How to Beat the Heat

Welcome to Friday Fictioneers! We are a lively and friendly international writing community. Between Wednesday and Friday of every week, we each post a 100-word story to share. To learn more about us, or to post your own story, please visit our lovely leader’s website, author Rochelle Wisoff-Fields’ Addicted to Purple.

This week’s photo prompt is from fellow writer J. Hardy Carroll.

Photo Copyright: J. Hardy Carroll

Photo Copyright: J. Hardy Carroll

 How to Beat the Heat

by Jan Brown

Emma lay in shallow water, in a wading pool that she set-up in the backyard. She was almost comfortable for a moment. 


She looked up at the moon through the many shade trees they’d planted over the last decade. It wasn’t enough. It was never enough. 

Relentless, searing heat was the new normal. Rolling brownouts meant that air conditioning was erratic at best. 

Her husband was away, fighting the ubiquitous wildfires. When she thought about the conditions he endured, she felt ridiculous complaining. 

Wisps of smoke from nearby fires swirled around the moon. It almost looked romantic. 



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27 thoughts on “How to Beat the Heat

    • Thank you! As to the title of the story, “Almost” would be a great choice. Bur I have been doing a series of ironically titled “How to” stories, so I continued with that.

    • Unfortunately we are close to this, yes. I fear the quality of air will greatly deteriorate as well, but didn’t have space to explore that aspect in 100 words. Thank you for reading and commenting, Bjorn.

  1. What a stunning story!
    These lines, alas, are too close to reality for comfort: “Relentless, searing heat was the new normal. Rolling brownouts meant that air conditioning was erratic at best. “

  2. I’ve had this feeling in California living with wild fires, especially when I was younger. I remember a summer when there was dozens of them all close together. Of course, nothing has really changed. Very original, Jan, and well written.

  3. It reminds me of our reality today with climate change. We had a strange winter this year. Last summer, I remember the smoke from forest fires, though not the heat. I wonder what this summer will bring – some heat I hope, but just enough.


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