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The Rat's Nest

I've been reading the Finca Vigia edition of Hemingway's short stories and he did this really interesting thing in "The First Forty-nine" that I really liked. In between each of the meatier stories he'd have a very, very short story. Short like 5-8 sentences.

These operate in much the same way as the six-word stories but I found that they were a little harder. You have a little bit more room to explore, but you still have to leave a reader feeling as though there's a larger story that they need to play out in their head.

I've worked all month on this and of all the ones I tried to write, this is the one I liked the most:

When we slept, there wasn't much we could do about them. They skittered about, scratching at the walls and cupboards, scouring every bare corner for food, terrifying our sleep, making it uneasy, queasy and dreadful. We've been here six weeks and will be here who knows how many more longer and they never cease to stress me. They finally ran the cat off completely yesterday, they were bigger, tougher and more stubborn than he was. Perhaps we'll finally get some rest tomorrow, I intend to buy a shotgun.

Comments

Peter said…
Sandwiches

I'm sitting at the computer and she brings me a sandwich.

"Hungry?"

"Still not."

"Plenty more where that came from." She sets the plate on my desk. Goes back to the kitchen.

I log off and eat the sandwich, turn off the computer, head for the kitchen. She stands at the counter, busy with the peanut butter and jelly. I see the next sixty seconds in my head.

She will say something like, Hungry? And I will say something like, Still not. And she will say, Need to eat. And I will say, Better get going. And she, I'll wrap it up. And I, Not necessary. And she, Just a moment. And I, I'll have something while I'm out. And then: she'll wrap the sandwich in a plastic.

I put the plate in the sink.

"Hungry?" she says and hands me a sandwich on a plate.

"Got any milk?" I say.

She opens the frig, pours me a glass.

"Plenty more where that came from."
Shelly said…
Aside from the word 'queasy', I LOVE this short.
Bankole Oluwole said…
Really liked the bit, it's good to know there's plenty more where that came from

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