Apr 12 2017

K #AtoZChallenge Kudos #Fiction #SFF

#AtoZChallenge2017 BadgeK #AtoZChallenge Kudos #Fiction #SFF @JLenniDorner

My THEME for the A to Z challenge 2017 is an ongoing speculative fiction story featuring telepathy.

Each letter post is titled and inspired by a commonly misused word or phrase.

The story started with All Intents and Purposes.

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Am I more ashamed that dad caught me thinking about my failure with dating, or that I was thinking a teacher is my only closest thing to a friend, or that I could have been thinking of ways to prove the Homeland Security Mind Task Force should be dissolved? A pointless thought, a self-pitying thought, or a thought I didn’t even bother to think of — what carries the most shame?

I’m supposed to be sleeping. Instead, I’m wondering about my powers. If I did send a shock through my dad earlier, that means they’ve expanded. What else can I do now that I couldn’t do before? Will I really be more powerful than both my parents? Will I ever find someone with more mind powers than I’ll eventually have? Do I owe it to my kind to mate with someone like me, or do I owe it to my future children to mate with someone normal so they have a small chance of not inheriting this? Eww, do I have to mate at all? What if I just get some cats? Is that too cliché? What about frogs? Maybe I can be the crazy frog lady.

That is, assuming I actually have a future. I’m assuming the HSMTF won’t find me and take me to their little holding area near Hawaii, never to be heard from again. Which seems less likely if Mr. Bennett keeps assigning journal prompts that have me writing confessions. It’s illegal for me to exist. I didn’t go out of my way to get this skill. It’s not like basketball or violin, I didn’t learn how to do it and then practice by studying what experts did. No, I was born like this, and the powers are growing as I grow. I can’t prevent it any more than I could prevent getting taller. I could slouch, but even that would only get me so far.

I watch Dad’s dream for a while. He’s seeing the reporter eating oranges. She hasn’t put her dress back on. Gross. Not her, I think she’s brave. But seeing her eating oranges in his dream, juice dribbling down, peel stuck in her hair, it’s just… eww.

Spying on dreams isn’t nice. I know that. People can’t control their dreams. Well, most people. Grandma could. She had all sorts of dream powers. Will I get any of those? I miss when she’d come into my dreams to give me praise. “Kudos goes to Anah for the unicorn drawing in art today. Great work with the glitter, sweetheart.”

It isn’t that my parents didn’t love me. They just aren’t great at appreciating small stuff. At all. Ever.

K #AtoZChallenge Kudos #Fiction #SFF

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*Authors note:
Yesterday’s entry was partly based on a true event. A television reporter uncrossed and recrossed her legs under a desk which, from her point of view, was solid black glass, but from the camera’s point of view was clear glass. For this simple human movement, she was ridiculed by the public and lost her job. I was raised differently from those who feel this is fair and justifiable treatment, from those who feel shifting legs for improved circulation is so humorous that it deserves to go viral, and from those who believe that a human can become unworthy of an intellectually-based career due to a normal limb movement. I cannot understand the other point of view, nor have I figured out how to reshape the world; I can, however, create a character who has the chance to take a stand. I considered changing her to a male and having his fly undone, which would be an equal reason for termination and extreme public ridicule. Yet, somehow, it felt like that might not have made the same point.
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What do you do most often when you should be sleeping but are awake?

by J Lenni Dorner
Reference and Speculative Fiction Author
A to Z Challenge Co-Host
Operation Awesome Debut Author Spotlight Organizer
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K #AtoZChallenge Kudos #Fiction #SFF


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  1. I think the cameraman should have gotten fired too (in the true event) because he certainly should have been able to keep the camera on the reporters face/upper body once he saw what was happening with her legs. If I am not sleeping but supposed to be, I’m probably reading. 🙂

    J is for Journey
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    1. I agree that the person who failed at doing a job was the camera person. Also, if the show Newsroom had any accuracy, there was a director and several others who also did nothing. I have no idea if anyone else was fired, or if it was just the first-day reporter who hadn’t been informed about the material of the desk.
      But the fact that I know about the reporter and DO NOT know about the fate of any other staff member that night means that only one person was shamed so publically that it actually went viral and then landed in a thread on a group of people who fight for equality was the woman. The rest of the staff suffered no large scale blame or public ridicule, though their failure to do a good job resulted in the destruction of someone’s life. News anchor isn’t generally a job that any high school graduate can just snatch up. There’s normally a college degree and a required amount of experience.
      So I see a punishment that doesn’t fit a crime and another crime that lacked an equal amount of punishment.
      But, like I said, I can’t reshape the world. I can’t fix the true event. I can only offer up a fictional character and give her a voice and a powerful moment.
      Maybe it’ll spark a conversation. Maybe that conversation will involve people who can change the world. Maybe those people will.
      Or maybe, just maybe, one person will come across that video and decide it isn’t funny and isn’t worth sharing, and then maybe the real woman will have one less “stone” thrown at her.
      That’d be something. 🙂

      Thanks for reading.

  2. This made for such an enjoyable read, Lenni 🙂 I like the transition from mating with normal people to not mating at all 😉 I’d definitely advocate a dog or a cat over frogs though.

    The stream of consciousness writing is strong in this piece. Very engaging.

    *K for Known: Shailaja/The Moving Quill*

    Theme: An Oxymoron in 100 words (Micro Fiction)
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  3. The child spying on his father’s inappropriate dreams? Interesting. As for the reporter who got fired for crossing and uncrossing her legs – hope she gets back at the camera person somehow. I would write a story about that.
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    1. Sounds like a thriller in the making!

    • FinnBadger on April 13, 2017 at 7:08 AM

    I hadn’t heard about that real event – thanks for sharing it.

    Mail art from A to Z.

    Phillip | K is for Kraft paper envelopes

    1. Your comment yesterday is why I added the note.
      I was just going to reply to you with a “it did and you don’t” but this seemed more fitting the seriousness of the topic I was aiming to hit.

    • Bob Scotney on April 13, 2017 at 12:57 PM

    When not sleeping, I’m probably yawning.

    http://bit.ly/2o89RVa K for Ketton Hall.
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    1. No!!! That’s contagious.
      Gruyère you, what have you done!

  4. When I’m not sleeping lately I spend time going through more A to Z blogs to catch up, and sometimes watch videos on Instagram of pottery being made – they’re so relaxing lol!
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