Writing Prompt Story Starter: Bechstein Piano

story starter

This week’s Story Starter begins with a question: can you play the piano?

We did have a piano in the house (which sounds awfully grand, but wasn’t), though I never learned to play it.

My sister went to teacher training college, and was expected to be able to play the piano, the guitar, the recorder . . . so my parents bought a second-hand upright for her to practise on.

It was shabby, but Dad carefully sanded it all down and gave it a wood treatment so that it would blend in with our “lounge” furniture — all G-Plan teak back then in the Seventies.

So Big Sis learned whatever it was she needed to. I can’t remember if she actually had a piano teacher.

And then she tried to teach me.

And that’s when we knew, if it had ever been in doubt, that I have no patience.

Fast results

If I’m learning something, I like early competence. That’s not really possible with a piano.

It was the same when I tried to learn the guitar. No fast results. I’m probably also not the least bit musical, which didn’t help.

Shame really. I wanted to take after my dad, who was a superb accordionist — not the Scottish Hogmanay show wheeze-box stuff, but proper continental-style on a 120-bass beauty.

It was the same when I went to stained glass art classes.

In week 1, we were to learn to cut plain glass. Week 2: start to cut coloured glass into shapes for your design. Week 3: start joining it all together with lead solder . . .

My weeks 1, 2 and 3 were still me trying to cut plain glass without shredding my fingers. I just couldn’t get the hang of it. Still have the scars.

There was no point in carrying on to Week 4 . . .

Anyway, back to the piano.

Some people will dream of playing and fail.

Others will dream of playing and succeed spectacularly.

Some will try, try, try . . .and never quite get there.

But it’s all in the trying.

A bit like writing, really.

If this piano isn’t your forte, you might find a different Story Starter can help you sit down to write. Click here to browse our archive.

You’ll also find all sorts of writing hints, tips and tricks by clicking here.

Shirley Blair

Fiction Ed Shirley’s been with the “Friend” since 2007 and calls it her dream job because she gets to read fiction all day every day. Hobbies? Well, that would be reading! She also enjoys writing fiction when she has time, long walks, travel, and watching Scandi thrillers on TV.