So, my latest idea for a short story involves a mystery surrounding a child’s travel from his father’s home in Chicago to his mother’s home in Los Angeles. The kid boards the plane in Chicago and sends a text to his mother saying he’s on board and he’ll see her in a few hours. But when the plane gets to Los Angeles, he doesn’t get off. His mother is understandably distraught. She texts him. No response. She continues. Nothing. She gets panicky with the gate agents in LA. The gate agents initially express concern and ask the cabin crew of the flight to search the plane, twice. After thoroughly combing the plane for a second time, there’s no kid. Needing to prepare for another flight departure, the ground crew shuttles the woman off to an “issues” team, who notifies the proper authorities to do searches in the Chicago and Los Angeles terminals.
I’m still working things out. I know how the disappearance worked. I know where he is. I know how he is found. But the story did not spill from brain through my fingers the way I’d hoped it would this morning. I can describe the situation, but I can’t make it come alive. I guess I need to put this back on the shelf for a bit and return to it when I have more caffeine flowing through my veins. When I get it done, I’ll probably hold it in reserve; as I envision it, it’s the sort of story I should enter into a writing contest (assuming it gets written and I like what I’ve written).