Writing 101 – Death to Adverbs

This originally was a prompt response to a personal exercise. I am mostly happy with the way it turned out and I think it’s free of adverbs. Speak if you see any!


Paul read his wife’s diary and discovered that she had had a miscarriage. He dropped the diary between his legs in disbelief. It landed with a loud thud – the noise echoed throughout the back of his head. A miscarriage? Why? When? Why hadn’t she told him? Straining for air, Paul closed his eyes and put his head in his hand. The salt from his tears stung his eyes. He felt the warmth of his face through his fingers. His wedding ring cold on his face. Paul gathered the strength to pick up the diary and continue reading.

“It’s my fault, Paul would never forgive me.” The diary read. “It’s my fault. It’s my fault. I’m not fit to be a mother. I killed our baby.” Paul wailed an echoless cry ingot he ceiling of their house. Their childless marriage had left a void in their relationship – it engulfed them entirely. It is the dense air between them, the distraction in their love making. It surrounds them on a daily basis, like two positive magnets trying to meet, it pushed them apart.

A wave of anger swelled in this throat. He hurled the diary across the room. Making a dent in the wall, it slid down and landed face down on the floor. He notices a picture that had fallen out. It is a photo of them, on their first date. Paul remembered how he fell in love with her as soon as she slurped her pasta. She had asked the waiter to take their photo.

“For the anniversary album.” She had winked. He remembered then why he loved her. Her wit, charm and her ability to make him smile on the greyest of days. He knew now. Julie cam home hours later to find a note attached to their picture.

“It’s not your fault. Lets start our family.” She turned over the photo to find a pamphlet on adoption.

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9 thoughts on “Writing 101 – Death to Adverbs

  1. oh my goodness I am in love with this story!! I would love it if this was a book! wow. This was great. I really enjoyed the the description where you said ” two positive magnets trying to meet, it pushed them apart.” wow! mind blowing! The ending had me hooked!! They’re about to start a family, how beautiful ! Thanks for sharing this lovely story!

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  2. No, not fumbled. I liked it. I felt that the ending was maybe a teeeeny bit of a cliche, only in the adoption bit, purely because if she went through all that then found her hubby had read her diary I feel like they would have had a lot to talk about and maybe it could be a bonding moment. But I liked the notion and point of it. And I loved the rest of it- as someone else mentioned, that magnets part was really good!

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