The people at these parties are just fantastic, they seem to be afraid to acknowledge that they even know who I am, it’s quite adorable actually. These people, they say things like “who are you?” and “why are you here?”
Words / Brian Long
Photos / Brian Long & Jessica Faust
In the past week, after my resounding success as a writer, I’ve really grown and become a new person. One small example: I go to fancy parties now and mingle with the best and the brightest. These events are beautiful and amazing; some might go as far as unreal. It's hard to think of my life back then, before all this happened. The people at these parties are just fantastic, they seem to be afraid to acknowledge that they even know who I am, it’s quite adorable actually. These people, they say things like “who are you?” and “why are you here?” To which I have become accustomed to responding with something like, “oh, darling, I am here for ideas, characters, and new worlds to explore in my writing, for I am a writer you see.” Then these wonderful people do what all people of fame and notoriety do, they act so modest and tell me I might be at the wrong party. It truly is sweet of them to think that I belong at a bigger and better party than theirs. I tell them I appreciate the sentiment, ensure them that I am no better than they are and I insist on staying.
Now, I don’t want to keep boring you, dear reader, with my new life of wonderment. No, what I want is to tell you how this has changed me and inspired me in new ways. I want to try new things in my writing and be taken more seriously; the humor-based essays of my past are just that, in my past. I've been inspired by the big wigs at the parties I’ve been to. You know, the parties I mentioned earlier with all the amazing things most commoners, like I used to be, never get to see or go to. One party that I wandered into was particularly inspiring. It was a newsroom moment, after the broadcast ended – the folks there really know how to have a good time. They do this thing called“wrap up” where they chitchat about how things went during the hour and then the coffee starts to flow. Everyone in the office has a cup of joe. It’s just wonderful. During my stay at the event I had two cups myself. They drink it up and gather their things in order to go to the after parties. The names they have for the after parties are just great too, like “home” or “meeting up with my husband for dinner.” I was too inspired to pursue any of these after parties. As you all know, I’m a writer first and when an idea comes to me I chase it. So, without any further ado, I would like to present you with a short excerpt from a short story I have been writing since yesterday. It’s called "It’s Five O’clock, It’s News Time."
IT'S FIVE O'CLOCK, IT'S NEWS TIME
By Brian Long
“Frank!” yelled Sharon from behind the glass. Frank looked over in disgust. Frank knew his job well, and he had no intentions of letting Sharon bust his balls again about his work. As Frank walked through the glass door, he sharply replied, “What is it Sharon? I have no intentions of letting you bust my balls again about my work.”
Sharon was a calculated woman who was prepared for Frank’s attitude. Sharon hated news anchors, but in her profession of being the boss of news anchors it was hard to get away from them.
“Frank, you read the stories how I write them! You understand? I’m the boss, remember? If you need to you can check my job description, and then check that attitude back at the door mister.” Sharon was fired up at this point and was not about to take any guff from Frank.
“Goddamn it Sharon! I wake up in the morning and put on my pants for one reason. To come here and tell the news, and you can’t leave the house without pants on!” Frank retorted through gritted teeth. “I know news! And if I know how to say it better than how you wrote it, then damn it I will do it my way.” He finished, now with his chest puffed out like an umpire defending his call.
Frank had gotten a bit wild in his older years; ever since he turned thirty-two he could only see things his way. He had lost sight of his dream and had found a new love in power. Telling the news gave Frank power. He told his little town what’s happening and he told them how he wanted.
“Frank, are you kidding me right now? I have spent twelve years with this company making sure we have images, video, and news! I make sure of it every night. I’ve paid my dues, now get in the damn line and start paying yours!” Sharon grabbed the coffee pot and poured her first after show cup of coffee. She then passed the pot to frank. Even with all her anger she knew from her twelve years of experience that everyone gets their after show cup of coffee. Frank took the pot, but never took his eyes off of Sharon. As he poured some coffee in his mug he took a deep breath.
“Are you out of your damn mind Sharon? I have boosted the ratings, set us up to meet the quarter goals, and increased the viewer-ship in the 18–24 age demographic! You need me!” Frank blasted like a shotgun. He was proud of himself for actually reading the numbers today, like he was asked. He wanted to thank Sharon for giving him the ammunition.
“You’ve been an anchor for three weeks! Those numbers are from six months ago. I asked you to read them so we can set your goals for this year! I do appreciate you reading those, as I advised. Keep that up and we’ll start getting along Frank. You’re in my house, you understand? That means my rules! Discussion over!” With that Sharon grabbed the coffee pot and poured a second cup. With a big win over a rookie like that she was ready to party.
To conclude this piece I have to say that the newsroom wrap up party I attended wasn’t the only thing that inspired my short story. I watched a clip of the show The Newsroom. I also watched the movie Nightcrawler. Both helped me with my knowledge of inner office jargon of a newsroom. I’m hoping my deep amount of research is apparent. If there’s one thing I hate in stories, it’s when there is a lack of understanding on the subject that is being written about. Also, I’d like to apologize to any of the younger readers for the four times I used the swear word "damn." Like I said though, I’m headed in a new, more serious direction. I hope you all accept my new creative choice and enjoy it.
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