I am incredibly sorry for my absence of late. If you follow my Twitter, you’ll already be aware that I took a fall at work and hurt my ankle. Being the klutz that I am, I fell down the stairs and severely sprained it.
I’ve also had an incredibly inane and long-winded group assignment to participate in, which is now, thankfully, complete. Between that and the pain of my ankle, I’ve had a very hard time concentrating on anything, but I’m back now! I’m healing slowly, and had my first day back at work today (though I avoided the stairs at all costs).
I always feel terrible when I don’t write for an extended period of time, and even worse when I don’t put up a blog post. This blog is first and foremost for myself, but I know there are people following this blog (yes, I see you! Hello!), and it makes me happy inside to know that you enjoy my writing.
But I digress! Having been unable to concentrate, I’ve not really thought about things to write about, and I’ve been debating with myself for a few days now, but then I had a thought. I often look for writing prompts, and most of the time, none of them really stand out to me, usually being something along the lines of ‘write about a holiday’ or something basic. So, instead, I decided to try something different.
Whenever I’m lacking inspiration, or just want to mix things up a bit, I’m going to grab a book from my shelf, use a random number generator to give me a page and a rough line, take the nearest sentence to that line, and use it as a basis for 500 words. I might continue on from that sentence, I might just use it as inspiration. It doesn’t matter whether or not I know the book or it’s characters (I have MANY books on my TBR list), because it’s purely inspiration; I’m not going to be writing fan-fiction.
Today’s randomly generated inspiration is from… Harry Potter! (It was the closest book to me at the time, plus my love for the Wizarding World is never wavering.) I’ve not used the characters – infact, I’ve made up my own – but in this case, I used the sentence as an opening line (though I’ve not included it in the 500-words limit).
I think it’s a great idea, if I do say so myself. I don’t doubt that someone thought of it long before now, but for me, it’s a stroke of genuis. Plus this way, depending on the book I chose and the sentence given to me, I’ll be widening my genre-writing, too. It might be fantasy, it might romance, it might be contemporary.
So, without further ado, today’s writing!
From the moment the article appeared, [she] had to endure people […] quoting it at [her] as [s]he passed them, and making sneering comments. (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, JK Rowling pg. 276, lines 26-28)
It had taken Theresa almost the whole term to work up the courage to submit her work to the school paper, and now she was being ridiculed for it. She hadn’t expected her fellow students to be supportive, or even kind, but she had expected some quite of quiet respect. Surely, they knew how hard it was to come out and say the things she had said? To talk about the horrible things she had been through, the abuse and neglect and hatred just because she was queer?
But no; children are children and they don’t understand, and so upon the article’s release, she received more of the same.
“Alright, rug-muncher?” one particularly nasty boy called, shouldering his way past her in the corridor. His gang of miscreant friends sniggered and made crude gestures. But she continued to class, head held high. She could put up with a few names.
“No wonder her mum gave her up; I could tell from the first time I saw her that she was a dirty lesbian! She couldn’t handle the shame, I expect,” a girl from the year above said, making sure to raise her voice and smirked evilly when Theresa glanced in her direction.
On and on it continued. Just let them have their fun, she thought, willing the clock the speed up with every wicked name and vindictive comment. But their fun lasted longer than one day.
The bullying only grew worse as time went on. Two weeks after the article had been published, and upon the fourth time of being spat at from the top of the stairs, she had had enough.
She wasn’t ashamed of who she was; being gay didn’t change a thing about her. But the bullies were starting to wear her down, and she was becoming sick of it. She approached her form tutor first.
“I suppose you’re here about the article? It was very brave of you, you know, to write that stuff. I’m sure you’ve received lots of support!”
Theresa nearly choked.
“You’re kidding me, aren’t you, sir?” she asked, bewildered. How was it possible that he had not heard nor seen the raucous chaos that followed her down the halls?
Mr. Wallan just stared at her, his face impassive. Theresa sighed heavily and walked out of the room. Feeling tremendously let down, she instead went to see Mrs. Baker, her Head of Year. She was much kinder; a portly old woman with a pinched face.
“Ah, Miss Riley. I already know why you’re here. One of your fellow students reported the happenings to me this morning. I want you to know that we do not stand for this kind of behaviour here. What you wrote was incredibly moving, and I am proud of you.”
Again, Theresa found herself dumbstruck, but for completely different reasons. Someone had reported the bullying on her behalf? But who? She had no friends. No one had stood up for her in the past two weeks, so why now?
It’s not nitty-gritty or full of details, but sometimes, stories tell their own tale. This, I think, is very apt for today’s society, and, remeber, it’s only a section of writiIt’s not a story all but itself.
I could have gone on and on with Theresa; it’s a very personal piece of writing. But I’ve limited myself as a challenge (and to keep the blog posts from going on for too long) and I think it’s okay. It’s not the best thing I’ve ever written, but it’s something! Baby steps, eh?
Now that I’m back, I want to start doing posts more often. I know I’ve said that before, but once a week, if that, is not often enough. So, try and hold me to this now! I will try my damned hardest to write more often, and thus make more blog posts, too!
Until the next time!