Mark Lewis’ flash fiction, 17:46 Patience is a Virtue (originally published on the London Literary Project site) is featured in the just-released Smoothly from Harrow: A Compendium for the London Commuter. This is a great project, as someone anyone who has put a lot of commuting hours in will be able to testify!
The 21st century commuter is a tragic hero. Long-suffering, long-journeying and subject to lengthy delays, he survives through an iron will and by burying his head in a freesheet. Chris Moss’s Smoothly from Harrow takes its title from John Betjeman, the bard of Metro-land, but brings the world of the London commuter up to date with facts and fictions, poems and propaganda, statistics and self-help advice. Did you know that John le Carre, Mrs Beeton and Henry VIII were commuters? Did you know Waterloo station ‘processes’ more than 94 million passengers a year? Did you know that you are not just a number, but a modern-day, latte-drinking flaneur – London’s key witness, greatest survivor and chief psychogeographer? This compendium will help you get through the dawns and dusks of your eternal, everyday, Herculean trial: to get to work and back.