All Creative Writing students starting at Brunel University London in September 2018 were invited to submit a piece of flash fiction in any style or genre, which reflected some aspect of becoming a student at Brunel. The quality of the submissions was very high but one piece in particular was felt by the judges (drawn from Brunel’s Creative Writing academic staff) to be the strongest. This is a very well executed and imaginative piece of writing by Chloe Perrin. Many congratulations to Chloe!
You can read Chloe’s winning entry below.
The Creative Writer
by Chloe Perrin
A flock of pigeons scattered as I sprinted through the square. I waved one particularly flustered pigeon out of my face while I dodged a doughnut stand.
There was no way I was stopping. I was this close to getting away. I skidded so hard I fell and scraped my knee on the damp pavement, which bloody hurt, but at least it gave me a chance to chuck my bloodied screwdriver into a bin before I raced down another alleyway.
I could still hear the police behind me, but further away now. This was good – I was sweating pretty bad and had a stitch like you wouldn’t believe. All I had to do was carry on down the busy street, keep shoving tourists to the side and once I was around the corner I’d be home free, there was nothing in my –
I swear I had to stop so fast I probably left a dent in the pavement where my feet skidded. The lady in my way was only marginally better than the police. I tried to stop gulping for breath and stretched my cheeks into a smile.
“Aunt… Olivia,” I panted. “Lovely… Surprise… I’m actually in a bit of a –“
“What are you doing in London? I thought you were up North! Don’t tell me, the job didn’t work out?”
I tried hard not to groan, but Aunt Olivia made it difficult. She was difficult. I could see her already drafting what she was going to say to the family as soon as I left: “Oh yes, she was running through the street like a crazy person, such an oddball. Scruffy, too. Still no job”.
“Actually,” I said. “I… Go to uni here.”
Aunt Olivia’s eyes widened. “You got into university? How marvellous!”
Somewhere in the distance I heard angry voices – “Which way did she go?” I couldn’t wait around too long.
“Yeah, well, clearing so…”
I blinked. “Hm?”
Oh, Aunt Olivia, you crafty fox. I started tapping my foot, antsy to leave, when I saw an advertisement on the side of a passing bus. My eyes followed the name…
“Brunnle.” I said.
Aunt Olivia smiled wide. “I think it’s pronounced Brunel. To study Art?”
“Creative Writing, actually.” I tried to sound casual but I definitely heard the clatter of a bin being overturned, and the sounds of steel toe capped boots getting closer.
“Oh,” said Aunt Olivia. “I just assumed Art because of all the red paint.”
She nodded to my jumper. I swallowed.
“Yeah, well, I’m in a society so…”
“There she is! Stop! Police!”
“I really do have to run,” I side stepped my aunt before she could say anything else and gave her a quick wave.
Aunt Olivia waved back. “I’ll call in sometime! I live in Hillingdon, just down the road!”
I turned and ran as Aunt Olivia was bowled over by a group of angry police officers, but I was already down another alleyway, wondering how late Brunel accepted applicants for Creative Writing degrees.
About the author
Chloe Perrin is a 25 year old from Wales and would always rather be reading. While she hopes to be an accomplished novelist and script writer in the future, her main ambition for this year is to keep her cactus alive.