Poor Penelope


Prompt 10 of the 30 Day Writing Challenge is:

Find something that you wrote a long time ago and rewrite the beginning, giving it a different tone.

Original version (written May 2011)
On Monday evenings I always indulge myself by a visit to one of the local bars. At 45 ive done well, keeping my looks, and body shape. Im often told I could pass for 35 easily.


So you will find me, sitting on a bar stool, on my own, hoping that I’ll attract the attention of a nice young man. Most weeks im in luck and my Range Rover with its blacked out windows is conveniently parked in the drakest corner of the car park outside. My friends think I’m crazy, but they dont have to live with a man who isnt interested in sex anymore. My husband became impotent at 40. Something to do with all the medication he takes. Dont get me wrong, I love him to bits, but I have needs, us women do, and now, ive found a way to fulfil them.

Sometimes I dont even get their names, but they never get mine, or not my real one.

New version (Sept 2013)
Monday evenings were the highlight of the week for Penelope. Her weekly “indulgence” she liked to call it, when she was given the opportunity to discuss it with her friends, which wasnt very often. Most of them were disgusted by her behaviour and others feared for her safety.

“But Pen, you dont know these men.” Her friend Helen would say on a regular basis. “I dont want them finding you dead in a ditch one day darling.”

Penelope would laugh, but deep down she knew she was taking a risk. It would be Alans fault if anything happened. What was she supposed to do, never have sex ever again? At 45 she was still young, and at 20 the idea of marrying a man 20 years her senior had seemed exciting. Why hadnt anyone warned her that she would become a nurse maid?

Sitting on a bar stool wearing the slinky blue dress she’d purchased that morning it wasnt long before she was approached. Chocolate brown hair, smouldering grey eyes, chistled chin and a tight T shirt, exactly Penelope’s type. After several drinks she discovered his name was Alan. It didnt put her off, she still led him out to her car, the seats in the back folded flat in preparation.

Climbing into the back Penelope pulled closed the door and engaged the central locking. If only she’d seen the small paring knife that Alan had in his back pocket.

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That was really hard lol. I’m not sure there was really a difference in the tone. What do you think? Which one did you prefer?

8 thoughts on “Poor Penelope

  1. I liked them both – the first one for being in the first person and therefore having a more personal ring to it, and the second one for being that bit more polished! I think you could have more fun with this character in the first person if it was a longer piece! So interesting how our craft develops as time goes by. Good on you, Vikki, for putting it out there and keeping at it! :-)

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