In a recent Creative Writing class, we did a few exercises on character development.  We were to compose a list of questions that we would ask characters, supposing they were real people.

My list included things like favourite hot beverage; paper, plastic, or cloth bags; and favourite author, to name a few.

Part two of the exercise was to turn to a classmate and interview them, using primarily the made-up questions.

Next we each received a random photo taken off the internet.  There was no rhyme of reason, just a bunch of pics given to whomever came next alphabetically.

(and I’ll be honest—I soooo got one of the better photos)

The last step was to write our new characters (a.k.a. fellow students whom we’d just interviewed) into these photos in a single scene. 

So Jarrett Moffatt, here’s to you:

Rufus folded over in a coughing spasm as he tried to catch his breath, his knees crushing the freshly bought danishes in the cloth bag, his copy of the New York Times sprawled across the sidewalk.  He’d missed the bus.  Again.  Maybe it was a good thing his desserts were now a heap of pastry and icing.  He was out of shape, despite his lanky physique, and couldn’t run to save his life.  Or catch a bus.

Rufus slowly stood up and examined the damage.  Yup, they were crushed.  Those sweet, innocent cherry and cream cheese delights.  The swirl of colours looked like the desserts had just been through war, bleeding a delicious cherry flavoured blood.  Of course Rufus would still eat them.  What?  He’d paid good money for them.  And it’s not like they were really bleeding, that’s just gross.  Of course if something could bleed chocolate...  Hmm.  He’d have to pick up a hot chocolate now, too.

No, dammit, no time.  At least his MACbook was OK.  That was all that mattered.  So he’d be late—what else was new?

Rufus’ stomach grumbled.   He should eat.  No, he should get home.  He needed to take his turtles to the vet.  Michelangelo and Donatello.  Don’t ask.  If only turtles didn’t live as long as they did—then he wouldn’t be reminded of the foolishness of his childhood passions.  Well, OK, maybe they weren’t that foolish.  Come on, it’s pretty funny.  Even if they don’t like pizza, they’re still alright.

Whatever.  Enough, no time to be stupid.

Rufus hoisted up his shoulder bag, making himself more comfortable as he began the long trek home.  Suddenly he felt like Tom Joad having just left prison, making the journey home.  Tom Joad.  From the Grapes of Wrath.  Mmm, grapes.

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