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I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…I hate that when I exit my hotmail and outlook email accounts they deposit me onto the MSN homepage and a plethora of horrible news articles. I try not to look but it’s impossible not to catch a glimpse of something that sucks me in and breaks my heart. I look, even though I tell myself I’m not looking. It’s not that I don’t want to be informed…I just can’t handle the pain and suffering in the world, and the fact that there’s not much I can do about it. I’ve also said before that writing is an escape for me, an escape from all that pain and suffering and those feelings of helplessness. Still, I want my writing to make a difference, to reflect the issues that are important to me and shed light on them for others. Which brings me to the Short Story Challenge, first round assignment:

Genre: Political Satire

Subject: Child Custody

Character: Speechwriter

I’ve never written political satire, so this will, indeed, be a challenge. I spent part of the day reminding myself of what political satire I have read and enjoyed, books like: Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels and A Modest Proposal, George Orwell’s Animal Farm and 1984. While I have yet to read Aldous Huxley’s 1932 dystopian novel, Brave New World, I recalled seeing his name in The Best of Early Vanity Fair and took time to read a satirical essay by him on the idea of modern promiscuity (in the 1920’s). I then did some reading on recent high-profile child custody cases, seeing what’s been going on in this area of litigation. The clock is ticking, and some might argue that I should just start writing…and free writing can be very helpful…but first I have to let the story find me. Right now I’m just looking, but not looking.