Around the waste there is Grundy and the clown and the man who comes to fish. The man who comes to fish wears a faded brown body warmer, and pitches his line at the very edge of the scum pond. Grundy watches him, from a distance. Watches as he wrestles the flippering silver bodies from the water and smacks them dead against a rock. Why, Grundy wonders, do the fish keep coming and biting at the line? Don’t they smell the blood?
My short story “Men Of The Waste” is one of twenty stories that have been shortlisted for the Bristol Short Story Prize. The winning story will be revealed at an awards ceremony on October 19th 2013, and all the stories will appear in a competition anthology.
“Men Of The Waste” is a short story that I worked on during my first year at UEA. It’s about a man who lives on a patch of wasteground in the middle of the city, and his vicious war with the council workers who come to redevelop the land.
The Bristol Short Story Prize was founded in 2007 by the editors of the Bristol Review Of Books, and is now in its seventh year. You can read more about the competition on the website www.bristolprize.co.uk.