When I first stumbled across The Writer’s Arena I was intrigued and delighted in equal measure – and quickly registered my interest.
I have always been good with deadlines (an occupational hazard) and enjoy any opportunity to put my competitive streak through its paces, so the concept was hard to resist. Two writers. One theme. Ten days. One winner. Boom!
The toughest decision was whether to invent a new backdrop for my story or go with my ‘Paignton Noir’ stock-in-trade? Prior to receiving my prompt I was determined to concoct a whole new world and step totally outside my comfort zone. Weirdly, despite the supernatural element suggested at by the prompt, I quickly changed tack and decided to fuse the new with the old. Would it work? Maybe. Would it undermine the rest of my carefully constructed fictional universe? Probably!
Did I make good use of my ten days? In truth, no. I lost three evenings to drinking, one evening to the Walking Dead season finale and another to buying obscure hip-hop albums on eBay. Actually, that last one almost certainly coincided with one of my drinking sessions…. which left me with five evenings’ worth of solid writing to fulfil my brief. Long enough? Not quite, but I busted a gut during the last few days of my slot and managed to turn it around. I hope. (That said, this was one of the toughest stories that I have ever had to write – hopefully it was worth it!)
So: fight night. The question is: will I be prime-time Hulk Hogan triumphantly body-slamming Andre the Giant at Wrestlemania 3, or will I be late-period Hulk Hogan arthritically leg-dropping a barely-winded The Rock at Wrestlemania X8 before getting easily beaten?
Head to the Writer’s Arena to find out…