I’m in the last week of the writing course I’m doing, an on-line MOOC (massive open on-line course) and heading towards having to submit a short story. I am just no good at short stories, not disciplined enough, i guess, but I want to do my best. In my opinion the course is too focused on characters and not enough on other things which make up a story – even something as simple as beginning, middle and end. However, I want to get through – it’s a challenge to try and do something I’m no good at.
We’re supposed to have developed characters from observation and weave them into a story. I now have two characters, but I’ll have to tweak what I first wrote about one, to fit with the way I’ve written about the second…
I stood, waiting for a train. I stood waiting, passive and tired, watching others waiting. No, not tired, bored. My name is Jakov, today my name is Jakov.
I stepped back as a man walked past, a big, intimidating man with a tattooed face and two tiny dogs. The dogs decided to swap places, nearly tripping the tattooed man. There was snapping and bad temper from the dogs, unexpected patience from their owner.
The train hissed in and the doors clicked and opened and I hefted my bag on my shoulder and stepped into the carriage. Why travel by train when I could drive or fly? It’s more difficult to follow someone travelling by train from a small town station… more difficult but not impossible.
But why would anyone follow me? Small fish in a murky pond. I sat by the window and watched the world, and watched who wandered up and down the aisle… I was tired, bored, but I didn’t sleep.
I’m not sure I’ll be very content with my story, it feels so forced and artificial somehow… but we’ll see, I might surprise myself!