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Author's summary: "Sometimes, standing still is harder than running."
Reactions and Reviews
"I liked how you wrapped it up and solved the weird bubble of emotions. It's quite a nice neat juxtaposition actually - outside in the wide world is all this possibility and movement and life, yet inside the flat, locked away, is stillness and solidarity and all that is familiar. And it turns out that Bodie wasn't really chasing a dream, because he's got it right there with him. If that makes any sense."
"....stand still while this writer almost breaks your heart with the sheer beauty and thoughtfulness of her work. Like a lot of my favourite writing – especially the shorter pieces – the beauty (for me) lies in the writer’s ability to handle the words, to manipulate or play with them and to place them together within an unusual context e.g. springtime determination - it's not just clever writing but it's also sweet and seductive; or, the flat was fresh and full of promise. And I loved the flow of her writing; the use of the present tense and the almost poetic quality to a lot of it:
The breeze that wafts through the small flat is fresh and full of promise. It drifts through each room of musty flat with a certain springtime determination to make everything seem that much brighter, that much more rejuvenated.
A beautiful beginning which immediately has the desired effect of drawing me in, at least in my imagination, which is all I can ask of any writer.
And I think the thoughtfulness of the writing lies in her great powers of observation, whether that observation is centred on the characters themselves or on the details which surround them. Details which could so easily become tedious, which I might have glossed over because they *were* mere details, but in her skilled hands become part of the poetry and so, I too, like Bodie, stand back in fascination, mesmerised by the vision of Doyle’s ‘lifting curls’:
The breeze lifts a curl from Doyle's forehead, toys with it for a second, before setting it back down the wrong way. Bodie automatically brushes it back into place, before patting the curls flat and watching in vague delight as they spring back to attention when he lifts his hand. Just like Doyle, the locks are dead set in their ways. Inordinately amused by this, Bodie does it again, and again, and each time the soft, copper strands snap back into curls, no matter how hard he presses.
I mean, I've never been so fascinated by curls before! Great observation which the writer successfully translates onto paper.......Is this one of the things which makes average writing, *very good* writing? Must be, surely......
And Bodie’s permanent state of restlessness, another example of how good the writer is at drawing out and expanding upon the unremarkable, making interesting some of the less noticeable features of B & D, but features, nonetheless, which go a long way to explain who they are and maybe what it is about each of them which attracts the other:
The bright sunshine draws his eye out at the world; even London's rooftops shine under a spring sun, and Bodie shifts in his chair, itching to get out and explore. They could do anything, today, could go anywhere and be anyone they wanted. And no one, not any of their mob, not even The Cow himself, would be any the wiser for being left behind and forgotten about, for just a day. Just one day, just them lost in the wide world.
And the clever use of his 'restlessness' as a symbol for the shortness of their lives, their time together and the need to savour what they have:
He wants to reach out and grab hold of the day by the throat, shake the life out of it and have it as his own. Before everything that could have been is lost forever. There'd be nothing he could do about it, and Bodie hates that feeling. Tomorrow, he could be dead; sitting inside while the sun is blazing and time is rushing by outside seems like madness. He wants to be out there, chasing the sunshine.What a beautiful, Bodie-like expression chasing the sun - from now on I'll always think of that phrase when I think of Bodie."
"You create a gorgeous, slightly uncertain mood here, one that has us right there with Bodie at the window, planning his escape route. Then with Doyle on the sofa. I love that moment when they both just stare at each other - felt so very, very canon somehow."
"There's such an air of poignancy about this story, I think. Maybe that it's written in the present tense contributes to that, I don't know, but it is so poetic and beautiful."
"Oh, this is awesome At first I thought it was going to be primarily a mood piece, which I thought was just fine, because you really put me there, in that flat, on that lazy spring day.
But then you started delving into Bodie's inner life and I really felt the push and pull he was experiencing between Doyle and freedom. You had me worried for just a bit when he was planning his escape route. Then Ray, who up to that point was less the focus, crossed to Bodie at that window and was just so...Ray. How could you not love him--how could Bodie not love him? Of course Bodie is going to choose lounging around on the sofa with the man over running around in the sun. Lord knows I would.Your dialogue is superb, your handle on the lads is sure and steady. I'm so excited to see you writing Pros! Please write more soon.