The Best Story Ever Written

Where to begin, where to begin…This is hard, terribly hard but I know that it should be. For a subject matter of such profundity, the kick-off means everything. And I am well aware of this. So aware, in fact, the knowledge seems to crippling my pen; the ink wrestling itself back, in fear of responsibility for any misplaced word. This writing is no place for slip-ups and shortcomings; this will be my opus, I decide with a sudden terrifying clarity. As I realize this a balmy sweat condenses on my neck; what word can I use? I am a diver, stepping forward to the precipice of my own opportunity. And picturing the idea in my head, it glistens and swims like a perfect cloud, formed and complete within the lonely confines of Me. But I cannot start it, the task is there and beautiful and endless. Whatever word drifts by, i cast off.
“No! That is not how it begins! It’s all too small, too big, too unassuming, too pretentious. It’s all too shit!”
The first word must be right; perfect and shining and clean. The beginning is everything, like that old quote about the crooked timber from which no straight thing could be made. All the words I know are crooked. Crooked and ill-fitting. The only thing I know is the un-asked question that both empties and fills me; how do you start the best work of your life? I am empty. I am nothing. I am the metal rod waiting for lightning, the dry crest of beach untouched by the sea-
Wait. Wait, now, just wait. Shut up and listen for a second. Shut up while I work. I pick up my leaden pen and sit silently for a moment. Then, in strained strides, I scratch the nib across my empty masterpiece. A hot, unnecessary gasping escapes me and I regard what i have written. One word. The most beautifully straight, unassumingly-pretentious word I have (and suspect, I will) ever commit to paper:
The
I lean back from my paper and smile. I am on my way.

The Best Story Ever Written

Jamie Fraser

Joined November 2007

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Artist's Description

Everyone loves an ironic title. Right?

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