There are children. Two of them. One boy and one girl. One is six. One is five. And they are... children.

And they are... weird.

The boy, Sean, he has this bizarre fascination with sniffing things. Just a few moments ago (It's 7 am on a Sunday, mind you) this kid ran into the kitchen and started sniffing my cereal bowl.

"What on Earth are you doing?" I ask.

"I smell Top Ramen somewhere," he replies, as if that might be something that one should be sniffing for at 7am on a Sunday.

Upon my inhalation, I ask him another question.

"Why do you smell like Axe?"

His older sister, Gianna, comes into the room.

"Gianna sprayed me," Sean says.

"No, I told you it was dad's!" She insists.

"Well, you smell like a walking high school locker room right now," I say.

Gianna walks off and does her own thing. Sean starts sniffing other things.

"Hey could you not sniff that?" I ask. It's my sister's bowl - not the cereal kind.

Sean looses fascination and runs off. Runs. Always runs. The damn kid runs everywhere.

I go back to my work, but I can't think. These children are too goddamned fucking happy. The characters in my novel are all pathetically depressed with life, but in this moment I have lost the groove. I can't seem to find that voice again.

These kids aren't mine. They're Tony's. Tony is my sister's boyfriend right now.

Sure, it's a big enough house. But a week ago I was living on my own, with my sister Jenn stopping in only once in a while. Now, there's these kids.

These happy... energetic... weird kids. And they are just KILLING my vibe.

I can't work like this. I need to be depressed. But these kids are ruining it for me. Every time they come running into the kitchen while I'm eating my cereal, wishing me a good day or telling me about their adventures at school or about monsters and space aliens and vampires and buttholes and farting and what the middle finger means - I really need to figure out how to write.

I have fallen WAAY behind. I was hoping to have at least 200 pages by now. But my 5-page-a-day pace has fallen to roughly a pace of 2-page-a-week, which has put me just shy of 110. Damn, and I haven't even figured out the ending.

OK. Think, O'Connor. You can do it. Just think. OK, here it goes.
     "Man walks into the bar..."
Shit, that's terrible. My character would never say something like that.

I hear a rustling behind me.

"Sean, what the fuck are you doing?"

He's standing in the refrigerator. Not near the refrigerator - in the refrigerator. His two feet are just visible from under the rubber seal.

"Nothing," Sean says. He says it with a "ph," after the vowel so it sounds more like "nophing."

"Get out of the fridge."

"Why?" he asks.

"Because it's extremely unsanitary."

"What's unsanitary?"

Knowing full well that this kindergartner has absolutely no concept of microbiology, I reply with a simple response.

"You are, now get out of the kitchen."


"Because your dad didn't say you could be in here, did he? Now get out of the kitchen."


Tony says I'm really good with kids. I don't loose my temper, and I'm not annoyed by them. I keep my cool around them, which is a godsend for him, because his kids were the reason he was kicked out of his apartment complex - they were too wild for all the retired people living next door.

Sure, I'm great with kids. I guess, I don't really know. But that's what he says. And I don't feel angry when I'm around them. Actually they make me feel happy - their curiosity of the world around them inspires me, enlightens me. They make me feel wholesome.

And that's the problem. I can't find my characters. My characters aren't wholesome, they are depressed. They are fucking train wrecks.

Well, that's all I've got time for right now. What did you expect, an ending? A conclusion? No, that would require a solution to this dilemma, of which I have no found one yet. You want too much from me, you greedy bastards. Go fuck yourselves.