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December 7, 2011

I am having a really difficult time writing this short story. It isn’t finished, but it will be by the end of this week and I hope it meets the criteria. Thank you for being patient. I think I have more to go with now than my first attempts. Here goes:


Kayla squealed with delight at the crisp, golden leaves crunching beneath her feet. Emily couldn’t help but chuckle at the little girl skipping across the sidewalk. “Not so fast,” yelled the mother, but Kayla simply giggled and bounded forward. “I’ll get her,” Emily said, bounding forward to catch her. The air smelled cool, clean and fresh. The humidity and heat of the summer had been blown away by the autumn winds. This season is always far too short, thought Emily. She rounded the corner and grabbed Kayla’s hand, slowing her to a walk, the girl shrieking with laughter at being caught. They arrived at a small brick house and made their way up the drive.

Kayla clambered up the steps of the stoop and began banging on the door. A stern looking old woman answered and looked severely at Kayla. “Kayla’s been so excited to see you all morning,” Emily said to the girl’s grandmother. The woman swung the screen door and allowed the three of them in. “How is everything, mom?” Kayla’s mother asked. “Oh, it’s fine,” the grandmother responded. Kayla ran to the den and looked at the shelf where a beautiful dollhouse stood. The dolls were delicate with sweet faces and all of the furniture was hand-painted. “Don’t touch it, Kayla,” the grandmother warned. Emily pulled the little girl away, inviting her to the table for lunch. Kayla began banging on the table and singing a song she’s created on the spot. “Little girls do not make such noise,” says the grandmother. Emily looks at Kayla’s mother, who winces and shrugs, unable to stand up to her mother.

After eating, Emily took Kayla to play while the women spent time together. “You need to discipline her,” the older woman said. “Yes,” said Kayla’s mother. Emily knew Kayla’s grandmother had her own particular, particularly strong, opinion on the proper way to raise children. She rolled her eyes and zoned out of the conversation. Not like she speaks to me anyway, I’m just “the nanny”. She smiled at the little girl playing quietly with her blocks. It seemed that no matter how she was behaving, her grandmother always found some fault. Too loud, too clumsy, too careless…what?!


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One Comment
  1. jenny permalink

    I appreciate your working through the story, Rachel, even though it’s not necessarily coming all that easily. Sometimes it doesn’t–writer’s block–and I find that the best way to handle it is to not expect or hope too much from a piece. Just do the writing methodically and wait for something to click. You will get credit for this–it doesn’t have to be the Great American novel!

    So, does the grandmother pose the conflict? If so, you might want to find a way to introduce her earlier in the story…readers should not have to wait for the real action to begin…

    do you have any questions for me or your peers about how to proceed?

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