First prize winner of the 1st Annual Short Long-Distance Writing Contest.

You’re lucky. I only checked my messages because I came into town for ibuprofen and marshmallows. What’s up?

— Legal has a problem with the Mountain Pure Water brochure, Bobby. I need a rewrite.

— Lou, I’m camping with the boys on Lake Superior. No Wi-Fi.

— I’m on my knees. Production says we must be on press by 12:01 a.m.

— So I have over an hour to find an internet café.

— No, you have fifteen minutes. I’m in Edmundston.

— Edmonton? That gives me an extra two hours.

— Edmundston, New Brunswick! An hour ahead of you. We found a printer here that uses enviro-ink.

— Don’t push me, Lou. I’m parked outside the Wawa IGA. The boys are at the campsite, waiting for marshmallows. And I have a killer headache.

— This’ll be quick. Legal only had a problem with “Crystallized for 100% purity right down to its DNA.” They were cool with everything else.

— The whole concept was built around that headline!

— We can’t say “100% purity” or “DNA” without a scientific study and a shitload of fine print.

— The integrity of the creative depends on that line, Lou! How about “Crystallized to taste as pure as . . . as . . . a baby mountain goat.

— I’ll pass it by Legal.

— Legal is in Edmundston?

— No, Legal is in Toronto at Mamma Mia but she promised to keep her PDA on vibrate. I’m qwertying her now from my other handheld.

— Lou, I may have taken my last marketing brief. I’m thinking about moving up here.

— What are you going to do in Wawa?

— Teach, maybe? Write poetry?

— That’s commie talk, Bobby. You’re like those dogs in Florida that run like hell when they hear a bell. You can’t not create promotional material.

— You’re wrong. The boys and I watched the Pleiades meteor shower last night. It was a holy experience.

— Hey, Legal just texted “l-s g-t.” She wants us to lose the goat.

— Fuck! It’s a metaphor, not a product claim! Shouldn’t she be defending murderers instead of killing headlines?

— She isn’t the type of lawyer who cuts deals with Crown prosecutors. Her job is to stifle creativity. How about just “Crystallized Pure”?

— That’s a shitty headline, Lou.

— We have two minutes to get on press.

— Could you qwerty Legal my POV?

— Too late for points of view. Let’s get this sucker printed before Cinderella leaves the ball.

— You’re right, Lou. I’m an award-winning creative director but my opinion is irrelevant because I didn’t go law school.

— Your work is done. Toast marshmallows. Take something for that headache.

— Can’t. The IGA just closed. Give me an hour and I’ll come up with a better headline. Let me find a media room where I can work.

— In Wawa?

— I wanted to reach for the stars for Mountain Pure, Lou.

— You can’t monetize the stars, Bobby. ’Night.



From her lair in Toronto, Terri Favro writes fiction, non-fiction, websites and advertising copy. Her work has appeared in literary and commercial magazines, and she was shortlisted for the 2007 CBC Literary Awards, for both fiction and creative non-fiction. Her piece, “Stardust,” won first prize in the Geist 1st Annual Short Long-Distance Writing Contest.



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