“So Ordinary” is a story about appreciating who you are and what you have, because despite how mundane or meaningless things seem to you, it may be fascinating and valuable to others. It is about an “undesirable” finding purpose and acceptance in a place he never intended to be. And that is often how life works out!
“Shirts and Skins” is a fantastical story about finding opportunities. Every business is meant to provide a service or product that people want or need. In this story, one woman seizes the opportunity to create the perfect line of protective wear and establish a lucrative business, however the clothing still possesses a life of its own. I could probably go further with this idea, but there is already a funny anime called “Kill La Kill” that has done something similar. We will see if this is something worth revisiting at a later time, though.
“Selling Dreams” is another fantastical story inspired that weird kid you probably avoided in grade school who grew up to be a success and those annoying infomercials you are used to seeing, especially on late-night T.V. This story points out our aversion to things that we think of as weird or different, even if it is designed for our specific needs. So often people hold to the belief that they understand something/someone and are unwilling to attempt learn more about the thing or person, possibly due to fear of being proven wrong or any number of things. However, sometimes people need to connect with the thing they try to avoid in order to resolve their immediate problem.
“Rooted” is a body horror story inspired by the fungi of the Orphiocordycep genus (I hope I spelled that correctly) which inspired the video game “The Last of Us”, which I’ve never played, but heard great things about. The fact that there are already things in nature that can turn other beings to real zombies is scary and exciting. In this story, the residents of a small town are put into some very uncomfortable and terrifying positions when they learn they’ve been affected by a cloud of spores that cause people to exhibit strange behaviors. I also took inspiration from other zombie stories such as “World War Z”, but I highly recommend that people take the time to research the mind-controlling fungus.
Lastly, “Inheritance” is a funny little story about a man receiving his first pet, which turns out to be more than he wanted but just what he needed. Kids might want a pet either because their friends all have one or they want the companionship of a new, living toy, but no kid will ask for the responsibility that comes with it. The main character in this story actually gets a monster dog as his inheritance from his late father who denied him the chance of having a pet in his childhood, and despite his father’s original thoughts on having an animal around, there are other benefits found in having a fantastic beast in his charge.
That completes another round for this week! There will be more to come soon.