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"Image Patterning, Starting with Jell-O"

Exercise #87 : "Image Patterning, Starting with Jell-O"

This is an exercise in working with imagery to create a sense of connectedness within a narrative. Take this as your opening line:

The Jell-O was not his favorite dessert.

Write on anything, but be sure to use the following imagery (in addition to Jell-O): overdone steak; a barking dog; too much perfume; a squishy blue velvet couch. Then, tie it up with an ending that somehow -- in some way -- returns to the Jell-O.

Man alive, this one is going to be hard. It's just really involved. I guess I just need to dive in.

GO!!! :)

Jell-O was not his favorite dessert, but it beat the overdone steak that he had just forced down a few minutes ago. The gelatinous, jiggling mass of horse hoof leftovers sat peacefully in the small bowl at his fingertips, but each time he tried to dip his spoon in for a bite he kept hearing the sounds of pained whinnying in the distance.

"It's not just made from horse hooves," he said aloud.

"What, darling?" asked Liza, his girlfriend. She was a wealthy, upperclass woman from a family of wasps, one of those women who constantly smelled of too much expensive perfume and money. But she was beautiful, a trophy girlfriend to be sure.

"Oh, nothing. I'm just distracted is all," he said. "Sorry."

She placed a fragile-looking, white gloved hand over his. "Are you not in the mood for Jell-O tonight?"

"You know, not really," he said. "I know you made it especially for me, but I just can't seem to stomach it."

"Well, that's fine," she said, flashing him a 1000 watt smile capable of warming even the abominable snowman. "Why don't you go into the living room while we clean up in here?" By 'we,' of course, she meant her two maids. She would polish off her glass of Chardonnay and waltz over to the living room shortly after to sit with him on her squishy, blue, velvet couch.

He sat down on the couch, engulfed in its plushness, and closed his eyes. I could fall asleep right here, he thought. It had been a long day at the office, filing page after page, stamping note after note... Just as he began to slip into the subconscious world of sleep, a dog barked next door, jerking him back into reality.

Suddenly and inexplicably, that Jell-O sounded quite appealing. Maybe Liza hadn't disposed of it yet.

"Liza?" he called.


Interesting. hehe I think the constant writing of NaNo has really dried out my brain. And to think that I only wrote 2,348 words! Well, not only... I just looked online, and there are people who wrote 10,000 words yesterday! I mean, honestly? How??? If I had really buckled down I could have probably gotten 5,000 words down, but double that? No way, nohow. It's insanity! haha Either way, I feel good about my progress. 4.7% done at the end of Day 1 feels pretty good.

I have decided, however, that I will not be posting excerpts until I have gotten a chance to do some major editing, because honestly... Well, what I've written is pure, unadulturated crap. Not even kidding. haha I'm getting my point across, but there are definitely better ways to say what I'm trying to say. Let's say, for now, that I'll start posting excerpts in January. That will be a good project, eh?

Anyways, it's 11pm, and I have school tomorrow for the first time in a week. I'm kind of stressed out because I was out of the loop for so long and have missed so much, but I'll just have to kick my butt in gear to get everything done that needs doing.

How is everyone's NaNo experience going? Are you meeting your wordcounts? Or are you being a NaNo Rebel and making the 1-month deadline work for you in some other way?

Bedtime for Bonzo. Happy writing!



Tamika: said…
Stef, I can count on you to get my brain gurgling with ideas. I love you inventive exercises.
Stef Howerton said…
Tamika, so glad I can provide you with brain gurling exercises! :) I know they help me a lot.
Stef Howerton said…
And by "gurling," I definitely meant gurgling... Note to self: proofread! hehe All of this frantic NaNo typing isn't helping my typist skills. :)

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