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I decided to organize a weekly creative writing exercise in the office to sharpen the skills of the writing pool. Everyone takes a turn inventing an exercise or a prompt.

The only general rule we've been using is that it should be doable in an hour or so. We've also tried to keep things fun.

Please feel free to share your own exercise efforts by leaving a comment. You can do that at the end of each exercise by clicking on 'Share your own effort'. Enjoy!

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Exercise 39 - Paired Fiction Writing

Pick a *writing partner and write two halves of a short story. Decide among yourselves who will write the first and second parts.

Writing prompt 

Write a story about three friends marooned on a desert island: Frank, and lovers Fred and Jenny. Writing perspective is in first person, and Fred is telling the story.

1. In the first part, bring the story elements to a crisis: 

The crisis reaches its climax when Fred finds out that Frank -- because of desperation, hunger, and growing insanity -- has killed and cooked his girlfriend Jenny for food. One of the writing partners will write the events leading to the crisis, e.g. how they were marooned on the island, why the food supply has run out, the tension growing among the three friends etc. It is your task to write a compelling starting point and run up to the climax.

2. In the second part, bring the story elements to a resolution: 

After Fred finds out about the grisly act committed by his friend toward Jenny, one of the writing partners will write the events leading to a resolution. E.g. how will Fred react? Will he seek revenge and kill Frank? Will he flee the island for fear of getting murdered and eaten next? Or will he join Frank and partake of the gruesome repast? Or do you have something more sinister in mind? It is your task to write an interesting ending for the story.

Word count is at least 200 words per half. Total word count for the whole story is 400 or more. 

My assigned partner is Tomas.  We agreed I'd write the first half.  Below is my contribution to the story and immediately following that is his other half. 

(My opening half)

This can only happen in the movies.  A plane crash in the middle of the ocean, surviving, and then being marooned on a deserted island Ė how clichť?   But it happened to me, to us and I still can't believe it. 

Jenny and I were on our first romantic holiday together when on our way home, the plane suddenly crashed.  We didn't know we were in trouble until the very last moments before the plane hit the water.  We slept through the trip only to wake up to a real-life nightmare. 

Everyone had died.  Knocked unconscious or trapped in the sinking plane.  Others had drowned trying to swim to safety.  The three of us though, by some miracle, had managed to escape through a smashed window and had managed to cling on to floating debris.  Somehow, Jenny, me and this guy, Frank survived. 

We had reached this deserted island, exhausted and grateful at having been spared.  I thought then search and rescue teams would eventually find us.  I imagined our only concern would be to stay alive until we were rescued in a couple of days.  I felt lucky and thought we weren't meant to die just yet.   

That was seven weeks ago to the day.

Now, I wonder if we were better off having died with the rest of the plane passengers during the crash.  No food and water save for the scraps from the few coconuts we managed to find, we had grown weak and emaciated.  Jenny contracted a fever yesterday.  It must be malaria.  I fear she won't last the week if we don't get rescued soon.

Frank had grown distant and irritable.  He has refused to help scavenging for food and supplies.  He is losing it.  We all are.  Everyday has become an ordeal worse than the day before.  I fear we will all perish, soon.  What's worse is I am beginning to welcome the thought.   

I am losing it!

What is that smell?  Burning?  No, cooking meat!  Where is it coming from?   

"Jenny?  Frank?" I call out.  No answer.  I follow the scent towards the other end of the beach.  There, a smoke trail.  I walk towards the source with caution.  Something is wrong.  Why did Frank offer to watch over Jenny earlier while I left to scavenge for food?  Then it hits me. 

Disbelief quickly overwhelmed by rage.  I break into a run and scream Ė "Frank, what have you done!"


(Tomas' closing half)

Killing and cooking my girlfriend. It was indeed a grisly act that Frank did to Jenny, but I just canít help thinking that Jenny has always been an attractive and shall I say delicious woman. The thought of eating a big, juicy cheeseburger makes me wonder what Jenny might taste like. She might just taste like everything else, tastes like chicken. But of course the thought of a Jenny steak is very undeniably enticing.

I know for a fact that she has always been a physical woman being an athlete during college. Thatís why every time we had an argument I always end up getting bruised black and blue. Will she still pound the crap out of me if Iíll have a bite of her? I donít think so, might as well give me a taste of those big buns of hers.  

But she is the love of my life. I canít just gobble her up. I wonder if after Frank eats her he might acquire some of her attributes and he becomes more like my baby. I would probably fall in love with Frank at that stage. But Iím no faggot. I canít like a guy for reminding me of my Jenny. In an isolated island like this anything is possible though. Fred and Frank forever, sound really nice.

This kind of situation reminds me of the movie Lord of the Flyís. Good natured and educated boys become cannibals because of survival. Same as what happened to those footballers from South America in the movie Alive. Human eating human might not be that bad after all. This is survival mode anyway. Nature has always been like this, survival of the fittest.  

Just one thought thatís been bothering me though. Iíve tasted Jenny in the flesh, scrumptious I might say. But how will I compare it to a Jenny kaldereta? One Jenny laureate for me please.

Posted at 12:05 pm by bisoy


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