Alice and Mr. Fantastico
Yesterday, I read about The Most Dangerous Writing App on Kottke, and I decided to give it a try. Basically, you have to start writing and not stop for a set period of time, or your prose will disappear. I used the default setting of five minutes and created a work of flash fiction. Bear in mind, you can’t really edit, so I didn’t make any changes after I’d finished. Also, if you try it, don’t forget to download your work at the end. My story is called “Alice and Mr. Fantastico.”
this is the first time i've seen this place from this distance, fantastico said, his hands stuffed into his pockets. alice said nothing, just stood there, facing the sun, feeling blue. they had been married for 17 years, 12 months, 6 days, 5 hours, and 13 minutes at that moment. he had set the marriage clock the second they'd exchanged rings, and every anniversary, they'd look at it together, admiring the steady swing of the arms around the face. for a moment, fantastico hesitated, then he stepped forward. hoping she wouldn't mind, he wrapped his arms around alice from the back, as if he was her personal straightjacket and squeezed. instead of leaning back into him, as he'd hoped, his wife turned rigid, bracing at his embrace. from the front of her head, she made a small noise, something muffled and gutteral that suggested unhappiness and a desire to file for divorce. beyond them, there was the great land: the rolling hills, the dramatic ravines, the orange-scorched sky. between them, there was no physical space, only the grim concrete of alice's waning interest in fantastico. alice sensed fantastico sensing her interest in disincohabitating. for a moment, she felt guilty. then she imagined the guilt was small bits of dust on the floor, and her newfound attitude was the broom sweeping them across the porch. it was very hard to know what to do sometimes, alice considered. now, of course, wasn't one of those times. this was a time to rejoice. soon, she would never see fantastico again. her life would be hers, and the land would be something into which she could run, never to return.
Buy my digital short, “The Tumor.” It’s been called “a masterpiece of short fiction.”