I have no time to take a break from study as my next course started 9 days before the exam for my last course. However, this new course is back to creative writing, which is what I really want to be doing, and I'm hoping it'll be a bit of a slower pace than the literature one. I'm still very much in the process of catching up, and although I should be just about starting week 3 today, I'm actually only nearing the end of the material for week 1 :o/ I have actually written something today though. It's only short, and not at all honed, but it's my first bit of creative writing since finishing the last CW course I did that finished this time last year. What I've written is for a short activity/exercise in the course book, and I thought I'd share it with you, but bear in mind that although I've done creative writing before I've never written anything in this genre before. Here you go, here it is:
Breath of Life
I don’t know what I was looking for, or who I was looking for, but I found myself scrabbling away in the dirt searching for something. None of the boulders beneath me seemed to hold any of the answers, and no matter how many I struggled to lift, I didn’t find any trace of another being. I didn’t understand. How could nobody else have survived? Where was everyone? Perhaps I was looking for an answer. Perhaps I was looking for my shoes.
I scrambled over the rubble of what had only yesterday been the majestic city centre theatre, with shards of broken glass and knife-edged chunks of brick cutting into my hands and feet. I hardly noticed the pain – my focus was on shifting the rocky debris to find whatever it was that lay underneath. Surely there must be something, someone. Where? I yelled, but my voice was consumed by the rubble around me. I yelled again, louder, hoping that I might hear a returning cry, or at least the echo of my own voice reverberating off the ruined streets, but it was as if the deep crevasses that now ripped through the roads swallowed up every breath of sound. Every breath of everything seemed to have vanished, except for an unnatural whisper of wind that occasionally flurried around me, whipping up the dust, making me choke, and briefly obscuring the perfect summer’s day sun from sight.
It appeared that I was the only person to have survived, but more ... there was no trace of any other being – no bodies in the demolition. I hadn’t really noticed till now, but where the hell was everyone? Why weren’t the gullied streets and collapsed mounds of shops strewn with ex-shoppers? Had they all run for shelter? But where? There wasn’t anywhere left standing that could have hidden a swarm of Saturday morning folk looking to part with their money. And anyway, if there’d been a scramble for shelter surely there’d have been some left behind and caught in the collapse of the world around them? But no, nobody, only an empty buggy standing upright and undisturbed; a bicycle still propped against a lamp-post that was now bent double as if in pain; and the multi-coloured arms and legs of unworn clothes escaped from the crumbled shops, giving the illusion of life as they waved and danced in the mysterious breeze. I sat on the heap of the theatre and realised that was it – that was why I had only just realised that I was alone. I’d mistaken the ghosts of unreal people for wounded survivors reaching out for help and the dead scattered like beans. The wind was blowing life into the cheerful array of textiles where there was no life ... except me.