The Fifteen Minute Novel: Day 40

The Fifteen Minute Novel is a novel written fifteen minutes at a time with each week day’s section starting with the sentence from the previous day. At least it is attempting to be a novel. For now I am just aiming at one continuous story, worked on for fifteen minutes each day. Started Friday January 1st, 2021 (in case you want to search for the beginning. I can’t wait to see where it ends up. It could be good, or it could be a mess. We’ll have to see. For now, here is today’s fifteen minutes.

Day 40: The stairs turned and James looked away stepping onto the first floor of books.

The stairs turned and James looked away stepping onto the first floor of books. A circular railing ran along the perimeter and placed near its edge were wooden tables.  The tables were dark wood polished to a high shine.  James found it a little strange as all of the tables he saw in libraries looked like they had seen a lot of use.  They were clean and polished, but under the polish were markings, scratches and dings from years of heave books, their corners, the edges of spiral notebooks and the like. These looked new and virtually untouched.

Stranger still was that all the tables had only one chair with them.  As he mostly thought of tables in libraries in terms of study groups, he found the singular chair strange. 

‘Maybe it is only universities that have the large study group tables,’ he thought.  ‘Maybe that’s why they are so clean.  They are for solitary study.’

James looked around but the ring of tables placed near the railings were the only tables n the space. ‘Maybe larger tables are elsewhere.’

He turned away from the tables and looked at the rows of books.  Each aisle between the shelves had a nameplate attached to the ceiling by two silver chains attached to hooks in the ceiling. James looked at them expecting to see numbers or categories or some combination of numbers and categories. Or even letters denoting fiction.  Instead he looked at the sign nearest him and saw the word Chess stamped onto the name plate.  There were no additional numbers or letters.   It seemed strange. 

James walked forward and looked up at the next sign as he approached the aisle.  It said Design.

‘Well that could be a category,’ James said.  “Or rather subject.  I think Libraries group books in subjects,’ he thought, remembering a long ago lecture.  He shrugged and stepped into the design category.  The first thing that greeted him were books on furniture design. 

He smiled, confident in his subject assessment and moved forward.  Furniture design spilled into woodwork and then into architecture. James reached the end of the aisle and frowned.  He would have thought that woodworking in general would have been filed under the subject of crafts not design.  He shook his head, clearly he didn’t know that much about libraries. 

He turned and walked back down the aisle, this time studying the other side of the aisle. On this side were books that dealt with the automotive industry.  They ranged from designing actual automobiles start to finish, to renovation and restoration of every sort of motor vehicle in existence. James reached the center portion of the library again and frowned.

He knew that auto repair, even the repair books that were more design restoration, were all located in a different section from architecture.  ‘And design has more interiors next to architecture or at least it should.’ This seemed more like how his brain thought of design.  It was a set of shelves filled with all of the design type books he would ever think to read. James looked up and let his eyes scan the shelves, glancing at the signs.  They all held general names.  James spotted a sign marked business and decided to try investigating that aisle next.

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