the photo and the five words. There's a one-week deadline and a 500 word limit. It's been a lot of fun and I'm glad Randy Lindsay wrote about it in his blog.

Since I began writing these little stories, there have been a few of us who write almost every week. Occasionally someone will join us, but it's evident the flash fiction writing prompt is not everyone's cup o' tea. I think things changed when author Chris Shawbell found the site and wrote his first entry.

I was blown away...

I'd like to think my stories were engaging and imaginative. Then Chris kicked up the writing to a whole new level. To be honest, after reading his first attempt I didn't know if I could continue writing a weekly story. I didn't know if what I wrote was good enough (a silly notion, I know, especially since one of the rules is to not take the challenge too seriously...). But authors are kind of weird ducks at times. I'm happy to say the moment of insecurity passed quickly and I found myself digging deeper and trying harder to write better. Thanks to Chris, I feel I've done that.

But, Chris's talent in forming words to create incredible stories pales in comparison to what he writes to each of the other participants by way of comments on their own stories. The guy can make an author feel like a million bucks! Just as an example, here's a comment to one of my blog posts:

Is that your poem? It's incredible!
Great piece. I usual read out loud, like I do with my own work, but I realized when I was on the last paragraph I had been holding my breath. I was intensely waiting to see what was going to happen with her. I LOVE that about the written word—how I can be captured! Good work, Scott. The poem was key! It took me from the moment. This allowed me to be shocked and surprised.


Like I said, authors are kind of weird ducks at times and a comment like that means so much. So, here's to you Chris Shawbell, author, gentleman. I look forward to another week and another story!

1 comment:

  1. I am honored that you have written this blog, but I want you to understand that it is you, Scott, and your work that I am writing about when I leave such comments. It is you who inspires every word of praise you receive. It is often our only payment for our efforts, and yet, it is the most cherished.
    Thank you, my friend. It is so good to be back online and settled down. I look forward to many more FF pieces between us.