The Power of Structure

Remembering Wilson's Landing

Copyright 2013 by T. E. Wilson

In my submission for the second week of the Coursera Creative Writing: The Craft of Plot online class, I continue close to where we left Mentsh in week one.

Can you identify all the parts?

  • Action
  • Background
  • Development
  • Climax
  • Ending

I hope you enjoy my submission.


Mentsh forced his way through the open window and struck his head hard on the hard floor of the ladies restroom. The pain was intense and paralyzing.

Light and dark filled his eyes in splashes and the cold tiles and smells of bleach and ammonia reminded him of visiting his dad’s office in the basement of the hospital. He called it a doctor’s office, but no one ever got better. It was the first place he had ever seen a dead human body.

The most recent time had been when he’d found Jack lying prone on a similar tile floor just in a different club – and likely not the ladies room.

Mentsh heard a voice in the hall and knew that the noise of his illegal entry had not gone unnoticed.

“The fuck was that? Did a freakin’ hit the window again?”

The knob began to turn, the ill-fitting metal catch scraping, and Mentsh sprang to action. Leaping with more grace than he would’ve ever though possible, he found cover in the first stall behind the opening door.

The owner of the voice only looked briefly into the room before leaving and Mentsh slumped back onto the tiles, trying to regain his breath before he slipped quietly into the hallway.

It took some time to create the right atmosphere tonight to push away the stresses of the week. Candles and lamps lit. My globe all aglow. And then the right music with the subwoofer set a tad higher than normal. I guess one of the benefits of no longer having downstair neighbors.

(The guy on the right is kind of how I picture my character, Mentsh.)

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