Writing Prompt: Office Romance

By Dalia Martinez
Peggy and Pete did it. Don and Megan did it. Joan and Roger did it. As for me? Guilty. For those who spend forty-plus hours dwelling in cubicles, workplace romances are not that unusual. Yes, they have potential for ending badly. But if it weren’t for these office disasters what would Mad Men’s world of advertising revolve around? Ads?! 
Speaking of advertising… TBWA/Chiat/Day’s Lauren Smith is coming to the Pad. She’s worked with companies like Kraft. She even got them to change the name of salad dressing! In her intro to copywriting class at Writing Pad, she will teach you how you can create your own copywriting masterpiece. If you’re considering making a career jump into advertising or you want to earn some money on the side for writing snappy ad lines, this class is for you!
And, if you’ve ever thought of turning your failed flings into a killer plot, join “500 Days of Summer” writer Scott Neustadter and producer Tom McNulty at Writing Pad this Friday, Sept. 27. They’ll talk about indie filmmaking and their newest movie that’s garnered five-star reviews, “The Spectacular Now.” 
Their latest film is based on a book that was a National Book Award Finalist. Sign up for one of these upcoming classes, and one day your writing could end up on the big screen, too!

Classes Starting This Week
Writing Prompt:
Maybe your hands brushed as he took your Swingline stapler. Maybe her perfume lingers at your desk a little too long. Considering the amount of time we spend at work, more than half our lives are shared with coworkers. Face it, workplace dating is bound to happen. Romance amid the cubicle maze is risky but common. 
For this week’s writing prompt, make a list of three workplace crushes or romances you’ve had. Did you break rules? Pick one. Add a sensory detail (e.g. scented roses at your desk, the feeling of his fingers on your shoulders giving you an impromptu massage…). Now, write about your workplace romance for 10 minutes, including the sensory detail (smell, taste, sound, touch). Then, post your results in the comments of this blog!
Once, I dated someone from work. Let me be clear: he wasn’t my boss or even in my department. We just happened to work for the same company. But, I found out early on there are consequences to dating colleagues. We didn’t want anyone from work to find out- at least not for a while. While at work, we kept it friendly and created space so as not to arouse gossip. E-flirting was off company property. Ultimately, we broke up because we were incompatible. Although I was hurt, I didn’t need to duck behind bushes or sprint into the bathroom when he was around because the break-up was friendly. That’s the key with workplace romances- keep it friendly. Be mature about it. Don’t let it blow-up into a Jerry Springer worthy break-up. But if it works, you’ll have a good story to tell the kids. 
Now it’s your turn. Write about your workplace dating experience for ten minutes, including your sensory detail. Then post your story below. You could win a free writing class!