Friday, February 10, 2012


   This is a fictional piece of writing for

      There is only one table occupied tonight. The weather channel has been on the t.v. behind the bar all afternoon covering the snowstorm. The city has come to a standstill. Liza gets up from one of the tables in the back of the restaurant where she has been filling salt and pepper shakers for the last half hour. She walks over to the bay window wondering what the hell has happened to her life.

     "Wow", she thinks out loud. "Who would have thought I would be waiting tables at my age?" She thinks about all the "what ifs" she could have done and the "why's" that led her down this road.

     Two years ago, she was a writer for the local newspaper, and a good one at that. She had the handsome, athletic boyfriend on her arm, going to all the jumping parties and the late night dinners at swanky restaurants. She had a cute townhouse that was decorated in the shabby chic theme that was all the rage. She was popular and having the time of her life. She didn't realize it then, but of course now she does, that as one drink was leading to others, her love of alcohol was leading her to addiction. And it was that addiction that led her here. To an empty restaurant, no money, no boyfriend and almost all of her friends gone. She threw it all away because she loved her precious booze more than herself. She chose alcohol over herself and everyone who cared about her. She didn't see what it was doing to her life and her career. She only saw the want and need of the warm liquid rolling slowly down the back of her throat and the immediate comfort it gave to her.

     She looks at her reflection and wonders if she should try and call him again. "no", she whispers, it's to late and he will probably just hang up again for the hundredth time. Instead she dials another number. "Hello, Barb?" She pauses. "Yes, it's me. I was just having a tough time tonight and wanted to talk".

     Liza sits down at the table picking up the salt shaker where she left off. With the phone in one hand and the salt in the other she thanks her sponsor for always being there for her......

Pick four numbers, each between 1 and 10.
Write them down so you remember.
Then take the four elements and combine them into a short story.
All four you picked MUST be your main elements, but you can add in other characters, settings, times and situations. 500 word limit.

I picked:
4. a waitress
4. a restaurant
9. in the middle of a snowstorm
7. Reminiscing on how things change


Shelton Keys Dunning said...

This has some great potential. I think her tone was a bit clinical in recollection, so maybe concentrating on one memory, maybe of the one day it all went wrong and using that feeling to drive her to call her sponsor would tighten the scene. Don't let the topic (or the word limit) scare you from exploring the deep emotional bank on this. I loved your protag's origin and I can see where she is in her acceptance of her past. Excellent.

Carrie said...

I really enjoyed some of the phrasing you used. This in particular was great: She only saw the want and need of the warm liquid rolling slowly down the back of her throat and the immediate comfort it gave to her.

It could use some tightening and you tell us rather than show us her emotional state. I like Shelton's suggestion to focus on the one incident that was a turning point.

lovemyspy said...

Thanks to both of you! I am new at this and all the help I can get is great!!!!

Cameron said...

I think, as storylines go, this is a really strong way to go with the elements you drew.

Like the others, I found myself wanting to see the moment it turned, or her version of that, a illustration of the boyfriend, the house, the job, and how she let it slip away.

As Carrie says, your description of the lure of the drink is vivid and engaging, and for me illustrates exactly where your focus should go.