Submissions aren’t the only way writers get to be creative on NITH. We asked Nathan this question, check out his response below.

Question: You are sitting in an expensive restaurant with a group of friends, enjoying a classy meal. The room is packed, the waiters are busy, yet the mood is sombre. In one corner a string quartet plays dutifully over the culinary din.

A waiter brings over your entrée, mushrooms stuffed with cheese and red pepper. As your fork pierces the fungal skin the door opens and a woman enters. She is barefoot and wears an overcoat. Her hair is auburn. She crosses the room near to where you are sitting and disrobes. Beneath she is nude.

Deftly, she climbs into the lobster tank and begins to swim with the crustaceans. The room is silent. The quartet has stopped playing. At another table a waiter over pours a bottle of wine and the spillage spreads a red stain over the bleached tablecloth.

What happens next?

Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane burst into the restaurant in the wake of the woman and begin singing, “I Want to be a Producer.” The quartet, without instruction, begins backing them up, and soon they are joined in a large dance and musical number by many of the waitstaff and the guests. It ends with champagne corks popping and a slide finish by the singers in front of the nude woman in the lobster tank.I shrug to my dinner companions, write it off as some kind of crazy publicity stunt, and vow to re-watch the Producers because now that damn song is stuck in my head.

Epilogue: Amazingly the nude woman is not arrested and goes on to a shining career as a chorus girl in the new vaudeville style acts that are once again popular. Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane go on to have long careers in which they act and sing. I return home and, under the influence of champagne, write a story about the vast undersea war between the lobster people and the mer-folk, then go to bed.

Nathan has a short listed submission right now for Flash Comp 300. Check it out here