At Play in the Field––––––

Okay, I know I promised you the second part of my proposal adventure, but it’s currently with my editor and I’m waiting to hear back. Wanted to have that info before I wrote the next segment.

So instead I thought I’d present a short story by the next generation of Battles writers, my daughter Fiona. She wrote the following story one day last spring, and I knew I had to share it with you all. She, of course, has no idea I’m doing this.



By Fiona

Once there was a girl in England. She was the biggest liar ever. But one day she said she was a guy with a gun and she cried “help” and everyone came and they go their guns and stuff and then they saw her giggling.

Then one rainy day she really saw a man with a gun and she called “help”! But no one came. And then she ran but then she got shot. And died! And they had a funeral and no one came because she is a big fat liar! Except her mom and dad were there.

And everybody had a party. And no one felt bad or sad.

Remember don’t be a liar unless you want to die.


The End.


Wow…character development, even an arc – you gotta think she learned her lesson right before she kicked the bucket. I love how Fiona titled it “The Girl That Cried Gun” but in the story the girl cries “help.” And that ending…dramatic! Couldn’t make a dad more proud.

The first story I remember writing, though I’m pretty sure it wasn’t my very first, was one about to crime fighting super heroes named Kung Fuey and Chop Suey Louie (original spelling). Their adventure took place in Hong Kong as I remember it. See, I was writing crime thriller set in international locations even then. The…eh…writing was on the wall, I guess.

So what was the title of the first story you remember writing? What was it about?

And, please remember, don’t be a liar unless you want to die.


19 thoughts on “At Play in the Field––––––

  1. JD Rhoades

    I don’t remember what grade it was, but we were supposed to write a story based on a picture in the workbook. It was a drawing of two boys climbing a hill. One of the boys was carrying something and the other was looking back at a shadowy figure following them. I’d been reading about North Carolina’s Outer Banks during World War 2. German U-Boats were operating within sight of shore and there was a constant fear of spies and saboteurs. So I wrote a story where the two boys were running from a German spy they’d discovered. I remember the teacher being taken aback by the fact that the spy ended up getting thrown through the air and breaking his neck when the boys detonated the bomb they’d stolen from him.

    Looking back you can see the beginnings of my current style: North Carolina settings, scary bad guys, violence, stuff blows up.

    I’d probably end up getting sent to a counselor for a story like that today.

  2. Stacy McKitrick

    In the ninth grade I wrote IT WAS ONE OF THOSE WEEKS. A comedy of sorts about a 15 year-old boy who had something go wrong every day of the week, culminating at the high school dance. My teacher enjoyed the story, even if the other students thought my dialog was stiff (the grammer was too perfect). Too bad it’s taken me nearly 40 years to realize I enjoy putting my imagination to paper.

  3. RKCharron

    Hi Brett 🙂
    Thank you for sharing!
    What a cute little story. You must be still be smiling from reading it, I know I am.
    My first story was typed on an old typewriter when I was three. My mom still has it.
    It had flying cars and sentient animals & birds.
    All the best,

  4. Jemi Fraser

    The first story I remember was about my imaginary friend Sally. She and I found new dolls. Really exciting stuff 🙂

    Love your daughter’s story – kids’ stories are awesome, aren’t they?!

  5. Alli

    That is very cute and you definitely have a budding author on your hands! Thanks for the early morning smile.

    I recently found a "book" I wrote for a class project many, many, many moons ago. I can’t remember exactly what happened, but I know there was a girl and a horse and mystery (I believe I was into Trixie Beldon books at the time). The teacher had written on the book that it deserved an A+ but I got given an A- because I handed it in late (probably because I had my head in another book).

  6. Louise Ure

    Her title is superb! Can I call dibs on it?

    My first oeuvre, THE PROUD ORANGE, was written at age seven. The aforementioned orange treated all the other fruit badly, so they skinned him alive and wrung him out for juice. He died "a horrible and painful death."

  7. JT Ellison

    Mine was called THE SAMARITAN: Part Two (why part two I have no idea, other than I’ve always been a fan of my stories beginning in media res.) It was heavily influenced by David Bowie and 2001, A Space Odyssey, I think, as the main character has been stranded on a faraway planet, his ship wrecked and his compatriots dead. The voice is the exact same as mine now, which is totally bizarre, considering I was 7 or 8.

    Fiona has a bright future!!

  8. Ben Sloan

    The first story I remember writing was about a team of scientists exploring an underground vault that get murdered by a monster living there. The lone survivor killed himself at the end.

    That was in elementary school. Haha.

  9. Gayle Carline

    I honestly cannot remember my first "written" story – when I was young, I drew. My family was chock full o’ artists, so they encouraged me to draw and paint. But all of my drawings were stories. I’d start with a character, usually an animal, then I’d tell myself a little tale about who he was and what he was doing and what happened next. And all the time, I’m drawing the scene out. There were houses in yards and forests and mountains, and bomber planes. Sometimes the Spanish Armada showed up. All in the same story. It made sense at the time.

    This is probably why I read books like I’m watching a movie unfold, and why I write stories the same way.


  10. Allison Brennan

    Definitely has a future, and I like her story better than the boy who cried wolf. It’s updated to reflect the times.

    I can’t remember my first story. I wonder if my mom has it? Hmmm . . . but I to remember that most of my stories had to do with large families (I was an only child) and the heroine was in her teens and almost always had a twin brother or an older brother (hmm, shrinks would probably have a field day with me) and she always stumbled onto a mystery of some sort or a dead body. Yep, even early I had dead bodies popping up in my books. But I never finished anything. Once I figure out who committed the crime, I became bored and started the next big family story with a teenage girl who had a twin brother . . .

    I do remember writing a story in third or fourth grade about my grandpa building a cabin "all by himself" but it was a true story and I got to interview him and then write it up as a story. That was fun. I still have that–or rather, my mom does 🙂

  11. Darynda Jones

    That is awesome!!! I love that everyone had a party at the end because she was a big fat liar! It sounds to me like someone might have spread a rumor about her and she didn’t take kindly to it. Ah, the ability to immortalize our enemies in words is so alluring…

    I was hoping my son would follow in my footsteps. He started a story when he was about nine called Chunky Zi and the Dragon. It was so cute, but he tells me daily he just wants to race dirt bikes. Little brat. LOL.

    My first story was plagiaristically close to Cinderella. Been writing Cinderella stories ever since. 🙂

  12. Lplate Author

    My first ‘novel’ was about a bunch of sweets who had to go rescue another one who had fallen into the wrong hands and was going to be….eaten. The other sweets set out to rescue him…(I’d give you a list of sweets (candy)but being from England I doubt you would know them…)

    Great post, great story, loved it x

  13. TerriMolina

    That story is too cute! I love reading my kid’s stories.

    I don’t really remember the first story I wrote but I vaguely recall being in elementary school. I don’t know why we were supposed to write a short story but I came up with one about a boy who found a magic lamp and was granted one wish. The boy decided to give it some thought and as he tried to decide what he wanted to wish for he started singing the Oscar Meyer Weiner song. yep…you guessed it. He turned into a hotdog. 😀

  14. Alafair Burke

    My parents insist I wrote a bunch of derivative nonsense about animals searching more missing stuff, but I have never seen proof of such stories and have learned that my family is made up of unreliable narrators. I have, however, seen proof a story called Murder at the Roller Disco, which I wrote in 6th grade and which, frankly, rocked. I may have to call the Mom for a copy. I see a future murderati post in the making.

    BTW, I think Fiona shares the sickness. Pretty dark stuff.

  15. Brett Battles

    Thanks everyone for sharing all these great early stories. It’s apparent we were all pretty sick and twisted even at an early age!

    Also that’s for all the kind words abou my daughter’s story! I’ll be sure to let her know.


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