Wednesday, August 18, 2021

WEP, Freedom of Speech

 Time for the WEP bloghop flash fiction stories, pictures, poems, or thoughts in regard to the subject: This month it is Freedom of Speech. I want to thank the fine ladies of Write, Edit, Publish for this opportunity, Denise, Nila, Laura, Jemi, Renee and Olga. If you'd like to post something too, it's not too late.

Freedom of Speech:

 Mary took a breath and watched as the king’s soldiers took her father from their estate. The captain thrust a parchment at her mother. Turned and left to be replaced by Lord Beliveau.

“Pack what you can carry, Madam. This estate and all in it now belongs to me. You and your daughter must leave at once.”

“Why? What has happened?”

“Your husband has betrayed our king, speaking against him in the public arena.”

Belivera followed them. “Only what you can carry.”

“But I brought this from home,” her mother said, holding up the china vase.

“You have no possessions. You’re lucky I’m letting you keep your clothes.”

Much later, Mary held her mother as she wept. No one would help them, and they found themselves in an old ally between buildings, freezing. Snow began to fall.

Word count 138

 The subject of this post, Freedom of Speech is something that I can’t do in a flash fiction story. So this short piece would need to turn into a short story or novella for me to do it justice. Instead, I hope as you read this it will remind you that not too long ago, none of us had freedom of speech.


Freedom of speech[2] (FoS or FOS) is a principle that supports the freedom of an individual or a community to articulate their opinions and ideas without fear of retaliation, censorship, or legal sanction. Freedom of expression (FoE or FOE) is generally used synonymously but, in legal sense, includes any activity of seeking, receiving, and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used.

 It’s also important to note that threatening someone is not freedom of speech.


Freedom of speech and expression is not absolute, and common limitations or boundaries to freedom of speech relate to libelslanderobscenitypornographyseditionincitementfighting wordsclassified informationcopyright violationtrade secretsfood labelingnon-disclosure agreements, the right to privacydignity, the right to be forgottenpublic security, and perjury. Justifications for such include the harm principle, proposed by John Stuart Mill in On Liberty, which suggests that "the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others."[4] Idea of the "offense principle" is also used in the justification of speech limitations, describing the restriction on forms of expression deemed offensive to society, considering factors such as extent, duration, motives of the speaker, and ease with which it could be avoided.[4]

 As an American, I haven’t thought twice about freedom of speech in all my years until the last 5. Now I know, that I can lose my freedoms if the wrong person comes to power. You can find me at the voting booth.

To read what others have written or posted go here.

In other news, I'm excited to announce that my first book, The Treasures of Carmelidrium is now available in paperback. There are two ways to order. 

One, go to your local bookstore and request they order copies from IngramSparks. The Treasures of Carmelidrium, by N. R. Williams

Two, for USA customers only because shipping is outrageous, send me an email and I'll send my PayPal information: Cost is $19.99 plus $5.00 shipping. You'll get a signed copy. 

My email address is:

Be sure to tell me in the subject line that you want to order your very own signed copy of Treasures. I get a lot of spam and I wouldn't want to delete your request.

 Coming in September 2021

The Beginning of a Legend, a novella in the Chronicles of Gil-Lael.


The Rise of Lord Sinon, Book 2 in The Chronicles of Gil-Lael.

Thanks you for reading. Please leave a comment.





Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Nancy - what a good start to weave a story around ... those two will face hardships, yet could turn truth tellers.

It is a challenging prompt - congratulations on turning your hand to it.

Good luck with your two books - and all the best - Hilary

Jemi Fraser said...

Congrats on your books! Awesome!
Freedom of Speech is a huge topic. Human history has so many examples of when speech has not been free. Good piece!

Olga Godim said...

Freedom of Speech is a huge theme, and it could lead in different directions. Of course a flash fiction format is not enough to do it justice. All we can do is touch on it, explore one small incident, lament one instant of silence. Your snippet is a good start.

cleemckenzie said...

No doubt flash fiction is a challenge, especially on topics of such substance. You've got a start and I like that as an American you're starting to realize how fragile the Freedom of Speech really is. We all need to pay more attention.

Yolanda Renée said...

An excellent start! Our history is full of injustice, but thank goodness also big wins. Evil does its best, and right now that evil is tearing an entire country apart. My spirit says it'll be the women, again, that defeats this evil.

Congratulations on your new paperback release!

Charlotte (MotherOwl) said...

Interesting start or synopsis for a few chapters if you choose so.
We'll mneet at the voting booth!

Pat Garcia said...

Excellent telling of someone who loses everything because of freedom of speech.
Shalom aleichem

Nilanjana Bose said...

Intriguing snippet and a great starting point. It's easy to take our freedoms for granted till we lose them.

India has faced a similar scenario, maybe a more dire one than US. All the very best for the books!

A Hundred Quills said...

Several facets of the freedom of speech. Nonetheless almost always a huge price to pay. Congratulations on the book.
Sonia from

Denise Covey said...

I know what you mean about your short piece needing to grow into a full-fledged story. Still the scenario you presented was common back in the day for sure.

I'm interested in how you went about your print book. Through IS, yeah? I plan to do print for all my books, but need time to decide...

Hope you do well ... said...

What a great start to a challenging story. Yes we have taken too much for granted.I hope that we are all fully woken up!
Congratulations on the 2 book publications! All the best.

Kalpana said...

Congratulations on your books. Your flash fiction had me wanting to know more. I hope it's the start of something because it was very promising. I also found the prompt vast and had many ideas. It wasn't easy.

Christopher Scott Author said...

An intriguing start to something more. Given the concise nature, you could steer the story in multiple different directions. Well done.

L.G. Keltner said...

This little snippet does a good job of reminding us all how precious our freedom of speech is. It's easy to take it for granted if you've always had it, but there are so many times in history where the wrong words could cost you everything. Even today, there are places where you dare not speak out against those in power for fear of retribution.

Well done!

Jamie said...

Yeah, about 5 years ago, and especially last year, I worried we'd lose more freedoms too. It got real dark. And sadly, the light is coming back way too slow.

Good writing.

Sally said...

The repercussions of one person's speech are widespread and unfortunately affected his whole family in such a distressing way.

N. R. Williams said...

Thanks everyone. I'm in the middle of a lot of work and probably won't get around to you all. My apologies.

J Lenni Dorner said...

So "The Treasures of Carmelidrium" is your fantasy debut novel? I have one spot left this year for the debut author spotlight at Operation Awesome. If you'd like it, please reach out to me in the next few days.
@JLenniDorner on Twitter is my preferred method of communication.

I like your WEP entry. It's crazy that the world is like that. "No man is an island," yeah, partly because there are some troubles you can get into that will ruin people you know. The main character is being punished for crimes she didn't commit.