Georgia Cook, LISP 4th Quarter 2020 Flash Fiction Winner by 'All The Ghosts In The Ocean'
LISP 4th Quarter 2020 Flash Fiction Winner, Georgia Cook by 'All The Ghosts In The Ocean'
- Can you please tell us about you and your daily life?
Hello there! My name is Georgia Cook; I’m a cartoonist and writer, currently living in London. In my daily life I design characters, props and costumes for animated films and TV shows, and I write horror and ghost stories in my free time.
- When did you start writing? How often do you write?
I've always loved writing short fiction, but I started writing 'properly' just under a year ago-- around the start of April 2020-- as part of my recovery from an eating disorder. Like so many others, I’d just lost my job to the pandemic, and was facing a very long few months of uncertainty and lockdown. Not wanting to relapse, I decided it was now or never, and started hunting down competitions and writing themes in order to keep myself occupied.
I wasn’t sure if anyone would like my particular brand of writing, but getting a story shortlisted for the Bridport Prize (the first competition I entered) was a major boost, as well as being accepted into several upcoming horror anthologies and narrated podcasts over the following months, and here I still am!
I try to write 500 words a day on whatever project I’m working on, but I won’t beat myself up if I don’t! I think a lot of writers burn themselves out with the notion that you need to be writing a huge number of words constantly and consistently in order to be ‘legitimate’, and that simply isn’t true. If you only add 10 words to your story today, that’s still 10 words it didn’t have yesterday.
You can find links to my published work on my website: https://www.georgiacookwriter.com/
- How does it feel to have your work recognised?
Such a lovely surprise!
- What's the best thing and the hardest thing about writing a Flash-Fiction?
The best thing is definitely the length, and the wide variety of topics you can cover in a tiny story. I love the challenge of telling a fully complete narrative or painting an evocative image in as small a word count as possible.
The hardest thing for me is finding that satisfying snap-shot ending; with flash fiction I feel it’s all in how you frame the last few sentences, and how they contextualise the piece as a whole.
- 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?
I love writing and reading ghost stories. The majority of my published work so far has been for horror anthologies and podcasts, and I adore any aspect of speculative and ‘weird’ fiction.
All The Ghosts In The Ocean was one of the very first flash fictions I wrote back in 2020. I couldn’t get the image out of my head of all these ancient fishermen ghosts, floating just above the water far out to sea, and decided it would either make an excellent eerie painting, or a creepy little story!
- Can you please give us a few tips about writing a 300-word flash-fiction story?
Be brutal with your editing-- cut everything you don’t need. Read your work aloud, or get someone to read it aloud for you, and listen for the stumbles. With short-short fiction, I personally find it beneficial to have the ending worked out before the beginning; that way I know the destination I’m aiming for, and won’t waste words trying to get there.
- What's the best thing and the hardest thing about writing competitions?
Hardest thing is definitely the rejections. I find working to a deadline really reassuring, and it helps me finish my stories, but sometimes receiving 5+ rejections all in one go can be horrendously draining.
It bucks me up to know that everyone receives rejections, at every stage of their writing journey, and receiving a story back from somewhere just means I have another story to send out elsewhere!
Best thing is the community of writers! Meeting all sorts of people writing all sorts of things, and cheering one another on.
-Lastly, do you recommend the writers to give it a go on LISP?
Absolutely! Give your story a little polish, read it back a couple of times, and send it through!