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November Short Story Writing Challenge Part 3

November is National Novel Writing Month. In celebration, there is a novel writing challenge where participants attempt to write a 50,000-word novel during November. I took this challenge as inspiration for my own November writing challenge. I definitely won't make it to 50,000 words, so it's more of a short story than a novel. A new part of the short story will come out every Tuesday this month until the story is complete.

If you still need to read parts 1 and 2, please read that first.

Here is part 3 of my November short story.


Startled by the phone's sudden vibration and the shock of discovering Mildred's musical fortune, Denise drops the phone and scrambles to catch it. She manages to answer the phone right before it stops ringing.

"Jim, why didn't you pick up the phone? I've had the craziest day. I thought I was going to a job interview for this old lady, and when I got there, a whole funeral was happening; it was super awkward; then I found out it was the old lady's funeral, and her granddaughter completely freaked out on me."


"I can't just breathe. I spoke to her yesterday, and today I was at her funeral. That doesn't even make sense funerals take time to plan. Her granddaughter said she's been dead a week. Margaret said they didn't even get along, but she was bawling when I saw her," Denise said, frantically waving her hands and pacing through the room.

"Wait, wait, wait, you went to see Margaret? Why was she crying?"

"No, not Margaret, her granddaughter was crying when I saw her, but she supposedly hated her grandma. But why would Mildred want a story for her grandchildren if she didn't even like them?"

"Because grandmas are nice like that?" Jim guessed.

"Grandmas are bake you cookies nice, not pay a writer to write their entire life's story nice. Oh my goodness, and she is a billionaire. Mildred, the grandma, was a whole billionaire for running a musical empire, but she was hanging out with Margaret at the Senior Center, telling her groupie stories. The crazy part is that her granddaughter is set to inherit everything, but they don't even like each other. Who the hell did I talk to yesterday?"

"You sound a little crazy right now. How could you have talked to a dead woman? Are you okay? I know you said you've been having a hard time with your book, but this is a lot. You know what; I'm coming over."

"Stop. I promise I'm not making this up. Some crazy stuff is going on, but it's all real."

"Okay, Denise. Tell me all about it when I get there."

Jim hangs up. After a few deep breaths, Denise angrily tosses a throw pillow across the room. She then googles Ingrid Besent.

"Ingrid Besent, Mourns Loss of Grandmother, Mildred

Ingrid Besent Organizes Public Memorial for Grandmother, Mildred Besent

Heiress Ingrid Besent Arrested for Petty Theft

Besent Family Conspiracy Theory"

Completely entranced by the never-ending information on her phone, Denise jumps at the doorbell sound.

Denise answers the door and, before even letting him in the house, blurts, "Jim, there's a public memorial for Mildred tomorrow."

"Hi Jim, thank you for coming to help me. Come in and make yourself comfortable." Jim says sarcastically, taking off his jacket.

"Yeah yeah. I think we should go to the memorial."

Jim guides Denise into the dining room and sits at the table across from her, hanging his jacket on the back of the chair.

"Denise, you can't just crash a memorial; what do you think will happen?"

"I don't know, but I need to talk to Ingrid. Something weird is happening, and I need to find out what's going on."

"Are you sure about this?"

Denise nods, and they start to discuss dinner. Jim agrees to pick up some takeout and heads to his car. He pulls his phone out of his pocket and texts Margaret.

"Show's on."

. . .

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