‘Teenage Kicks’. A new flash fiction.

It’s been ages since I posted a piece of fiction on my blog, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been writing. I have. I’ve been working on  several pieces for various competitions and journals and am thrilled to say that I have won the current Flash500 flash fiction competition. It’s my biggest win to date and I am pretty pleased with myself. You may (if you wish) read ‘Dandelion Breeze’ over at the Flash500 site.

The best thing about receiving recognition like this for my efforts is that it has made me want to write even more, so to get back in the swing of things after an evening spent celebrating I set myself a quick writing challenge: I sat down and wrote out the first phrase to come into my mind. This turned out to be ” just the idea of it makes me feel like throwing up” (and that has nothing whatsoever to do with the celebratory drink (s) last night). I then used it as the starting point for some flash fiction. I hope you think it is worthy of a place in #fridayflash this week.

Teenage Kicks

Now, just the idea of it makes me feel like throwing up, but back then I can’t have given it more than a second thought. I might even have pretended it was teenage bravado; the word was in our vocabulary having just done that essay on ‘Bravado in Romeo and Juliet’. Or was that another one you never finished?

‘Kiss Paula Dobson on the mouth. With tongues.’ That was the dare you set me. But it’s not her lips or tongue I remember; it’s what was left of her lunch hanging from the front of her train track braces.

I knew what you were up to. I was your proxy; I always was. You dared me to do all the things you couldn’t face up to yourself: nick a sherbet dib-dab from the corner shop; piss on Mrs Phillips’s roses; snog Paula Dobson. They probably call it transposed desire or something. I haven’t got that far with my therapist yet.

You didn’t give me any more dares after that. Was it because I was looking at you as I was kissing her? You can call that transposed desire if you like, Simon.

I can still taste it by the way; they always gave us Irish stew on a Wednesday.

© flyingscribbler 2012


18 comments on “‘Teenage Kicks’. A new flash fiction.

  1. Steve Green says:

    More going on here than just dares, it bit the guy deeply, him needing the therapy an’ all. Sometimes the smallest acts can have farther reaching effects than we imagine.

    Well done with Dandelion Breeze Justin. That guy is gonna carry his share of the guilt, even though he didn’t do the act, he knows he’s a big chunk of the reason it happened.

    • Thanks for that Steve. I seem to enjoy writing stories that say more then they appear to at first. It’s a fine line to tread sometimes though. Thanks for heading over to my Flash500 story as well.

  2. pegjet says:

    congrats on your winning the Flash500! Quite a coup.
    I’m impressed with the way you came up with your own writing prompt, and what you did with it. “Teenage Kicks” bears a few rereads to get all the unsaid elements…nice.

    • Thanks so much. I’m tickled pink to have won. I always worry about writing stories that require going over more than once, especially flash as the point is to be a rapid read, but I can’t help myself.

  3. Icy Sedgwick says:

    You pack a punch with this one, Justin. Very deftly done – and good to have you back!

    • Thanks Icy. I really miss the interaction that #fridayflash gives me when I’m away from it, but life keeps getting in the way! I must try harder because it does help my writing.

  4. gailaldwin says:

    It’s easy to underestimate peer pressure until you read this. I’ve written something about a teenager too this week.

  5. Richard Bon says:

    Nice work with the prompt you created. Definitely a lot going on here about more than just food caught up in a teenage girl’s braces; a subtle commentary on teenage sexuality and self-discovery. Well done.

  6. Richard Bon says:

    Also, I’ve just read “Dandelion Breeze.” Congrats on the win, it’s a very well crafted piece and I’m glad some things were left unsaid.

    • Richard, that’s what i was hoping to achive with ‘Teenage Kicks’, so am very pleased you picked up on it. Also, thanks for reading my winning story. The unsaid elements were the hardest things (not) to write and I agonised over them. Having read the judge’s report, I think it is what helped the story to win.

  7. Congrats on your win!

    Love this piece. I could definitely imagine the scene. 🙂

    Cherie Reich – Author

  8. First of all congratulations on winning Flash500 – Yay!

    This short flash is much deeper than it first appears, it seems he still needs to work through a few things. Nice piece Justin.

  9. This piece left me grinning at the bravado of youth, but with a little bit of a bad taste in my mouth from the Irish stew. 😉

    Congrats on the success with “Dandelion Breeze.” I just popped over and enjoyed reading it.

  10. Fantastic News first of all.. good on you my son!!
    I love the nauseating nostalgia that hangs over this short.. and there’s something quite sinister going on behind the bravado.. You pack a hell of a lot into a few lines and the taste certainly lingers afterwards.. Fab stuff.. good to read your stuff again J.. Now ..off I go to flash500

  11. dannigrrl says:

    Congrats on winning the Flash500!

    This story actually twisted my stomach at the end. To get a physical reaction from someone means you did your job well. 🙂

  12. John Wiswell says:

    Yeah, eye contact during smooches with someone else is a no-no. I’d break ties.

    Congratulations on landing at Flash500!

  13. ElizabethM says:

    So fantastic! You said a lot in between the lines and I enjoyed that. It wrapped up tightly at the end too and I let out a little laugh. Well done.

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