The smell of burnt coffee drifted from the food court a few hundred feet away from where I was perched.  It melded with a popcorn smell and then faded behind the sudden overwhelming scent of White Diamonds. Shifting my weight I followed the perfume lady and her big red hat.

“Bet she’s a secretary,” Jeremy said.

“Associate producer of a TV show,” I said.

A man wearing a pinstriped suit stopped at the watch kiosk beside where Jeremy and I sat crossed legged on a bench. The man didn’t spare us so much as a glance as he ordered the hapless teenager working the kiosk to replace the battery on his expensive watch.

I couldn’t help, but laugh. “Like a mall in cow country, would carry a watch of that caliber.”

Jeremy grunted, “Batteries are batteries.”

“Yeah, but if you were a lawyer type who could afford a watch like that. Would you trust a kid with five face studs working at a place blaring out christian screamo music?”


The above is a writing exercise I did today during the Mad Anthony Writer’s Conference. Our only rules were five minutes writing and the scene is a mall.