"What you got?"
The editor frowned and pulled something out of the black bag. "Here."
After examining the verb, the author said, "What have you got?"
"Quite a few descriptive and modifying adjectives. And verbs." The tall, bald editor thrust both large hands into the bulging sack, moving, shifting, and sorting rapidly.
The author sighed. "I don't see many of those -"
The editor squinted. "Nouns? No, not many at all, I am afraid."
"Well, I can't very well write without those."
"I see your -" The editor's brown eyes narrowed in thought.
"Problem," provided the author, and the editor nodded appreciatively.
The author reached into his sack and rummaged through its contents. "I'll need to procure, locate, obtain, elicit, or garner some of those."
"You are spilling those verbs all over," the editor complained.
The author nodded, shoving, pushing, and sticking the verbs back in the bag.
"Look, you should be all right," the editor said. "You have plenty of exciting, visceral, illuminating, and astonishing adjectives. And those verbs will get your story hopping and popping."
The author frowned. "But without anything to put them with those adjectives aren't much good. I still need some of those -"
"Nouns. I see what you mean." The editor dug at the bottom of the sack. "You could use these."
"Hm?" He reached in and pulled the pronouns up. Thoughtfully turning them over, he considered the situation and then he said, "With just two? I could try doing a third person omniscient with a flashback. I don't know."
The editor smiled as he saw something they'd missed. He handed the proper nouns to the author. "I think you'll be okay after all."
Jack grinned as he took the proper nouns. "Thanks, Mr. Smith. This should do it." His brow furrowed as he began putting his story together. "There," he said, wiping the sweat off his forehead with a sleeve. "There's the first paragraph. What do you think?"
A merry smile burst through the ragged matting of red beard as the driver screeched brakes and the wide-bellied Dragon convertible bounced to a stop, huge white headlights ablaze above the shock of vitreous chrome bumper gleaming in the night like a spear. A large, crooked hand yanked the tattered straw hat away and throbbing blue eyes laughed beneath the storm of red that sprang forth. "Howdy!" regaled a booming voice.
"That's quite good actually, but-" Mr. Smith stabbed a quick glance at his gleaming gold wristwatch. "Hm." His thin face drooped.
"What's wrong?" Jack asked, worry in his voice.
His lips fashioned a wry smile and Mr. Smith said, "It seems we've used all of our time in the preparatory stages. We have no space for the rest of your story, Jack."
Jack stared. He scratched his shaggy head, squinted his eyes, and kicked the bulging black bag. An exclamation popped out. "Darn!"
"I'm sorry." Mr. Smith sighed sympathetically. "But this is the end."
published 15 October 2011