You’re currently online so you’ve probably heard Zola’s story. But maybe you’re not totally hip with it and haven’t. There’s also the chance you have heard of the story or maybe even tried reading it yourself but are a little lost.
For those ready to take the ride of your lives, read Zola’s story here. For those who want the breakdown, let’s do this. Here is the Sparknotes version of the greatest Twitter story ever told, what is surely to be considered classic literature of the digital age.
- Zola: This is our protagonist. Zola is a young women who works at Hooters in Detroit, dances, occasionally traps and has a sugar daddy. She is confident, witty, a fast thinker, and is remarkably keen on on her surroundings. The story is a first-person narrative from her point of view.
- Jess: Jess is a white girl who is honestly just sort of a mess. She convinces Zola to come to Tampa with her and her pimp and, while she seems ultimately sweet, she has no real backbone. She clearly relies on Zola’s self-assuredness.
- Z: Jess’ pimp, who we later learn is wanted for murder and sex trafficking. He is a no-nonsense motherfucker who is truly terrifying but also kind of weirdly trustworthy. Like, you’d feel safe if he was on your side. But he is also bad.
- Jarett: Fucking Jarett. This is Jess’ boyfriend who is revealed to be bipolar, and really shouldn’t be on this vacation at all. He needs a relaxing getaway that isn’t going to stress him out. He is the comic relief of the story, the sad sack who can’t even get himself out of his own misery. Even Jess, who, like I said, is a hot mess, looks like Condoleezza Rice compared to Jarett.
- Hooters in Detroit: This is where Zola and Jess first meet. It is also where Zola returns to after her weekend in Florida.
- The Gross Hotel: This is the place for Jarett. Don’t worry.
- The First Club The Girls Went To: Zola and Jess didn’t make a ton of money here and it had a ton of rules. It set up a place they did not want to be.
- Nice Ass Hotel: Where Jess traps and Zola brings in lots of dudes for her.
- The Even Nicer Hotel: This is where Jarett calls Jess “messy,” which is pretty funny. They argue a bunch and Jess traps more.
- The Pool at The Even Nicer Hotel: It’s Florida! Zola’s gonna hit up the pool.
- The Hotel Where The Man With Dreads From The Gross Hotel Now Is: That name pretty much explains where we’re at.
- Z’s Condo: A lot of concluding action takes place here, including Jarett getting his pants stuck on the balcony.
OK. I am about to try and summarize the greatest story ever told. But, you know how your teachers used to say you could easily learn what Shakespeare is about but without reading it yourself, you weren’t truly experiencing Shakespeare. That is also the case here. I will give you rough plot points but it’s like saying Romeo & Juliet is about two people who really like each other. Here we go.
It starts out with Zola meeting Jess while working at Hooters and then 24 hours later being in Florida, dancing for cash. When Jess is unable to pull in the amount of cash Zola is she decides to trap (sleep with people for money.) Zola helps her do this and is ultra successful because she is someone who understands the value of a woman.
Meanwhile, Jess’ whack boyfriend Jarett is crying in The Gross Hotel and finds out she is trapping and so does Z. Z is like, dope, and brings them to a nicer hotel to make more money and Jarett literally uploads skanky photos of Jess to her Facebook which is incredibly rude and and shady and makes Jess very upset.
A lot of other things do go down that are literally worthless if I explain them and really are brought to life by Zola’s storytelling, but basically we end up with Jess being held hostage in another hotel and Z, Jarett, and Zola with a gun go to rescue her. But Z goes a little too far and literally kills the kidnapper and then has to buckle Jarett into the SUV after he tries to kill himself. And Zola has to be like, guys, unfortunately I am not feeling this anymore.
That is literally how she dips, she is like, I’m gonna peace. Oh she also then pretends to not know Jess when she hits her up months later, which is probably the best epilogue ever written.
In India reading #Zola. Drama, humor, action, suspense, character development. She can write! There's so much untapped talent in the hood. x— Ava DuVernay (@AVAETC) October 29, 2015
Zola’s story had: -character development -plot twists -atmosphere/tone -racially diverse cast -passed the bechdel test— Isaac Kariuki (@isaac_pdf) October 28, 2015
I want to publish Zola's book.— Ms Jones If Ya Nasty (@FeministaJones) October 29, 2015
*looks left* *looks right* *closes @parisreview tab* *goes back to reading Zola’s twitter story*— Saeed Jones (@theferocity) October 28, 2015
People aren’t totally sure if Zola’s story is real and in the end it doesn’t really matter. Again, comparing her to Shakespeare, people don’t really know if he is writing his love sonnets for a lady or dude, but we still relate to them. What we do know is Zola took to the medium of Twitter, said “fuck you” to the 140 character limit that discourages suspenseful and engaging narrative and gave us just that.
This was a story about will power, revenge, love, adventure, ambition, and fear.
Thank you, Zola. Thank you so much.