[The Story] Props and Incongruities

“I collect LEGO to use as props for my big story. But only the ones that fit into their world. They’re probably not big into monster trucks, so I would have no need for this.[1]” My customized LEGO minifigures, showing main characters Trishna (left/above) and John (left/below), have paid for themselves and any prop sets tenfold for their effectiveness in building ideas within the world of “The Story.” Here’s why you should consider similar props.

Spoiler Warning Scale: Minor (character building) WANNA READ ABOUT HOW PROPS CAN HELP YOU TELL STORIES EVEN IF YOU DON’T DISPLAY THEM TO OTHERS? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!

[Fiction Practice] It’s… Just You

“Thanks for joining us today, Jane, was it?”
Jane sat across a small table from a reasonably-dressed hiring manager. She couldn’t help but notice that most of his attention was at the glass wall behind her.
“Yes. Here’s my resume, too.”
The well-dressed professional gave him one resume and placed another on the table in front of the empty seat to her right.
“Thanks. Well, George is running late again… so let’s jump right in.”

WANNA READ JANE GO THROUGH ANOTHER INTERVIEW? THERE AREN’T ANY OBVIOUS TELLS, BUT THERE ARE A FEW THINGS THAT COULD BE HELPFUL TO FELLOW INTERVIEWERS. CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!

[The Story] Mother’s Day Moments

Mother’s Day for the Lanchester family is an important celebration. Like Father’s Day, and everyone’s birthday, it’s more than just an excuse for Trishna (left) to take photos of her newborn niece Alejandría (“Allie Pally”). It’s a time to reconnect, fortify long-term goals, work through any lingering problems that might need attention, and celebrate the matriarchal side of the family. Let’s explore how Mother’s Days might feel in the first few years of “The Story.”

Spoiler Warning Scale: Minor (hypotheticals, character development)
WANNA READ ABOUT SOME COOL MOMS AND POTENTIAL MOMS? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!

[Career Story] Forward or Backward?

What is the goal to your career story? How “did” you get there, if you’re predicting your 10 to 40 year plan? When we start our careers, any opportunity will do, no matter if it’s night shift or underpaid. I don’t think it’s that we become less flexible. It’s that we’ve seen the bad gigs and know that investing our time and effort into “this job” will actually pull us backwards away from our career story’s goal.

WANNA READ ABOUT INCREMENTAL PROGRESS AND HOW IT’S UP TO YOU TO DECIDE HOW MUCH EFFORT YOU WANT TO PUT IN TO YIELD YOUR OPTIMAL CAREER STORY ENDING? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!

[The Story] Our Most Vulnerable

No matter how much we mentally prepare for change, life can slip out of control instantly. “Tout passe [everything goes], tout lasse [everything tires], tout casse [everything breaks].[1]” The concept of “control” is a mental construct of our collective imagination that we dare wield to challenge The Great Unknown in a battle of normalcy over our chaotic reality. With only tangential relation, how might Trishna (center) and John (right) handle vulnerable moments in “The Story?”

Spoiler Warning Scale: Minor (some early events)
WANNA VICARIOUSLY EXPLORE WEAKNESS SO THAT WE MAY BECOME STRONGER? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!

[Fiction Practice] We Drifted Apart

“Thanks for inviting me over, Sammohini. I’ve been wanting to talk to you one-on-one, well, with cute little Allie Pally here, too, for a while.”
Both childhood friends adjusted as the baby fussed, crawled out of the guest’s lap, and returning to her mother.
“It’s been too long! Right, huh? You haven’t seen Auntie Jane-y in a while? Have you?”
They both smiled. Jane wanted to smile, but there was too much on her mind.

WANNA READ ABOUT HOW FRIENDSHIP DYNAMICS MIGHT HELP US COPE WITH DRIFTING APART FROM OTHERS? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!

[The Story] Entertaining Solo Hobbies

The introductory conflict of “The Story” is how two social outcasts, John (left) and Trishna (right), want to develop their relationship yet can’t due to geographic distance. It’s not spoiling this conflict to say they do meet, since this conflict is the narrative introduction deemed “The Scene,” and it’s a convenient inference. If their natural inclination then is spending all of their time together, after spending years physically apart, would they even have separate hobbies?

Spoiler Warning Scale: Minor (character development) WANNA CONSIDER HOW WE MIGHT OVERSATURATE OURSELVES BY SOAKING IN TOO MUCH OF ONE THING? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!

[The Story] Painting as Teamwork

While painting this inconsequential accent wall, I thought about how Trishna (left) and John (right) might paint in “The Story.” Trishna might lock her breaks, dip her roller with extension pole into a paint tray, paint one section, move, and repeat. John might then get the finer details along the corners. Since painting takes preparation, planning – and when working with others, teamwork, collaboration, and delegation of duties – how well would they handle any possible friction?

Spoiler Warning Scale: Minor (character development)
WANNA READ AN ACCIDENTALLY DEEP PSYCHOLOGICAL ANALYSIS PROMPTED FROM A RANDOM TASK? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!

[Fiction Practice] Your Barnyard Animal?

The 5-person panel interview at the Department of Revenue was going ‘excellent’ and ‘alright’ simultaneously. Everyone flipped between either word for every answer. Jane was having trouble reading the expressions of the two potential teammates, hiring manager, and two customers when she heard the strangest interview question of her career: “If my team were a farm, what barnyard animal would you be, and why?” She’d brushed up on any applicable modern technology, but nothing agricultural.

WANNA READ THIS REAL-LIFE INTERVIEW QUESTION AND POSSIBLY HOW TO NAIL IT? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!

[The Story] Chilling and Relaxing

The characters and people that inspire me have figured out parts of themselves. Whether conscious or subconscious, they know what they like, dislike, their ambitions, and how much they can realistically accomplish. Watching action heroes mow down everything in their path doesn’t inspire me because there’s no dramatic tension and release. They aren’t believable without a cool-down release period! In “The Story,” after working toward their ambitions, how do Trishna (left) and John (right) unwind?

Spoiler Warning Scale: Minor (character development)
WANNA READ ABOUT HOW CHARACTERS FLOAT ALONG AFTER PUSHING AHEAD? CLICK HERE TO KEEP ON READING!