Very few of my stories fall out of my direct experience. Most are inspired by things I see happening to others, or wondering what would happen if things happened to others. My most recent publication was directly inspired by my old workplace.
Let me start by saying that I loved working there, the people were amazing and the work was interesting. But when the market turned and the share price plummeted, rounds of redundancies became commonplace, happening every three months or so. It was a stressful time for everyone.
My team went from 11 people to 5, yet we had the same amount of work to do. Everyone in my team was staying late, working from home, checking their emails on their phones at all hours of the day and night, everyone, that is, except me. When I walk out of the office, I believe in leaving the office behind. Maybe that’s why I was the next one picked to be made redundant?
So because I write speculative fiction, not contemporary fiction, I decided to use a different work pressure, one that might be an issue in the future. The original title of the story was ‘Work life balance’, but I realised that I was commenting on the lack of balance. So then I decided to call it ‘Work’ but that also seemed wrong because while it was work, it was also my character’s entire life. So I ended up with the title ‘Life’ because work and life had become the one. In retrospect that is not very clear, so the title is a bit crap, but hey that was my thinking at the time so I guess I’m stuck with it.
Anyway, I hope you enjoy Life – and thanks to Antipodean SF for once again picking up my flash fiction!