"Small" writing challenges for my small writing talent. Hotel note pads are the only space allowed. Let's see if I can strip it down and tighten it up to learn something. Improving my skill of weird fiction.
The class assignment? Characterize the real victims. His pages were blank, empty, wordless, hollow-exactly what the victims were left with. Never would words describe what it must have been like and that’s what Dan felt was right with his result.
“These pages are just like the holocaust victims,” he thought, “Who are we to put words in their mouths?”
The blank pages would be a perfect medium to describe them. He put his name on top, the class under it, and turned in eight blank lifeless pages the next morning. A just feeling enveloped his mind, having achieved a real insight he thought nobody else could. A real tiumph of expression. Beyond composition, this was art! That is how Dan, a free-thinking seventeen year old student, received an F-grade and a long conversation with his teacher and parents about doing homework.
(Author’s notes) October 18th, 2015
This could have been a finalist, even a winner in how NOT to open a sentence. At first I started it with, “Dan’s homework stared at him like a holocaust victim.” Since then I edited it into what it is now, something that doesn’t make you click the page closed and unfollow and unlike. But the rest of the story is connected and works with the terrible idea.
Any inventive concepts we thought of in High-School were squashed by the staff because it strays from just doing the assignment, no questions asked, as it were in my midwest town. Can’t write a curse word, oh no, that’s a bad word! Anything integral to the story or article had to be clean and proper. Be afraid to stretch out and try for something. No run-on sentences and creative made up words like any famous published authors. No. Do it this way or get That D or F. Literary construction conservatives. They should have changed the name of English class to inflexibile conservative composition.
I understand Dan’s position. He thought of something and in High-School, any new idea to any student is now the world’s greatest idea and has to be shouted out. But really, it’s not like he was the first person to think of such a thing. Stifle the kids. Force their thinking to be just like our old white male rule-makers thinking. I felt that way then. That’s how I wound up here, doing this project, trying to catch up on learning writing and real creative thinking and probably doing it poorly at that.