Bokeh photo of yellowy gold lights

Dark Angels Note 171

Dearest Friends

Welcome back to our Friday Note – our weekly collection of writerly thoughts.



This week marks the anniversary of the death of F. Scott Fitzgerald (24 September 1896 – 21 December 1940).

Francis Scott Fitzgerald was an American novelist, short story writer and essayist. Known as the “poet laureate of the Jazz Age”, his most famous works are The Great Gatsby and Tender is the Night.

The Great Gatsby wasn’t much of a commercial success at the time but went on to become a literary classic. Despite publishing over 160 short stories during his lifetime, it seems Fitzgerald fought an inferiority complex, particularly when comparing himself to his rival, Hemingway.



Known as the wife of the famous novelist, Zelda Fitzgerald was one of the first American flappers, an artist and muse. She may have unwittingly provided material that Fitzgerald would pass off as his own.

Read how Zelda Fitzgerald was plagarised and silenced by her husband in this article on Domestika.



Think back to a party or social gathering that you’ve been to, and the interactions and observances that you made while you were there. Can you create a short story that presents your point of view of them?

We’d love to see what you come up with if you’d like to share.



To close out our last Note of 2023, we have two instalments in the Sharing section.

Sarah Farley is sharing her interview with Rob Self-Pierson on her excellent Substack The Writer’s Walk. You can read the interview here, plus there’s a chance to win a copy of Rob’s book, Moonwalking.

Janet Wilkes is sharing her Christmas poem Bethlehem.



At an inconvenient time

Mary travelled to Bethlehem

And, on arrival, found no room –

Only a stable in which to

Stay. But the animals, used to

Seeing birth, warmed the cold air with

Their rhythmic breath, gave her hay to

Lie on, their manger in which to

Place her child and guarded the door

Against the elements of night.

It was inconvenient when

Three Kings came unannounced looking

For a child, not questioning where

The bright star they had followed stopped,

As they knew the significance

Of the star they saw in the East.

But the story of their coming

Has slipped into legend as the

Animals blocked their exit and

They returned home another way.

Matthew 2:1-12


Keep sending us any poems, writings, links and writerly whatnots that you’d like to share with the wider Dark Angels family. We love to read them.





Weekly Tuesday Gatherings

Our weekly Tuesday Gatherings will be back on 9 January 2024.

Join us again for a reflective hour of reading, writing and communing led by Neil Baker. Everyone is welcome – from the Dark Angels community and beyond. We meet at 7pm UK time. To join us, click here on the night. There’s no need to register in advance.


Be well, keep reading, keep writing and know that we’re always here.

From everyone at Dark Angels



Photo by Benjamin Wong on Unsplash