Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Short Story Assignment

Author’s Notes:

1. I want the reader to understand what the narrator is struggling to grasp with his world that he’s created.

2. The descriptions worked well in this piece I think and the dream itself was easy to write.

3. I had some problems putting this on paper and trying to finish the story. The ending was hard to write and thus its a bit jumbled and rushed and weird.

4. I would like to proof read this myself and fix up some of the weird bits. I would rather if you didn’t comment on this as I do not like the essay and, if I had the choice wouldn’t share it with anyone.

Ever since I was little I’ve always gone to see her. I can clearly remember the day we met. It was a warm day by the beach, early summer I believe. the waves tumbled over the golden sand by the shore. The town bustled off to the left. Children played in the shallows and made short-lived fortresses in the soft sand. Few people went out into the waters, the sea was unfathomable after only a few feet out. I liked swimming out there however, it was relaxing if not a little dangerous, it was certainly deep enough for a variety of creatures to be living in the depths. I liked to swim out there however, to be alone, with just me and the fish who swam fearfully away at my coming. This day was different, I was going to go as deep as I could. There was a long thin stick that stuck outof the water like a broken flag. I took it as an invitation that there was a bottom. I plunged into the water and held my breath until I couldn’t hold it much longer but as I was going to swim back, something pulled me back into the depths. Like my weight was floating up in another direction. I blacked out and when I awoke I was in a small bunker with two rooms to the left and right and what appeared to be a T.V. on a shelf much smaller than it. Standing over me was a girl around my age, she seemed curious that I was there but greeted me as if I was an old friend. She had long, tangled brown hair and shockingly brown eyes. Brown always struck me as a dull color but she somehow made it seem light and exciting. It was odd, how odd this was and how un-odd she made this feel. It was like being greeted home after a long journey.
I’ve been to the bunker many times since that time, swimming into the abyss with more certainty each time. Nobody questioned me swimming out and not returning for hours or days on end. The girl didn’t talk much but expected my visits. We never did anything really, but those days in there were calming and cheerful, it fel        t         



I awoke after what felt like a while. It was weird to do so after what had appeared that I had actually lived another life. Sort of like if you woke up one day and found out that your entire life had been a dream. It's a Scary thought. Especially because the average dream lasts between 5 to 20 minutes. I almost felt betrayed. Here I was with this memory of a town I’ve never visited, complete with people I’ve never met, and a girl who lived at the bottom of a bottomless sea. Not to mention memories about past times with all of these. Within a single dream that was the product of lack of sleep and a minor fever. Don’t get me wrong here, I have vivid dreams all the time, but never one that I felt close to, never one that I’ve had memories of another life. And never one that made me feel strangely complete. At the same time, I was sad. It was great that I was being allowed to visit this world, but I also knew that it might be the last I do. Dreams rarely happen again. The memory left the rest of the day on a good note. That night I fell asleep slowly and tiredly. Kept awake by my own thoughts.

I was in the city once more. I was curious as to why I , but then I noticed the differences. I was older, maybe late teens or early 20’s. Things seemed different than they were when I was here last, but then again how old was I when I first remember being here, 12? 13? The city was less welcoming now, grey buildings overlap with stores that once held the attention of endless tourists. I was startled but not deterred. A shady man shambled over to me with a crooked grin on his face, he asked in a raspy voice for money. He peered at me like a challenge to say no. I fumbled around my pockets and gave him a wad of money. It was only a dream, I had no use for it and something about the way the shadow’s moved made me believe that he wasn’t alone. I walked to the beach, it was bigger now, with a spot for gazing over the water. The shady guy walked up to me and put his hand on my shoulder like we were now friends. I gave him the rest of my money and he took a hint. I waded out in the water slowly at first but soon I was swimming out to that spot where the girl lay hidden. The stick was gone but I knew the spot now. I dove down and sure enough, I was in the bunker again. The girl was walking around with a blank expression on her face. When she saw me she seemed surprised, even scared. It was the same face that was infinitely full of life the last time. I asked her what happened and she stared at me, not speaking. It felt like I had been away too long. I didn’t understand. The bunker still had the homey feel to it but now it was underlined in sadness and betrayal. As the dream faded away I could hear her speak the single questio        ning



I woke up shaking that morning. It was way too early but going back to sleep was out of the question. What had happened? why what? So many questions were going through my head I couldn’t keep up. It was the same dream but wrong, wrong in many ways. I thought that originally I was living another’s life through this dream but now I know that to be false. It was me all along. One night later I was 7 years older and had let this fantasy creation go to waste and die. The reasonable side of my brain contradicted me, “well, its only a dream, dreams aren’t real.” In which I gladly took as the answer. Its hard to understand the unexplained so we, as humans create scenarios that are much more possible and realistic as we know it. I dismissed the dream and went on with the rest of my day without too much trouble. I fell asleep that night restlessly after not being sure of what would happen.


I was awake. The solitary word deafened me and jolted me upright. I resigned myself to stay up for the rest of the night and so, immediately fell asleep.

why are you here?”
I sat up, looking up at the saddened eyes of the girl. She was fuzzy and out of focus. I was sitting in the bunker once again like I had the night before. Everything looked about the same and it didn’t appear that time had moved forward. I sputtered for words, the girl hadn’t spoken much at all before this. She had a slight accent that was hard to place.
“You can’t be here,” she spoke softer this time, “This world is crumbling. Your imagination can only create so much before it moves onto other things. You have to dream of other things. As good as dreams may be it will only ever be a dream. The question that remains is what can you get out of it.”
“I don’t think I understand”
“you’re dealing with powers beyond your limitations. NOW GO.” With this she pushed me back and I fell, I never stopped falli  ng  while up abov
e there stood the girl with a look o        f acceptance and pain ingrained on her face. It looked like an Illlusion, with everything gradually weathering down to a shade of gray. With the edges distorted. It looked like a bad glitch in a video game.

    I woke up for the third time with a bad taste in my mouth. It was Monday and as much as I’d like to fake a cold, I don’t think I’d like to be alone with my thoughts or my imagination any longer.


  1. 1. The conflict was that the narrator couldn’t understand his dream, it was internal. It was resolved by going to school and not imagining anything. I was interested in the ending and thought it was well done but I think it could have had a better description of the cave or falling.

    2. The character learns the power of his own imagination and this is important because the entire story is based around that.

    3. I like the description of the beach the most in the story that happened in the exposition . “The waves tumbled over the golden sand by the shore.” I like the line because of the language in it making me feel like I am really there.

    4. I think the best part of the story was moving words on the page to effectively disorient the reader. I think it was creative and a smart way to slightly confuse the reader, not just with the words themselves but where they are.

    5. I think the best theme is that you can’t spend too much time dreaming, you have to focus on reality or you are just losing time wishing for what cannot be. It is cleverly underlined in the rising action when he realizes he shouldn’t keep dreaming the same dream

    6. I think you should work on the resolution. It could benefit you say if he had the dreams again or not. Also you should make sure you capitalize sentences and “I”.

  2. 1. The conflict in the story is that the main character couldn't figure out why he was having such vivid and bizarre dreams. The conflict was internal. The conflict was resolved by the main character going to school and pretty much not questioning it. I dont think anything could have made the conflict more dramatic because it was already very dramatic.

    2.The protagonist in this story changes because in the beggining he had a lot of questions about what was happening to him. Then by the end he learned to excceptt it and not ask questions. The insight that developed in this story is that the charecter stops asking questions. This change really helped make the ending more dramatic.

    3. My favorite part of the story was the first line "Ever since i was little I've always gone to see her" I like this because it really sets a mystifying and eerie mood on the story and it really hooks you and makes you want to read more.

    4. The best quality of this story is definitely the vivid word choice. The words that the author chose are so perfect to describe some of the situations.

    5. I think that the theme of the story is that sometimes in life you have to be content with the temporary answers that you get, because not everything can be explained.

    6. I think that the author could revise some of the capitalization, but besides that great story.


  3. Hi Satchel! What you've written here is truly wonderful. Your story has the reader disoriented and hooked at the same time, which isn't easy to do.

    I agree 100% with Zach when he says that one of the best qualities of your story is your word choice. Phrases like "short-lived fortresses" and "stuck out in the water like a broken flag" were such a joy to read. You described the girl in such a way that I felt like I didn't need to know very much about her to know her as a character.

    I really liked the way you ended the dream sequence section of your story. It made your theme clear and gave me as a reader closure. If you feel like you want to change the very end, where your narrator wakes up for the final time, I think that Sean's idea might be interesting to consider.