Table for One – FanFic Assignment

“Table for one, please.” He says in a crowded Saturday morning where all the hungover kids scarf down their breakfast in an attempt to calm their stomachs.

Kevin Reowl’s six foot frame follows the waitress to the table and slides into the seat and stares at the other chair across from him. She hands him the menu and places a neatly wrapped fork, spoon, and knife beside him. “Anything to drink?”

“Water for now.” He says and opens his menu, green eyes lazily scanning the pages. He hated waffles and eggs and skillets. He just liked bacon and the odd orange juice. He’s kept one ear piece in and the other dangles around his neck. He’s supposed to, though. That was the plan. Go in, scope it out, and leave.

Kevin Reowl takes his position seriously. He works for someone who knows exactly when targets will be arriving at certain places. Then he’s sent out. Soon, she’ll arrive and the waitress has placed him in the exact spot he needed to be. Of course, the Boss knew that, too. He set an elbow on the table and rested his jaw in it, fingers brushing his short, curly, brown hair. He enjoyed sitting alone on missions like these. He was able to have some alone time to himself and think about his life.

He ended up with this position when a good looking woman entered his life and told him that he would be perfect. He must have looked confused. Perfect for what? Marriage? A doctor? An all-star quarterback?

Nope. An spy.

And so here he was sitting in a restaurant waiting for the next target to come into play so he could get the details he needed and leave abruptly. Maybe he would buy an orange juice. if the waitress ever came back with the water.

Whatever. He wouldn’t care either way. it was just something to make people think he wasn’t a creep or something.

Kevin heard her voice and his looked up above his menu. He glanced down at his watch and nodded. Right on time. Now he could finally complete this.

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There’s a short answer to that assignment for DS106: http://assignments.ds106.us/assignments/creating-your-own-character/. I could go on for a lot longer but I believe I covered the majority of the criteria of the assignment. I really enjoyed this little assignment. This prompt came from actually hearing a guy ask for a table for one. I found it very interesting and decided to write about it here. Any feedback would be great on it. Can you tell I’m an English major? This might actually spin into a longer story for another class of mine.

Something like this I will definitely do in an ELA classroom of mine. I would love to tell students to just listen to conversations around them and something might spark a story. I’ve had this happen to me several times. Just seeing what a person looked like had a story spinning in my mind and I ended up writing it.

Writing about a character’s likes, dislikes, appearance, backstory, personality, and what their place is like in their world is definitely a great place to start for a character. If I were to continue this story I would add in more details about him but this will suffice for now. Again, an assignment like this is a great way to get students thinking about characters for stories.

Another great place would be to ask students to think up questions they would like to ask a character who lives in their mind. Tell them to think up ten questions and not just basic “What’s your favourite colour” ones, either. I’ve also had to do that for a creative writing class this semester.

Overall, I love writing exercises so whenever I get the chance to do them, I’ll do them. I’ll definitely continue writing some DS106 Fanfic or Writing assignments.

 

What’s in a Name?

My first name, Helyn, is a different version from my grandma’s name, Helen. My parents thought it was a beautiful name (and yes, I think it is) but it has created some irritation with me over the years. Why? Well, both ways are not pronounced the same. Ah ha! Yes, that’s the trick. You might think it’s like Helen but no. It’s actually, “Hel-lyn”, if you will. Just think of “Lynn”. Close enough.

I’m becoming more amused when I tell people my name and it takes them several times to find the right pronunciation. I still have some friends who pronounce it wrong. I’ve received all sorts of name variations from “Helain,” to “Helene” (a French version).

And then there’s the spelling of my name. I would say my name over the phone of for another person and they would stare at me with a blank stare, “Um, what?” Really, though, it’s not that hard to spell. H-E-L-Y-N. One time I had someone who put an “i” where the “y” is supposed to go. Close, but not quite.

When I’ve gone on first dates I usually ask them how to pronounce my name. I’ve become more amused with it over the years as they try to look like they know how it’s pronounced. But they usually get it wrong.

Anybody else have funky name problems? I could tell you about my long last name and the spelling of that but that might be for another post.

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This was an assignment for the DS106 (Digital Storytelling) assignment in Writing. http://assignments.ds106.us/assignments/whats-in-a-name/

It is a really simple assignment that can be used in the classroom as an ice breaker for students. It’s a great way to let them write about themselves and talk about their name and the experiences they’ve had with it. As I kept writing the ideas and stories just kept flowing. This would work really well for a high school ELA classroom and would work well for a prompt to a character — the students could write about a certain character’s name and see what type of story comes from just doing that.

Slam Poetry

On Friday I was asked if I wanted to participate in another slam poetry event put on by the Education Faculty. The due date is extended until tomorrow. However, I have no idea what to write about. My one friend gave me different, professional slam poets to check out. This one really hit home:

This one is titled “Pretty”. 

And, as we’re all told, women are painted a certain way in the media and society. We’re told to look a certain way and act a certain way. We’re told to fit in this certain mold and come out looking the same even though we can’t reach photoshop perfection. 

On the other side, though, men are painted a certain way, too. They’re told they have to be strong and tall and handsome. In the Disney movies, the princesses fall for the handsome and rich princes who protect the fair ladies which gives everyone false expectations. Men expect women  to look like photoshopped fakes and women expect men to look like Prince Charming. 

Perhaps this is just a rant about the media and what it’s done or maybe it’s the beginning of a slam poetry idea.