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Monday, February 2, 2015

Writer's Block and "The First Impression"

Starting my latest online writing class, I've run into some serious writer's block. The class is called Creativity Training, so I had expected the lessons to include some practical tips for knocking out my writer's block. You know, free writing for ten minutes or making funny connections between random words. 

Oh no. The only way to cure writer's block is to writeHere was my first assignment:

"In less than 300 words, write a story with a beginning, middle, and end by starting with one of the following sentences. 

Mary was fed up with Bob and…

Today's children should be taught…

Looking at Paris in this light…

Pat knew for a long time that a clairvoyant gift was…

They called it a near miss, but I called it…

P.S. You also need to have a twist ending."

It seemed impossible. I'm in the class precisely because I can't do stuff like this. I went to the discussion board to get some inspiration and see how people were managing (big mistake) and of course, other people were all kinds of brilliant and hilarious. The only twist ending I could think of was "but it was all a dream." 

It didn't help that Tyler immediately came up with a twist ending for the very first one I mentioned. 

"Looking at Paris in this light? That's easy! It's a painting inside of a prison cell. Done."

After much stress and inner debate, I finally found my own twist ending. It's not my best work, but I'm happy with how it turned out, given the word count constraint. So here it goes. Mary was fed up with Bob and...

The First Impression

Mary was fed up with Bob and his escapades. From the beginning, it was a dramatic love story.

She had made quite a first impression on Bob in her gown, and less than twelve hours passed before he could keep himself from seeing her again. Together they dined on lobster, skied through the Alps, and sipped champagne under the stars.

After only a month, they met each other’s families in Chicago and Texas. Bob was a lawyer and she was a doctor, but they would make it work. Nothing could keep them apart – except the other woman.

With every farewell kiss, she had pretended not to know that Bob would whisk the other woman off to eat the lobster, to drink the champagne. But now the time had come for Bob to choose. 

He stood at the edge of the cliff, overlooking the fishing boats of the little Croatian village where their love story would either end or begin. As she approached, Bob adjusted his tie, then clasped her hands to help her up the cobblestone steps.

“Darling,” he kissed her cheek, “I cherish every moment we’ve had together. You’re beautiful and kind.” Bob took a deep breath. “I never thought I’d be able to find love again after my wife passed away, but you’ve opened my heart, Jane, and I will always be grateful to you.”

“But?” Jane searched his face.

“But,” he continued, “unfortunately, I do not feel ready to take the next step with either you or Sandra.”

Suddenly the phone rang. Mary brushed the Cheeto dust off of her fingers as she picked up the receiver. 

“Hello? Oh hey, Sally. Are you watching, too? The nerve of this guy! I swear, this is the last season of The Bachelor I’m ever watching.”


  1. Bahahahahah!!! I love this so much!!!! Katie you are brilliant. And this makes me want to start writing again desperately!!!! I love random writing prompts!!! Keep sharing!! :D

    1. Thank you Leanne! Keep writing. I'm nowhere near a novel. :)