The Ladderman

So I’ve been a little quiet on the old ‘three word challenges’ of late. Partly because of writing Behind Closed Doors and Cyber Cell but also because I’ve been doing a little learning. I signed up to a free 5 Day Challenge to learn more about writing in Deep Point of View. It’s been a real eye opener and I can recommend Lisa Hall-Wilson’s book (Method Acting for Writers) and also her website.

So I’m currently trying my hand at a horror story inspired by Magda O’s submission of three words: Paper, Rock, Scissors. I apologise for the long wait, Magda. I am also trying my hand at writing it in deep point of view, which, I am told, gives the reader a more immersive reading experience.

As I am hoping to submit this short story for publication I can’t really publish it on my blog (plus it’s not quite finished so it would be a bit tricky!). I can give you a little snippet of it…


By Angela Archer

[…] The remnants of a dry-stone wall lined both sides. The woods fell away behind them and, in front, lay Kevin’s favourite part of this walk. The view across the valley never failed to release him from the turmoil of his life since his mother died. He could see all the places she’d been, the chapel school where she was a cleaner, the tea room where they ate brownies on a Saturday, their old house, the graveyard…

The dog yelped from behind. Kevin turned back only to see the dog running past him, tail between its legs.

“Marlon. Marlon, wait!”

The dog did not slow down.

“MARLON!” Kev jogged down the lane cursing his dog. Something tapped his shoulder and he heard clink of stone hitting stone. He spun around.

“Hello? Who’s there, who threw that?” He scanned the lane. “Come on, stop messing about!” He leant over the wall, no one there in either direction. He stood still, eyes searching the landscape. Nothing. No over hanging trees for anything to fall from. He was too far from the woods for anyone to make it back unseen. He checked the other side of the lane, getting caught in the brambles as he leant across the wall, nothing there but rabbit food.

“MARLON!” His jacket snagged on the thorns as he set off after his dog. Half jogging half looking back, his breath quickened and his eye’s widened. His hangover flushed away as his heart pounded and rushing blood echoed in his ears.

He rounded the corner, his dog nowhere to be seen.

Thud. His head jolted forward with the force of something hitting the back of it.

“Arrghh!” His hand automatically reached round to the pain. It felt wet. He rubbed it some more, then felt a faint trickle at the back of his neck. He looked at his hand. Blood, his blood.

“Alright you fuckers, this ain’t funny! Who the fuck are you? Come on! Show yourself!” Alone, Kevin looked round, his gaze zigzagging around like his dog. His stomach churned, his breath as loud as wind in his ears. Only silence replied. Another rock hit him in the chest. The force of it made him step back, his head snapped down to see the lump hit the ground. His hands clutched at his chest rubbing at the throb on his sternum. Where the hell did that come from.

RUN. He wasn’t sure if it was his voice or his mothers but he turned. And he ran.


As ever, I value any feedback and if anyone spots any author intrusion or pesky distancing words then do let me know. Also, if you want to read the whole piece then drop me an email and I’ll send it you (when it’s finished). I might even be able to do something a bit whizz-pop-bangy and send it your e-reader!!

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