“Hey, uhh, thanks for stopping by.”
“Yeah, sure! Is now a good time for me to work on your device, doctor?”
The young computer technician arrived with notes in hand on how to fix the issue.
“Sure. I’ll just be reading over here. Let me know if you need me.”
“Sure thing! Thanks!”
She started clicking around on the computer, trying to figure out what was wrong. It wasn’t straightforward and wasn’t in the notes.
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“You’re strong for a girl!”
“You’re pretty for an old curmudgeon.”
Just like that, everyone around the final pallet of freight to be brought into the warehouse that sweltering Evillian afternoon burst into laughter, concluding with the now embarrassed curmudgeon and then Jane, who, soaking in the sensation, uncharacteristically smiled.
“Alright, that’s enough. Good work, everyone. Your end time is 6:15. Check the calendar to see your hours for tomorrow. Jane, hang tight for a minute.”
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“It’s like going into a landscaping project best suited for a rake with a shovel.” “I’d get in there with a backhoe!” I prep my writing like landscapers prep the land with a backhoe before using a rake. Some projects just require a light raking or editing. I’m teaching myself how to use the writer’s equivalent of a backhoe because writing John [left] and Trishna’s [right] stories – “The Story” – is like landscaping for someone important.
Spoilers?: Minor (worldbuilding brainstorming exercise)
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Two childhood friends sat on a run-down apartment patio on a warm summer evening. There had been a lull in their reacquainting conversation.
“Hey Jane, so Samuel and I were looking through some old stuff, to you know, downsize and stuff, and well, I have these boots I never wore that might be worth some money. If you want to sell them, we could split it. I think they should be worth at least $100… Interested?”
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Someone waved vigorously at two computer technicians as they returned from lunch. “Wasn’t that Harlowe?” “Yeah, he’s cool. Say, Sammohini…” the older technician, Hank, looked made sure no one was around before continuing, “how good are you at keeping secrets?” “Well, certainly not if it’s bad, unethical, or illegal! But, I mean, if it doesn’t hurt anyone, I guess it’s OK, so, I guess good…” “…Want an easy side job? The work’s clean and clear.”
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If my ambitions for “The Story” include comprehensive commentaries on the nature of our reality, how much nuance should go into those commentaries? A thoroughly-built restaurant might evoke patron conversations idly chatting over the fine flatware or reveal restaurateuring price negotiations for finer flatware. The narrative should always guide the focus. It’d waste your time and my effort if Trishna (left) and John (right) only visited Zbigniew’s (center) Teriyaki once. But if they go frequently…?
Spoilers?: Minor (worldbuilding, character development)
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[Story 3 of 3 – Beginning]
“First, let’s stop by Linda’s.”
They wheeled the freshly-rebuilt computer over to their manager’s open door.
“Hey Linda, got a minute?”
“Sure thing, Rockstar. What’s on your mind?”
Hank leaned up against the door frame and Sammohini stepped into sight.
“This’s that computer we got your approval on. She’s gonna be ornery.”
“Sounds like it. I trust you both. Call me if you need reinforcements.”
Henry stood at attention, saluted, and they departed into battle.
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