Friday, June 7, 2013

A Writing Assignment

I think I've said before that a writers' group I'm part of puts up weekly writing assignments. Well, I participated in this week's and I thought you all might like to read it.

It hasn't really been edited at all, so just ignore the mistakes. ;)

Here's the assignment

Write a story in the first-person point of view. This means that you will refer to the character as I/me/myself. It's like seeing everything directly through your point-of-view character's eyes. Because of this, the reader can know only your point-of-view character's thoughts and feelings. What's fun about first-person is that the reader experiences the story as the character does. To make this squab even more fun, build your point-of-view character from one of the following options:

-A compulsive liar
-Someone who thinks they're a genius (they may or may not truly be one--that's up to you)
-Someone who likes to explore

Genre: Writer's choice
Goal: To stay in one POV & to explore a POV you may not have used before
Word Count: 500 – 800


And here's what I wrote


Rusty nails protruded from the sides of the crates, and dents riddled the surface of the wooden boards. I pressed a finger into one of the small craters in the box’s surface. This dilapidated container was only one of thousands in this warehouse the size of Rhode Island.

I craned my neck and gazed up at the ceiling. Or, I would have, if it had been visible. Darkness covered the area above me, disguising whatever was overhead, but I knew it had to be high. The crates and boxes extended into the oblivion and out of sight.

Discouragement washed over me. How was I ever supposed to map this monster? Even with Fin’s help it would take eternity, and this mission was supposed to last only two months.

Pulling a tablet computer from my satchel, I glanced around the aisles formed by the boxes around me. Perhaps pretending I was an intrepid explorer would help. Some of the adventurers I obsessed about as a child had the most excellent expeditions one could ever hope to have,

Perhaps I would be like Timothy Krislen who mapped a portion of Mars on his one-man expedition of the red planet, or I could be like Adrianna Lemth, who reached the bottom of Marianna’s Trench.

I turned on my computer tablet and the screen flickered to life, displaying a vague map of the warehouse’s layout, some of the lines cut off abruptly, missing sections of walls, as if the person who sketched it wasn’t sure what to put there. Did the room continue on in that part or stop? I squared my shoulders. It would be up to me to find out. Me and Fin, anyway. Where was he?

I scrambled to the top of the crate, careful to put my boots on the thicker slats. Still, the boards creaked under my weight. Raising an eyebrow, I pulled up the 300 page inventory list on my tablet. Hopefully, this crate didn’t contain anything hazardous.
The box must be weaker than I first thought, too. I looked down at my combat boots, laced tight around my calves. Boards splintered under the toes. I clambered onto another crate nearby. It wasn’t as though I weighed a lot – the opposite, actually. I was the smallest on the expedition. My boots even had to be special ordered from a children’s shoe store, and my sea blue uniform had to be taken in by a seamstress near base. But that was all far away now. Thousands of miles. A few light years were more accurate.

I refocused my attention on my tablet. Where was I on this thing? I activated the wireless locater embedded in my wrist. A green light flashed under my skin, glowing dimly in my epidermis.

My tablet shone a corresponding green light. I looked up at the ceiling again, but there still wasn’t anything visible.

I sighed, letting my shoulders relax. At least a wireless receiver was nearby and could see me.

Aliff thought the walls of this room might be too thick to penetrate with our equipment. Apparently he was wrong.

“Hoff?” A deep voice reverberated through the aisles, twisting through the maze of metal and wood boxes.

“Here!” My voice sounded shrill compared to Fin’s.

“We need to get to the hanger.” Fin’s voice sounded far away. “We’ve picked up something on the sensors. We need to be in a more secure room in case it’s hostile.”

“I’m coming.” I jumped from a crate onto the metal flooring—Finished before I even
got a chance to get started.

Something rumbled under my feet. I shut off my computer and tucked it back in my back.

The rumbling came again. I headed for the exit. Who would have ever thought a room this big would ever be discovered on an abandoned spaceship?
I passed in to the cool, metal hallway that ran alongside part of the warehouse. And who would have thought there would be other spaceships that could rival the size of this one?

I shook my head. Who cared ‘who would have thought?’ I was just glad I was around to experience—to be chosen to explore it, even if it was dangerous.


  1. Soumds fun, I wish I had time to do it. ):

  2. That turned out great, Amanda! I wish there was more to read. Quick question, though: is Hoff a guy? Until I read the name, I assumed the character was a girl. (Don't ask me why.)

    1. Hoff is indeed a girl. :) I hope you assumed she was a girl because of her 'voice,' the way it was written. Hoff is her last name. :)

    2. Ah, I see. Her voice does sound feminine, especially when she mentions her small size.
      I hope you plan to continue this story! :)