WHITE SCREEN

Short Story by: Charles EJ Moulton

Summary

I stared onto an empty screen, looking for an idea, as if the answer somehow lay inside the fabric of my PC. The white document stared back at me, waiting for me to move. Waiting, stalking like a predator.

Content

Submitted: June 12, 2013

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Content

Submitted: June 12, 2013

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I stared onto an empty screen, looking for an idea, as if the answer somehow lay inside the fabric of my PC. The white document stared back at me, waiting for me to move. Waiting, stalking like a predator. “Why aren’t you writing?” the screen bleeped “Because I can’t think of anything,” I responded. “Then plan your story, bub,” the screen spat back. Writing Chess, I told myself. Write what you know. I know you, Inspiration. But I also know Writer’s Block. The clock ticking, I found myself again up at a quarter past one and my next day beginning at seven. Finding that special idea became an obsession. That viral scanner ticked in the background, but ticked too slow. I needed the sleep, but that cop on the phone urged me to perform a viral check. I wanted a defining answer as to what actual viruses crisscrossed my PC. So, I waited and wrote, realizing that my night would be short. That gnawing emotion picking at me like a vulture picking at a half-dead body, jumping at the chance to escape and not being able to. My knee started to bounce, my heartbeat increased. In my minds eye, I saw my wife rushing down the staircase and asking me what on Earth I was doing still up? My assignments this week were big and I needed the sleep. Write about your fears. Write what you know. Old enemies seemed too boring, old flames to dull, old history too dry and old games too tender. Sixty percent ready in the viral check and close to one thirty. What made me so edgy? The fact that my wife wondered why I didn’t come to bed? No, my own shame of being up so late did the trick. The fact that my gig this weekend was big and important? The fact that I had to get up in five hours? I felt like a racoon chased by a coyote. Go to bed, I told myself. Let the viral check take care of itself. Check it in the morning. Do something. Even if it’s wrong, do something. I am, that other voice spat. I am writing this story. This is a story? You are just writing an article about you not wanting to go to bed. Gosh. You are right. My foot started tapping again. The windmills of my mind turned and suddenly I saw a spiral turning in front of my eyes. This psychedelic spiral, however, really bothered me. What was that? Out of this white document came a spiral. It was a tunnel. The document wasn’t white anymore. It was a time tunnel. Dumbfounded, I leaned over toward the screen and looked into the that thing. “What are you and where do you come from, big guy?” I asked, sceptically. Now, a wind started blowing from inside the computer. Yes, the screen became a hole. I felt like a time traveller, sitting in his leather chair and looking into the universe. If inspiration comes like this, it can be pretty cool, I told myself. My stomach started making twists and turns. I felt exhillerated. Up and down ceased to exist. Timelessness met me. Then, I simply returned to my screen, to my life, to my boredom and the boredom became interesting. I had journeyed the blips and dots of the personal computer.


© Copyright 2016 Charles EJ Moulton. All rights reserved.

WHITE SCREEN

Status: Finished

Genre: Flash Fiction

Houses:

Details

Status: Finished

Genre: Flash Fiction

Houses:

Summary

I stared onto an empty screen, looking for an idea, as if the answer somehow lay inside the fabric of my PC. The white document stared back at me, waiting for me to move. Waiting, stalking like a predator.

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