A writer personality test?

I was going through my writing notebook and I came across a blog that I never wrote up. It was about an experience I had that may be enlightening to other writers.

I was trying to come up with an idea for a very short story. A vague idea bubbled up from somewhere, so I just went with it to see where it went. It didn’t go to a good place.

The story was set in one of those dystopian futures where people have numbers instead of names, for example, A517 or A to his friends. Well, A sits down to a “genuine, vat-grown steak” when his comm buzzes. He answers and someone goes, “Hey A, it’s T.” A doesn’t know any Ts, so T explains he works with R at the clone factory.

[It was about this point I knew the story … sucked, but I just forced myself to finish it.]

A still doesn’t know who T is, so T in frustration asks, “This is A571, right?”

“No, I’m A517.”

“Oh. I’m sorry. I guess I have the wrong number.”

I wrote that, then turned to a fresh page to start all over again, forgetting that I ever wrote that story. At best, that was the plan.

I started thinking about a couple of characters discussing their bad stories. Then I thought about an author publishing a collection of his terrible story. What would be a good title for a collection like that?

Then it hit me. I had written a bad story, but instead of burning it, I was trying to figure out some way to use it. I think how we react when we write something bad could almost be a personality test for writers. Some tear it up, some spend time trying to make it better, and some use it to go off on a tangent.


One Response to “A writer personality test?”

  1. jaswrites Says:

    It reminds me of Star Wars clone troopers 🙂

    Excellent post!

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