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January 2012
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March 2012

Making a Sandwich

Here's this week's short story challenge from Chuck Wendig at Terrible Minds. In his words:

You have up to 1000 words to write a story — not a scene, but a story — where a character makes a sandwich. Any kind of character, any kind of sandwich, but the point is to infuse this seemingly mundane act with the magic story-stuff of drama and conflict. Make it the most interesting “person-making-a-sandwich” story you can possibly make it.

As always, these challenges are fun - so here's my story ...


Edit - this was published online in May, by the Pittsburg Flash Fiction Gazette


Making a Sandwich

"Want me to make you one too, hun?" 

"No thanks Dad, I had a bite earlier. Just this tea is fine."

"I don't mind, I'm already making one for your mother."

She watched his slow yet precise movements around the kitchen. He'd always been the cook in the family, taking simple pleasure in the routines. He opened the fridge, took out the bacon, turned to the cutting board, picking up a knife on the way. He cut off two thick slices, placed them in the pan, back to the fridge with the bacon - part of a smooth dance that he'd done for years.

"I'm making her favorite," he said, "a BLT. Fresh bread from Henderson's, bacon nice and crispy, a tomato from our garden, some mixed greens, and light mayonnaise. Tell you what, I'll split it between the two of you."

"Thanks, Dad," she said. "So, have you thought about what we talked about?"

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ROW80 check in 2/22 - lowered expectations

I finally decided to "adjust" one of my objectives. I'd wanted to edit my WIP for 90 minutes a day, didn't seem that big a task when I set it, but it just wasn't happening. I decided to aim for only one hour, that works better so far, maybe because it's less intimidating to start at. When I was writing my novel two hours it was more a more creative flow. I had some scene outlines and knew it was a first draft so just 'had at 'er'. Editing is creative too, but in a different way, slower, more thoughtful, a juggling of characters and sub plots. And harder to measure progress in, other than time spent. But, as I said, an hour is easier to start at, and some days I get on a roll and just kept going.

My second objective- short stories - is going well. Another one is due this Friday, the topic is 'making a sandwich'. I had a good BLT for lunch at my local, chalk it up to research. I do find these weekly challenges keep me thinking during the week, and are short enough that they are easy to write.

Third one -blogs - is a couple of days behind, but pub was MT except for me and server April, so catching up was be easy.

A final objective could be to do the Sunday and Wednesday checkins on Sunday and Wednesday I suppose. 


ROW check in - 2/19 - Backsliding

Yes - I know it's the 20th - missed the Sunday check in. And the Sunday work. So - them objectives:

  • editing my WIP - maybe an hour a day - not the 90 mins I wanted. But still working at it.
  • short stories - picked up another challenge Friday, have been thinking on it. Story has to unfold while making a sandwich. Will do a romance - with a twist of course.
  • blogs - have managed to keep current, reading, noting, replying, commenting. Picking up some good writing tips along the way, applying where applicable to my novel(s)

Not that bad so far, I am backsliding a bit, but I'm not ready to redo my objectives to match my efforts. Trying to walk a bit more and eat a little less too- more goals but no specific objectives. I do find that writing helps to keep me distracted from the fridge. It's that late night TV with a block of cheese and plate of crackers that does me in I think. My mother used to comment that her wine and cheese before dinner was fattening her up - in her case since she was in her 90's we told her to go for it. Myself - I want to ensure I get to my 90's. 

ROW80 check in (2/15) -unblocking my plumbing

I like this challenge, mainly because so far I've met it. Well, sort of.

I had wanted to edit my WIP every day, but haven't done that as much as planned. I could use the excuse that the editing is tied to Scrivener and my PC, so not iPad friendly and capable of being carried around for those spare minutes. But challenges are also about honesty, so I'll admit editing is a pain for me, so I tend to avoid it. And I do realize it's best done in 1-2 hour chunks, away from distractions. There's a lot of focus needed for me to keep track when juggling scenes, characters, and plot points.

Another challenge was to work on short stories, I'm doing better at that. I did another Flash Fiction challenge for Chuck Wendig at Terrible Minds, the constraint this week was to write using an unlikeable protagonist. I used that approach for a Hallmark Valentine's Day post yesterday, and discovered it was a nice way to spin the story. I also spent some time Monday on a book review of Zoo City, by Lauren Beukes. I'm in a small book club that meets every month or so to review a sci-fi/fantasy book, Zoo City was our last one. In other news - got a shoulder MRI Monday - weird experience. You get slid into a tube then someone whacks the outside with a 2x4, all the while telling you not to move.

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