If SparkLife were a football team, and you guys were the handsome, courageous, boundary-breaking players, and I was the scruffy, inspirational coach, this is the point in the championship game where I would point at you and say "You're hall of fame in my book, dudeskis." (*This may or may not be a direct quote from the phenomenal movie Remember the Titans, which I may or may not watch every single night while eating an family-sized bag of frozen waffle fries.) But alas, I am not Denzel Washington (he's 3 feet shorter than me) and you are not football players; what you are, friends, is WRITERS.
You wrote the proverbial pants off last week's prompt, and I am brimming with non-proverbial pride at your mad, mad skillz. It was nearly impossible to choose a favorite story; everyone wove such riveting tales about Stanley Plinkton that I began to wish he was a real boy, instead of just my best imaginary friend (he took Eugene's spot when Eugene stopped letting me win at invisible banana-ball. THANKS FOR NOTHING, EUGENE.) So without further incomprehensible movie analogies and no more ado, here are last week's finest fictional masterpieces:
Sparklers' Choice (with an astounding 57 votes): NarniaSparks! Here's her righteous tale of awesomeness:
The bell rang. There was a moment of quiet before hundreds of teenagers burst forth from the industrial-like doors.
“Stanley! Stanley!” a short new sophomore called to a gangly fourteen-year-old.
“Stanley,” Ian called, stopping next to him. “I’ve got big—“
“—News, I know. I’ve got something to do,” Stanley said, looking straight ahead. “No, really, you should hear this, it’s important,” he said, breathless after sprinting down the stairs, wiping his forehead in the heat of the Texas sun, which was burning over them. Ian glanced to his left, where a nice ash tree was kind enough to lend some shade.
“Really? Important like what?” Stanley said frustrated, turning to Ian. “Important like cafeteria menus? Important like a new edition of our Algebra 2 textbook? Or like the last time you said you had ‘big, important news,’ when you told me that you had decided you liked Myra? That, by the way,” Stanley said, pointing a finger in Ian’s face, “is not significant. Why? Because you’re never going to do anything about it, she won’t like you back, and all it means is that you’ll come back with another pointless story about how you have her picture in your room!”
“Well, that’s actually what I,” Ian started, clearly hurt. Stanley paid him no attention as he rolled his shoulder back and strode towards a pretty brunette.
“Hey, Myra!” Stanley said. “I was wondering if you wanted to do anything this summer. I think it would be lots of fun,” he said, nudging in his most playful manner. As Stanley leaned towards Myra, he was hit to the ground. Hand over his ear, he looked up and yelled, “Ian, what the hell are you doing?!”
“You never listen to me, Stanley. If you did, you’d know I’m DATING MYRA.”
Dagger's Choice: thesuburbanrebel! Here's her witty, razor-sharp story, written ingeniously in the form of a letter:
Dear Stanley Plinkton,
Yesterday I punched you in the ear. Today Principal Bergestein is making me write this letter to apologize. I don’t want to get red pen on my permanent record, so let’s pretend I’m sorry. Actually, we don’t have to pretend. I really am sorry about a lot of things.
I’m sorry you’re the biggest guy in eighth grade and you think that makes you better than everyone else.
I’m sorry you have anger issues. I’m sorry you probably weren’t hugged enough as a child.
I’m sorry Adam Delagan has one leg.
I am very sorry that you find some depraved amusement in calling him cyborg. I’m sorry that you think it’s funny to trip him. I’m sorry that yesterday you reached a new level of deranged pyschopathy and announced a new sport. I’m sorry that “Make the crip cry” is the most creative thing you’ve ever thought of.
I’m sorry that the textbooks I threw at you missed. I’m sorry you gave me that arrogant smirk you always wear and told me that girls like me are only good in the kitchen or the bedroom. I’m sorry, so sorry that you took that opportunity to kiss me. I’m sorry your taste of tobacco and unbrushed teeth has been making me want to vomit for the past 24 hours.
I’m sorry I’m writing this letter. You’re a complete tool and I never talk to inanimate objects.
I’m sorry I ever met you, Stan.
P.S. I’m sorry I punched you in the ear. I was hoping to break your nose. Don’t mess with my brother.
DomiKat (for the acting class story)
Congrats to the champions, who shall be remembered forever and surely go on to do glorious, glorious things, like write an award-winning novel or own their own elephants. And now for next week's prompt:
Write a short story (max: 300 words) that involves these three items:
-a rabid animal
-a tiny bottle of hand sanitizer
Writing Tip of the week: If you're struggling for inspiration or can't find your voice, try emulating a writer whose style you admire. Take a shot at writing a story using their syntax, their diction, even their slang, and see where you end up. The goal isn't to copy the masters; it's to LEARN from them. Once you've nailed the style of Faulkner (impossible), or Rowling (surprisingly easy), or Meyer (if you pull this off, it will be hilarious), you'll know what works for you and what doesn't. You'll start to develop your own, unique style—and then, much like a robot made of bullet-proof glass, you'll be unstoppable. Here's an example: take a page from Hemingway's book and write with short sentences. When challenged to tell an entire story in only 6 words, Hemingway wrote: For sale: baby shoes, never used. BAM. Heavy stuff, right? Practice conveying pages worth of meaning in only a few lines—you might be surprised to find that you've been using a whole bunch of unnecessary words.
A few notes for you worriers out there: I read EVERY SINGLE STORY, no matter when it was posted or how many votes it got. If you'd like to see the stories organized in the order they were posted, or by highest-rated, or by most recent, just change the way the comments are sorted!
ALSO: If you try to publish a comment with more than 300 words, it will show up as BLANK. Don't panic! Just re-pub your story with the correct number of words. If you have more to add, simply "reply" to your published comment. Make sense?
Additionally, if you mess up your story or publish it before you mean to, no worries; you can comment with edits or new versions!
NOW GET ON YOUR WRITIN' PANTS AND TYPE ME SOME MASTERPIECES!
Related post: New Series Alert: Writer Wars!