There will be Rain #Friday Fictioneers

Another week and another Friday Fictioneers!  How the days fly by!

For those of you not already in the loop:  Every Wednesday Madison Woods posts a photo on her blog.  Every Friday, writers from all over the place converge on her blog to post links to a 100 word story they have written, a story inspired by the photo.

For writers, it’s a great way to brush up on your writing skills and get some exposure.  For readers, it’s a great way to read some really neat stories..Madison has quite a diverse range of followers.

Here’s this week’s picture, my story follows.  As always, comments and thoughtful criticism are appreciated.

There will be Rain

“How long till we get our water?” the old man asked.
“Two weeks, looks like,” the sheriff replied.  “River has to be kept flowing.  Minnow habitat.”
The crowd muttered and glared at the floodgate.  “A few sledgehammer hits and the minnow be damned,” someone said.
But the old farmer raised his eyes to the gathering storm; he heard a faint footfall of thunder rolling across the hills and smelled the first breath of rain.  “Maybe we don’t need that water tonight after all, boys,” he said.  “Maybe we should just go on home.”

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About glossarch

The word "glossarch" doesn't exist. At least, not yet. But let's pretend it does for a second. The first part is "gloss," a word that comes to us from Ancient Greek via Latin and English. It means "language." The second part also comes from Ancient Greek and can mean "having power over." So "glossarch" means simply "language controller." So what am I doing making up words? Well, I made up an entire language once. It's called Angosey. So I'm the Glossarch of Angosey. I'm currently a doctorate student in volcano seismology (a branch of geophysics). I enjoy writing fiction and poetry, launching balloons, programming, and hanging out with my lovely wife! Follow me on Twitter! Writing and language creation: @glossarch Balloons and science: @bovineaerospace
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17 Responses to There will be Rain #Friday Fictioneers

  1. Stacey says:

    Hi Danny 🙂

    A very conscientious entry! Here’s a thought: if you don’t already, try reading your dialogue out loud. As a reader, I stumbled over “be kept flowing” (“River has to keep flowing.” made more sense to my tongue (presuming the sheriff is a man of few words)). I know nothing of minnow habitat, so I defer to your authority on that one. 🙂 “A few sledgehammer hits” also felt wrong. “A few hits” or “A few hits with a sledgehammer” would have better flow (and I think you may be doing that character a disservice by giving him that phrasing—these aren’t ignorant people, these are frustrated people). Should “minnow” be pluralized in this sentence (“the minnows be damned”)?

    I liked “faint footfall of thunder” and “the first breath of rain”—they caught my attention and sounded pretty cool.

    The last line was notable because it defined the sledgehammer commenter as the leader of the pack. He decided the group’s course of action without the sheriff telling them what to do. That being said, it’s hard to break out of thinking that the sheriff should be saying the line, because it is cliché and normally the law enforcement officer speaks those words. You may be able to side-step this odd feeling if you change “don’t” to “won’t” in the last sentence. They are anticipating rain (don’t is now, won’t is future)—the farmers still need the water tonight but the expectant source is different. If the sheriff says don’t, it feels right because he’s trying to convince them they don’t need the water. When the farmer says it, it feels wrong because the farmers have already decided they need the water, they’re just hoping to get it elsewhere.

    Overall, nice piece. 🙂

    I’m at http://plowright.wordpress.com/2012/07/26/fictioneers-23/ — it isn’t terribly exciting this week, but, hey, it’s practice!

    • glossarch says:

      Stacey, thank you for your careful reading of my story. I definitely agree with some of the stuff you pointed out and I’ll keep a good lookout in the future. In particular I like the idea of reading the dialogue out loud; that’s a good reality check.

      Thanks for your critique!

  2. Very nice, I like that the old-timer was the only one who heard the thunder and smelled the storm coming. He sounds like one for the good guys too. Nice!
    BTW, I hope you’ll put some volcanoes in some time. Next to tidal waves, they’re my favorites.

    Lorelei
    http://westcoastwriters.blogspot.com/2012/07/friday-fictioneers-faucet-fancies.html

  3. Sandra says:

    Nice phrase: ‘faint footfall of thunder’. Good work.

  4. raina says:

    a lovely piece 🙂 I enjoyed it.

  5. I agree with Sandra, that’s a great descriptive phrase. You entire piece reminded me of some of the old western’s I use to watch. You did a lovely job, capturing the building frustration.
    http://whimsicalquestsofacuriousmind.blogspot.com/

  6. rochellewisoff says:

    I liked the footfall line, too. I can see the crowd gathering ready to lynch the farmer. Good imagery.
    Mine’s here: http://www.rochelle-wisoff.blogspot.com/2012/07/snarl.html

  7. Parul says:

    I too liked the phrase “faint footfall of thunder”!
    You created an interesting scene there… Nice use of the prompt! 🙂

    Parul
    http://faitaccompli.wordpress.com/2012/07/27/bo-peep-in-the-city/

  8. I like the imagery, but even more I like the touch of what’s-more-important-habitat/nature-or-people, something we have to think about often.

  9. Janet says:

    I agree with the commenter above, you open up a large issue with the nature or people arguement. I like a story that leaves me thinking. Here’s mine: http://postcardfiction.com/2012/07/27/drained/

  10. I liked the realism of the phrase “be kept flowing” it put a picture in my mind of a wise old timer speaking in a local dialect. I was there.

  11. Glad he smelled the first breath of rain because I felt something nasty about to happen. Tks for visiting mine.

  12. vbholmes says:

    Mentioning the smell iof an approaching rainstorm is a nice touch–makes it real.

  13. I felt the desperation in the crowd. I agree that something bad would have happened if it weren’t for the impending rain storm. Saved by the thunder!

    ~Susan

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