• LISP Team

Bob Thompson, Short Story Finalist


Can you please tell us about you? Where do you live and how is your daily life?

I live in Upminster with my wife and new puppy around whom live revolves.

When did you start writing? How often do you write? We want to learn all about your writing life!

I was a commercial researcher and writer for thirty years, publishing nearly three hundred articles and papers in my own name with many more as “white label” pieces. This includes three non-fiction books.

I started writing fiction in 2016 when I retired. Since then I have written two full-length stageplays, two screenplays, numerous short stories and published my first novel – Old Tom.

How did you feel when you learned that you are a Finalist on The London Independent Story Prize?

Since I write mainly for fun it is always an honour to have ones writing recognized.

What's the best thing and the hardest thing about writing a Short Story?

I find the hardest thing is fitting a story to a predefined length. My style is probably overly wordy so it often becomes an editing exercise to give the story focus. I have been trying my hand at flash fiction recently to tighten up my writing style.

How did you come up with the idea for your LISP selected story? Is there a story behind your story? And how long have you been working on it?

It was an exercise. Every month Havering Writers Circle set some prompts for stories to which we can respond. In this case the three prompts were an usherette, an all-night café and a love letter.

Can you please give us a few tips about writing a 1500-word short story?

Don’t worry about the word limit. Tell your story and edit it later.

What's the best thing about writing competitions?

The Dutch have a saying – Reputation arrives on foot, but departs on horseback. Although I was a professional non-fiction writer, that horse has departed and I am starting from scratch as a writer of fiction. Competitions are an important part of building a reputation. Competing makes one a better writer.

Lastly, do you recommend the writers to give it a go on 1500-Word Short Story and LISP?

Absolutely. The more the merrier.




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