“Writer’s Block – Sent with Love from [____]”

This is my first week participating in the IndieInk Writing Challenge. This week’s challenge comes from Karla V. over at Tot Thoughts. The challenge: I find a package on my doorstep one morning with a note that says, “Writer’s Block – sent with love from ____.” Only I can see who sent it. So what does my character do with the package, and who sent it? Find out after the jump.


I woke up on a sunny Saturday morning with the smell of freshly brewed coffee lingering in my apartment. Tom had already left for the day (he was shooting a wedding), and I was grateful he hadn’t woken me up. I needed to sleep in (if you can call 9 a.m. on a Saturday “sleeping in”). The brutal 60-hour workweek had drained every bit of energy from me. Rested and refreshed, I was now ready to take on the weekend.

I poured myself a cup of coffee, turned on the television, and mentally went down my to-do list: the laundry had piled up, this coffee’s pretty strong; there was grocery shopping to do, snow again; yoga classes to attend, should definitely make a Red Cross donation; a dinner party to prepare for, this Gaddafi guy needs to go; and oh yes, a dog to walk.

Who the hell is at the door this early?

Pepper had started barking before I even heard it. The knock was quick but loud – thud, thud against the metal door. How they got in without ringing the bell, I wasn’t sure.

I put on my robe and made my way to the door. “Who’s there?” I asked, as I looked through the peephole.

No response.  I unlocked the door, and peeked through the safety chain. There was no one there, but there was something on my doormat: a beaten, brown box, wrapped in twine, with a pink note attached to it. I opened the door and looked down the hall. It was empty and I didn’t hear any footsteps.

I hesitated getting any closer. I had become skeptical of random packages since 9/11. I was always the first to notify a conductor whenever I saw a “suspicious package” in the subway, and alerted staff if I saw a bag unattended at the local Starbucks.

But the note was addressed to me, and I immediately recognized the handwriting.

“Writer’s Block – sent with love from Pandora.”

I picked it up and placed it on the table in front of my couch, grabbed a kitchen knife, and turned off the television. I stared at it for a good 30 seconds.

You’re back, aren’t you? It had been months since it was last here, and then, like now, I had failed to recognize it at first. I leaned over with the knife, cut the twine and, with a deep inhale, opened the flaps.

Inside this small, overused box were the items I had placed in it months ago: pictures from my childhood, a jump rope, a cassette tape of Jerry Rivera music, my sister’s cell phone, and a letter she had written before she died. I took out every single item one by one, bits and pieces of a story I had started to write, and then decided I couldn’t anymore.

Couldn’t or wouldn’t? I had told myself months ago that I had too much going on in my life, and the subject was just too difficult to write about anyway. But was it really? It was much easier to pack it all up and leave it for another day. Now it seemed I had simply let everything in life stop me from ever going back there again.

Well, here it was, or rather, here I was, telling myself (again) to get over it already and just do it.

I grabbed the box and headed towards the window. No more re-packaging and re-sending, no more procrastinating. This was it, the end of the road for the box.

I closed my eyes, took a deep breath, and tossed the empty box out my window. With it, I hoped, went every bit of self-doubt and worry I had in me.

“Hey!” A booming voice shouted, quickly pulling me from my own encouraging thoughts. “What the hell are you doing?!”

Next to my old, tattered box stood a very large and very angry Mr. Bobeck. “Oh no, sorry Mr. Bobeck!”

He shook his head and looked down at the box. “You could have recycled it, you know?”

I could have, but I had recycled it too many times already. I really should have burned it instead.


(Note: You can check out my challenge and the Challengee’s response here. Thanks for reading!)


About MelissaR

Lover of words and movement. View all posts by MelissaR

12 responses to ““Writer’s Block – Sent with Love from [____]”

  • cclester

    I love the latter two thirds of this. I have to admit the opening section up until ‘But the note …’ didn’t really captivate me, but the rest was fantastic and so full of emotion and possibility.
    Nice writing 🙂 C-C xx

  • Marian

    oh this is so intriguing and now i want to read the other story!

  • K

    I really enjoyed reading what you did with this. I had noticed from your earlier posts that you were going through some… writer’s block so I was curious as to how you would work with an actual one on your doorstep. I have to say, you took this challenge and really created something very nice with it. The whole piece gave me the sense of participating in a new beginning.

    I look forward to reading more of your work!

  • Pablo is Back | Tot Thoughts

    […] PS – you can read Melissa’s response to my Indie Ink challenge here. […]

  • Lazidaisical

    I love where you went with this. Such a great idea.

  • Supermaren

    As someone who has struggled with writer’s block many times, I can totally appreciate this. I am always tempted to box half-completed thoughts up to send to myself later. Nice job.

  • Mandy

    This is a fantastic response to the challenge. I love how careful you were with opening the box. I feel as though it’s a good metaphor for how careful we can be when we get over writer’s block and start writing again. Well done!

  • Lilu

    I like this. It would really be nice indeed to be able to pack up one’s writer’s block and just send it to yourself later… But does that actually help us get rid of it? Does it “grow” on the way? Hmmm… Nice work. Though, the beginning was kind of overwhelming with such detail just as you start to read. It had an effect of wearing you down. Otherwise, this was a lovely piece =)

  • MelissaR

    Thanks everyone for the comments! I appreciate all the feedback. And if you want to be brutally honest, feel free to email me!

  • Jenn Baker-Henry

    Wow, a really touching story. I like the twist of her sending a package to herself and being able to forget it. It’s kind of like she’s torturing herself and not at the same time. Another beautiful story.
    This IndieInk challenge sounds pretty awesome. Good luck with the other challenges! I know you’ll do well.

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