Who Cares…? Friday Fictioneers, December 2014

“Garbage,” Professor Galbraith shouted, throwing my manuscript down, “utter rubbish.”

It had been my best work ever; I doubted I’d do better.

So I dropped out of college, moved away, and never wrote another sentence. The word was I’d died; which I had, in a way.

And years later I read my own work, now a prize-winning novel, published under his name.

He was old when I found him, but not so old that he was willing to die.

“You can’t get away with murder,” he gasped.

“You did,” I said, “and anyway, who cares? The word is I’m dead anyway.”

I thought it was time I offed someone; must be weeks now.  The picture this week is one of mine, taken on the Rhone in September whilst moored on a ‘ponton d’attente’  waiting for the lock to be set in our favour.  Depressing isn’t it?  Somebody should care…   Thanks to Rochelle for hosting another edition of Friday Fictioneers.  Where would we be without her?

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About Sandra

I cruise the French waterways with my husband four or five months a year, and write fiction and poetry. I love animals, F1 motor racing, French bread and my husband, though not necessarily in that order.
This entry was posted in Friday Fictioneers, Just Sayin' and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

74 Responses to Who Cares…? Friday Fictioneers, December 2014

  1. wildbilbo says:

    I am getting a whole murder theme reading these early stories… love it. The use of the ‘garbage’ prompt to literary criticism was very clever.
    Well done.
    KT

    Like

  2. Horus says:

    Payback time ! 🙂

    Like

  3. Dear Sandra,

    Good to see you back this week and your stories never disappoint. I’d say his murder is poetic justice. Thank you for the photo this week and you’ve shown us all how to step outside the box.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Like

  4. dmmacilroy says:

    Dear Sandra,

    You’ve just sunk every other murder story your picture will generate this week. Welcome back.

    Your story was brilliant and sure to make every writer in the group smile and say, yeah, that works for me. And it does.

    Aloha,

    Doug

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      Hi Doug, good to be back. I see we both wove the words “who cares?” into our pieces this week. And who knew a picture like this would prompt so many murder stories. Perhaps the thought that with scenes like this we’re murdering our planet? 😉 Take care in that vog. You’re needed here.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Sandra, Welcome back. Good, well-written story. I guess the professor believed the student in his past was really dead and it would be safe to publish the work under his own name. What a terrible thing to do. Now it looks like he’ll pay the ultimate price for it. Very sad. It makes me wonder if it’s ever really happened. Great photo! Thanks. 🙂 — Susan

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      I’m sure it happens in one form or another quite often, Susan. Though I’m not sure the victim ever goes this far to obtain satisfaction. 🙂 Thanks for dropping by.

      Like

  6. yarnspinnerr says:

    The motive you have used for murder is much more common really appreciated.
    Beautifully crafted.

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  7. Oh, I love this so much. This is a 50.000 words novel, not a 100 words ff. How did you manage that?

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  8. I once had a creative writing tutor say that to me, but I didn’t kill him. Even if he happens to turn up dead, it wasn’t me. Great story Sandra, so much in so few words! And great (awful) picture.
    Claire

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      I’ll take your word for it Claire. Just as you must take mine if you see my name in the papers. 🙂 It is an awful picture, isn’t it? I’m sure it was so thick you could walk on it. Ugh!

      Like

  9. You took the words out of my mouth, Sandra! Revenge…..served cold! I laughed at your remark about it being time you “offed” someone – it being weeks now. You sound like a “Sopranos” cast member!

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  10. You shouldn’t do like this.. we might be inspired to do something ourselves someday.. revenge reaching up from the grave so to speak.

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  11. The word was I’d died; which I had, in a way. This describes how anyone who had worked VERY hard on something then had it stolen would feel. Excellent take on the prompt. Thanks for a thought provoking picture for the week.

    Like

  12. storydivamg says:

    Good story line this week, Sandra. I popped in here first to see what the week’s photographer had to say, and I like the way you pulled away from the literal nature of the photo to bring us something fresh.

    All my best,
    Marie Gail

    Like

  13. The perfect alibi. And never trust a professor named Galbraith! A romping revenge story!

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      I’ve never liked the name Galbraith ever since I had to do three re-sits for Economics whilst studying for my professional qualifications. Thanks for reading, Patrick.

      Like

  14. paulmclem says:

    I wonder how many great writers have had their blood, sweat and tears thrown in a critic/agent’s rubbish. I know it wasn’t the point of your tale but writing is so subjective. One man’s garbage is another’s…err…not garbage.

    Like

  15. Elizabeth says:

    Wow Sandra! I had a supervisor during my postdoc that used to say it to her students (this is garbage!). Sometimes they came and talk to me that they wanted to give up, and I always said to them, don’t pay attention to her, do a better job next time, but never give up. And congrats for your photo being the prompt today!

    Like

  16. elmowrites says:

    Well, Sandra, you’ve come back to us with a bang! Loved yourstory, lved you taking us right away from the prompt, but clearly using it as a springboard, loved how you touched the writers in us all this week too. I suspect the Professor won’t find much sympathy in the jury of the Fictioneers!
    Great photo – although I’m appalled by rubbish thrown anywhere, I liked that in this one the bulk of the waste there is natural – somehow that hghlights rather than drowning the garbage in its midst.

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      Hi Jen, I think we’re all a bit sensitive to the subject of plagiarism, so I suspected it might strike a chord with the Friday Fictioneers. Yes, a lot of the rubbish was created by nature herself; but I get so annoyed when the river authorities don’t clear this kind of thing up., especially when ‘nature’ has corraled it as neatly as this. It can cause so much damage to the rudder and prop on a boat, leaving you stranded on a fast moving river. Thanks for reading.

      Like

      • elmowrites says:

        Yeah, I remember one year the boys (I wasn’t with them) got a bit of tyre wrapped around their prop. It was a rented boat so at least didn’t cost them anything to deal with, but wasted a good day of their trip with the boat stranded until they got a replacement. And I agree that a) we shouldn’t drop i and b) the authorities should clear it up. Natural litter never seems as dangerous or as offensive, does it?

        Like

  17. Sandra,
    that Professor Gilbraith is the worst kind of person, destroying lives and then profiting off it. Great last line.
    -David

    Like

  18. Interesting photo to begin with Sandra. Why did you take it?
    Of course I loved your story, I always do.

    Like

  19. Joyce says:

    Every writer’s nightmare. 😦

    Like

    • Sandra says:

      I used to contribute to a horror story ezine where we were continually being warned about a blatant plagiarist. He would lift a story, word for word, no alterations, and put his name to it elsewhere. I stopped going there because of the helpless rage I’d feel if it happened to one of mine. Thanks for dropping by Joyce.

      Like

      • Joyce says:

        Plagiarism is kind of like a rape or violation to the original writer taking what did not belong to him/her and trying to own it for him/herself, and something we all have to look out for. I have recently been checking on my own stuff to look for copying of anything.

        Like

  20. Great story as usual! And the fade-out is at just the right moment, just as if Hitchcock had directed it.

    Like

  21. He’s the worst kind of person to be teaching young people. Any writer would seeth at his actions. Good story, Sandra. You made me angry.

    Like

  22. great story.
    Justifiable revenge, because it’s from the hands of a dead person, is especially sweet.

    Randy

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  23. Depressing indeed– the trash on the river, I mean. The story is fantastic! It’s true that you haven’t written a good chiller in a while, and this one really resonates with the writing hook.

    I’m with Dawn, what prompted you to take the photo?

    Like

  24. I enjoyed the wicked premise to this piece. Great twist!

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  25. Your usual very high standard of writing.
    Great story.

    Like

  26. Nan Falkner says:

    Dear Sandra, Wonderful story and so fitting. Too bad she couldn’t kill him twice. I think I would hunt the creep down too and do him in. Really fantastic work Sandra, and I love the picture you submitted too! Thanks! Nan 🙂

    Like

  27. draliman says:

    Ah, happy revenge 🙂 In my mind your protagonist carries out the deed almost dispassionately, something that just “must” be done.

    I like the “dead” theme running through, both figuratively and ultimately literally.
    I really liked this (as always).

    Like

  28. Honie Briggs says:

    Deadly good, Sandra. The photo is depressing, but I had to turn it around in my story, because I’m so happy the semester is over and tomorrow is my last final. This panster’s got a 4.0! Time to party. (no drugs were used in the writing of this comment)

    Like

  29. Jan Brown says:

    Sandra, thank you so much for the intriguing photo! I love that your protagonist is a writer. Hell hath no greater fury than a plagiarized writer!

    Like

  30. plaridel says:

    sounds like a perfect murder to me. perfect dialogue. a well-written piece.

    Like

  31. Zenith says:

    How haunting, love this

    Like

  32. i b arora says:

    i think the best i have read this week

    Like

  33. Wow! Great response to the photo. I’m impressed! (as always)

    Like

  34. liz young says:

    I’m beginning to think I’m the only one who didn’t think of murder when they saw the prompt! Good story, this one.

    Like

  35. Anita says:

    Super plot!
    Plagiarism is so terrible.
    The budding author never wrote a word after the “rubbish” feedback.
    Then, the “dead” author killed the old plagiarist 🙂 Brilliantly conveyed!

    Like

  36. Glynis says:

    The theme of murder, well Plagiarism would cause any writer to go down that dark road. Well done!

    Like

  37. Hi Sandra you could’ve offed one of the litterers for good measure…in writing only of course 🙂

    Like

  38. Margaret says:

    It’s so easy to kill someone’s confidence. I like how you’ve used the ‘rubbish’ idea as a jumping off point. Very clever.

    Like

  39. Excellent revenge story Sandra!

    Like

  40. Oh justice is painful if not always swift.

    Like

  41. Sarah Ann says:

    Wonderfully done. I know you couldn’t say in 100-words, but I hope your narrator also made the dear ol’ prof change his will so all past and future royalties end up where they belong.

    Like

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