Episode 88 (29 February 2024): While sorting through storage boxes at home, I found an old notebook belonging to my son. It wasn’t a school exercise book but something he’d jotted and doodled in as a twelve-year-old. Among its random pages was a short story he’d written in 2014 about a father who doesn’t have “great ideas”.

Trigger warning: This episode mentions teenage self-harm and death. Lifeline Australia: 13 11 14.

I wrote the Finding Inspiration blog post in February-March 2022, eight years after my son wrote his short story about a father who doesn’t have great ideas:

Many people have great ideas. My father, however, is not one of them. He is always inventing things to help us be safe that are stupid. Of his many stupid ideas, most of them have hurt us. For instance, when I was one, he made a diaper-changing machine that nearly suffocated me by putting a diaper over my face. This is my life.

As I stressed in the blog post and podcast episode, my son’s story is entirely fictional because I had great ideas as a father in 2014 and still do today. And I’ve never made a diaper-changing machine, though that is an idea worth pursuing!

However, after reading the story, I reflected on the inspirations for my early creative writing and shared them in the Finding Inspirations blog post.

Memories and Inspiration

I’ve kept many mementos and journals from my son’s childhood and before I became a father. Some of these have inspired my writings on Tall And True and podcast episodes on Tall And True Short Reads. For instance, uncovering old theatre programs led to episode 78Taking a Bow, and my travel journals inspired episodes 60Kurd Friends in the Mountains, and 69 and 70Two Visits to the Berlin Wall – Parts One and Two.

While my now twenty-something son rarely accuses me of having “stupid ideas”, he says I’m a hoarder. Perhaps he’s right. But as I observed in the Story Insight for this podcast episode, I’d counter that I’m hoarding memories and inspiration!

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More Inspiration

I hope you enjoy my inspiring blog post. You can listen to Finding Inspiration on Acast (above), the Tall And True Short Reads website, or find it and other episodes on Apple PodcastsSpotifyYouTube, and all popular podcasting apps.

You can read my short stories, blog posts and other writings on Tall And True. You can also buy my short story collections, including the latest Tall And True Microfiction anthology, from the Amazon KindleApple Books, and Kobo online bookstores.

Share the Inspiration

The next episode of Tall And True Short Reads will be released soon. In the meantime, please check your feed or the podcast website, TallAndTrueShortReads.com, for earlier episodes from all four seasons, and follow or subscribe to the podcast and rate and review it via your favourite app — doing so helps me share my storytelling.

And please share this blog post and podcast episode with family and friends and tell them about Tall And True Short Reads and the Tall And True writers’ website.

© 2024 Robert Fairhead

N.B. You might like to read a post introducing Season Four of Tall And True Short Reads.

Note: This post originally appeared on Tall And True.

This post was proofread by Grammarly
About RobertFairhead.com

About RobertFairhead.com

Welcome to the blog posts and selected writing of Robert Fairhead. A writer and editor at the Tall And True writers' website, Robert also writes and narrates episodes for the Tall And True Short Reads podcast. In addition, his book reviews and other writing have appeared in print and online media, and he's published several collections of short stories. Please see Robert's profile for further details.


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