Rebuffed by Michael Fleming
I started writing fiction in 2012 when I retired from a career as a Chartered Surveyor and began studying for a Creative Writing MA. I’d been writing song lyrics for years before that – a pursuit I found great fun. I’ve tried to keep that sense of fun ever since and humour is to be found in almost everything I write – either on the surface or a layer or two of easy digging down. Certainly never more than six feet.
I’m a strong believer in supporting writing competitions such as the one that formed part of the Steyning Festival. Competitions can be a great help for writers developing their craft. I’ve been fortunate to have won the Chelmsford Literary Festival short story prize, the Write Across Sussex short story competition and the Eastbourne Writes poetry competition. I’ve been placed in others (Charleston, Northampton Writers and now Steyning!) and short-listed in several including Writers and Artists, Exeter Writers and the H. E. Bates competition.
My poems and short stories have been included in anthologies and I’ve self-published a story collection, The Fish on My Ear (for details visit www.michaeljfleming.co.uk ). I belong to my local writers’ group, Anderida Writers. I’ve completed one novel (unplaced as yet but marinating) and am working hard on a second. I’ve also tried my hand at a novella. It’s completed and, as you might expect, already submitted to a couple of competitions! I found the novella to be very much akin to a bridge between the short story and the novel. I’m hoping it’s not a bridge too far.