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Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Creative Writing Exercise: Short Story

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I asked the people of my Facebook page to help me out with a little writing exercise I wanted to try just to get my creative juices flowing.

I asked them to give me a name, a place and an activity I would then use to create a short story.

This is part one in a series, feel free to leave a comment here, and I'll try to write about it soon.

So my words today are Charlotte, Pensacola beach, and watching Football... Here goes:

Charlotte had grown up in a small town, one where it was hard to get into trouble, because every one knew who you were, and your entire family too.

She'd never really minded though, she was a star in her little hometown. Head cheerleader, homecoming queen, girlfriend of the quarterback, heck, she'd even held every starring role in the town Christmas show for at least ten years running.

High school had ended a long time ago though, and her quarterback boyfriend had hurt his knee in a dumb drinking and water surfing accident, so now he spent a lot more time watching football than he did playing it, and had become unbearable as his frustrations over loosing his childhood dreams just kept growing.

He'd been staying out later and later, leaving her alone and frustrated. This was not the life she'd envisioned when they were in high school.

He'd come home smelling of booze and smoke, and she knew where he went, because she'd found the matchbook in his pocket. It was a strip club one town over, where they went when they wanted to eat a fancy dinner or shop at a mall.

Their sex life used to be great. They could talk openly about anything, would do it several times a day some days, flirt openly all the time. Now he never noticed a new hair cut, or new clothes. Not even new lingerie.

One day when the cell phone he'd left on the counter before collapsing in a drunken stupor wouldn't stop buzzing, she picked it up.

There was a text message from some girl named Jazz. Apparently, she really hoped he'd had a good time yesterday, because she was really in to him. Wanted to know when she could see him next. Signed it with little X's and O's.

Well isn't that sweet? She thought to herself as anger and hurt stirred in the pit of her stomach. She opened the phone and nearly exploded when she was confronted by a slew of messages, to and from, all flirty, and some pretty explicit.

All this time, he'd been ignoring her, but going to someone else? Been a jerk at home but Prince Charming to some girl named "Jazz" of all things?

That was it! She'd been thinking about leaving him for quite a while now, but this was it. This was the push she'd needed. She grabbed his credit card and went online. Booked herself a beautiful trip to Pensacola Beach, Florida; first class air fare and a five star hotel.

She packed her bags and left him a note.

"Jazz texted. Wants to know if you enjoyed last night and is really excited about seeing you again.

That's good, because I'm hoping I never see you again. I've booked myself a wonderful trip on your credit card and if you dare to cancel it, I'll tell the whole town exactly where you hang out and what you did.

Won't that make Sundays at church fun?


PS: the irony of how much you hate jazz music is not lost on me."

After that day, Charlotte only ever went back to the small town to visit her family and friends. She met a man on the plane on her way to Pensacola Beach, and it was love at first sight, even though she didn't really know it at the time.  She'd thought he'd just be her rebound guy, but they'd been inseparable ever since, and were planing a lavish wedding for the fall.

"Jazz" turned out be Jasmine, a stripper at the club he'd been frequenting. He got her knocked up and had to take two jobs to try and support them. Turns out the tips weren't that great with a big pregnant belly; who would have known?

The end.

Thank you to Kim Sumrall for the suggested words.

Much love,


  1. C'est un bon début, je ne sais pas ce que tu cherches comme comentaires, c'est bien écrit et tu as réussi à intégrer les mots suggérés mais,sans vouloir te vexer, la situation dans son ensemble est un peu « cliché...» la top cheerleader, le footballeur blessé et frustré, la danseuse... j'aimerais bien lire une autre version inspirée des mêmes mots. J'espère ne pas être trop sévère, c,est juste MON opinion...

  2. Ton joueur de football devrait s'appeler Charlotte, il se rend en cachette au Gay Pride Parade de Pensacola, le week-end du Memorial Day... personne chez lui sait qu'il est gay. Charlotte est son nom d'artiste, lu son chum Bob qui se fait appeler jazz et qui s'habille en femme forment un duo de drag queens dans les boîtes gay de Pensacola...

  3. Haha c'est bon anonymous.

    For my English readers, in the first comment he/she said they felt my story was too full of clichés. He wanted to see a different version with the same three names.

    In the second comment, he/she gives a scenario of how he/she would have used the three words.

    The thing is, I'm not trying to write the next classic novel, this is simply an exercise, and it's main goal is to get me writing again, which it has. In addition to this short story, I prepared four other posts this week, more than I have in a long time.

    I'm glad you've found inspiration through this experiment Anonymous, I would love to read your short story. I will not be revisiting these words, at least not for now, as I have 6-7 other stories to work on. I will try to be less cliché in those, but the idea is that I just write. I had a vague idea of where I was going, but the story kind of wrote itself, and I don't want to over think it, because that's when the block hits you.

    I don't mind your comments anonymous, but I must say, when someone puts "it's my opinion" in cap letters, I find it hard to take seriously when they don't leave their name.

    Have an opinion, share your opinion, but have the guts to put your name by your opinion.

    But that's just my opinion.

  4. tu sais qui! qui t'écrit en français? Je considère que tu est talentueuse... je comprends que tu ne vises pas, pour le moment le Grand Roman Canadien mais, ce n'est pas une raison de ne pas te forcer, sortir de ta zone de confort, aller plus loin, tu as le talent.


  5. Merci ;) je ne sais pas ce que tu penseras de l'histoire publiée ce soir...

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