Developer: Damon L. Wakes
Launcher Quote: “Every year since 2012, I’ve spent the whole of July writing one very short story every single day as part of Flash Fiction Month. I’m probably working on one right now, in fact.
The first July I attempted this challenge, I made it as far as the 23rd before getting completely stuck for anything to write. That day I settled for a story in which an author gets stuck for anything to write and considers simply typing “banana” over and over again in order to hit the Flash Fiction Month’s daily 55-word minimum (with the joke being that my own story consisted almost entirely of the word “banana” as a result).
Despite having been written for want of any better options, the story proved popular and I’ve since produced one “banana story” every year. These sometimes revolve around a non-banana item – perhaps an angry imported spider or pretend handgun – that readers must spot within the text. It’s become something of a genre in its own right, and people seem to look forward to each one. I’ve now been at it for the best part of a decade.
There’s probably a moral to this story, but I don’t know what it is.”
The creative process is rife with peaks and valleys of inspiration, and as someone who has been blogging on and off for the better part of a decade, I am intimately familiar with that kind of roller coaster ride. Sometimes you’re hit with a huge bit of motivation and sage understanding, and you begin writing words that basically just spill out of your mouth, and other times you’re just utterly spent and can’t come up with anything beyond a couple of words here or there. It’s the great dilemma of the creative process – no one’s going to be completely inspired 100% of the time, but you need to work your brain to try to get past when it isn’t in some form or fashion.
For the developer, they’ve appeared to deal with their valleys in creativity for writing by trying to introduce what seemed to be a theme into their work – in this case, the presence and use of the word banana in whatever they’re working on. In a way, this is kind of making the creative process a bit chaotic – you’re introducing something into it that potentially has no business being there, but which is nevertheless something that can shake things up in order to get past what is always a challenge when it comes to writer’s block – that of not being able to proceed at all with writing, and that one’s writing isn’t good enough. The use of bananas to plant more trees to make more bananas in this project’s entry is definitely a visual indicator of that, and it was fun just to fill the screen with seemingly endless banana icons in an attempt to meet the goal of having all the bananas, all the time on the screen.
When writing these little pieces for this project, I’ve had to struggle at times to create the right words, especially when I’m limiting myself to the same time limit as the games are typically supposed to be played in. Playing this game seemed to knock something loose for me, that I could probably deal with the next time that I’m struggling to write something in 5 minutes by just introducing a little chaos into my writing by way of something that wouldn’t necessarily belong there, but would nevertheless still be at the very least, entertaining. It’s an interesting antidote to the difficulties behind the writing process, and seeing a piece of fruit being used as the cure was definitely something that inspired some thinking out of the box for me entries for these games.