Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Short stories: think positive

Marian here:


 Sorry, readers, I know you're dying to hear more about me and the contents of my story but there's been a development at work. I was called in for an urgent review. Someone's had an affair with the wrong manager or tried to worm their way into an interview without finishing my course, I thought. But no!!! My trainees weren't in the training room when I arrived and my line manager jerked his head towards the board room door. Human Resources issues, I thought. Then I went in. And out.

Well! You will be incensed (there's no other word for it) to know that I am to be parted with.  Yes, I know!  It's unbelievable isn't it, after my splurging all my skills and expertise into countless, probably unworthy, trainees.  Companies all over the U.K. may have efficient little manager bods trained by me. Ex college.

SOBS. So, this is for all my American fans. Marian needs love. She wants you to rush to your Kobos, Kindles and ibooks and buy ME-TIME TALES: Tea breaks for mature women and curious men.

Actually, a fourteen-year-old girl, five techies with designer stubble, and countless hubbies sneakily reading, have enjoyed the book. Probably because my story is first. (Even though that inept woman who is our author, Rosalind Minett, says that Elfreda's story is best. What does she know?)

Anyway, I am going to display my adaptability in a new managerial role. More of that later. I think I need to do the adapting first, before bringing myself to speak of the change in my life. But, as I've always told my trainees: POSITIVE THINKING. You Americans know all about that. x x x

Friday, 4 April 2014

Inside story. Show me yours.

After calling her fellow readers 'a line of chickens', Marian thought she would take charge in her usual managerial way. Little does she know that her firm, a financial services training off-shoot for the lower ranks of the industry, is about to dispense with her services. There is a chain of dry cleaners who are advertising for a manager and this opportunity is going to be brandished at her by her current employers. Russell re-enters the scene, in the know.

Elaine: Where's Marian off to?

Russell:  Her HQ are in need of a consultation with her. She may be gone rather a long time.

Elaine:  Right then. Let's look at her story in full, see whether she's really got the right to call us a line of chickens.

Pru:     Yes, I really resented that! (Actually I do feel like a flustered chicken most mornings, but look what I get up to, 

Daryl:  What do you get up to? I'd characterised you as a wholly reliable woman.

Elaine:  Obviously not so holy

Pru:  Stop it, Elaine! Daryl, I should have said, what I get out of bed to every morning.

Peggy:  Wouldn't your mother say, 'You've made your bed, now lie on it.'

Pru:     You've got it in one!

Bella:   Darlings, what is this about?

Peggy:  Haven't you read her story and how she accidentally went to the extreme of what her mother predicted for her? 

Bella:   My mother predicted bliss for me, and that's what I spent my life experiencing. 

Elaine:   And?

Mrs W:      Isn't bliss enough? Did I say that already? Isn't bliss enough?

Daryl:   How would someone like me know? I am so far from bliss that I can't imagine it exists.

Elaine:   Yawn, yawn, Daryl, with your miseries. Listen all, weren't we going to look at Marian's story while she's out of the way?

Pru:    To be fair, though, we should all share a bit of what's inside our stories.

Jess:  Yay! Y'know what? I said weeks ago to Marian, I'll show you mine if you show me yours, and she did a bit. Don't you remember?

Peggy:  Sorry, it must have passed me by.

Elaine:   Passed her by! That's exactly what's in her story. I'm looking at the end.

Peggy:  Stop laughing, we want to read it right through.

Mrs W:   On the first page, where I am, there's mention of a certain under-garment.

Jess:     Shock - ing. Doesn't she wear one?

Elaine:   Turn over, turn over. Let's see the next page.

Russell:  Let me remind you, Ladies, that Pru suggested you all shared your stories rather than centring on just Marian's.

Mrs W:   Have I said before that actually I'm very keen to share my story? I don't know what it means . . .

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