My sixth short story

A month ago, I set myself the objective – set out in this posting – to write five short stories this summer. I have now achieved this target but the ideas are still flowing.
So today I publish my sixth short story entitled “A Friend Indeed”.
What do you think?


  • Dana Huff

    I am going to sit down this evening and read your stories at last. I promise!
    I nominated you for a silly award called the Zombie Chicken Award for Most Agreeable Blogs:

  • Alexei C.

    Hello Roger,
    Hope everything is well with you and your family.
    I noticed that you started writing stories, but read only this most recent one. I find it very touching and pleasantly sad.
    As someone who reads rather superficially, I often wonder if I really grasped the author’s thought behind the story. Would you mind sharing?
    Thanks for the nice reading,

  • Roger Darlington

    Hi, Alexei.
    Authors are usually reluctant to spell out the meaning of their writing. They like to leave it to the reader. But, since you ask and since I guess English is not your first language, I will explain what I am trying to do in the story.
    I’m posing the question: if you could go back in time and meet yourself as a child, what advice would you give that child about life? I’m suggesting in the story that the main piece of advice would be: don’t worry too much – things work out.
    Now, if that’s the advice you would give to yourself as a child, perhaps that’s the advice you should give to yourself now as an adult. In many ways, each of us is our own best friend (the point in the final sentence).
    There are three subsidiary messages in the story:
    1) Paternal support can come from figures other than one’s own father
    2) It’s never to late in life to study and to learn
    3) Death is a terrible loss but we can cope
    I hope that this helps.
    Please check out my other stories and see if you can work out what I’m trying to say in them.

  • Henry

    I have never replied before. I am not someone who feels moved to “write to The Times”.
    However, when I read your 6th and latest short story (great!), I read “palimpsest”… c’mon – who knows what that means? I only learned about that one when I took my niece to the Saatchi Gallery on the Kings Road – the brochure waxed on about the palimpsest of the artist…
    Your writing is fluid and warm – no need for big words – they affect your piles of spoch!

  • Roger Darlington

    It’s a great word, Henry, that describes exactly what I’m trying to say. I’ll see what other readers say before deciding whether to change it.
    When I read a word I don’t understand, I look it up in a dictionary – that way I learn a wider vocabulary!
    But you might be right …

  • Henry

    Yeah, you’re right – better to look it up and learn something.
    It’s just in this “I-want-it-now” world, things like that stop us in our tracks. And I fully admit, this is just my meaning and my subjectivity.
    Still loved the story!

  • David Monkman

    I’ve just read your fifth and sixth short stories. Are they in any way autobiographical?
    I’ve enjoyed both. Once again well done and thanks for posting them.

  • Roger Darlington

    Many thanks for the encouragement, David.
    None on my stories are autobiographical, but most of them borrow something from experiences I’ve had or people I’ve met or places I’ve been.
    I guess that’s one of the advantages of short story writing when one is older!

  • Georgeanne Lamont

    What a beautiful story – very ‘you’. It’s really tender and captures the child’s eye view when the marriage collapses.

  • Silvia

    Ah, tugs the heart strings – and of course no personal links in this one!


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