To have all the words and suddenly lose them is scary. To have no words when there is a fast-approaching deadline is terrifying. Bruce wanted to move away from the blank computer screen but he wouldn’t allow it.
So far he had read the paper, cleaned the kitchen, drank four or five cups of coffee, sorted out his car tax, sold a few items on ebay and contemplated making a start on the puzzle his mother had got him for Christmas. On the whole it had been an entirely unproductive day. It was two o’clock in the afternoon and submission time was at five. Bruce knew how sneaky time could be so he didn’t want to move until he had written at least three hundred words. Then he only needed to complete seven hundred more and he was on the home straight.
Bruce, the accomplished writer and best-selling novelist knew that he should find short story writing a breeze. Today he didn’t feel accomplished, instead he felt like a student pushed to start and finish an essay overnight. Maybe he should give it up as a bad job and let the editor know that it wasn’t going to happen.
The phone mocked him. It was certainly the easy way out as he was convinced that they could find another capable author to complete the job. As Bruce reached for the phone, a loud knock at the door jolted him to his senses. It was a police officer.
“Sorry to disturb you but I have a few questions. There’s been a break in across the road and we are led to believe the suspect fled through your garden”
Bruce stared at the police officer blankly until he offered more information.
“Whoever he was left his shoe and socks behind”
Bruce tried not to express amusement.
“A shoe, a single shoe and a pair of socks,” he guffawed
“Yes that’s right. Don’t suppose you have seen anything?”
This was golden, Bruce thought, pure fiction gold.
“How strange. No I’m afraid I haven’t. If I recover any underwear in my garden I will be sure to let you know.”
After the officer left Bruce rushed back to the computer ready to write the best damn short story the paper had ever known. A frenzy of fiction was going to spark from his fingers, Bruce could feel it. Rubbing his hand together he waited for the sparks to ignite the keyboard. He waited and waited, and then he waited some more however nothing happened. Bruce hit his head against the desk and let out a small whimper. He took the phone in his hand and punched in the numbers for his editor. As the listened to the phone ring and he glanced across the room and saw his daughter’s Cinderella book perched on the coffee table.
Bruce slammed the phone back down desperate not to lose the idea in his head and for two hours he let the words fall out him effortlessly. When the time came his literary masterpiece had been completed. Breathing a sigh of relief he pressed ‘send’ and mentally patted himself on the back. Five minutes later Bruce received a reply.
Sorry bumped your story for book review. I thought Sally had informed you, many apologies.