The Fifteen Minute Novel: Day 200

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 200: While that was fine on its own, it didn’t actually lead him anywhere.

While that was fine on its own, it didn’t actually lead him anywhere. He didn’t want to become an English teacher and he was fairly certain that acting on any stage was not something that anyone would approve of.  “Not while I am thought to be dead.”

James doubted any acting he could do world be worth more than a small inconsequential role in a local community play, and he doubted anyone was searching the ranks of community theater for people like him, but he doubted it would be viewed as an acceptable activity.

Besides the stage had never actually appealed to him.  He liked the drama of Shakespeare and he was certain that there were other writers of note he would enjoy as well, but he was a consumer, an audience member and not a player on the stage.   The spotlight held no fear, but it also held no appeal.

‘Making it just a hobby to pass the time.”  It was a fun hobby and one he wasn’t ready to abandon, but it didn’t really move him forward.  The problem was that there was no forward where he wanted to go.  There was no actual drive to build anything. 

James felt his thoughts grow morbid.  Was he just passing time until he finally shuffled off his own mortal coil and died in actuality instead of just on paper? The thought caused him to slump on the couch. The television played in front of him but he paid no attention to the words as they became a meaningless jumble of sound scattered through an insignificant interplay of light and color. 

‘That seems like a waste of a second chance at life,’ James thought.  The thought swam from the back of his mind and felt like a different voice.  He wasn’t sure whose but it was the sort of voice that couldn’t be ignored. 

“I just don’t know what to do,” he said. The voice didn’t speak further but he felt it waiting in the back of his mind. 

The rest of the evening passed in a funk.  He frowned at the television, finding nothing humorous in the comedies, nothing terrifying in the horrors.  It was all meaningless noise.  When the time came, he slouched his way to bed feeling like a sulking teenager who has been told they can’t go to the concert they desperately wanted to attend. 

“Although it would be a relief to want to go to a concert,” he groused as he readied himself for bed.  His depressed and annoyed mood took him into sleep where his dreams were chaotic, fractured.  Even in sleep he couldn’t grab onto a single thought and lock it into place.  It was almost a relief to slide out of bed and put his swimming gear into his gym bag. 

The Sunday morning quiet filled the town and on his drive he was able to pack some of the internal angst away.  He parked and took a deep breath, letting it out slowly.  With a smile he remembered his first girlfriend at university.  She was into meditation and while he wasn’t really into becoming one with the universe, he picked up her deep breathing habits in times when he needed a little calm.  He could almost hear her voice advocating that he let go and embrace the opportunities around him.

“That’s the problem,” He decided as he slid from the car.  “I don’t see any opportunities.” Still the thought was voiced with a smile.  He had no clue where life ended up taking her but he decided to talk the advice.  “I will leave myself open to opportunity.” He decided.  James locked his car.  “After all I can’t sulk forever.” He walked across the parking lot to the front door.

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