Good party. Good, good party. Shit everywhere. Cigarette butts, beer cans, everyone out cold.
Thirsty. So, so thirsty. No spit thirsty. Need something to drink, just a sip.
Get something then.
Get something, then dip out! Oh, yeah—thanks, Rybo. Thanks for the party. Good, good party.
Over there, next to the sleeping bag, next to Rybo. A bottle of Coke or Pepsi or whatever—over there is a cold drink, get it.
Probably warm…yeah, no thanks…
Whatever! Thirsty! So, so thirsty! No spit thirsty! Need a sip!
Watch out—butts everywhere, and probably shit. What a party. What. A. Party. Thanks, Rybo. Thanks for—oh! Sleeping bag—sorry, sorry.
Yeah, yeah…Whatever, Party Cans. Just get the bottle and get the shit out of there.
Need a bag for the cans, Rybo, and a bag for the shit everywhere. Sorry, Rybo, and thanks…
Out cold. Sleeping.
Whatever then. There is the bottle. Get a sip and get out…
What the shit?
What is it? The bottle, what is it?
Dip spit is what!
Yeah. Dip spit.
So thanks, Everyone. Just thanks.
If you read my last story, “Field Trip.” then you know what I’m up to with this…
Another attempt at the George Saunders exercise. (Write a story comprised of exactly 200 words, of which only 50 of those words are unique.)
If you decide to give this exercise a try yourself (which I hope you do), you are welcome to post a link to your story in the comments!
Thank you for taking the time to read my 200-word story! Would love to know whether or not it hit the spot.
Welp, it’s back to the kitchen to cook up some longer short stories. Those take a while to marinate, so it may be a minute before you hear from me.
Until we meat again,
My 50 words were: good, party, shit, everywhere, cigarette, butts, beer, cans everyone, out, cold, thirsty, so, no, spit, need, something, to, drink, just, a, sip, get, then, dip, oh, and, thanks, for, the, Rybo, there, over, next, sleeping, bag, yeah, bottle, of, Coke, or, Pepsi, probably, warm, whatever, watch, is, it, what, sorry.
Beggars can't be choosers Maegan.
Unfortunately(said with tongue-in-cheek), your story does a good job of generating an unpleasant experience for the reader—at least this reader. I enjoy feeling something, rather than nothing when reading a story. This happened for me here. Even if the feeling is "negative." (As we know, emotions are neither "good" or "bad" they just are), so this story/scene pulled me along, and triggered memories of my misspent youth.
N0t sure if this helps, but will point out a few of the obvious aspects of this story that makes Morning After work—for me at least.
The conflict is clear: the narrator's desperate dehydration is palpable, as is their desire to quench their thirst. Their goal is clear: narrator's gotta get hold of a bottle of something drinkable on the other side of the room.
The obstacles are clear: in addition to alcohol positioning, the narrator and has to get past the physical obstacles of other humans passed-out on the floor to get to a bottle of something that might be hydrating. This creates tension in the reader's mind—while revealing the character (narrator steps on someone and says sorry)
Even though there is little description, I was able to sense the narrator’s hungover condition. (The repeating of "good party" did that for me). That plus the stuffy after-party stench of cigarettes, spilled beer (not mentioned explicitly but its there in the back of my mind), people snoring in musty sleeping bags, living room floor strewn with bodies—a living floor in a living room. Things were’t overly described, allowing me to fill things in organically, which I always appreciate in certain situations.
I liked the coke pepsi lines. Highlighted for me the illusion of choice for a narrator who may not have made the best choices the night before.
As unpleasant as a hangover can be, it's an experience that I was able to relate to. I like the way it went from a “not too terrible situation” to one that became more unpleasant.
Field Trip was similar in that way. Went from a fun playful experience that digresses rapidly into an experience of repulsiveness and embarrassment. Unpleasant, yes, but generating an experience in the reader nonetheless. The nature of the experience may not be considered "positive," by most people, but it is good that any feeling is generated in the reader.
So, on that note of "quality" do you know Eleven by Sandra Cisneros? If not, I thought you might find aspects of this story interesting. It's short, but packs in ample amounts of emotional qualities for the reader, and does so in a few pages.
Also see if you can get hold of the short story "The Hangover" by John D. MacDonald.