While You Are Away

Such a long time since I posted anything on here. No excuse, except that I’ve been completing an MA in Creative Writing at Exeter University. I have neglected my little story pods blog, no recordings for well over a year. Disgraceful.

I wrote this when The Man was away for a week a while ago. He went to visit family as soon as lockdown was lifted. I began to think about what I missed when he was away and also the things I could do without him at home. If you live with someone, do you find there are some things you are suddenly free to do that you would normally not think about, because it might upset your partner? The Man and I get on really well, never a cross word — honestly — but even so there are a few things in which I can, and do indulge, when I get the opportunity. That sounds more exciting than it is!

No musical intro this time…just my melodious voice…. Click on the link, listen to me read…While You are Away



The Man Does Not Like Coleslaw — But I love It! 


While You Are Away

I eat coleslaw
rise early
      make               a cup of tea
go back to bed
read the news        do my words


get up
take the      dog      out
whatever    the weather
and  do       household jobs


I colonise your side
                              of the kitchen table
      with my clutter
books         computer         pens
      and      pencils


I can choose what I want
to watch                 Netflix             BBC
but no fun             no conversation
      early to bed                  read a bit
stroke                     the empty side
count         how                 many              sleeps
until           I          must
the coleslaw



Ninette Hartley © September 2020

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Hot Lips. . .


Many people have asked me about my flash fiction story that came third in the Story Slam at Bridport Arts Centre at the end of last month. So, I’ve recorded here. You just need to press on the play button but make sure you’re viewing in the browser and not from your email — if that’s how you recieve it.

It was brilliant fun performing it! If you have any problems listening to it please comment to let me know. Thanks. Enjoy

Hotlips 1

Hot Lips © Ninette Hartley March 2019

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Rudolph’s Rebellion

reindeer-clip-art-41 copy

A little poem that I’ve posted on my blog Ninette’s 90 Notes but thought I would also upload it here.

Rudolf Text

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Back Seat Driver


Image from clker.com

Whenever we go anywhere in the car I usually do the driving and since The Man has been cycling more his back seat driving has become worse. I take it all in good heart and for the most part ignore him. A poem seemed an excellent way to get my own back! Press the play button to hear the poem.

If you enjoyed listening to this poem please take a tour of this site and listen to more. Also share with your friends and make a comment in the comment box.


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English Country Fair…

It’s been years since I recorded anything for this website and I’ve been nagged to add something…so here, for your amusement and delectation…(no I’m not thinking of joining the music hall) is a the poem I wrote for my blog ninette90.com You can pop over and see the post here You can also see more photos and even have a go at the caption competition.

Click on the start button to hear the poem…


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british birds


I’ve been busy writing and travelling over the last few months and more active on my other blog www.olivespastavino.com  so haven’t managed to do a ‘storypod’ for ages but a couple of weeks ago one of the prompts for the story writing competition write-invite was ‘Russell’s Up a Tree’ or something very similar.  I wasn’t able to write the story in half an hour on the night, but finished it during the following week. I decided to record it for my blog as I thought it was a bit of fun.. I do hope you enjoy listening to it…make sure you are in the browser then press the play button…








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A Good Year for Pétrus


A little story that began life with a prompt of ‘Wine Cellar’.  Look out gents…don’t go stocking up on the vino if you’re thinking of going somewhere…

Make sure you are in the browser to listen…then press play

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Saved By Text

holiday copy

I’m not sure how this story began it’s life but It’s been hanging around on my computer for a while.  It seemed appropriate to post it today.  Not everyone loves Valentine’s day and although it ends up okay for this chap, for some people it can be a bit of a lonely time.  It’s all too commercial for me anyway.  We cancelled Valentine’s day in our house a few years ago.  But, not to be too much of a misery about it, I’m sure there are many lovers enjoying today with chocolates, flowers, champagne and dinner.

Give a thought,  to those who are lonely or those who might find today difficult for whatever reason.

Love is in the air

Go to browser to listen to the story

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Just Another Friday Evening…


I can’t believe it was November 2014 when I last posted on here..very bad. No excuses but I was away for Christmas and I have been working on other writing projects, so not been entirely lazy. I did post on www.olivespastavino (once) but think I need to get another post on that blog soon.

Happy New Year to all.  I hope you enjoy this very short story which began life because of a post on Helen Yendall’s blogaboutwriting  I took up the challenge and wrote this piece.  I was thinking of developing it further but then figured that with a little tweaking….it could do just as it is for my short story pod.

Press the play button below to hear the story…

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Angela Breaks Free


This little story began life once again on write-invite but it wasn’t shortlisted. I then revamped it and it was chosen as one of the very short stories featured during the 24 hours of National Flash Fiction day in 2014. Having had five children I can sympathise with Angela. I loved every minute of being a mother but still craved more education and a career.  I knew that it was possible to have both…although at times it was exhausting!

Click on the play button above to hear the story.


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