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Writing Resources from Fifteen Minutes of Fiction

The following is a piece of writing submitted by Laura on June 6, 2010
"This was from an assignment which involved beginning a story with the opening paragraph from "Little Shop of Horrors"... somehow this is what I came up with."

Little Mass Merchandiser of Horrors

On the 23rd Day of the Month of September the human race suddenly encountered a deadly threat to its very existence, and this terrifying enemy surfaced, as such enemies often do, in the seemingly most innocent and unlikely of places...

...Wal-mart. Yes, Wal-mart, that bountiful world of insincere yellow smiley faces and flagrant fashion errors. For years it had seen unprecedented growth worldwide, saturating the market with cheap imitations of quality products, and lowering standards for millions of people.

And how was it able to achieve such “success” in spite of such apathetic service, warehouse-style shopping environment, and general unreliability? No, it wasn't the low prices, and it wasn't the commitment to... well to... selling stuff. It was the gnomes.

They may have come from China. They may have come from Taiwan. No one knows for sure, but what faster way to reach the hub of the general American populace than through the method they chose?

It was this one unfortunate Saturday morning that found Angie Jones barreling through said store with a large blue cart, wearing pajamas and barely conscious of the half-asleep throngs she was almost running over. Finally, she made it to the somewhat deserted lawn and garden department, and headed towards the back to get some cheap flower pots. And that's when they struck.

With no time to scream, shriek, or utter a sound, she was thrown headlong into a large, plastic, innocuous-looking gardening chest, and was given barely a moment to struggle before feeling the wet cloth covering her face, and remembering no more. Her half-filled cart sat awkwardly in the middle of the aisle.

Angie was scared. The brief memories of scuttling feet, glowing yellow eyes, and evil munchkin voices struck terror into her bones, and she feared for her life, and whether she'd ever get back to her old farm and pick-up truck. However, such thoughts were soon erased from her memory just as soon as she found her feet again, and walked dazedly over to her cart.

She stared at it for a moment, trying to remember what she had been looking for. She grabbed a hold of it methodically, and went back through the store trying to jog her memory, only now something felt different. She walked much more slowly than before, and for some reason, any time she saw an item she might possibly be able to use, she plopped it into her cart. Before long, it was nearly full to the brim with a plastic lawn ornament, a new deck chair that was 50% off, some summer dishes, pots, potting soil, a trowel, seeds, some greeting cards that looked nice, and even some new clothes. And on she crept, drowsily, towards the check-out area.

And thus it began. The spine-tingling invasion of evil, leaving few traces behind but scattered glimpses of little men in blue overalls, with shiny yellow eyes that glimmer in the dim warehouse lighting. If you listen closely, perhaps you can hear their muffled laugh of evil as they poison us into fulfilling our own demise.
They're out there.
And they're coming for you.

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