Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Campaign Challenge #1

It's that time, folks. Campaign challenge numero uno. As stated on Rach Writes...

Write a short story/flash fiction story in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be in any format, including a poem. Begin the story with the words, “The door swung open” These four words will be included in the word count.

If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional), use the same beginning words and end with the words: "the door swung shut." (also included in the word count)

For those who want an even greater challenge, make your story 200 words EXACTLY!

 I've never done flash fiction or writing prompts like this, but I enjoyed myself, and I enjoyed reading others. These challenges strengthen my editing skills. I'm amazed by how much I can cut and still have my story make sense. I love that four little words can inspire writers to go in a million different directions. I actually wrote a different flash fiction story for this exercise, but right before I posted, I abandoned it and wrote something else from scratch.

Without further adieu (and at exactly 200 words long)

I Am Woman. Hear Me Pee.

The door swung open, and Lacey entered a brave new world: the men’s room. For years, she watched men file in and out while she suffered on line for the ladies’ room. She finally had it.

She crept past the lineup of synchronized pissers at the urinals. The lights flickered; intermission was ending. She spotted a row of stalls; her bladder rumbled with excitement. Even the seat was down - a sign from above!

“You can’t be in here!” An old man said, cane pointing. Other men craned their heads, but kept peeing.

“This is the men’s room,” a guy wearing a pink scarf said.

“I…” Lacey’s face reddened. “I’m sorry.”

“Get out!” The old man yelled.

She glanced at the toilet. Her heart ached for the women outside who couldn’t enjoy this embarrassment of riches. Centuries of injustices endured by previous generations flooded her mind.

“No!”  She could feel the spirits of Gloria Steinem, Billie Jean King, and Susan B. Anthony surrounding her. “I am going to the bathroom, and if you have a problem with that, then you get out!”

With that, Lacey lifted her head high, marched into that stall, and smiled as the door swung shut.


  1. Fabulous, Phil! Women around the world are clapping at your 200 words, right now. :)

  2. Phil, you are quite the ladies man! I can tell by this post. Any man who fights for a woman's right to pee is a man I can adore.

    My hat is off to you!

  3. I love this so much. It reminds me of my teenage years when we posted our boyfriends outside the doors while we sneaked in - although I'd never have been brave like your MC, if someone was in there!

    This was so much fun :-)

  4. I love your cheeky take on the prompt ... you have dared to be different ... way to go !!
    My entry is no.#59

  5. Hahaha! Victory is Lacey's. I think every women who reads this will relate.

  6. I love this! It made me laugh. Good for Lacey! Marching on into that stall...

  7. Hahaha! Love it! I cheered for Lacey. I hate waiting in line at the ladies' room. I've gone into the men's room a few times!

  8. Brilliant, Phil. Just Brilliant!

    Not only did your title have me cracking up, but so did the rest of your story.

    "Even the seat was down - a sign from above!"

    Dude. I'm crying here! This NEEDS to go to stage 2! :)

  9. HAHAHA! I wish I could have the guts to do this!

  10. I love this and have been tempted to try this at many shows. Nice job. mine is #72

  11. Hahaha awesome piece, Phil! :)

  12. Very different. Great job. I can recall seeing women entering men's rooms at crowded events where the lines are long for the ladies room. Never heard any men complaining.
    I'm going to put up my entry Friday 9/9.

    Tossing It Out

  13. Yes! I love how she told that old man off. Hahaha. Great entry!

  14. Thanks for all the story love! This was fun to do! And full disclosure: I once unknowingly entered the ladies room and didn't realize it until I was midway done with my business. LUCKILY, the bathroom was empty, but I still felt so embarrassed.

  15. *high applause* .. I admit to having used the gents when faced with a huge queue!!