#FlashFiveFriday – Backbone


This month Mr B and I are taking part in #FlashFiveFriday run by The Indie Exchange.

#FlashFiveFriday is a weekly flash fiction / flash blogging prompt.

The rules are very simple if you’d like to take part:

1) Write for no longer than five minutes
2) No upper or lower word limits
3) You must write something new
4) You can prepare your post ahead of time but the 5 minute limit still applies
5) If you add your blog post to the weekly linky you must visit five other blogs that week too to show your support


#FlashFiveFriday – Backbone

Donna says: “Poor Dave has been abandoned to a solo effort this week – I’ll be back next week!”

I’ve never been a particularly strong person. Through school I was quiet, shy and retiring, not the sort of person to rise to a challenge. Even after leaving university I struggled. I found the office environment intense and uncomfortable. The prospect of using a phone terrified me. It still does sometimes.

I think as we grow up some of us are stronger than others, it comes more naturally but that doesn’t mean those who are perceived to be weaker are necessarily inferior. Compared to the popular kids at school, I wasn’t the first choice for the football team (usually last!), I didn’t have rebellious tales of drinking and smoking too much (started drinking at 15, tried smoking once at 11!) and I didn’t have enviable accounts of the many girls I had to fight off due to good looks. I had none of those things but most of the time it didn’t bother me.

I’ve faced some adversity in my life, nothing compared to what most people have survived, and though I often shrivel and retreat in the face of a challenge there are some things that I have taken on and stuck with, my writing being one. When my best friend and I were at university he once told me what he liked about me most was that I didn’t care what people thought of me, I was always just myself. Those words meant a lot to me and I realised it was true. I hadn’t changed myself to suit others, to be wanted, needed and popular, I was just me. I may have been spineless in many situations throughout my life but when it comes to being me I’m always glad to find my backbone in place.

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Dave Brown

I was born in Barnsley, South Yorkshire, England and have always been a bookworm and enjoyed creative writing at school. In 1999 I created the Elencheran Chronicles and have been writing ever since. My first novel, Fezariu's Epiphany, was published in May 2011. When not writing I'm a lover of films, games, books and blogging. I live in Barnsley, with my wife, Donna, and our six cats - Kain, Razz, Buggles, Charlie, Bilbo and Frodo.
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  1. David – Great post this week! You've got my respect and your best friend at university was insightful enough to recognize a good character trait when he met you. It takes courage and a backbone to put yourself out there for others to criticize. Not many have the strength of character to do what you've been doing. Thanks always for the support you provide to the independent writing community.

    1. Thanks Gregory, that means a lot. I don't consider myself brave or strong, just honest. It is sad that we are judged so much by others. It would be much nicer if we could all be accepted for who we are.

  2. Wonderful post – I really enjoyed this. And for the record, I think it takes a ton of courage to not care what others think. I actually think that's the hardest things for most people to do, to not try to modify who they are to seem more impressive to others.

    1. Thanks for your kind words, JC. It's only with hindsight I've realised I'm more stubborn than I thought, refusing to change to suit others. No one should have to do that. We should all just be who we want to be and not be questioned.

    1. Thank you Terri, that's really kind of you to say.

      Being older does give one perspective. Looking back all these years later I can be proud of my self-imposed stubbornness not to change for others.

  3. Lovely! What a cool friend. I was the same in senior school – a shrinking violet, but I was always daydreaming and writing stories. Hindsight is a funny beast. Looking at the backbone pic, it's funny how it kind of looks like a caterpillar with lots of little legs! :)

    1. Thanks for commenting Vickie.

      Can't believe you were a shy one at school. Too busy being creative but that's not a bad thing. Wish I'd started writing a bit younger. I always had a pretty active imagination though :)

  4. I hate using the phone too. I don't even like to order pizza. So all my friends thought it was hilarious I got a clerical job that was mostly following up with vendors by phone. Thankfully more is done by email now.

    1. Thanks for commenting Donna.

      Yes, in my last office job we had a rota with one person doing the phone calls all week. Those were the weeks I dreaded. The rest were fine, especially working on emails all week ;)

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