One of the great difficulties of writing is to make every word count.  Writing a story, or the introduction to a story, in 100 precisely-chosen words,  is a great way to practice that skill.  If you like to write, join us.  We are kind and helpful.
If you like to read, join us.  Our stories are diverse!  Click on the blue link critter at the very end, sit back and enjoy your travels.

(I’ll be traveling Friday-Monday, so it may take me some time to get to your story.  But I will.  Happy Easter or Passover to all of you.)

copyright rochelle-wisoff-fields

All three sayings in my story are from our family lexicon, the name has been changed to protect the innocent and, thankfully, the advice was heeded and the story is complete fiction.  Thanks, Rochelle, for the picture.


After Midnight

“Nothing good happens after midnight” and “Never take a drink you haven’t seen someone open.” Dad’s oft-repeated sayings, sometimes accompanied by Francesca’s surreptitious eye-rolls.   Hot from dancing, she’d gulped from an extended glass, then felt woozy.  Gathering her wits to decline an offered ride, she called Dad, knowing he’d be up until she got home.

She half-sobbed,” I’m sorry.  Are you mad?”

“Stay right there, I’m on my way. You’re fortunate nothing happened and too smart to do it again.”  Then, as he did nightly, he added, “Dad loves Francesca.”

The passing headlights glowed in the warm darkness like nightlights.


After Midnight

  1. lessons learned
    some the hard way
    excellent dialogue and feeling conveyed

    • Thanks. You’re up and reading early (although maybe not, since it may be the middle of the day wherever you are.) 🙂 No matter where it is, good morning from NE Ohio and have a wonderful day!


  2. Best wishes for the holiday.
    Dad to the rescue. Glad she had enough wits about her to remember to call him. Some dads can be rocks in their children’s and other people’s lives. Always there. Always dependable.
    Nice touching family story

    • Thanks, Randy. This is what we hope our dads will be and this is the type of dad Bill is, which is a great thing (although if this were real, he may have said more than just what was in the story as he’s not limited to 100 words!)

      Happy Passover to you and all others celebrating it,


  3. Alastair says:

    Love this story. Glad the lessons were learned. It is every father’s fear. I know when my daughter (14) went to see Justin Bieber with her friend a couple of weeks ago I was worried about spiked drinks etc.

    Just as an aside, I don’t know if you know, but you can get something called “Toppers” When you see someone open a bottle, you put one in the top and then a straw. Then someone can’t just walk by and drop something in.

    • Wish I’d have invented that! But open glasses are probably an even bigger problem (although that anyone can afford the price of a mixed drink these days is beyond me.) I’m thankful Bill did such a goot job with the girls on this and that this story never happened.

      Top o’ the mornin’ to you,


  4. petrujviljoen says:

    Both your and Rochelle’s stories triggered memories.

  5. claireful says:

    I was sure this was going to end badly, so I liked the surprise that it all turned out well. This line confused me at first: “Dad’s oft-repeated sayings, sometimes accompanied by her surreptitious eye-rolls.” I thought you’d got Dad’s gender wrong…

  6. kz says:

    awww i so love her relationship with her dad and his sweet way of saying goodnight ^^ a really great dialogue

  7. I’s good to have a dad… and I agree nothing good happens after midnight – even Eric Claption knows it :o)

  8. vbholmes says:

    If only all young girls were so smart–and all fathers were on standby when needed. The Perfect World. Nice, Janet.

    • Ahh, I didn’t say all, but this is (or would be) certainly true in our family. Neither of our daughters ever got in this situation but everything else is true. I would hope it were the same, even though I know it’s not and we’re certainly not perfect.


  9. jwdwrites says:

    Ah! Where would a gal be without her dad? Good advice there for anyone, I hope my girl is more careful than your MC. Good story Janet. 🙂

  10. yepiratehere says:

    This story means a lot to a father…

  11. Sandra says:

    A lesson for all there; with a nice feel-good factor. Good one Janet. Keep safe.

  12. A positive twist on the prompt. Advice we always give our girls. Great job Janet.

  13. Joe Owens says:

    I hope your travels are enjoyable. There is such a genuine feel to this story. We will not always take the words of advice as quickly as we should Thankfully her folly did not lead to destruction. It is a very likely possibility with this rag tag bunch. We have a lot of evil lurking in the stories lately.

    • We do have plenty evil luring around this time of the week, Joe! I’ve written some like that and probably have to try harder to do more.

      The genuine feel from the story is that is taken so closely from real life.


  14. Parul says:

    Very wise sayings all three.
    A very true to life story. I could be Fransesca too – the character felt so real.
    This on had a message of sorts. I really like it!

  15. Scary indeed.. I’m happy all went well…

  16. Penny L Howe says:

    Just brilliant, for me the message loud and clear. Your story flowed from beginning to end Janet! 🙂

  17. Tom Poet says:

    Smart girl, sharp author and good Dad..what more could you want? You are always so fast and sharp! By the way loved your poem the other day. I keep rolling the words over in my head.


    • Hi, Tom. I’m glad you liked the story and very pleased that the poem has stuck with you. I’m thinking I may try to write a bit more poetry for my blog. I’ve done some haiku, which I enjoy, but I may try to branch out a bit. Right now, I’m taking immense pride at how great my newly stained hardwood floors look. 🙂

      Glad you’re not making a stranger of yourself!


      • Tom Poet says:

        Finished up a story a day before deadline so I have some time on my hands today. But come Monday all hell breaks loose and I will be making one word comments at best! Always time for you Janet.

      • I’m so happy that your “real” writing is going so well. What happens on Monday?


  18. Very sweet story. What a dad!

  19. claudia says:

    Nice to see such a good ending to the night!

  20. deanabo says:

    This makes me miss my dad… very good.

  21. rgayer55 says:

    Dad’s are very wise. Reminds me of a quote by Mark Twain, “When I was 14 I thought my father was stupidest man on earth, by the time I was 21 I was amazed at how much the old man had learned in only 7 years.” (paraphrased)

    Enjoyed the JJ Cale, but much prefer the version from the album “Naturally” I wore out my vinyl copy and now the CD is showing signs of needing replacement. What a great songwriter.

  22. Dear Janet,
    Dad’s a gem and so is your story. I feel the love and safety that Francesca finds in him. Well done as always.

    • Dad is a gem, both in the story and in real life. It’s sad when children can’t feel the love and safety of a dad like this.

      Thanks for stopping, as always, and for taking care of this unruly group!


  23. nightlake says:

    a lesson learnt. enjoyed it

  24. A real account of the love and care from a parent to a child. This was lovely. Dads like mums are precious in so many ways, you told it well.

  25. I like the way you tied to the picture as a metaphor for the headlights. Looks like the father raised a smart girl.

    • I did want to have some sort of link there and thought of the headlights right away, but wasn’t sure how to work it in. Always good to raise smart children! 🙂


  26. elappleby says:

    I love ‘nothing good happens after midnight’ – although we all know that just depends on your definition of ‘good’ 🙂 Great story – lovely father!

    • Yes, it does depend on your definition…and from a father’s viewpoint toward his children, nothing good ever happens. 🙂 Glad you liked the story. I love the dad myself!!


  27. I think scenes such as this are a right of passage in some ways. We’ve all had these moments.

    Nicely written.

  28. Very neatly pulled together.
    Loved it.

  29. Jan Brown says:

    I like this story — and the sayings — very much! Dad and Francesca are both deserving of each other’s love.

    Have a lovely Easter/Passover, Janet. God bless!

    • Thanks, Jan, same to you. We’ll be spending Easter in Philly with our younger daughter since her break was spring break, not Easter break. 🙂 Glad you like the sayings. Our girls heard them a lot!!! But they’ve always remembered them and never fallen into this story.


  30. boomiebol says:

    Aren’t dads the best :). I have to agree, nothing good happens after midnight…my girls will no be hearing it from me many times lol.

    Have a blessed Easter

  31. Carrie says:

    I hope my girls know they can always call us if they need to 🙂 Sometimes kids make mistakes but a good parent ensures they understand we’re always there, no matter what 🙂

    great sotry

    • You’re right, Carrie. Even if we don’t approve or they do something wrong, we’ll always love them and try to be there for them. Sometimes that means letting them suffer the consequences, sometimes not. Glad you liked the story.

      Happy Easter,


  32. A feel-good story, Janet. However. I have an ominous feeling about those oncoming headlights.
    I’m having trouble posting my story (error on my blog). Hopefully, it will be fixed by tomorrow. Happy Easter !!

    • Lora, you can relax. The headlights were just reminding her of the lights in the picture. 🙂 But with FF, you can never be too careful. I’ll be heading out of town tomorrow morning but I’ll try to catch your story sometime over the weekend or when I get back.

      A blessed Easter to you, too,


  33. tedstrutz says:

    I loved your story, Janet.

    • Thanks very much, Ted! Nice to hear that tonight as I wait for Bill (AKA “Dad” in this story) to get back. Tomorrow we visit our younger daughter in Philly.

      Have a great Friday,


  34. Those are some really good words of wisdom. That’s a good dad.

  35. 40again says:

    My dad was just like this and I loved him with all my heart.
    Thank you for bringing back some cherished memories with your lovely story.
    Have a very Happy Easter

  36. zookyworld says:

    After the woozy description, I was worried the story was going to end out not good for Francesca. Yes, my Dad worries kicked in. But, thankfully, it worked out well. Whew! Good story about remembering advice, and I really like comparing headlights to night-lights and the home/comfort they remind us of.

  37. denmother says:

    Reading the comments I think I may be the only one who got an unsettling feeling of the relationship between the two. I think it was the way her father said “Dad loves Francesca.” It sounded like an odd phrasing and left me wondering. I’ll stop there because I think I’m on the wrong track. Have a great weekend.

    • Nothing unsettling here, just the way my husband tells the girls he loves them. Too many FF stories!! You’re cut off for the week. Busy weekend here but maybe I’ll get to some more stories. If not, there’s always next week!

      You have a great weekend, too.


  38. unspywriter says:

    My dad was always there for me, so it’s good to see it still holds true. Good job–though I might have been the only one to perceive that maybe she got hit by Dad’s car. That could just be the way my brain works on only a half-cup of coffee.

    Here’s mine:

    • I can see that you might take it that way but no, just the headlights reminding her of home! I’m out of town for a long weekend but I’ll get to your story eventually. Thanks for reading and enjoy the weekend.


  39. Shreyank says:

    Moral of the story ! listen to dad 😉 great story drawn from real life lessons. I liked the part that despite the mistake the person called her dad !

    • Yes, listen to Dad!! Even if children make mistakes, they should be able to count on Mom and Dad, although sometimes that means they have to face up to things with that support. Glad you liked it and enjoy the weekend.


  40. Hi Janet,
    Years ago, I saw J.J. Cale perform in Wichita and I was listening to Cajun Moon before it was released because I used to hang with musicians in Tulsa. So thanks for that trip down memory lane. I liked the supportive parents in your story and the fact the girl called her Dad for help. Stories from personal history are often the most authentic. One quibble, I’ve always thought dusk was at sunset and isn’t this sunrise, or am I missing something? Ron

    • Hmmm, Ron, you have a point. While it isn’t morning, unless the party began early, it would be later than dusk (unless they partying with Managua and Bjorn in midsummer.) Have to fix that when I get a chance. Thanks!! Our girls have always been able to turn to us and that’s a blessing!


  41. elmowrites says:

    I was worried about those headlights, but I’m hoping they are just Dad arriving to come to the rescue. Every teenage girls needs a dependable and forgiving father; I’m glad this one came up trumps.

  42. I might be the only one, but I had to read the story twice to make certain both she and her dad weren’t just about to be hit by a car! Otherwise, a sweet story…

  43. Nice story about parenthood. Hopefully I wouldn’t be out drinking a spiked drink somewhere when my daughter called. (Thankfully I don’t have a daughter!) Very well done, great last sentence.

    • Hopefully you’d be like this Dad, waiting to be sure his daughter got home safely I’m glad you liked the story and the last sentence.

      Enjoy the weekend, Perry,


  44. wmqcolby says:

    Good take on the prompt. I liked this story because it says there’s something worth its weight in gold in this world … there are responsible people STILL when it comes to their kids. Very assuring. Thanks and have a great Easter!

  45. kdillmanjones says:

    Nice story! I empathized for the poor girl the whole time.

  46. Sarah Ann says:

    So glad she gathered her wits and made that call. This is a great tale of love.

  47. I’ve made that phone call.

  48. Abraham says:

    I enjoyed this.
    I intend to write something about my Dad’s sayings 🙂

  49. sandraconner says:

    A very moving story, Janet. And it’s hard to move people emotionally with only 100 words. Thank God for parents who really are like this. Sounds like you had some good ones. I did too.

    • I did have good parents, although this story is really more about us being parents. But we learn so much from our parents. Thanks for reading. Nice to have you back.


  50. fgassette says:

    Thank you for visiting my blog today. I appreciate the time you took to stop by. May your day be filled with joy and peace.