A drabble… I’m not exactly sure where it comes from, is a format for fiction which is exactly 100 words (not including the title). It can’t be any more or less than one hundred.
When I was younger, I used to hate deadlines and restrictions. As silly as it sounds, the hypothetical comic company my best friend Adam and I had (Awesome Comics, later El Queso Diablo Comics) had a certain level of deadlines. I’d try and finish a script by a certain time. We wanted to be a proper publisher one day, like Marvel and DC. We were 13 years old, so that wasn’t likely to happen. Still, I made 30+ scripts. I was on fire, even though the second I had a deadline I did something else. Even through college I was allergic to deadlines. All those scripts are gone now, all that college work. Everything of my writing which I’d types up before I was 20 vanished when a laptop so damaged by its exposure to me, was rendered completely worthless, was burgled from my home.
Instead of being a sad occasion, this became a changing point. I started again from scratch. I didn’t look back. Over the next few years I grew to love deadlines. I relished them. These restrictions and rules. If I am going to write for one of the big comic companies then I’ll need to learn to write what other people want, I’ll need to write to a deadline.
Exercises like a drabble, writing to exactly a hundred words, are good to play with. I liken this to writing a comic script to make what is effectively an act break at the end of each issue. To making a dramatic beat preferrable at each turn of the page.
These preceeding statements are to explain that I am going to be posting a couple of drabbles for a couple of weeks. My plan is to have some bigger fiction up here before I run out of drabbles, but I have things to write, things to edit.
I hope you enjoy the first of these drabbles, short though they are.