Posted by: victanguera | June 28, 2009

Writing Prompt Day Four

They say there are no new ideas under the sun. So to prove it, for today’s prompt re-write a Dick and Jane reader. You know, actually make it into a story for adults with an edge of some kind. Here is a link to Standord University‘s information page on Dick & Jane Readers.



  1. Here is today’s writing. Yipee, a little longer today. Still didn’t finish yesterdays, but maybe I’ll get to that tomorrow.

    Glancing at his watch in agitation, Richard pushed through the crowd. Shoving his way through the swell of people only increased his anxiety. So many bodies pushing against him made sweat prickle down his spine.

    Jane would be sure to notice his rumbled appearance, and comment on it. “Dick,” she would say. She still called him Dick, even as adults, even though he tried to insist he’d prefer Richard. “Dick. You really must look after yourself better. People will notice.”

    And she’d straighten his ties and fuss with his hair. He smoothed down his unruly mop of mousy brown curls at the thought, hoping she would leave him alone for once.

    He spotted her long blond hair, combed to perfection and trailing down her back in a cascading sheen. He wondered why after so many years Jane didn’t let the black show. Why she still insisted dying it that putrid colour. It reminded him of their childhood.

    Something Richard would much rather forget.

    She stood in front of her latest painting, all perfect lines in perfect symmetry, much like her. She’d always hidden behind perfection. Much like Richard had hidden behind his bedroom door, night after night.

    “Dick, Dick, Dick,” Jane said, waving her hand frantically as she spotted his head towering above the crowd around her. “Here, here, here.”

    Her voice grated on his nerves. Even after all this time, she still couldn’t speak like an adult. It sold painting for her though, utilizing the shared consciousness of a million baby-boomers. He could no longer live that life.

    Jane wrapped her arms around him. She leaned in, touching his forehead with her own.

    “Richard. I’m so glad you came. Mom and dad are here.” She waved her fingers in the direction of the buffet table, heaped with finger foods. People milled around, diving in and out like birds before drifting off, plates laden.

    Richard’s mother nodded lethargically and pushed through the crowd. He stiffened inside, dreading another confrontation, dreading another instance of playing happy for the masses.

    “You came,” his mother said, taking his limp hand in hers. “I’m so glad you came.” Tears coursed down her face. Jane held his hand, her grip denying any hope of release or quick recovery.

    “Tell us a story, Richard,” Jane said, her voice husky with unshed tears. “Like the ones you told Sally.”

    Richard stared at Jane, unresponsive. He’d never told another story. Not after Sally fell ill. He’d held her hand in the hospital, reading their stories to her. The last stories they would ever tell together.

    “Will you please, just for us,” his father asked. He placed a hand on Richard’s shoulder, his touch light.

    He stared at his sister, at the tears running unchecked down the porcelain beauty of her pale skin and nodded. For Sally, he thought. She would want this.

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