Write a story that doesn’t use unhappiness as its narrative catalyst. That is to say, write a happy story, one that is textured, interesting, not overly sentimental, but that is at its core, a happy story, however, you choose to imagine that.
Roxane Gay’s writing appears in Best American Mystery Stories 2014, Best American Short Stories 2012, Best Sex Writing 2012, A Public Space, McSweeney’s, Tin House, Oxford American, American Short Fiction, Virginia Quarterly Review, and many others.
She is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times. She is the author of the books Ayiti, An Untamed State, the New York Times bestselling Bad Feminist, the nationally bestselling Difficult Women, and the New York Times bestselling Hunger. She is also the author of World of Wakanda for Marvel. She has several books forthcoming and is also at work on television and film projects. She also has a newsletter, The Audacity.
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11 thoughts on “Day 7 – Roxane Gay Wants You To Be Happy”
I found this one hard, too! My character was grieving the loss of her brother, and by being asked to write a story of one happy memory they had together, she was able to pour out one happy story after another and began to deal with her grief. So happy stories hidden in a sad one. Does that count??
It’s so true that I find dark easier. This was an excellent prompt for me. I decided to stretch myself and did a lot of thinking. I came to “happiness is…” in my thoughts, so I wrote a story about a girl who is riding home with a new puppy in her lap. I used the opportunity to engage all the senses in the quick 450 word scene. It was a pleasant way to spend a writing day.
Happy is hard. But I managed, thanks to some real-life inspiration!
Ummm, I don’t do “happy” 🙂
I wrote a story about a wedding gone wrong for all the right reasons, a journey two hearts travelled to become sculpted over time and experience to perfectly complement each other.
How is this hard?! And yet…
AAAAAARGH! Time to touch some grass and come back to it. ☺
Happy is hard for me too!
I did it though! (sort of) 🙃
How lovely to be given permission to create a story that leads to a happy ending. I wrote 1340 words and enjoyed every minute.