He wrote, she wrote.

He Wrote, Week 06

by Dave Smith

Dallas Reed and Craig Paulsen were classmates in film school and graduated together, tied for tenth spot in class GPAs. They went separate ways for a few years before serendipitously meeting again at Comic-Con. Over cocktails and heavy appetizers, they caught up with each other. Craig worked as storyboard artist and assistant script writer for a small video game company. Dallas had spent his time after graduation writing scripts for local television station commercials. It kept bills paid, but was far from exciting.

Craig, seizing an opportunity to work together with Dallas again, offered an inside tip on a game tester position coming available. It hadn’t been made public yet, but would be advertised soon. He gave Dallas the contact details for Mr. Brantley, the head of quality assurance, and suggested he get in touch before the applications poured in from the public. Craig promised to put in a good word for him.

Dallas knew that as an entry level video game tester, he’d bear the grunt work of endlessly inserting and ejecting disks, booting and rebooting games, or repeating the same in-game interaction hundreds of times and writing reports before he moved up any rungs on the job ladder. Sure, boring at first, but, in the end, the potential for new and exciting things was better than local commercials, so he jumped at the chance. Read the rest of this entry »


The Next Level (She Wrote, Week 6)

by Christine Hawks

For at least the third time that morning, I reminded myself of why I was out in this asphalt desert plastering flyers to windshields already pre-heated from summer’s extended morning sun.  Old-timers say that you wear summer in the south.  I now understood what they meant.  I adjusted my brother’s ball cap I’d borrowed and felt a few tendrils of my sweaty hair attempt to escape from underneath.  Hastily, I pushed them back up under the hat and decided that now was a good time to rehydrate.

I made my way back to the mall and entered into the food court.  My best friend, Connor, worked at the Diary Queen and was at the register today. Thankfully, I didn’t have to apologize for my appearance or give any details about why I was at the mall looking like that.  On a Sunday morning, the mall was definitely not the place to see and be seen.

“Hey, Ellie!  How’s it going?” Connor was full of his usual brand of morning chipper.

“Hey, Connor!  Same as you, I suppose.  Working through another weekend.”

“I take it that it’s break time?  What kind of cool and wet can I get you?”

Though tempted by the thought of my favorite Blizzard or even a brain-freeze inducing shake,    I was committed to the responsible choice. “Just a water with lots of ice and a to-go cup, please.”  I dug into my jean shorts pocket for the $.25 to pay for the cup.

Connor waived the change away.  “Every little bit counts, right?  Just don’t tell anybody,” he winked. “You’ll owe me a ride to school when you finally buy that car.”

“Fair enough,” I grinned.  “Thanks!”

I took a seat on a bench in the shade outside the food court entrance to savor a few sips before finishing up with the last stack of flyers.  I picked up one of the flyers, noting that it was printed in color.  Someone had spent more money than the norm.  I scanned the ad.  It was a call for video game testers.  Paid video game testers.

I weighed the potential opportunity in my mind.  It probably paid at least as much as papering car windshields.  And, it would be air conditioned.  But, I knew nothing about video games.  My little brother, on the other hand, was probably just the right type.  He had done odd jobs for neighbors, finally earning enough to buy his Xbox after a year and a half of saving. Between school, homework and filling every other available hour with trying to earn money to buy my own car, I never had the time to spend with him in front of the TV.   I likely wasn’t who they were looking for, but, still, how hard could it be? Read the rest of this entry »

Week 6 Challenge

by Christine Hawks

Admittedly, we’re late in posting this week’s fiction fortune generated by the Storymatic.  This week, seemed tailor-made for He Wrote, though we have admitted to each other that this week’s character and plot have led us both into dead-ends.  Fear not!  We are both at our respective keyboards hunting for and pecking out some sort of tales featuring a video game tester and a note on a windshield.  It is Sunday, deadline day, so look for our posts to appear here sometime between dinner and Dexter tonight.

And, in case you missed Week 5 – now’s a good time to catch up while you are waiting on the new material.  Don’t let your chance to vote for your favorite gravedigger from last week expire!