Rita’s Short Story

Rita Miller, one of our residents at The Manor House Whickham, is an award-winning author and has penned a short Halloween story exclusively for the Home’s newsletter.

Rita, who says she is ‘too old to tell’, started writing at school and was a prominent member of Newcastle Writers’ Club through the 1960’s and 70’s, four times winning the Catherine Cookson Cup presented to the member who submitted the best short story.

She has had short stories published in well-known magazines and newspapers including Sunday Post, Sunday Express,  Chat, Woman’s World and Woman’s Own.

Rita worked for the BBC and interviewed many of the North East stars, including Mike Neville for the local Evening Chronicle newspaper. She had many other contributions published in the newspaper and has never lost her love for writing.

Rita has enjoyed a fantastic life and  started entering consumer competitions in the 1980’s winning, among other things, a round the world cruise, fridge freezer, washing machine, camera, bike and even a red Mini Cooper!  She also won £2,000 for writing a slogan for Wisdom toothbrushes.

Jordan Bates, lifestyle co-ordinator at The Manor House, Whickham said: “We absolutely love hearing about the lives of our residents and Rita’s has certainly  been colourful and exciting.

“We were delighted to publish her short story in our newsletter and to support Rita in continuing to do one of the things she loves doing most – writing.” 

Bewitched by Rita Miller

Anita’s heart raced as she gazed at her reflection in the full-length mirror. Ever since handsome Peter had become part of her group of friends, she had thought of nothing or no-one else. His tall, strong frame and jet-black hair haunted her every thought.

Tonight, they were all meeting in town for the first time. As the clock struck seven, Anita stepped out into the clear, starlite night. Her cat, Samuel, brushed against her sheer silk stockings. “Sorry, you can’t come with me” she said. As she bent down to stroke his soft black fur, Anita’s two friends appeared at the end of the garden. They waved down to her, their pointed hats silhouetted in the moonlight as they circled around, waiting for Anita to join them.

“Coming!” she called out to her cloaked friends. Anita opened the door to the outhouse and reached for her broomstick. Her grotty, centuries-old broomstick, laced with the web of a thousand spiders, but still, the only transport she had.

Anita sighed as she dusted off her broom. As she mounted it, she thought – “some things never change” but tonight would be different. Tonight, Anita would cast a bewitching spell that would make Peter hers… forever.

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