Welcome to the Tall And True blog of a writer and podcaster, Robert Fairhead.

In addition to sharing posts on this website, Robert is a writer and editor at the Tall And True writers' website. He also writes and narrates episodes for the Tall And True Short Reads podcast, featuring his short stories, blog posts and other writing from Tall And True.

Robert's book reviews and other writing have appeared in print and online media. In 2020, he published his début collection of short stories, Both Sides of the Story. In 2021, he published his first twelve short stories for the Furious Fiction writing challenge, Twelve Furious Months, and in 2022, his second collection of Furious Fictions, Twelve More Furious Months. And in 2023, he published an anthology of his microfiction, Tall And True Microfiction.

You can follow Robert on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and the Mastodon social media platform.

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A Dad and Son Road Trip

On Monday, 11 December 2023, my twenty-one-year-old son and I set off in his van on a 10-day, 4600-kilometre dad-and-son road trip from Sydney to Margaret River. We had planned the trip for over six months to spend Xmas/New Year with our WA family. And yet, I only had a vague idea of our route.

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Tall And True Short Reads – The White and Blue Niles

Episode 95 (9 July 2024): In 1987, my wife and I shouldered our backpacks and set off from Australia. The plan was to live and work overseas in England for two years, using it as a base for UK and wider world travels. And the widest of these were inspired by reading books like Alan Moorehead’s The White Nile and The Blue Nile.

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#30Words30Days June 2024

In April 2024, Danielle Baldock from the Twitter/X #WritingCommunity reprised the #30Words30Days microfiction challenge she’d run with Sumitra in April 2023. Danielle posted a daily prompt word to inspire us to write and share our 30-word stories. It was so much fun that we were all keen to do it again in June!

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The Power of Two

I’m a lone-wolf superhero. Heck, I’m not called Solo Shield for nothing! So, I wasn’t keen when Long Vision suggested we buddy up as a dynamic duo. “I don’t know, Viz,” I replied. “Neither of us wants to play Robin to Batman.” “It won’t be like the comics, Solo,” he asserted. “We’ll be equals.”

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An AI Blog Post

I wrote a post in April 2024 about spending 62 minutes in a float tank on my 62nd birthday in March. In addition to Tall And True, I have an eponymous writer profile and blog site, RobertFairhead.com, where I cross-share posts. This website has an AI page builder, so I thought I’d test it with an AI blog post.

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You Have Been Warned

Excuse me, humanity, please pay attention. I have an urgent message. “What? Not in the middle of my reality TV show!” I’m sorry. I’ll be brief. But first, a little background. My message concerns the fate of a pale blue dot in the inky expanse of the universe. Beyond its fragile borders is vast nothingness.

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Tall And True Short Reads – Different Journeys

Episode 93 (27 May 2024): Teresa’s first thing in the morning text message was a punch in the guts. “Sorry, Colin. I love you, but we’re on different journeys. Let’s stay friends.” I blinked twice to clear my eyes and was about to respond, “Are you serious?” but threw the phone against the bedroom wall instead.

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One of Those Mornings

Have you ever had one of those mornings? You know, where everything goes wrong. It’s like a farce, a series of mishaps increasing in frequency and intensity that have you howling with side-splitting laughter or shedding tears of frustration. Mine started when I forgot to set the alarm for Amy’s swim squad training.

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#30Words30Days April 2024

In April 2023, Sumitra and Danielle Baldock from the Twitter/X #WritingCommunity ran a #30Words30Days microfiction challenge. Danielle re-ran it this year, posting a daily “Nature” themed prompt word and inviting writers to share their 30-word stories, read and cheer everyone else, and have fun!

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The Dead Sea and a Float Tank

I turned 62 on 30 March. In previous years, I’ve swam laps to match my age on my birthday (until I tore my shoulders), read 59 and 60 chapters, and written a 61-word story. This year, I spent 62 minutes in a float tank, and to prepare for it, I read my travel journal entry on my 1995 trip to the Dead Sea.

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Different Journeys

The first thing in the morning text message was a punch in the guts. “Sorry, Colin. I love you, but we’re on different journeys. Let’s stay friends.” I blinked twice to clear my eyes and was about to respond, “Are you serious?” but threw the phone against the bedroom wall instead.

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Five April Stories

My first attempt at the Australian Writers’ Centre’s Furious Fiction writing challenge was in April 2020. Since then, I’ve submitted entries to every challenge except two when I was away from home on holiday. I wrote my forty-third (official and unofficial) Furious Fiction this month, my fifth April story.

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The Light Above

I wrote The Light Above for the March 2024 Furious Fiction, the Australian Writers’ Centre’s 500-word flash fiction challenge. The brief for March was that each story had to include a character who revisits something, the same colour in its first and last sentence, and the words CAMP, FAST and SPARK.

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Tall And True Short Reads – A Good Story

Episode 90 (1 April 2024): My first “published” writing was an Enid Blyton-Famous Five-style adventure story, Sand Island, in 1972. I wrote the story and illustrated it with coloured Texta markers. My aunt, the only one in our family with a typewriter, typed up the manuscript. And my father helped bind and cover the book. I was ten.

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Tall And True Short Reads – Moving On

Episode 89 (14 March 2024): Eighteen-year-old Hugo glanced up at the train station clock. It seemed time had stood still, with the minute hand barely moved since he’d last checked. He confirmed the time on his watch and then looked at the departure board, breathing a sigh of relief. His train was running on schedule.

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A Window Table

The sign at the front desk of the restaurant was emphatic: “WAIT TO BE SEATED.” No “Please” or “Thank you”. Bernie and his date, Sally, glanced at each other in awkward silence. “YES,” a gruff voice boomed from a speaker on the desk, “DO YOU HAVE A BOOKING?” Bernie stared into the webcam taped to the speaker.

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Published November 2023

By definition, brevity is the key to good microfiction. There is no time for plot and character development, so every word must count. ~ Robert Fairhead

Tall And True Microfiction by Robert Fairhead
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Published September 2022

I hope readers enjoy the short story journeys in Twelve More Furious Months and make it home in time for dinner. ~ Robert Fairhead

Twelve More Furious Months by Robert Fairhead
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Published April 2021

I look forward to the Writer's Centre's monthly Furious Fiction competitions because I've become addicted to the escapism of writing short stories! ~ Robert Fairhead

Twelve Furious Months by Robert Fairhead
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Published March 2020

This slim book is hard to put down. And the only regret we may feel after reading it is that we reached the end too quickly! ~ Denise O'Hagan

Both Sides of the Story by Robert Fairhead
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Share Your Writing

There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you. ~ Maya Angelou

Share your untold story — fiction, nonfiction and reviews — on Tall And True, an online showcase and forum for writers, readers and publishers.

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