Short Story Of the Day (Flash Fiction), Storage by Bill Chance

“Sylvia was driving and I didn’t realize how drunk she was and how icy the roads were. She slid around the corners, whooping and laughing like a crazy person. It scared the shit out of me but Sylvia thought it was funny.”

—-Bill Chance, Storage

Mural, Deep Ellum
Dallas, Texas

I have been feeling in a deep hopeless rut lately, and I’m sure a lot of you have too. After writing another Sunday Snippet I decided to set an ambitious goal for myself. I’ll write a short piece of fiction every day and put it up here. Obviously, quality will vary – you get what you get. Length too – I’ll have to write something short on busy days. They will be raw first drafts and full of errors.

I’m not sure how long I can keep it up… I do write quickly, but coming up with an idea every day will be a difficult challenge. So far so good. Maybe a hundred in a row might be a good, achievable, and tough goal.

Here’s another one for today (#9). What do you think? Any comments, criticism, insults, ideas, prompts, abuse … anything is welcome. Feel free to comment or contact me.

A flash fiction bit I wrote from a prompt from the book The 4 A.M. Breakthrough. I’ll put the prompt after the story. You don’t have to read the prompt if you don’t want to.

Thanks for reading.


Storage

All five of us were laying on Sarah’s huge bed watching Game of Thrones – she has a great big plasma television on the wall in her bedroom and an HBO subscription. It was actually very innocent, comfortable, and fun until Alice started kissing Sarah. She has a girlfriend and can’t go around making out with anybody she wants. It ruined the whole evening. I gave her a kick and pushed the two of them apart, giving both a piece of my mind. They laughed at me, even though they stopped sucking face. It interrupted the whole thing… it upset me so much I missed Arya killing some dude… they said she stuck Needle slowly right up through his neck. I wanted to see that. They wouldn’t even run it back for me. So selfish, so self absorbed.

Then, well, Alice was in the back seat, half passed out. She was still pissed off at me about the kissing Sarah thing from Game of Thrones night. Sylvia was driving and I didn’t realize how drunk she was. She slid around the corners, whooping and laughing like a crazy person. It scared the shit out of me but Sylvia thought it was funny. When we arrived home she said, “Big deal.. we’re here OK aren’t we? All’s well that ends well, that’s what I say.” What an idiot.

I swear that Alice and Sylvia are out to get me. I see them talking to each other, quietly, when they think I’m not watching. We all decided to go swimming and those two chose the spot – some lake out in the country. When we got there, I fished my suit out of my bag and they all laughed at me. We walked down and the place was full of naked people. They all stripped down and jumped in. It was disgusting. I wore my suit and everybody stared at me – stared at ME. They were the naked ones, but they made me feel like I was the one that had something to be ashamed of. Alice, Sylvia and Sarah all knew that I can’t stand people to see me naked. Joyce drove us down there but maybe she didn’t know. It was so humiliating, I get shivers thinking about it.

With those three all trying to destroy me I thought at least I had Joyce on my side. It gave me comfort. She has always been a good friend. So I called her up and tried to get her to take my side against the others, but she told me I was crazy. “Gwen, you have gone BATSHIT CRAZY!” was exactly what she said. I slammed down the phone and cried for an hour. That whole group has it in for me. My birthday is coming up and they haven’t even mentioned it. They know it’s my birthday and they are ignoring it. It is awful… I need new friends. I’m going to just ghost them, I swear.

So it was my birthday and that bunch of bitches completely ignored me. Joyce came by the house and didn’t even mention what day it was. All she wanted to do was get me to go shopping with her and I told her to go to hell. She laughed and absolutely made me go. On the way she said she had to stop at Sarah’s and I hit the roof. I said I’d wait in the car, happily, but she would have none of that. She practically dragged me out of the car and into the apartment. Right when we went through the door everybody jumped out and yelled, “Surprise! Surprise!” It was a party for my birthday. My friends are the best.


From The 4 A.M. Breakthrough

Writing Prompt:

Paragraphs As Containers

Write five paragraphs of narrative about one individual who has decided to stop spending so much time with a gang of friends. Each paragraph should be about an isolated problem of this larger issue. All five paragraphs should have overlapping characters, but you do not have to follow one character all the way through the five paragraphs. Think of the paragraphs as tiny stories in and of themselves. Separate each paragraph by a space.

This is a question of Story VS. Storage. Paragraphs are boxes into which we put information. Let each new paragraph in your writing signal another set of thoughts and ideas.

 

Short Story (flash fiction) Of the Day, Confrontations by David Galef

Maggie kept saying I should exercise restraint, that I might still have my teller’s job at First National if I’d been more polite. I had several replies to that, once bottled up, but no longer.

—–David Galef, Confrontations

(click to enlarge)

This guy came to see me at work. “I was almost run over in the crosswalk coming from the parking lot,” he said to me. This happens a lot, especially at certain times of the day; a good portion of the campus population goes by our entrance. When they are late they drive too fast and distracted and when the sun is just rising it’s hard for everyone to see. The guy at my desk though… I had seen him before walking around, very fast, with his head down – like a maniac.

“Do you have any details?” I asked, “What kind of car? Did you get a license number? How fast were they going?”

“I don’t know,” he said. “I wasn’t looking, I actually walked into the side of the car as they drove in front of me. Never even saw it.”

“Umm, that’s a bad spot, you should look before you step off the curb.”

“No!” he said. He was angry. “It’s a crosswalk and I have the right of way. I don’t have to look.”

I think about this all the time. Technically, he is right. The cars have the responsibility to look for pedestrians and to stop. Of course.

But you are a sliver of soft flesh and delicate bone and they are huge metal machines that weigh more than a ton and rush around at high speeds. You are going to get killed and they are going to get smudged. To me, that gives them the ultimate right of way. You are responsible for your own fate, as much as possible… you should… you need to look out.

It’s amazing how drastically different other people can look at the same world that I do.

Read today’s flash fiction here:

Confrontations by David Galef

from BRILLIANT flash fiction

Daily Writing Tip 76 of 100, Anger is Fuel

For one hundred days, I’m going to post a writing tip each day. I have a whole bookshelf full of writing books and I want to do some reading and increased studying of this valuable resource. This will help me keep track of anything I’ve learned, and help motivate me to keep going. If anyone has a favorite tip of their own to add, contact me. I’d love to put it up here.

Today’s tip – Anger is Fuel

Source – The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron

Recovering a Sense of Power

Anger

Anger is fuel. We feel it and we want to do something. Hit someone, break something, throw a fit, smash a fist into the wall, tell those bastards. But we are nice people, and what we do with our anger is stuff it, deny it, bury it, block it, hide it, lie about it, medicate it, muffle it, ignore it. We do everything but listen to it.

Anger is meant to be listened to. Anger is a voice, a shout, a plea, a demand. Anger is meant to be respected. Why? Because anger is a map. Anger shows us what our boundaries are. Anger shows us where we want to go. It lets us see where we’ve been and lets us know when we haven’t liked it. Anger points the way, not just the finger. In the recovery of a blocked artist, anger is a sign of health.

Anger is meant to be acted upon. It is not meant to be acted out. Anger points the direction. We are meant to use anger as fuel to take the actions we need to move where our anger points us. With a little thought, we can usually translate the message that our anger is sending us.

If anger is fuel, then why am I tired all the time.

I Mean, Is This Guy Pissed Off… Or What

“Letting go gives us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness. If, in our heart, we still cling to anything – anger, anxiety, or possessions – we cannot be free.”
― Thích Nhất Hạnh, The Heart of the Buddha’s Teaching: Transforming Suffering into Peace, Joy, and Liberation

Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas

Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas