Myths of Love and the Moon

Last week at my local writer’s group, we did a short writing exercise based on the series of prompts about the origins of myths (suggested here). Below is what I came up with:

Gerald and Mavis were sat on the beach, star gazing. Mavis had her head on her boyfriend’s shoulder, as she listened to his long-winded explanation of how the earth came into being.

Drifting in and out of sleep as he went on and on, she caught a few key words and phrases.

“…all started about a hundred years ago, you see… when the ice blasts died off, and the grass overtook everything else… water wasn’t discovered until much later, of course.”

“Of course,” she affirmed, groggily, before really processing the words.

Ice blasts, grass, and then water? Her eyes scrunched up at the thought. Either she was more tired than she realized, and had misheard rather a lot, or her boyfriend was an idiot.

Surreptitiously, she forced herself awake enough to check the flask that had rested between them for any signs of alcohol.

All the while, Gerald carried on. He was talking about the moon now, and how it changed shape because of the fluctuating pressure of the sun.

Mavis was wide-awake now, staring at him.

Finally noticing this, Gerald paused. “Are you alright, dear? Don’t you find the moon fascinating?”

Shaking her head, Mavis held up her finger and pressed it to his lips, in an effort to halt any more words from escaping.

“Firstly,” she began, “The moon doesn’t actually change shape, it just looks like it does and-”

Gerald pushed her finger aside to ridicule her. “Don’t be ridiculous,” he said. “Things are exactly as they appear. You don’t believe in the airy-fairy nonsense they teach kids on TV these days, do you?”

Suddenly horrified at her taste in men, Mavis did three things: one, decided not to let her friends pick out blind dates for her ever again; two, to start making potential suitors take aptitude tests and, three, she stood up.

“Gerald,” she said.

“Yes, my dear?”

“That thing you’re looking at?”

“Yes?” he said again.

“It’s a satellite.”

They drove home in silence.

Upon a Flight to Vegas

This evening at Belfast Writer’s Group we rolled a dice, which decided story prompts for us to run with. So, the fates decided we were to write a coming of age tale that included an invisibility device, set on a plane, with a main character who an alcoholic carpenter, and another character who was an unsuccessful salesman. The following is what I came up with, in the space of a half-hour:

Alex was a carpenter from Minnesota, on his way to Vegas to celebrate his most recent divorce. With him was his best friend, Jack, an unsuccessful salesperson of no fixed address. Together they would conquer the world, or get drunk trying.

“I’m telling you,” Jack insisted, as he leaned over the sleeping lady sat in between him and Alex, to yell in Alex’s ear, “It makes you invisible. Amazing technology! You should invest before it goes big.”

Alex gave a dismissive wave of his hand, consequently knocking both of his drinks over the lady in the middle seat. She didn’t stir.

“Now look what you made me do!” he slurred, before pressing the button for the hostess, then looking up and down the aisle. “Where is she? What are we paying her for? People here need drinks!”

“Alex, no. Alex, listen, you have to hear this. Invisibility, it’s the future!” Continue reading

Character Assassination

I’m a member of Belfast Writer’s Group, and during a meeting a while back I suggested the following writing prompt:

Pick a fictional character you detest and kill them off.

Simple as that, but bonus points if you could do it without specifically naming the character and yet have everyone know who they were just from your description. My own response to the prompt is below. Not only should you be able to guess who’s being killed, but who’s doing the killing. Here we go:

Sparkliness. Idiocy. Creepiness. Those were his three main crimes – in that specific order. He was everything both a boyfriend and a beast should never be, and it was why she hunted him; why she had to end the mockery he was making of the real monsters that defined her existence. With walking around in broad daylight – albeit under heavy cloud, which she so did not appreciate – he was easy to find. The difficulty only really lay in deciding the best way to dispatch him.

After having thoroughly considered all of the classics, she didn’t think any of them quite seemed right. In being the antithesis of everything he should represent she decided that his death should be equally unnatural.

A railroad spike replaced her usual stake, Bourbon was picked in place of holy water, and fire was kept as a staple, though in a different form than she would usually use it. After beating him around the head with a statue of Buddha, she pinned him in place with the spike, poured on the alcohol, and let the Zippo lighter finish the job.

Disclaimer: this is just for fun. No offense is intended, if the fictional character I don’t like is one that you love.