Well it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything here. It’s just so hard to keep up with everything, isn’t it? I’m really busy at the moment, both in my personal life and in my writing one, but that’s a good thing. I could moan about how there doesn’t seem to be a bottom to my ironing basket or the fact that my kids think I’m both a cash machine and a taxi service, but I won’t. Nor will I moan about the fact that sometimes the only time I can find to write is when everyone else is sleeping and sometimes they’re actually all waking up by the time I’m contemplating going to bed!
So since I’m not moaning about anything, I’ll tell you something nice. I spotted my 13 year old son writing a story the other day and I asked him if I could have a look. I won’t tell you what I thought about it because you all know what I’m going to say! I’m just going to post it here and let you all make up your own minds. I’m writing it exactly as it appears in his copy – in his own words. I’ve told him I’m posting it here so we’d be grateful for your comments.
A WINTER’S NIGHT IN THE CITY
It’s Christmas Eve. The last light has long since diminished, only to be replaced by stars. The yellow glow from the street lamps is casting an eerie light on the roads. A soft white blanket is beginning to form as the snow falls heavily from the skies.
The cold sends tremors tingling down the backs of the occasional figure hurrying through the streets of Dublin city. The steam from their steady breaths billows in front of them, instantly rising and disappearing into the night sky.
A woman steps out of a doorway into a desolate street. She is greeted by a rush of cold air, pressing against her face. Mary turns and waves goodbye as her friend, Jackie, stands watching from inside her house. She rounds the corner and disappears.
Mary shivers as she walks through the narrow alleyway which seperates the main street from Jackie’s house and pulls up her jacket, covering her mouth, to stop the cold from getting into her bare skin.
As she continues through the back streets and alleyways towards her house, she hears the subtle crunch of footsteps coming from behind. She nervously glances over her shoulder. Nothing. Pulling her jacket across her face, she quickens her pace.
As she nears the end of the road, she catches a glimpse of a single figure hurring towards her out of the corner of her eye. Fear rises up inside her and as she turns the corner, she breaks into a sprint. She hears the man shout, but whatever he said is muffled by the wind. The gap is closing between the pair and sweat begins to drip down Mary’s forehead.
A sense of relief cuts into her thoughts as she sees her house at the end of the next road. But as these thoughts whizz around in her head, she fails to notice the lump of snow she’s approaching. She trips and plants her face in the snow with a shrill scream. She scrambles to get up and get away as quickly as possible. Too late. The man is standing in front of her, dressed in scraggy clothes with a long scar running down the side of his face. Just as she’s about to scream, he smiles and hands her something.
‘My scarf,’ she says, quietly. ‘How did you…’
He cuts her off. ‘You dropped it back there.’
Mary blushes. ‘I’m sorry. Thank you. It’s just…’
He interrupts again. ‘No need to apologise; I shouldn’t have frightened you like that.’
Mary smiles. ‘Well, thanks again. Bye.’
She walks away, embarrassed knowing how wrong she had been and thinking what a nice man he was, following her on such a bad night.
And as the man walks away in the opposite direction, he smiles. How easy had that been, he thinks to himself, as he roots through the contents of the purse he’s just slipped from her handbag!
What an absolutely fantastic piece of writing! Very, very well done 🙂
Thanks Jane. It is pretty good, isn’t it? Eoin says thanks for the comment too. M.x
How wonderful! I truly loved it. Your son has a great sense of place and described the street so well I felt I could have been there myself. And what a fab twist in the tale – very hard to pull off.
Well done to him. I’d be as proud as you if it were my baby.
Thanks Nettie. I was delighted when I read it, and yes, I’m very proud. Eoin says thanks for the comment. M. x
wow! that’s really excellent. i wasn’t expecting the twist at the end. he certainly has a talent.
well done, young man!
Thanks Paula. He got it just right, didn’t he? Eoin says thanks too for the comment. M. x
I’m impressed. And the ending, as expected as snow in June. Well done, young man.
Thanks for that, Kay. It was nicely done, wasn’t it? And Eoin says thanks for the comment too. M. x
That was excellent – really atmospheric and a good surprise at the end. A talented guy! Proud mum. 🙂
Thanks for that. I’m very proud. Eoin says thanks too. M. x
Writing talent obviously runs in the family! This is a great story; it’s beautifully descriptive and has great atmosphere, not to mention an unexpected (and clever) sting in the tail.
I really enjoyed reading it and hope to read more 🙂 .
Thanks Rachel. Glad you liked it. Eoin says thanks for the comment. M. x
So Good,So sweet,I loved it ,Eoin you should be so Happy that you are this good,how long has it taken you dear mum? love to you both xx
Thanks for your comment. Eoin says thanks too. x
I am astonished at how beautifully written this story is. The scene is so perfectly described and the feelings come across so intensely. I also loved the surprising twist at the end. You must be so very proud of your talented son.
Thanks Sarah. I’m very proud of him. I was really surprised when I read it. Eoin says thanks for the comment too. M. x
That is absolutely brilliant. I was totally hooked.
You have a really strong talent.
Thanks for that. I’m a very proud mom! Eoin says thanks for the comment too. M.x
Maria and more importantly Eoin – that is BRILLIANT. Well done you!
And a great twist in the tail at the end.
Well done again!
Thanks Barbara. Glad you liked it. Can’t wait to show Eoin the rest of these comments when he comes back from school. M.x
Eoin, would you like a job? After finishing school, of course 😉 In my daily life (work), I read a lot of pieces written by young people. I never–ever!–would have guessed this story’s author was anyone other than a seasoned, professional writer. You already know what many writers never learn–how to engage your reader and keep them hooked to the end of a story with the perfect amount of detail.
Maria, you’re so right to be proud. Thank you for sharing!
What a lovely comment, Erin. Thanks for that. Eoin will be thrilled when he comes home from school and reads it. Yes, I’m very proud. M. x
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this – from the evocative descriptions in the opening paragraphs to the twist at the end. Well done Eoin. Brilliant.
Thanks for that, John. I appreciate your comment and Eoin will too when he comes home from school. M.x
Maria, what an incredible story! Maybe he would like to join the Young Writers Group in Nano for next year and write a first draft? There’s a year to plan. Please thank your son for sharing this excellent piece with us :-).
Verrrry good indeed!
Eoin , fabulous story…..didn’t see that coming. Love it
My God – that was so gripping – a very well written piece of work from someone so young.
It runs in the family Maria, – Eoin – you have to keep this up.
Just loved the story – held my attention throughout and a nice sting in the tail at the end.
Well done Eoin. Maria ring me!!!!!!!
Hey Eoin, that was brilliant, well done you! Really enjoyed the descriptions and the pace of your story, and wasn’t expecting the ending at all.
I review books (and write) and I think you have achieved something amazing here, something absolutely central to a great piece of writing. And that is reeling your reader in and keeping them hooked…. and making them want to read more. So, is there more? Hope so! Keep it up 🙂
And Maria, squeee! How talented is your son? xx
Oh he is a star for sure-very clever-very clever indeed. Loved the opening-and ending with all the good writing in between!:)
WOW. He’s 13? Pretty impressive. Hopefully he keeps writing. 🙂
The pace, the textures and the fab twist….wow! I want pupils like him in my class!
Funny and clever. I’m stunned.