Our week-long vacation in Florida ended up being very productive in terms of writing. I was able to generate drafts for 2 stories. I finished up another one the weekend we came back. I hit the first story relatively hard because I want to use it as an example for my Providence Clemente Veterans’ Initiative students this spring. My finished manuscript for the story “Egmont Key Ferry” ended up being a little under 1700 words. It’s told in the simple present tense, which I haven’t used an awful lot in the past, but I found the pacing to be wonderful. All three stories are based on experiences that I had in Florida. “Egmont Key Ferry” is about waiting in line for the ferry. Sounds thrilling, right? I promise it’s not nearly as boring as it sounds. I’m feeling good about this being a model for students to write their own stories. We’ll start with a non-fiction experience as the seed. Students will tell their story just like this one, nice and quick, present tense, first-person, and then we’ll put it up on blocks and revise the hell out of it. I sent this one out to a few magazines so far. Fingers crossed. I’ll probably pick a couple more markets over the weekend. I hope to get the next stories hoisted up in the shop and start revising them while they’re still warm.