Tall And True Short Reads

One of Those Mornings

Episode 94 (18 June 2024)

Have you ever had one of those mornings? You know, where everything goes wrong. It’s like a farce, a series of mishaps increasing in frequency and intensity that have you howling with side-splitting laughter or shedding tears of frustration.


One of Those Mornings

Show Notes

Season Four: Episode 94 (18 June 2024)

One of Those Mornings is a short story from the Tall And True writers’ website, written and narrated by Robert Fairhead.

Read the story on Tall And True: https://www.tallandtrue.com.au/fiction/short-stories/one-of-those-mornings

Read the Five April Stories blog post: https://www.tallandtrue.com.au/blog/five-april-stories

Listen to The Winner’s Toast, Episode 45 of Tall And True Short Reads: https://www.tallandtrueshortreads.com/the-winners-toast/

Support the podcast: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads

Buy Robert’s short story collections online:

Story Insight

One of Those Mornings was my entry for the Australian Writers’ Centre’s April 2024 Furious Fiction writing challenge. And as I shared in the Five April Stories blog post on Tall And True, it was also the fifth April story I’d written for Furious Fiction since my first in 2020.

The brief was:

  • Your story’s first sentence must be a question
  • It must include something being pulled
  • And the words POST, TEAR and THUNDER.

In addition to examples of questions and how writers can use them to open a story and engage the reader, the Writers’ Centre specified:

For this challenge, we don’t want to see any “she said” or “Jane asked” tags at the end of this first sentence. It must end with a question mark.

My question, “Have you ever had one of those days?” and the scenario for the short story about a widowed father with a teenage daughter came to me very quickly. But soon after I started writing, I realised it was too broad, and I’d need far more than 500 words to tell the story. And even if I had 1000 words, I doubted it would engage the reader until “The End”!

So, midway through, I gave up on the story and thought of another opening question, “Can you keep a secret?” I wrote a paragraph but returned to my original story, drawn back by its characters and premise. However, I tightened the timeline and pace by slightly modifying the question, “Have you ever had one of those mornings?”

The Writers’ Centre judges didn’t Showcase or longlist my fifth April Furious Fiction, which was disappointing. But as my protagonist artist says in another of my Furious Fictions, The Winner’s Toast (Episode 45 of Tall And True Short Reads), “I’ve learned to channel disappointment into creative energy.”

I revisited the story, tweaked a few sentences, and shared it on Tall And True. I even changed the last sentence when I drafted the script before narrating it for Tall And True Short Reads, adding that the father was “shedding happy tears” but would “remember the alarm next week”.

I hope you enjoy listening to One of Those Mornings. You can read this and my selected short stories, blog posts and other writings at TallAndTrue.com.

You can also buy my short story collections, including the latest Tall And True Microfiction anthology from the Amazon Kindle, Apple Books, and Kobo online bookstores — links are available in the show notes.

The next episode of Tall And True Short Reads will be released shortly. In the meantime, please check your feed or the podcast website for earlier episodes from all four seasons. And follow or subscribe to the podcast and rate and review it via your favourite podcasting app — doing so helps share my storytelling.

You can support the podcast financially by making a small one-off or regular donation via the Acast Supporter Page.

Finally, please share this episode with family and friends and spread the word about Tall And True Short Reads and the Tall And True writers’ website.

Podcast Theme and Sound Effects

Royalty-free music from Pixabay.com: Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 15 in D major, Op. 28 ‘Pastorale’ – IV. Rondo. Allegro ma non-Troppo, performed by Karine Gilanyan.

Sound effects licensed under Creative Commons 0 from FreeSound.org:

Production Notes

Tall And True Short Reads is produced using Audacity. Podcast episodes are recorded in Sydney, Australia, on the traditional lands of the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation.

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Support this show: https://supporter.acast.com/tall-and-true-short-reads.

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