Superstitiously, I would always imagine every conceivable disaster before an event, and I’d drive myself crazy, hoping that would take away any real disaster. How many times in my life have I approached a situation that made me anxious and got so crazy beforehand that reality could never have been so bad?
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She decided to build a fence around the entire backyard. Not a white picket one. Not even a wooden paneled one. This was more like a stone wall. Impossible to see over or break down or climb. No one knows why she did it. I don’t know if anyone had even asked.
I’m positive that the organizer did not intend for her commentary to be divisive; from my interactions with her, I knew that her intentions were pure. She certainly didn’t mean for her words to parent a thick, tar-like awkwardness that pervaded the room, even after she began to read.