In a world where having a high number of followers was the ultimate form of flattery, the irony didn’t escape William that being followed down a deserted city street was scaring him shitless. It was more than a feeling; he’d determined that, three blocks back when he circled an intersection all of 360 degrees. That’s when he got a good look at the clown who was following him.

Only one block from home, William was beginning to feel safer. He’d resisted the impulse to turn and look back for a while, but he had his hearing on full alert. There was nothing behind him. With only four doors between him and his apartment, a clown stepped out of an alleyway and stood stiffly before him. It couldn’t be the same clown, was William’s first thought. But of course it could. Damn me for taking the long way home to get away from this guy.

William was surprised when the clown spoke – in a woman’s voice.

“I need your help,” said the clown. She handed him a piece of paper and pushed past him, running awkwardly in her clown shoes back the way William had come.

Author’s note: Until October the 31st, I’m going to try to use this space to create possible beginnings for my 2016 NaNoWriMo project. Feedback is welcome.


“Send in the clowns!” they say,
so we don our paint
and shovel our feet into gigantic shoes,
place the rainbow wigs upon our heads
and screw our noses in place.

Then, what do you know?
The children’re all afraid
they shiverin their boots
for they told us not
to leave off
the pointy teeth.

Oh, Pennywise, you fool,
shiny eyes peeking through the grate
you’ve ruined it for us all.