RECEIVED FROM AN ENGLISH PROFESSOR
This assignment was actually turned in by two of my English students as their "in class assignment," Tandem Story: Each person will pair off with the person sitting next to them. One of you will then write the first paragraph of a short story. The partner will read the first paragraph and then add another paragraph to the story. The first person will then add a third paragraph, and so on until both people agree a conclusion has been reached. The story must be coherent, and each paragraph relevant to the prior one.
Rebecca <last name> and Gary <last name>, English 144A, Creative Writing, Prof. Miller
At first, Laurie couldn't decide which kind of tea she wanted. The camomile, which used to be her favorite for lazy evenings at home, now reminded her too much of Carl, who had once said in happier times, that he liked camomile. But she felt she must now, at all costs, keep her mind off Carl. His possessiveness was suffocating, and if she thought about him too much her asthma started acting up again. So camomile was out of the question.
Meanwhile, Advance Team Captain Carl Harris was leading his patrol squadron into orbit over Skylon 4. Carl had more important things to think about than the neuroses of that air-headed asthmatic woman named Laurie who, after one sweaty night over three months ago, was still desperately clinging to an illusion of a relationship she had fabricated in her unbalanced mind. "Alpha Tango One to Geostation One-Niner-Three," he said into his subspace communicator. "Polar orbit established. No sign of resistance..." But before he could sign off a bluish plasma beam flashed out of nowhere and blasted a hole through his ship's cargo bay. The jolt from the direct hit threw him out of his seat and into the cockpit control panel.
He hit his head and died almost immediately, but not before he felt one last pang of regret for psychically brutalizing the one woman who had ever had feelings for him. Soon afterwards, Earth stopped its pointless hostilities towards the peaceful farmers of Skylon 4."Congress Passes Law Permanently Abolishing War and Space Travel." Laurie read in her newspaper one morning. The news simultaneously excited her and bored her. She stared out the window, dreaming of her youth -- when the days had passed unhurriedly and carefree, with no newspapers to read, no television to distract her from her sense of innocent wonder at all the beautiful things around her. "Why must one lose one's innocence to become a woman?" she pondered wistfully.
Little did she know, but she has less than 10 seconds to live. Thousands of miles above the city, the Anu'udrian battleship launched the first of its lithium fusion missiles. The dim-witted, bleeding-heart peaceniks who pushed the Unilateral Aerospace Disarmament Treaty through the U.N. had left Earth a defenseless target for the hostile alien empire who was determined to enslave the human race. Within two hours after the passage of the treaty the Anu'udrian ships were on course for Earth, carrying enough firepower to pulverize the entire planet and nothing to stop them. They swiftly initiated their diabolical plan. The lithium fusion missile entered the atmosphere unimpeded. The President, in a submarine off the coast of Guam, felt the inconceivably massive explosion which vaporized Laurie and 15 million other Americans. He slammed his fist on the conference table. "I KNEW this would happen! I am excercising my executive priveledge to annul that treaty effective IMMEDIATELY! Ready the nukes, we're gonna' blow those bastards out of the sky!"
This is absurd. I refuse to continue this mockery of literature. My writing partner is a violent, chauvinistic, semi-literate adolescent.
Yeah? Well, you're a self-centered tedious neurotic whose attempts at writing are the literary equivalent of Valium.