We Need More Power!

21 Feb

Every day seemed longer and busier than the last, I reflected as I saw Charles to his bus at the end of the driveway. Today, he started out before I was awake. He was sweet and good until I tried to give him his medicine. One pill and a half teaspoon of some red liquid that my mom assured me was the right stuff, even though it so closely resembled cough syrup or nyquil. He began to get obnoxious, and when he decided it would be a great idea to try to pull up the new, eight hundred dollar flooring, I put him in his room and wrote a note to his teacher.

Little Charles was going to have a hard time, if he insisted on misbehaving. I let him out and began to help him into his coat after he calmed down. Just in time, the bus arrived to offer me sweet mercy. I helped him into his backpack and hat, and he was out the door running. I followed after, and caught up as he struggled up the bus steps. I waved to the driver, and turned to go inside, out of the cold air before the door was even shut.

I was cold, tired, and had lots of writing to do before my friends woke up. I needed to stop being a pushover and get my work done before I played games with them, but it was such a trial to get all of us together at once, I usually just put everything on hold as I joined in.

That was how it went the past few days, and I did nothing useful. I hated it because I was unhappy. I wanted to stay caught up, even if it was, in the end, pointless. The first entry was easy. It was already started several days ago. The second came easily, as well.

Finally, it was 11:30 in the morning, and I had only two more stories to write. I decided a breather wouldn’t hurt, and walked to the kitchen. I loved how the new flooring felt under my feet, and slid around playfully before I opened the oven. Three boxes were inside, and the one at the bottom was left partially open. I grabbed it. Ah, deep dish cheese. I pulled the entire box out. Someone else enjoyed some of it the night before, it seemed. Two of my pieces were gone, leaving only half a pizza to last my day. Good thing I had another box of pizza hidden in my room, leaving the point moot.

A drilling sound came from the back yard. In confusion, I walked to the door and looked out. At first, I saw nothing. Then, I spotted two cherry picker trucks working on our power pole. They were drilling through the top, and then they shoved a small umbrella-like thing into the new hole. I watched for several minutes and walked away with my pizza box. I had stories to tell!

It took some time, but eventually a third idea came to me as I ate my pizza and stared out the living room window at the neighbor’s fence. They had several old pickets, and a random bunch of new in the middle. Somehow, this caused my brain to click an idea into place, and even though I wasn’t fond of it, and didn’t think it would be well-recieved, I began to write. At first, I planned to simply kill the narrator in the third paragraph. I changed my mind. That was bad pacing.

I just kept writing, and the story told itself, as though I was little more than its puppet. It was a story about a bunch of kids, their aunt, and a zombie apocalypse. It was a popular subject, but I’d never written about zombies before, and didn’t particularly enjoy it, despite the warm feelings it left in my belly.

My next plan for that story was to have it all end up as a television show or a book excerpt read or watched by some brat. Instead, I just kept writing.

With triumph, I finished just past the thousand words mark, and posted it up. I re-tagged and re-formatted it a few times to make sure it wasn’t borked up, and I gave myself a pep talk. I moved downstairs to my bedroom and returned the pizza box with its lone slice to the oven. Only after I sat down, did I realize what a mistake I made. Upstairs, I could concentrate. In my own room, old habits were hard to kill, and I wanted to read comics, browse Imgur, and chatter with whoever was online.

With much difficulty, I started to write a story about Face. He was a good fallback character to use, even if he was my persona. Halfway through, I recalled that I already wrote a similar story, and already the start was tacky and lackluster. I could manage zero interest in it any farther, even when I forced myself.

Maybe I should write about my struggle, and what kept me from posting for so long? I decided to go with that. It was easy enough, but the words began to slow down halfway. Absently, I hit the “Attack” button on a cell phone game I had up, and by the time I finished a paragraph, I glanced to the side. It claimed me as the victor. How very exciting. With bored eyes, I scrolled down the “Win” page to see what I won. Experience and money were my prize. Nothing horribly exciting. The numbers were low.

I returned to writing I was little more than halfway, and decided to add some more details from the morning.

Suddenly, the power went out. I was in the dark, and my fingers had a hard time finding the keys. I couldn’t save my draft. My mind went back to the sight of men out the window, working on the power lines. Did they fuck something up out there? I held my breath a moment, then opened Notepad++ and pasted everything in. I decided I should add more details about the men working on the lines, and scrolled back up.

As I finished adding details about the workers, I got more ideas and wrote them out. Now things were moving smooth, and all it took was for me to get writing and to ignore the little voice in my head that said ‘stop’.

Of course, by the time I finished writing, the power still wasn’t on. My battery was only at half power. Absently, I unplugged my cord and saved again, nervous that I might lose this precious story. I double-checked it again, then exited and put my computer into hibernate mode, then went outside to see how long it would take for power to return

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Posted by on February 21, 2013 in Nonfiction


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