Day Twelve and Thirteen: Word Choice and Character

Yes, I know how to count. I know I’m out of sync/order/my mind.  I also know that I don’t want to give Sara’s Entire book away in my blog, so we get to jump around the listed exercises (though I’ve been completing all 30 of them at home).

I’ve been a bit absent as of late, but for very good reason. I was working on a piece of writing to submit to APS for the chance at a writing fellowship. Let’s hope for the best! No announcements until June, I believe.

SO, next up on Crawford’s 30 Day Writing Challenge, we take a look at word choice (day 12) and character creation (day 13). While the book offers a list of random words to use, it also suggests a visit to The Random Word Generator. I think I’ll give the link a try. What we’re going to do is take the list of random words and incorporate them into a bit of writing (pick a format).

The random words provided me by the generator are: outside, broom, gravitational, blue, function, knuckle, gumption, and jerk.

I’ll use the given words to create a fictional character. The book lists a set of questions to answer about the character, which I’ll not list here (you really need to purchase the book). Think of this as more of an insight of rambling thought as to who this person might be rather than a cut and dry outline.

As usual…unedited.


 “Conglaciation,” he stated. “The act or process of changing into ice or the state of being converted to ice, a freezing.” Junior dug his notebook out of his pocket to write down his word of the day before he forgot. He tucked the pad away in his shirt pocket in case one of the diners said a word he wanted to keep. He rolled his new word around in his mouth for a moment before slipping the edges of his paper hat down around his broomy hair. Junior was a jerk. More to the point, Junior was a soda jerk.  Each day was a race through getting dressed, absorbing as much as he could through the school day, and then off to work at Knuckle’s Diner. He loved his job.

This is a cover of the Saturday Evening Post as painted by Norman Rockwell.

This is a cover of the Saturday Evening Post as painted by Norman Rockwell.

Junior took pride in his duties. He moved the can of Gumption that Knuckle had left out, again, and cleaned the counter until it shined. He took special care around the end of the counter where SHE sat.  The girl with the blue eyes and the big nose. Junior didn’t know why he liked her nose so much, but every time she smiled, her nostrils flared just so. He found it most intriguing.

He refilled the straws by the register and looked out of the front window. He could see his father walking down the street with two large staves. Wilford Sr. worked in the counting-house, when he still worked, and had little use for people. He preferred his numbers. Once he retired, he spent his free time indulging his hobby of baculometry. Wilford Sr. knew exactly how many staves it was from his front door to any business in town, but he couldn’t tell you his neighbor’s first name. He used to tell Junior math was life. It was even in their family outings, a function with relations. Then he would laugh his gravely little laugh and go back to his calculations.

As the son of a strange man, Junior learned to navigate people like his father navigated numbers. People were drawn to him. Anyone would tell you. It was gravitational. Junior pulled people in because of the way he made everyone feel that there was something out there bigger than themselves. Wilford Sr. lived on the inside. Junior lived on the outside. Wilford Sr. was ice. Junior was fire, but he loved his father just the same and waved at him through the window.

The bell by the door cheerfully brought the diner to life. SHE didn’t have to order. Junior was already making her cherry cola before she sat at the end of the counter.

“What’s our word for today, Junior?”

He smiled as he fumbled getting the notebook out of his pocket. SHE giggled.



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