#47 – Calculus

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Every blink sent the room spinning out of focus, the sound of the teacher muting to a flat white noise.  Johnny couldn’t help it: the sun was hot and the air was thick.  If he could just rest his head a moment,…

The number “36” was staring at him.  It was twitching it’s arm and tapping against the desk.  Johnny didn’t know why it seemed so annoyed: there was still time to catch the funfair – the derivative told him so, though you should never believe a derivitive.

Someone was shaking him.

“Shall I fetch you a pillow, Johnny?”

“Sorry, Miss.”

(c) Tim Austin 2016.  Promo Image by Annie Spratt via Unsplash.

Today’s story was inspired by Leo Nolan – Actor, Musician and Puppeteer, and founding father of Midland Red Theatre Company.  

If you too would like to donate a word, pop it in the comments section below or Tweet it to me @timaustin2k using the hashtag #onewordonestory.

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Tomorrow’s word:  Jobseeker.


#45 – Apology

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“I see, Mr. Jones, that is,…”

“And what are you going to do about it!?  Nothing, that’s what!!  All you ever do is pass the buck!”

Alice’s eyes narrowed, her computer screen swimming in and out of focus.  The rattling air conditioning ground her threadbare nerves.  The man on the phone just wouldn’t stop.

“Mr. Jones, do you know what Cymothoa Exigua is?”

“,… What?”

“Cymothoa Exigua, Mr. Jones.  A parasite that eats away at the tongue of it’s victim and attaches to the dead stump.”

“,… Why,….?”

“I’m wondering if you poor wife would like me to buy you one as a pet.”

(c) Tim Austin 2016.  Promo image by Vladimir Kudinov via Unsplash.

An odd one today.  The ending went a few places – one of them tremendously dark.  I decided against it.  If in doubt, aim for comedy.

Today’s word was suggested by Steve Thomas of One Fine Day Artworks – purveyors of absolutely beautiful framed art.  Take a look at their range at

If you’d like to suggest a one word title, please do: pop your suggestion in the comments section below or tweet it to me @timaustin2k.

Don’t forget to follow the OWOS project here and on Facebook so you can get a fresh 100 word short story every day!

Tomorrow’s story? Conundrum!


#42 – Stunning

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Carly hadn’t expected this,…

Flashbulbs were blazing from every side as she stepped from the limousine.  The red carpet was shining bright. She waved, expecting the cry of excitement to drop away as the revellers and paparazzi realised their mistake.

She was a bit-part in the movie: a blink-and-you-miss-me nobody.  She’d cried at her Mother on the day the première ticket landed on the doormat.  And now,.. she was adored.

Carly flashed her brightest smile and twirled.  The press strained to take each shot.  They loved her!

The trail of toilet paper followed her unseen.  She didn’t hear them laughing.

(c) Tim Austin 2016.  Promo image by Yoori Koo via Unsplash.

Today’s story was inspired by my ol’ uni mukka Rory McNamara – software tester, walking music almanac and producer of the finest Vince McMahon impersonation this side of the Hudson.  You can follow him (if that’s your bag) on twitter @RorsDM

Suggest your one word title and I’ll write a story about it: it’s easy.  Just pop the word in the comments or tweet it to me @timaustin2k with the word and the hashtag #onewordonestory.

If you’re enjoying the blog, please let others know about it.  Like the OWOS Facebook page so you never miss a story! 

#40 – Stretched

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“No! Not that door, Joey!  Sally-Anne, stop pulling Tony’s hair!  Does anyone want to play a game?! Please??”

How did it come to this?  A simple party, she said.  Light refreshments, a dip in the pool, cake and TV.

“It’ll be easy with us both there,” she said.

He surveyed the chaos as he wandered to the bathroom.  He couldn’t be sure what was wall and what was crayon.  Why was there was cake inside the CD player? Nothing made sense any more.

His phone rang.

“Honey?  I’m still at the airport.  How’s the party?”

He locked the door.

(c) Tim Austin 2016.  Promo image by Stephanie McCabe via Unsplash.

Suggest your one word title and I’ll write a story about it: it’s easy.  Just pop the word in the comments or tweet it to me @timaustin2k with the word and the hashtag #onewordonestory.

If you’re enjoying the blog, please let others know about it.  Like the OWOS Facebook page so you never miss a story! 


#31 – SmegForBrains

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Doug watched the two men with helpless amusement.  Television production had ground to a halt as each man took turns placing the prop against their tongues.

“Doug, we’ve two more scenes to film ye,…”  “Shhh, Sally”

Sally lowered her voice, following the director’s gaze.

“What are they doing?”

Doug leaned down, conspiring with the runner.

“It’s a game of “who can hold the vibrating probe to their tongues longest without laughing””

Chris was winning – Craig seemed wholly unable to keep a straight face.

“But didn’t we make that out of,…?”

“Oh yes.”  Doug winked.

“Thank God for Ann Summers,……”

(c) Tim Austin 2016.  This probably didn’t happen.   I mean they wouldn’t.  Would they?  Fictitious.  All of it.  Honest, guv.  It’s even fictitious people.  (Also goes without saying: no infringement intended – all in the spirit of fun!) Promo image Courtesy of NASA via Unsplash.

Today’s one word title was kindly donated by the TV legend that is Mr. Danny John-Jules: Cat in Sci-fi comedy “Red Dwarf”, jammy fella who flies to a sunny island every year to film “Death in Paradise” and (my personal favourite) Barrington in “Maid Marian and Her Merry Men”.

Thank you Danny 🙂

This project is my attempt to write a whole new short story every day for a year, based on single donated words.  Take a look at some of the other stories written so far – you’ll find a list on the “Pre-Loved Words” page and in the sidebar to the left.  If you’ve enjoyed this story hit it up on your Social Media feeds and let your friends know!

If you want to suggest a word, please do – you’re very welcome to.  Tweet it to me @timaustin2k using the hashtag #onewordonestory and I’ll write a story based on that word (more info on the “Introducing” page, above).

There’s a new 100 word story every morning: hit the follow button (below to the right) and “Like” the OWOS Facebook page – it’ll really help me out and you’ll never miss a story.

See you tomorrow for “Hands”!

#23 – Seasick

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Sea Clem Onojeghuo

“Oh!  Isn’t it beautiful?”  Anna squeezed her husband’s hand, her golden hair whipping in the sea breeze as the cruise liner rocked gently through the Pacific blue.  The sun was a perfect orb against the glimmering horizon.  Blue met blue, the clean salt air filling the newly-wed’s lungs and setting her spirit soaring.  She shivered as a drop of liquid brushed her cheek.  “We’d better get in – it’s starting to rain.”

Ten year old Kevin wasn’t having a good time on the deck above.  Leaning over the edge, he retched again, wiping the edge of his green, vomit-stained mouth.

(c) Tim Austin 2016.  Promo image courtesy of Clem Onojeghuo via Uplash

Today’s title was suggested by the beautiful Vicki Oliver – Actress, reader and artist!  You can find some of her work with candles at  Please share the blog and this story on Facebook and Twitter :)

Today’s story is dedicated to the memory of the enormously talented Victoria Wood who died today. God bless and keep you, Victoria. RIP.

Please continue to share and support the blog by suggesting words and telling your friends.  If you want to donate a word, tweet me @timaustin2k and using the hashtag #onewordonestory.

See you tomorrow for “Breath”

#19 -Tendrils

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Colonel Anderson jumped as the beast slammed its snaked arm against the splintering glass.  His hands shook as he lifted his wrist to his mouth, spitting breathless commands to the rest of his platoon.  He had to stay quiet: the alien saw the world in sound. It knew he was there on the other side of the bulkhead.  It knew.  He hissed a second order but it was no good,… they were gone.

“Aaaand I think we’ll call that Lunch, Colonel,” boomed a female voice.  “That’s the Tenth simulation you’ve screwed.  But don’t feel too bad,… it’s Pasta Wednesday”

(c) Tim Austin 2016

If you get it, you get it.  And if you do, let me know!  If you’re enjoying the stories, hit that follow button below (if you’re on WordPress) or like the OWOS Facebook page.  Oh, and share it on Facebook and Twitter 🙂

Tendrils was suggested by my old sparring partner John “Bobby” R Wilkinson (Esquire): Associate Artist at York Theatre Royal and all-round top bloke!  

If you want to suggest a word, pop it in the comments or Tweet it to me @timaustin2k using the hastag #onewordonestory.

Browse a few more stories and I’ll see you tomorrow for “Particles”!