Be careful what you wish for …

Casey Clifford inserted that old adage into the comments of last week’s post. And speaking of coincidences … Saturday I was happy to download a new short story by Sherry Isaac … What You Wish For . Click on the link and buy this amazing story.

I asked for writing prompts and to date I have an even dozen. Hardly enough Wednesdays in April and May to cover all of them.

What I truly loved was most of them can qualify as suspense, thriller, mystery. Do my readers  know me or do they know me?

mystery is murder

Murder Mystery Link

Prompted In The City …

Yes, I’ve been inspired to create a new feature here In The City.

I bet you are thinking I’ll never be able to do a story based on all those great sentences? Is that what you think?  And I bet you again that I’d certainly not be able write each of those stories within the five boroughs of New York City … maybe all in Brooklyn?

Hold on to your garters ladies … because this Brooklyn born and bred, New York City ex-pat is going to attempt to do both those. Write a story for each sentence you sent and plant each story under my sunny umbrella In The City.

I’ll cheat and do them out of order and most likely struggle with at least three of them. No, I won’t tell you which ones.

I’ll also struggle with the word count. I’ve been known to be a little long in the word department and I might go over. I trust you’ll forgive my small failings.

This first post to Prompts In The City was provided by Patricia Yager Delagrange. Go find her. You’ll be glad you did.

She heard someone call her name but didn’t dare turn around, fearing after two years she’d finally been recognized.


Sarah rolled her collar against the wind and took her usual morning constitution along Surf Avenue.  She ambled over to the Wonder Wheel to enjoy the sight of the giant cars being hung back in place. She had become more comfortable of late, believing she had succeeded in blending in with the locals.

A Hartsdale gal, born and bred, Coney Island was not her first choice of places to hide. A deserted island in the Caribbean or a small cottage in the Florida Keys had been her first choice. Yet, here she was living in a small one bedroom apartment off the main drag. Her appearance altered, her name changed and her life one of constant fear.

She arrived in the dead of winter a little over two years ago. The first time she strolled on Surf, she faced boarded up arcades. Not many people on the streets, not nearly as many as the crush of people who would arrive in a few months when the heat of summer pushed Brooklyn natives to the beaches.

She got lost in the amazing process as each of the colorful cars were hung on the massive steel structure like giant Christmas lights. She delighted watching them sway in the early Spring breeze. One of the workers turned and smiled, “You know it’s Spring when the Wonder Wheel cars go back up.”

She laughed, “Actually the first day of Spring was Tuesday.”

“You live around here?”

Her breathe hitched. She didn’t like talking about where she lived. Two years of hiding had taught her to trust no one. Even this burly man seeming to have no agenda became an instant threat. “No, I–”

“You gotta come to the opening this weekend.”

She shuffled backwards. “Absolutely,” and quickly walked towards the end of her daily trek, the landmark Cyclone roller coaster.

The calm she had felt only moments earlier was shattered. She had broken the first rule. Don’t trust anyone.

The rules set down by her best friend became etched into her brain. “This is for your safety. And remember, your name is Laura Meyers.”

“I can’t hide forever.”

“It won’t take me forever to nail his ass,” she said. “Just stay here and watch your back.”

“No one I grew up with would be seen dead in Brooklyn.”

“You’d be surprised the places people would be seen dead in.”

She would remember those words.

The crowds began to arrive, a bit more each week as the weather warmed and brave souls ventured onto the sands. Teenagers and tourists came for the rides, for Nathan’s Famous, and for the sights they read about in magazines. Each time someone lifted a camera, she moved out of view.

She longed to be herself again, to have her life back, the life that had been shattered with one brutal act of violence.

It was a muggy August morning, the heat so intense in her small bedroom, she decided to cool off along Surf Avenue. Maybe she’d go on the boardwalk and enjoy the light as it played along the incoming waves.

She was at the top of the ramp approaching the boardwalk. She heard someone call her name but didn’t dare turn around, fearing after two years she’d finally been recognized.

“Sarah?” The voice persisted. “I know that’s you, Sarah.”

It was a familiar voice from her childhood. Sarah gripped the steel railing and slowly turned around. It was Mike Sanders, the one who got away, the one who she threw over such a long time ago.

“Go away, Michael.”

“I want to help you.”

“How did you find me? No one knows where I am.”

He moved closer and touched her arm. “You’ve got to trust me.”

Trust no one.

Panic buzzed in her brain like electricity. She turned to run and felt his powerful grip on her arm. “No, don’t run. It’s not safe here anymore.”

Okay …  Let’s have some fun.

You know those TV shows and movies where the audience picks the ending? We have 649 words so far. That’s enough for today.

Next week I’ll give you a choice of three endings. One will appeal to those who love HEA … one will appeal to twisted sisters … and the third will appeal to folks who love poetic justice.

What do you think will happen to poor Laura?

And pray tell … what do you think of my new series so far?

fOIS In The City


The sentence came from Patti, the inspiration came from Amusing the Zillion, a Brooklyn blog I have begun to enjoy. Tricia is a local to the neighborhood of Coney Island, Brooklyn. She reminds me that my fascination with the spirit of Coney Island has never dulled. I hope you visit her blog to get a better view of what has captivated me since childhood.



Filed under Flash Fiction

25 responses to “Be careful what you wish for …

  1. Florence – I almost didn’t pick the iPad up tonight. I’m so happy I did as your blog rolled in and I discovered a treasure. I love what you are doing with this new series. Are you sure I have to wait until next week for the next installment?


  2. I’m already biting my nails over the outcome, and thanks for the heads up about Amusing the Zillion, just checked it out, my kind of site.


    • Yes, Shelley. I knew you would like Tricia’s blog. I am investigating so many of the Brooklyn blogs and hers is one of the best. No, dont bite your nails … take a deep breath and wait for next week “when all will be revealed.” 🙂


  3. Have I told you recently how brilliant you are? No? Well, I’ll say it again. I think you’re a fabulous writer. You have an awesome talent for telling tales. I love your writing. And I loved what you did with my prompt. AND I LOVE THIS SERIES.


    • We did it, Patti. We kicked off the series with your great sentence and then readers will have to choose which ending they liked the most. I appreciate your kind words … at the risk of using a cliche … this is really a labor of love 🙂


  4. christicorbett


    Wow. Just, wow. Wow that you can create such a story from only a prompt, and have me on the edge of my seat waiting to see what happens next. You are such a talented writer!

    And you know how to hook a reader too, since I’m eagerly awaiting the next installment.

    Christi Corbett


    • Christ, glad you like the first story. Yes, I guess I added another feature to the blog. It’s like I haven’t anything to do at 3am ….. soooooooooo.

      I will enjoy seeing which ending each of you selects next week … a little Freudian thing going on there. Thanks again for the comments 🙂


  5. vicki batman

    Florence!!!!! I love it. You are amazing and Patti’s prompt was awesome, too. I can’t wait for more and more.


  6. You make this look so easy…I can’t wait to turn in my book, and play, like you are! Bravo!


  7. Wow, great job, Florence. I can’t wait to read those three endings. 🙂


  8. Florence,

    Of course I’m not surprised you’d choose NYC. Remember the line from The Naked City, movie and TV series: “There are eight million stories in the naked city. This has been one of them.”

    That population was for the year of the movie. I’m sure it’s more now and inbred in your writer’s bones.

    Well done. Look forward to next week and the 3 ending choices.


    • Yes, yes … Casey … that is one of my all time fav for a TV or movie. There’s so much to pick from and since I am forever home-sick … doing the stories keeps NYC close to my heart 🙂 See you next week !!


  9. What a brilliant idea and an absolutely brilliant outcome. I’m looking forward to keeping up with this. I’ll be tuning in for the next instalment!


  10. I really love this. I can’t wait to see my choice of an ending. I’ve been reading a lot of New Adult contemporary books lately. Most have such tragic, cliffhanger endings (to facilitate a book #2, of course). I can’t wait to choose.


  11. Florence, This is my first time visiting your site, and what an absolute treat it is. The fact that you can grab a prompt and create a compelling story in record time is an example of pure magic. This tale of yours reminds me of some written by one of my favorite mystery writers, the iconic Patricia Highsmith. Like her, you create an atmosphere that becomes a character essential to the story. Well done, Ms. fOISinTheCity.


  12. Pingback: Prompt endings … | fOISinTheCity

  13. Pingback: VERY INSPIRING BLOGGER AWARD | Sheri de Grom

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