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Topsy Turvy Challenge June 2020: Turning My Character's World Upside Down

When I first joined Instagram, I discovered Challenges where we were given prompts to share things about our writing, our writing lives, or two write something based on a prompt.

And after a while, my friend Robin Castle ( and I decided to create our own challenge for people to join in with.

And, because we're quite silly, we decided it'd be fun to come up with ideas that'd most mess up our character's days.

We originally ran this challenge in June 2020, but so you don't have to scroll back through thousands of posts to read them, I'm going to share them here too :)

This should make them easier to find on here, because I can add tags and categories to the post and you can just click on them to find all the posts.

It also gives me a little time to write some new posts for the blog!

I'm going to share three a week to start with (after having initially saying this was going to be a monthly blog, oops) and take it from there :)

Oh, and I've done quite a few of these challenges now, so expect lots of silly, random little stories from me!

Okay, enough waffle from me, let's get on with the first Topsy Turvy challenge post :)


Day One: Baseline

First things first, we need to know where we’re starting from, right?

You know, before we start flipping my main character’s world upside down!

So, in case you haven’t met them before, I’d like you to meet Lucas and Clara.

Though wholly separate people, Lucas and Clara work best together, and so they both joined in with the Topsy-Turvy Challenge.

Lucas was less than thrilled, but Clara thought it was rather exciting. This was pretty much the theme of the entire challenge!

They live in 1928, Lucas in the small fictional village they both grew up in, which is called Castlebury Magna, and Clara in a slightly fictionalised version of London, because I’m lazy with my research and I’m not sure how many people are going to care that much anyway.

However, as Festively Fatal, which I was writing at the time of the challenge, takes place at Christmas, they’re both celebrating in Castlebury.

Well, until a murder takes the shine off the festivities, but we won’t worry about that…

Lucas is 24, a reporter for the local newspaper, lives with his mother, and is one of life’s rainclouds. He just wants a quiet life, and doesn’t think this is too much to ask, even if he rarely gets it (oops, that’s my fault). That went double for this challenge (more oops).

He also happens to be able to talk to ghosts, something he’s not terribly pleased about, particularly as they tend to demand his help with solving their murders. However, underneath a carefully constructed layer of grump, Lucas is a kind soul and generally helps.

Eventually and unwillingly, but he helps and that’s all that counts, right?

Meanwhile Clara is 21, enthusiastic about everything, sees the good in people even when it’s not there, and believes life is there to be lived. She gently nudges Lucas in the right direction, i.e. towards helping the lost souls who need his help (however she occasionally does this by running headfirst into danger) and is generally good fun.

She’s funny, sweet, and all-round lovely, but a little impulsive at times. This makes life, uh, interesting for the risk-adverse Lucas.

And now you know where we’re starting from, let’s see how we can mess their day up...


Thanks for reading Day 1 of the Topsy Turvy Challnge! The next one will be showing up in a couple of days, when I'll give you ten words about what my work in progress (or WIP) is not.

Catch you then!

Love, Saff xx


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