I’m not sure whether I should call this a short story, or call it a scene. From what I have learned about writing thus far, the line between a scene and a short story is rather blurry. If you have any advice on this, please let me know in the comment section.
The past two and a half weeks have been torcher for Joanne and Mark. Mark was laid off from work, and there’s little chance that he will be returning to that particular job. It’s a sign of the times, and that’s the way they’re looking at the situation. Joanne has been trying to work on a novel without the use of utter solitude. The going has been rough.
Mark has been making his trips to the local job service center, filling out applications for the jobs he is qualified for. The cluttering that has been running rapid through their house is slowly diminishing because he is cleaning out closets and the drawers of all the dressers. Trying to keep busy was a problem he refused to have.
Nevertheless, Mark’s almost-constant presence is stopping Joanne from doing any in-depth writing. Her friends try to help with her dilemma giving suggestions like, “Just tell him you need some time alone so that you can write.”
Joanne’s response is “It isn’t that simply. Besides, I’ve already tried that a few times. There always seems to be something that needs my attention – at least that’s what he thinks.”
Mark does have some insecurities going on that even he may not be aware of. In his present situation, they’re revealing themselves in his dialogs with Joanne.
“Honey, do you want me to make more coffee?”
“Come look outside in the backyard, Jo. You have to see what those kittens are doing.”
“Jo, do you want me to fix you something to eat?”
Joanne is bound and determined to be tolerant of his need for noise because, after all, he is trying to be congenial. Furthermore, he’s doing some of the heavy housework that she probably wouldn’t get to until the holiday season.
And there’s that one most important reason – they have a good marriage that need to be maintained. That means, among other things, give and take on both sides. It’s hard on both of them for him to be home so much of the time and be out of work.
Frustration can get a grip on Joanne that almost feels like strangulation. In the past, it’s been the act of writing that has come to her rescue. With the inability to find a quiet time to write as being the stress factor, relief from this fury within her is difficult to find.
Until the situation changes, both of them live in quiet desperation. Being tolerant has become the battle of wits. They live on large portions of hope, love and constant searches for solitude and acceptance.