Copy Talk

Finding Old Work

I’ve been making an effort to write more (obviously not here, but I’m working on it) and in the process, I found an old notebook of mine.

Normally when I find old work, my first instinct is to destroy it. HULK SMASH. But this time, I didn’t immediately drown in my own embarrassment. This time, it wasn’t terrible.

It—more specifically—was a list. When I don’t feel like writing, I’ll often make lists of things I could write for when I do feel like writing. And so I’ve written many more lists of fiction than actual fiction. Helpful? I’m not sure.

Plays To Write Solely for the Pun

ON CLOUD NINE – The Internet has expanded into ten clouds. Mike works on cloud nine and can’t concentrate.

SWEPT UP – Guy with kooky idea for unmanned street cleaners gets carried away.

BALL’S IN YOUR COURT – Lucille Ball gets in legal trouble.

BLUE BLOOD- Wealthy couple contracts strange disease with harmless, but problematic symptoms.

OVER THE HILL – Retirement community in a valley.

This particular list came after a marathon of Arrested Development episodes. I was amazed by how the show would extract every possible meaning from a phrase and use it ceaselessly.

Lucille? Loose seal!

But just because Mitch Hurwitz does something doesn’t mean you should. That may be the lesson here. Or the lesson may be to go ahead and do it anyway because the stakes are low to nonexistent. Remember: one day we’ll all be dead.

Or maybe there’s not a lesson. Sometimes, there just isn’t.

Plays to Write Solely for the Pun (Cont’d)

LEFT TO HIS OWN DEVICES – Baby is raised by computers as part of a grad student’s unsupervised thesis work.

HASHTAG – Drug dealer who cleverly labels his hash “goes viral.”

IN A HOLE – Brothers in financial trouble take ditch-digging jobs.

SO YOU CAME CRAWLING BACK – One-act play about on again, off again couple of worms.

COLD TURKEY – A man addicted to Thanksgiving leftovers tries to quit once and for all.

C’mon, admit it. You want to hear an epic breakup song from an earthworm. You’re up and you’re down, you’re covered in slime, you’re M.I.A. when it raaaains. 

You’ve got to admit, even bad work can be pretty great sometimes.


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