For those of you who have followed my blog, you know I participated in the March FADness competition last year (Flash-A-Day). The challenge was to writea a story a day, from between 500 and 1,000 words. I had a thought to do something similar this month, and Tilia Linden and I discussed it and she offered to help provide some prompts. I’m not keeping to the word limit, necessarily, as some stories will be shorter.
So, over the next month, read along as I play with Story and have some fun! If you decide to write your own stories based on the prompts, please provide a link so I can come see!
Here’s the first one: This is actually based off some work I did with a book by Josip Novakovich, called the Fiction Writer’s Workshop. Excellent book, check it out. This is from Exercise 1, Chapter 1:
“One page. According to Henry James, a writer wrote a novel from a glimpse of a seminary students’ dinner party. Write a scene of a story from a glimpse you have had a group of people – in café, zoo, train or anywhere. Sketch the characters in their setting and let them interact. Do you find that you know too little? Can you make up enough – or import from other experiences – to fill the empty canvas? Objective: To find out if you can make much out of little.” (Novakovich)
Untitled, From the CTA (Chicago Transit Authority, commonly refers to the trains but can also mean the bus service. In this context, it’s the elevated trains)
Bobby ran and blocked the doors from closing. “Come on, guys, hurry up!”
“Please do not block the doors,” the conductor intoned over the loudspeaker.
Bobby blushed and waved at Tammy, Lilly, and Faruk. “Come on!”
Faruk almost tripped coming across the platform and Lilly let out a loud peal of laughter. They all clustered inside the door together, and the rubber edges whooshed shut. The train started with a jerk and Tammy fell against Bobby.
“Sorry!” she gasped, nearly breathless.
Lilly laughed loudly again and flounced across the aisle to the other door. She bounced off the partition and threw her backpack down. “I’m tired,” she announced to the train in general.
Bobby privately felt embarrassed but he didn’t say anything. A businessman standing nearby caught his eye and looked away in disgust. Bobby felt heat flame into his cheeks but he went over to stand by Lilly.
Faruk followed, but Tammy stayed by the first set of doors, staring out at the buildings zooming by. “Wow,” she murmured, mesmerized.
“Tammy!” Faruk hissed, gesturing sharply.
After a moment, Tammy turned and moved over by Faruk. “What?”
“Quit being so obvious!” he snapped.
Lilly laughed at that, startling Bobby. She sank down onto her backpack and Faruk flopped down next to her. Bobby looked up and found a woman dressed in a grey suit staring balefully at them. When she felt Bobby’s eyes on her, she glared at him and the looked back at her book, disapproval on her face.
“Guys, maybe you should stand up,” he muttered.
“Don’t be silly,” Tammy countered airily. “I’m comfortable. Whee!” she squealed as the train went around a curve, throwing the passengers around a little. She fell to one side but caught herself and laughed.
Faruk pulled her upright with a hand on her shoulder and they leaned together, whispering. Tammy stared out the window.
Bobby edged over to the door next to Tammy. “Are you okay?” he murmured.
It took her a moment to look back at him. “Maybe I had more than I should have,” she told him thoughtfully.
“Shh!” he retorted, glancing around to see if anyone was listening.