We Need to Talk in 29 Words

We Need to Talk - Hospital Room

  12+   The Australian Writers' Centre ran a 29 Word Story Challenge on 29th August 2019. The rules were: The story must contain exactly 29 words, begin and end with the same word, and include the names of at least two countries. With a lucky hyphenation, my repurposed We Need to Talk was spot on 29 words.

I recently blogged about Repurposed Writing (Tall And True, August 2019). In the post, I explained how I'd revisited a piece of a microfiction I'd written for a Twitter competition run by Meanjin Quarterly in 2017, We Need to Talk (Tall And True, November 2017)

The original microfiction story was 280 characters (with the Twitter hashtag #meanjin280) and 44 words long. Could I edit 15 words from it? Yes, thanks to the legitimately hyphenated "twenty-four".

We Need to Talk 

Talk, now or never. Twenty-four hours from England to Australia, to white walls, antiseptic, tubes, wires, electronic beeps and the wheezing breath of my shrunken father. We never talk.

As my editor friend might say, all writing, long-form, short stories and microfiction, can do with a good edit.

The Australian Writers' Centre blog (5th September 2019) reported they'd had nearly a thousand submissions for the 29 Word Story Challenge. And [proud puffing of cheeks] mine was one of their published favourites!

Do you like to dabble in or read microfiction? You may like this collection I reviewed for Writing NSW in 2017, Loopholes by Susan McCreery (Tall And True, October 2017).

© 2019 Robert Fairhead

N.B. You may also like to read my blog post on how I wrote the original microfiction We Need to Talk (Tall And True, November 2017).

Robert Fairhead

Robert Fairhead

Sydney, NSW, Australia.
A middle-aged dad and dog owner, Robert is an editor and a writer for Tall And True and blogs at RobertFairhead.com. He enjoys reading, writing, playing the guitar, walking his dog, and watching Aussie Rules Footy with his son. Robert has worked as an electrician, sales and marketing rep, computer programmer, dog trainer and (wanna-be) writer. He also had a one-night stand as a stand-up comic.

With thanks to cor gaasbeek for the hospital room image from Pixabay.


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