October 24, 2011

Drifting Away: Third Campaigner Challenge

Rachael Harrie’s Third Campaigner Challenge as part of the Author Platform Building Campaign:

Write a blog post in 300 words or less, excluding the title. The post can be in any format, whether flash fiction, non-fiction, humorous blog musings, poem, etc. The blog post should show:
·         that it’s morning,
·         that a man or a woman (or both) is at the beach
·         that the MC (main character) is bored
·         that something stinks behind where he/she is sitting
·         that something surprising happens.
Just for fun, see if you can involve all five senses AND include these random words: "synbatec," "wastopaneer," and "tacise." (NB. these words are completely made up and are not intended to have any meaning other than the one you give them).
*****
Drifting Away
The sun began to creep from its hiding place, warming the sand beneath her toes. She spread her fingers through the grains, moving past her bare legs to begin shifting sand over one foot and then another. Creamy vanilla and caramel colors swirled with the teals, greens, and blues of the waves moving just ahead of her.
Such synbatec beauty couldn’t stop the yawn from escaping her dry lips. Full shopping bags awaited her in the room, the credit card he gave her maxed out. She reached for her water, the cool liquid easing down her throat. A deep sigh followed.
Paul motioned for the waiter just before the cell phone went off again. “It’s Miss Raphine. I have to take this,” he whispered and walked away.
Why had she come? He said they’d get away, focus on each other. With each tacise lie, pieces of the relationship broke away.
She closed her eyes and melted into the cocoon of the expensive towel. A wave of nausea rose as the scent of bacon and wastopaneer drifted toward her. He knew she hated both, they argued about it last week before boarding the airplane.
Her head fell to the side, her eyes drifting open. She saw children she’d never have running down the beach, a man and woman trying to keep up. An old couple sat in chairs under an umbrella watching the fun.
The shutdown began, like the spin cycle of a washing machine… slowing, slowing. The orange bottle was empty beside her. The small pills once inside it were working their magic, easing her load. Her breathing began to slow, and peace came.
*****
I found this challenge extremely difficult, but a wonderful exercise to practice show-don’t-tell. If you enjoyed my piece, please stop by Rach Writes… and vote for me, #118. Please take a few minutes to read some of the other wonderful pieces and vote for your favorites.

27 comments:

Moody said...

Nice work. Kind of a sad story.

mood
(now following)
Moody Writing
@mooderino

Sheri L. Swift said...

Good job using those dreaded words! Lol! Was a bit sad. Good description! ; )

Tia Bach said...

Thanks, Sheri & Mood!

When I tried to fit in the "surprising" part, the story surprised me and went sad. Maybe I need some sugar. ;-)

Dana & Keith Newbrough said...

I thought this was beautiful, even though it was very sad. Well done using all those points! Very touching!

Laura said...

The ending is what I liked the best! Well done.

David Powers King said...

That's not fun, her going out like that. But it reflects a very true problem some people have. Very good writing. Loved your imagery! :)

Tia Bach said...

Dana, Laura, and David... Thanks. This really pushed me. I'm loving the campaign and its challenges. Off to read some entries now. I didn't want to read any until mine was complete (I didn't want to be influenced).

bridgetstraub.com said...

Nice job although what I wouldn't give for some full shopping bags right now, so it was a little hard to feel sorry for her. Still, you wrote it well.

Jen said...

Very sad, but you used wonderful imagery. I love the part about the cycle on the washing machine. Great job!

Mine is #25.

Tia Bach said...

Bridget, I hope the full shopping bags showed things don't make you happy, but I agree... I'd take some. ;-)

Jen, can you tell I'm a mom? ;-)

Thanks for the support!

Nana said...

Superb!!! I'm impressed and delighted to see you stretch yourself. No red marks on this entry!!!

Tia Bach said...

Shucks, Mom... you made me blush. I know how much we both love making red marks!

Jessica Therrien said...

Great surprise ending...left me wondering if she was just numbing herself with the pills or if she was committing suicide...either is no good. Great job with this story Tia!!

Damyanti said...

Love the images!

Jess said...

Wow. Loved it. Very sad, but I completely loved it. You've got my vote and I'm following along :)

I'm entry #5

Fairview said...

very nice work doing the show, not tell and still managing to convey emotion. great job!

Tia Bach said...

Thanks everyone! This was a challenge, so I really appreciate your supportive comments. Loving this campaign!

Margo Kelly said...

Hey! Guess what?! You're moving on to the next round in the judging process. :) Congrats!

:) Margo

Tia Bach said...

Margo... you just made my day!!! Thank you!

Clarbojahn said...

Loved the way you translated the challenge? So sad is what I see in the comments and I agree. My piece used pills but she "Grew Up" in mine along with her kids. Didn't want to give all that tacise and plantomeer any more. Thanks for visiting. I appreciate the support. :)

Tia Bach said...

Thanks, Clar.

Lori M. Lee said...

Whoa, didn't see that ending coming o_o Lovely writing.

Tia Bach said...

Lori, Thanks. I really appreciate you stopping by, reading, and commenting. I hope to get to a lot more entries today.

Lena Corazon said...

Oh, this was wonderful and quite bittersweet. You did a great job weaving in those challenge words, and I really enjoyed all the description. It definitely made the scene stand out vividly in my mind.

Tia Bach said...

Lena, I can't thank you enough for your lovely compliments. This campaign has helped me grow so much. I'd never really done flash fiction before, and I've become addicted. ;-)

Grillyfish said...

I loved your entry and was really touched by the ending - so sad! I really wanted to keep reading, so I have sent you through to the second round of judging, well done!

Good luck in the next round :)

Tia Bach said...

For such a sad piece, it sure has me doing the happy dance. Round 2... yeah. Super excited! Thanks for the well wishes and touching comments.