Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Dime Stories: Animal Net

Summer is a magical time; with that said, I'm going to try something new on this blog! I'm going to write posts entitled "dime stories." They'll be very small stories, under 300 words, inspired by an image.

The author of The Night Circus, Erin Morgentern, writes what she calls her flax-golden tales on her blog. I've read a few of them and I love the idea. But it wasn't until fellow figgie Hannah decided to give it go that I wanted to try it myself. 

I'm not sure how frequently I'll do this, but I think writing one at least once a month is a good goal for now. We'll see how it goes. 

Found here on We Heart It

Animal Net

  When the world turned plastic, Tina left her home and wandered barefoot through the farmland. She whistled to keep her feet from turning cold and hard, to keep the blood running through her veins like clockwork. 
       The neighbors were frozen in place. Glazed eyes stared, wide-eyed, reflecting the last moments of their lives before their hearts turned rubbery and perfect.  
       “Good morning,” Tina shouted to every plastic person she met. Just in case. But she only heard her own voice echo through the fields.
       Although she had left home before sunrise, she had been too late to save the animals. Tina examined a chicken coop: all eggs pearly and inedible, chicken clucking silently, feathers and feces pristine. The world is clean when it’s wrapped in plastic. 
       Tears dripped down Tina’s nose. She hiccupped and rubbed her face on a dishtowel while the wife of the farmhouse bent over a fresh pie, poised to blow on it. A little black dog curled up in the corner of the kitchen drew her attention. Without thinking too hard, she picked the dog up and cradled its hard, plastic body in her arms. She went back to the coop and stole a rooster, left it perched on her shoulder as she whistled her way to becoming a plastic animal thief. 
       The rain smelled like vanilla beans, the droplets impure as they fell upon Tina and her plastic menagerie of animals. Her skin stretched and she whistled harder. She massaged her cheeks to keep them warm and soft. But the animals didn’t last the rainstorm. They shriveled up like raisins so Tina threaded them into her hair. 


  1. That was awesome. I NEVER, not in a million years, could have come up with something like that. Well done!

    1. Hannah! Thanks! But your image-stories on Figment are just so cool! I can't keep up with it weekly like you are, but I think writing short stories helps stretch the brain a bit. Do you find that to be the case with yours?

    2. Oh yes. Definitely. I just finished writing the one for Wednesday, and while my brain is steaming a bit, it's definitely helping my writing skills.

    3. Awesome. I'm glad I made it in time to read last week' story, haha.

  2. OK, a few things I like about this.

    1) dime stories. Reminds me of dime novels (I'm sure that was the intent). Old timey. Hence, I like the idea!

    2) I like the theme of plastic, cellophane-wrapped perfect as being unnatural and stultifying. Perfection is not just over-rated, it's not ideal. Too predictable and just not fun.

    Anyway, good work and I look forward to reading more of these =D

    PS: I responded to your comment on my blog =) Anyway, have a good, productive summer!

    1. Yes! I knew you'd get the dime story reference. My university has a stack of them in their special collections and I got to (carefully) read some. The paper was terribly yellow and fragile. The stories were hilarious though (to me at this point in time). The characters shouted, squealed, and even ejaculated when they spoke. I'm so glad that's fallen out of fashion.

      Thanks! And, yay, I'll check out your response!

    I want to try~~

    Great story btw. You are unstoppable~

    1. Aw, thanks! You should do it. I'll say it 'till I'm blue in the face, but I loved your fashion and story post. It's like the same thing, haha.

  4. I can't imagine what teaching is like. If I remember what college kids were like in my day (just a few years ago, but oh so long ago now) then even if they do show up, half are hung over, and of the few who are paying attention, they only do so with the idea of getting the grade in mind.

    I wish you the very best of luck. Even if you reach just one other student, it'll all be worth it. You never know what that student will do, or who that student will reach =)

    As for having a mind-numbing job ... it makes you wonder what you went to college for, anyway? Which is a sad and cynical thing to think, especially when you quickly realize that learning is awesome in and of itself and I have the ability now to express myself and extract all kinds of beauty and meaning from life's experiences. Being able to appreciate the arts beats the hell out of just watching sports all day, living for the weekend, the rat race, etc. But the job itself just bores me to tears, and makes me anxious to get back to my intellectual or creative pursuits. Lucky for me, I have plenty of time for that. Most people dont. So overall I am grateful for how things are, for now.

    PS: I reply here where I figure you may get a notification

    PPS: I've hit another rough patch in "The Hall Monitor" though at this point I tell myself "just write the draft and revise it later just write the draft and revise it later ..." 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration. Like with iSociety, even if the original version isn't where it should be, it can be worked on and improved a hell of a lot =)

  5. I LOVE THIS IDEA. I am super-excited to read more of your Dime Stories.

    This one was fantastic. Seriously, if someone painted an abstract representation of your brain there'd be all this crazy, bright, gorgeous squiggles just going all over the place! (It's a good thing... really!)