“Well then, just make something up.”
“I could do but… won’t they know?”
“You’re clever. You’ll think of something.”
“I don’t think I’m that clever.”
“You might surprise yourself.”
“But 20,000 words. If it was 2,000 then maybe…”
“Just do it, Sam.”
“OK. But don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
The Bermuda Triangle. It’s been written about to death. Pardon the pun. If all the experts in the world and Wikipedia subscribers can’t come up with an explanation then how am I…? I could say some kind of boat-eating creature but then that would be as ridiculous as… well, the Loch Ness Monster. And even I know that doesn’t exist.
Talking to my editor is never a pleasant experience. She’s too much like my mother. Well, not mine necessarily but a mother. She’s… mothering, smothering. But she pays the bills so she is ‘she who must be obeyed’ so that’s what I do.
At least this time she’s given me a month to do it. And £5000. She never gives me that kind of budget. Unless she… oh no. She wants me to go there. Without ordering me. Sending me to my doom. That wouldn’t tick her Health & Safety boxes.
I guess I could go to the area, interview the locals, get their spin on it. A couple of weeks on a tropical island wouldn’t hurt. I could do a quick piece. 20K doesn’t actually take long when you get going. I’ve done NaNoWriMo three times. It’s that 50,000 words in a month, you know… start 1st November, stop 31st with 50,000 words (or more in my case) in between. 30. Of course. See, I can’t even remember that November hath 30 days, and all that.
So as I was saying, a couple of weeks on a tropical island… is Bermuda tropical? At least that’s geography not science… sort of.
OK, let’s see. All-inclusive packages. A week? No. Who goes somewhere like that for a week? Three weeks, that’s more like it. God, that’s cheap. Oh yeah, I see why now. Tonight. Well, I suppose I could. Nothing stopping me here. No animals, plants half-dead anyway, and I could get Mrs Roberts… Robbins? Robinson? to come in and water them. I’ve got a spare key under the mat. Yeah, I know, not very original. There’s nothing much to steal anyway but that’s not the point. I should move it. Well, I will when I give it to… Her garden’s immaculate so she might get them blooming again. Or take them hostage. She can keep them, I don’t mind. I’ll probably get plastic ones, or silk – they’re nicer; less… shiny.
OK. So, nine pm it is. That gives me… be at the airport for seven… can’t be doing with being late. Some people don’t like all that hanging around and they’d rather queue than check in and do a bit of take-your-time shopping. Latest bestseller, cosy chair, a beer, a nice barmaid to chat to.
So, 7pm there, 6pm leave. That gives me… yes, seven hours. Shower, pack… that’s easy. Jeans to travel, shorts and loud t-shirts… look like a tourist. Foreigners love spilling their deepest darkest secrets if they think there’s some money in it. And with a budget like mine that’ll buy a lot of wagging tongues. Four and a half grand left. And Nance won’t be expecting many receipts. We do what we have to in this line of work. Beats accounting. That’s what I used to do, by the way; Finance Manager for a small and not very successful stationery company. Got out before they went under. Of course I was best placed to see that, wasn’t I? I’d been doing this on the side for a while so had built up a bit of a nest egg already. I know what you’re thinking; finance, a position of trust, siphon something off the top but I’m not like that. Some are, granted, but not me. Straight as a dye, whatever that means… metalwork? Oh, thanks Google. That’s why I turned in that couple – at the tennis court. Well, it wasn’t fair on the dog. Just because I don’t have one myself it doesn’t mean…
So now the only figures I want to be staring at all day are bikini-clad ones. Long, lean, tanned ones. Mismatching tops and bottoms with just a little of their bottoms… OK, you get the picture.
It’s good to be home… nothing missing. Not that Mrs… whatever-her-name-is is that type but I had expected the plants… hello boys, you are looking healthy. Glad I brought her something back now.
The article’s done, emailed to the wicked witch, good old Wi-Fi. It seems obvious now you think about it; City of Atlantis underneath the Bermuda Triangle. All those people heading down to the city that doesn’t sleep. Now that was a holiday I won’t forget in a hurry.
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