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A man, Henry, sits at a curb, holding a paper airplane with a crinkled nose.

An old, legless, black man, Alistair, in a wheelchair approaches from the street.

There is no traffic.

Alistair: What happened to your airplane?

Henry: It crashed.

Alistair glances over his shoulder in the direction from which he came.

Alistair: Crashed, huh? Planes are ‘bound to do that.


Alistair: You should probably get on outta here, you know that?

Henry: Yeah.

Alistair: You know what happened, right? You been sittin’ here the whole time?

A cloud of unnatural tan/grey dust begins to roll over them.

Henry: I know what happened.

Alistair: Then let’s get movin’.

Henry doesn’t move.

Alistair: Is it your airplane?

Henry: I made it myself, but it won’t fly. It just crashes.

There is a terrible groan.

Alistair: Let me see that.

Henry hands the crinkled paper airplane to Alistair.

Alistair: Your plane needs a logo.

He pulls clippings from the Sunday comic pages out of his jacket pocket. There is a clipping of Garfield, Donald Duck, and the Superman logo. He licks the back of each and pastes the images to the wing of the plane. He hands it back to Henry.

Alistair: There. It will fly again.

Henry: Are you sure?

Alistair: Mostly. Now push me.

Henry stands and pushes Alistair through the thick dust cloud, away from the noise and terror.


Actually to Warren Ellis.

Without delving too deeply into my personal life, I’ve had a career reboot recently. I have been uncomfortable for quite some time professionally. But as of late, I’ve been able to distill this discontent into a slightly less murky plan.

No details of the plan spilled here, but I’m excited to say I have a title/concept/starting place/springboard. And I have Warren Ellis to thank thru Wil Wheaton.

Over on Wil’s excellent blog, he briefly links to a (new to me) concept called burst culture.

Zip over to Warren’s blog and zing…there is an explanation of the burst idea. His thoughts…

“Every day, millions of people download single lumps of data that take them three minutes to consume. They’re called mp3s. It’s a burst culture. Embrace the idea for a while.”

Out of this comes a new exercise for me. Quick 100 word play snippets. Daily (or near daily) as a process for learning more about my own writing process. Eventually, other people’s snippets.

Growth, development, new playwriting. Short bursts.

Burst is playwriting in easy to swallow portions.


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