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September Story Chat Summary

The Story’s Success

With 275 recent views, 74 likes, and 146 comments, Gary A. Wilson’s story, A Daily Regret” continues to make Story Chat a raging success.

If you love to read short stories, you will enjoy Story Chat. For links to all of the Year Two stories bookmark the Story Chat Page or visit one of the authors’ recent blog posts listed below.

99-Word No More – No Less Summary

Reggie Maddox, a former playboy and the current famous CEO of Cynosure Artisans, shares his biggest regrets in the interview of his life with journalist, Tom Deerling.  Dismissing the love of his life for the promise of sexual freedom, Reggie revealed his battle with a venereal disease which left him sterile.

Although he poured his life into other endeavors and relationships, he regretted having thrown away the promise of true happiness. The end of the interview reveals that fate rewarded his public repentance. Tom Deerling revealed that his mother Amelia was Regie’s true love, and he was Reggie’s son.

Click for the newest 99-word-Flash Fiction challenge from Carrot Ranch

Attendance with Abbreviated Chattering

WARNING: Story Chat is not for the faint of heart. Going into a chat room online is much the same as going to a party. Story Chat is usually kind of like a warm homey chat room. There’s a lot of off-topic conversation as well as niceties. Since this is a summary of the chatter, not a taped recording to be used in a murder trial, I edit (not murder) comments with a chainsaw. To do this, I take out the parts that I think are white noise or unrelated and leave some of the raw emotional comments brought out by the story. To read the unabridged comments, feel free to refer back to the story post.

If the chatterer has a blog I linked a recent post to their comment.

  • GARY A. WILSON: (AUTHOR) “I tried to put both men at a disadvantage by having the interview NOT go as they expected, but I also wanted their reality to lift them both rather than humiliate or unhinge either of them. These days, almost all media is equivalent to what we used to call tabloid-quality so, I dream of what decent, useful, and uplifting media might sound or feel like. I doubt I’ll cause a new fad with this, but wouldn’t it be nice to at least trust our media again someday? In my story, Tom had an agenda where he did not expect to need to show any grace or forgiveness, but I wanted both men to do the right thing in the end. I hoped it would not land as flat or simply unbelievable. Reggie was not likely expecting any grace and had this happened to me, I’d be mentally scrambled with two huge shocks – realizing that I have a son, a blessing I thought had passed me by, and the unexpected notion that Amelia might ever forgive or be interested in seeing me ever again. Finally, as long as it’s credible, what could ever be wrong with a happy ending that leaves everyone sensing a possible bit of hope or grace for wherever life has left them?
  • MARSHA: (HOSTESS) “I love the all dialogue technique. I am terrible at writing descriptions and for me, writing is more about the relationships anyway.”
  • FENDLANDPHIL: “Brilliant, I really enjoyed it.”
  • HUGH’S VIEWS & NEWS: “You pulled it off, Gary. In fact, your story has been going around in my head since I read it because I loved the ending so much.  I had no idea how the story would end until I reached the final few lines. I enjoy reading dialogue stories as you can build your own scene in your head, including what the characters look like. The conversation was good and full of emotion which I think many writers have problems getting over to the reader.”
  • KEEP IT ALIVE: “Very interesting way of narrating the story Gary. I hope it’s a happy ending.”
  • LISA AT MICRO OF THE MACRO: “Wow, I first mused the interviewee agreed to be interviewed in an effort to “get her back.” And then the hidden intention of the interviewer was revealed! Never read anything like it. Yes, I, too, have known many Reggies, and many, men & women, who have lived with relationship regrets for most of their lives. The carelessness with which we can treat each other is sad, really. I’ve never read anything where such long-held, deep desires were publicly revealed by two male characters in such a short space of time.”
  • NEW2WRITING: “You did a great job of transitioning both characters’ pov (point of view) in such a short piece. It’s quite easy for the reader to picture themselves falling into that situation and becoming rather tongue-tied. I liked the dialogue writing structure, I find it very refreshing. One of my favourite lecturers once said;’“If you can write dialogue, you can write,’ meaning, that it’s very hard to capture authentic dialogue it can sound too much like an extract from a textbook, (his example was – would you fall off a cliff and shout….excrement – no you’d probably use a rather more foul form of the word! Lol). Or it can go the other way and sound too fake making you think that; no-one talks like that. I think you capture dialogue very well.  think the father’s reveal was handled really well, the interviewer was clearly expecting the interviewee to be as per the tabloids and wanted a confrontation but when presented with a softer side to him, it changed his perception and I think that reflects real-life well, we can’t trust all we read in the tabloids and even if it is the truth at the time people do learn, grow and reflect. You’ve captured that well here.”
  • WRITING WRINKLES: “A bit public for such a revelation. I think perhaps I’d have would up the interview first… The arena rather constrains the interviewee’s response (although I suppose it is a recording and can be edited).
    But as a tale, the revelation is nicely led up to bring that ‘Ahh’ moment.
    But think of all the women who will be suing him for their old STDs now he’s made a public confession…
    And which celebrity do we think might have inspired this story?”
  • TANGENTAL: “That’s an unusual and clever vehicle for your piece; it lends itself to telling some details in a way that trying to show them in another context would be both difficult and extend the story. I did find Reggie’s motivations difficult to discern; why did someone who has nurtured his privacy want to reveal this part of his backstory? Why now? And why link that to Amelia? Maybe, Reggie didn’t want to do this but his publicity machine needed him to be seen as more ‘real’, not so private and this was his way. Indeed following that line, maybe the reason Tom got the interview is Reggie’s management knew about the story and felt that would be exactly what Reggie’s image needed. Like when Miley Cyrus dropped the girl next door image for a twerk and a wrecking ball! Could be a total setup! I suppose this felt a little contrived by Tom, to enable him to link his revelation onto the Reggie’s. In fact, given Tom knew the truth as he started the interview and, one assumes, had some sort of plan to spring it on Reggie, the fact of Reggie’s revelations, whatever they were, wouldn’t really matter, would they? It was getting Reggie in the situation that gave Tom his opportunity. As I read Tom’s expose, I wondered about his motivations; embarrass his father? Make him squirm? By doing it in an interview context he would probably do that by making it public which might well be more than Reggie wanted.
    And then my whole line of thinking goes to pot, as you reveal Tom is really there on behalf of his mum, to get Reggie to get back in touch, which suddenly doesn’t seem too hard after Reggie’s regrets. It’s always interesting how a reader can run with an idea that probably has no link to the author’s intentions. That’s what makes for a good story.
  • PRIORHOUSE BLOG: “That was such a delightful ending that earned the heart! Reggie’s maturity and openness felt so realistic and I could imagine his eyes getting wet right after the big reveal of being a dad (esp after thinking that was not ever an option for him) It really did work (dialogue)
    Oh and the dialogue-only part also felt cultural timely because podcasts seem to be huge right now (and I guess before that we had decades of radio)
    But the interview felt so real. I just checked it out (even tho as I said before – I think the time for reading is SO VARIED among people and even fast readers have slower or faster days so it can be varied even more —
    And a nine-minute read for who? I am just curious as to how folks come
    Up with the reading time for a story – is it an average?”
  • RAMBLINGS OF A RARING WRITER: “I think Reggie choose this venue to tell his story in the hope that Amelia would hear it and contact him. It’s a story of hope, regret, shame, honesty.
    The story reminds me of a chat show we have here in Ireland. Tommy Tiernan is the host, and he chats with his ‘surprise’ guest in a relaxed manner. The questions aren’t rehearsed and quite often the interview goes fairly deep and unexpected. They say (admit) things unintentionally.
    Reggie honestly regrets the lifestyle and regrets more that he let Amelia go. Happens a lot, I’m sure.
    Tom’s ulterior motive for the interview was to confront Reggie about Amelia and to reveal that he’s his son. Or did he want to interview him only because he’s his son, but only decided to reveal that information after Reggie’s honest admissions?
    As it’s a recording, it’s not like a live interview so Reggie wouldn’t have to agree to it being published.
    Another thought I had; both men knew the truth about the parentage before the interview and went public with the information as a publicity stunt.?
    I wouldn’t be a fan of Reggie’s lifestyle, but I had a little ‘aww’ moment when Tom said that Amelia would like to meet him. Everyone deserves a wee bit of happiness, especially when they show remorse for their wrongdoings.
    I enjoyed this story, Gary. Getting so many details to us in the form of an interview was a clever idea.”
  • ROBERTAWRITES: “I thought this was a very good story. It is quite odd that I should read it this week as on Wednesday I had a conversation with my 83-year-old mother about regrets. She said that as you get older you have regrets about things you did in your life that hurt other people or failed to support them. I do think that if you have something big in your past, like the event detailed in this story, you would feel regret. Especially, if you ended up all alone with no one who cared about you. I think there are a lot of lonely older men and women out there who made mistakes that cost them the love of their families. I also don’t have personal experience with this. I have wonderful parents.”
  • ROLLERCOASTER: Wow 😮 this is an amazing story!
  • UNIQUELY TIMES WITH CINDY: “There are a lot of Reggies in life. My dad still lives with lots of regrets similar to this story and has been married twice and never married the 3rd time and has been with his SO for almost 30 years.. so I guess he’s learned something. He’s lucky he had me and I’m forgiving 💖😇 Great job!
  • JACQUIE MURRAY’S WORDDREAMS: “Excellent story and I loved reading your backstory. What a full life you’ve had.”
  • WILLOWDOT: “I really enjoyed reading another of your unusual stories Gary.”

Author’s Perspective on Story Chat

“It has to be a version of an older bit of wisdom: if you want to be a good writer, hang out with those who are. Story chat made this happen for me and did so in the context of either them reviewing my work or me reviewing theirs – which was often a tad daunting. This group has made me more aware of the subtle complexities that change a decent story into a wonderful one. I did not want to show up at a story chat with armature-grade typos or grammar errors.

I wanted my fingerprints on each story I wrote, but I wanted to know how to make that story great without it being a formula.

This group is so diverse and willing to engage to help peel away at a story’s layers that pressing the submit button to send you a master was something I took pretty seriously. Hopefully, some of the talent that I’ve shared your virtual chat rooms with has rubbed off because I want to write like some of the talents that were in that room with us.

I could have written, A Daily Regret, two years ago, before there was a Story Chat project, but it would not have been nearly as good.”

Ongoing on Always Write

  • This has been a month of amazing blogger meetups. I fly back to Phoenix from Spokane today. I’ll be back on schedule by Wednesday.
  • This is the end of Year Two.
  • As much as I love Story Chat, this is my last post. If anyone is interested in taking it over, I will be happy to help you get started.

Thank you, Gary, for submitting your media story. Readers, thanks for the time you took to read, think about this story, and respond honestly. You are all the heart and soul of Story Chat.

10 replies »

  1. A wonderful wrap up and fun story featuring Gary to go out on a high note with. I’ve been thinking of you Marsha and hoping all was well since I haven’t seen you writing much and now I know it’s more than well. I’m sure you’re having a ball and please buy Lisa a cup of Starbucks coffee for me and give her a hug. Can’t wait to hear al❣️

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Cindy, thanks for the lovely comment. Lisa was not able to make it unfortunately – excuse to have another meetup soon! 🙂 I’m looking forward to all your exciting pictures. You are amazing at blogging. I took a vacation. 🙂





Hi, I'm Marsha Ingrao, a retired educator and wife of a retired realtor. My all-consuming hobby is blogging and it has changed my life. My friends live all over the world. In November 2020, we sold everything and retired to the mile-high desert of Prescott, AZ. We live less than five miles from the Granite Dells, four lakes, and hundreds of trails with our dog, Kalev, and two cats, Moji and Nutter Butter. Vince's sister came with us and lives close by. Every day is a new adventure.

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