The Proof is in the Post
933 words long
No one believes actual tiny sentient demons are infiltrating the post and editing letters for brutal honesty. It's just natural processes at work.
belated fictionette announcements made in the dust of the wagon i'm running to catch up with
Hi! Pretend it's Friday. Pretend the Friday Fictionette for February 9 just went up. (It isn't, and it didn't, and it actually went up on Saturday just before our roller derby double header got underway--thank goodness there's public wifi at the Boulder County Fairgrounds now!) This is the blog post that ought to have gone up right about then, announcing the latest release.
We good? Good. So...
The Friday Fictionette for Friday, February 9 is "Electing a Chair" (ebook and audiobook for Patrons, teaser excerpt for all) and exemplifies the GIGO principal at work in the perfect obedience of enchanted household objects.
OK. So. The post about cooking is coming tomorrow, if I don't totally fall off the wagon again. 'Til then!
this fictionette proposes a new game that we can all play together
The wee hours of Saturday still count as Friday if I haven't gone to bed yet, right? Which was, for once, quite easy. Whenever I do several hours of work at a pub or bar, I feel like I should always be drinking or eating something to excuse my lengthy presence. And after two beers and two small plates, I was not up for more food or alcohol. So I ordered coffee. And of course they didn't have decaf. And of course I had coffee anyway. I may yet be up awhile.
And but so anyway please accept this Friday Fictionette as a token of my dedication to you. It is called "The Proof is in the Post" (excerpt available for all, full-length ebook and audiobook for pledging Patrons). It is about truth, and the risks of telling the truth, and how sometimes you don't actually know what your truth is until you hear it come out of your mouth--or until the post office imps helpfully edit your letters for brutal honesty and you see what comes out at the other end. Because that's how this version of the world works: The post office will not deliver a lie.
I had a lot of fun with the freewriting session that eventually turned into this story-like object. It was an exercise in worldbuilding. Supposing that any letter you send gets altered in the mail so as to correct inaccuracies, clear up ambiguities, and replace any lies, whether by commission or omission, with the truth. What are the implications? What does that do to communications, economy, contracts, paychecks, love letters, invitations? I had so much fun with the worldbuilding that I never actually came up with a plot. So this week I had to come up with a plot post haste. (Get it? Post haste? Because post office? See? OK. Right, so, anyway...)
I didn't expect the character to get so well fleshed out. I didn't expect to have to pause the audio recording because I suddenly got all choked up at the end because, dang it, she's me at fourteen and I feel for her very strongly. I want to reach out and hug her and assure her it's all going to be all right.
So that's the story behind the story.
Here's a story about the Friday Fictionettes project in general: I'm going to add a feature! If I remember come Monday, that is. I'm writing it down now so that I will remember. Let's see if it works:
On first through fourth Mondays, I propose to make a public post on Patreon sharing the writing prompt associated with the Fictionette that will be released that Friday. So you can play along at home. If you want, you can share your results in the comments. Then everyone can see how differently multiple stories based on the same prompt can turn out.
I mean, it looked cool when Chuck Wendig did it. Let's try it and see what happens.