Relentless sun.

……A watering ban??  What about my flowers & lawn?!!

….The AC runs constantly.  What about my electric bill?

….Pivot’s still bringing up water from the well but the crops are struggling.  What if the well runs dry?  How will we pay the mortgage, buy our food, feed our animals?  We could lose the farm.

….We trek to the well again but there are so many people, so little clean water.  The children cry from thirst, though we give them all we can.  What if the well runs dry?  What about our children?  What about us?


To read all the stories generated by this prompt, click on this link to go to the Friday Fictioneers’ site on Madison Woods’ blog:

Here’s the link to the blog and I’ll make the other one live as soon as it is:

Do visit!  You’ll be amazed at the talent and variety on display in a mere 100 (+/-) words.  And be sure to leave a comment or a “like” if you enjoy what you read.  It’s always appreciated by the writer.

  1. Carrie says:

    Scary and realistic situation. Visiting from Friday Fictioneers

  2. vbholmes says:

    Nice–you’ve certainly captured the mood of the summer of ’12.

  3. raina says:

    I totally hear ya… and them… 😉

  4. Sandra says:

    A hosepipe ban came into operation three months ago in England – and then the rains came. Nice one, very evocative.

  5. Frightening. We had a huge rainstorm today in the Northeast. Wish we could have shared it with the midwest who are suffering a terrible drought.

  6. Parul says:

    Difficult questions!

  7. Dear Janet,

    You’ve described the world of fifty years from now…and now…and all of the past. We are creatures wedded to water and your story illustrates this perfectly. Well done.



  8. Craziness. What the future may hold. I’m on the list.

    • This is all happening right now during the drought! Hopefully the rains will come soon and bring relief and clean water will be available everywhere as well.

  9. Janet says:

    Real fear for a lot of people. I’m on the friday fictioneer link (i’m another Janet at no. 49) list or you can find me here:

  10. A scary situation captured beautifully. I’m here and linked as well:

  11. So very true for some people sadly..x

  12. Stacey says:

    I liked it, but I was a little confused at the end. It seemed to go from suburban America (watering ban/AC) to rural Africa (trekking to the well). The farm running out of water made me think that maybe these were four different scenarios (I thought maybe the first three were the same farm, but then the “so many people” indicated the fourth was not the farm) but the second wasn’t about water. If you can make it more parallel (four obviously different scenarios containing references to water; two distinctly different scenarios (suburban and farm etc.) not necessarily containing water; etc.) it would make the piece stronger.

    • These were four different “degrees” (per the title) of irritation at the lack of water, from least important to life-threatening. Yes, the first was suburban at a low level, the second at a slightly higher level, the farm much more pressing and Africa life-threatening.

      Thanks for the comments and suggestions. I appreciate the feedback.

  13. Brian Benoit says:

    I was confused by the ellipses at first until I saw what you were doing – then I really enjoyed your approach. I especially liked the repetition of “What if the well runs dry” with two different versions of the consequences following. Nice job

    Brian (

  14. A dry and dusty image, a scary and difficult situation. Well done.

    Thanks for your comment on ours.

  15. Linda says:

    You captured the consistent worry that people have around drought perfectly. I enjoyed the story very much 🙂

    • Thanks, Linda. We finally got some rain, which helps, but we can certainly use more. However, even before the rain, it wasn’t as critical as the last several scenarios in my piece. Farmers are suffering in too many places and the clean water issue is so sad.

      • Linda says:

        We’ve had the opposite here, firstly too dry for too long in very early Spring, then torrential rain for two months causing all sorts of problems and deaths very close to where I live and finally we are getting some more normal summer weather. Until a couple of weeks ago we all still had our heating on … 😉

  16. When we lived in Virginia Beach, we often had water restrictions. People complained about dry lawns and dirty cars…some places in this world, those are luxuries. Well played…


  17. Russell says:

    Sorry it took me forever to get here, Janet. But it was certainly worth the trip when I made it. We often take things for granted until they are gone–or in serious danger of being gone–and then it’s too late. You did an excellent job capturing that.

    • Thanks, Russell. Glad you came by. Not sure what will happen this week as I’m going to be heading for the mountains of Wyoming and driving on Wed./Thurs., but I’m having so much fun writing and meeting all of you. Come again.