I’ve always loved fortune cookies. I don’t just read them and leave them for the waitress to throw away. If they are clever, poignant, if they resonate, I keep them. I have them stuck everywhere … inside my wallet, in journals, taped on my computer monitor … in fact I’ve got whole jar full of them. Some are over five years old. I think fortune cookies are magical. They’re little slices of serendipity.
Today’s fortune seems like a real winner: “Assert yourself, your ideas are worthwhile at this time.”
“You know your Friday fortune cookies always rock,” a co-worker says. “It’s like reading chapters in a book.”
And that’s when the idea hits me.
What if I used all those fortunes to plot a book? What if, instead of stressing over the story line, I just let fate decide.
So I randomly pulled the first three and decided to give it a try.
The story’s set in a small southern Tennessee town called Walbash County. It may seem familiar to some. Our protagonist, Pepper Monroe, works as the local newspaper editor. (Hey, they say write what you know.) In the first chapter, Pepper’s got a problem. A local family and an outsider investor are clashing over a rezoning dispute and Pepper’s caught in the middle. The fact that Luke Wilson, her secret crush, happens to be on one side, doesn’t make things any easier. (Ps. Good luck trying to decide who Luke’s based on because I know you are going to try.)
I’ll post a new chapter each Sunday. I’m looking for story feedback. I’m not really interested in grammatical errors and type-os. I’ll catch them on the second edit or my editor will catch them later. I want to know what you like about the story and what you don’t like. I want to know if there are blanks that need filling in. I want to know if the characters seem interesting to you and whether you like them.
Thank you for all the positive feedback but I’ll need the negative too. Don’t worry, I’m a big girl. I can take it. It will make the writing better in the long run, so please don’t hold back.
You can make your comments directly in the Facebook group I created and invited you to today. Or you can send me a private message on FB or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also make comments on the blog posts if you’d like.
I honestly have no idea where this thing is going or what kind of story it will end up being. But I promise to take you in whichever direction the fortune cookies take me.
I sincerely thank you for your interest and your willingness to give me feedback.