Monday, September 14, 2009

Hemingway Doesn't Think About Getting Laid

Hemingway sat at the bar in a steamy Caribbean backwater, the atmosphere thick with the scent of smoke and whiskey. He wasn't even thinking of getting laid, just sitting there, brooding ruggedly with a thin sheen of sweat on his forehead and three days growth on his chin. The words came quickly, writing themselves. The story formed, one short and clean sentence after another, a half empty bottle and a single glass close at hand.

The women in the room want him. Their dark skin and darker hair call out to him; the allure of flesh is strong. Ignoring them, he pours himself a drink and downs it, wasting no effort. The words continue. The men hang back against the walls and huddle at small tables in the darkened corners, murmuring to themselves and taking quick glances, afraid to stare too long. He's too real, too human for these shadows. He pours himself another drink and finishes a page. The story, powerful and direct, mirrors his own presence.

She walks into the bar, a strange woman in a stranger land. Her skin is dark like the others, but her eyes are emerald and piercing. If he notices her, he makes no sign, his only motion to finish his latest drink and continue his feverish writing. The story is all that matters. She slowly approaches the bar, intent on only one person and wanting only one thing. All of the men and several of the woman look at her, wishing those eyes would find their focus on them but they never waver. She reaches one slender hand towards his neck, her fingers trembling slightly with desire.

Before her fingers touch him, his hand, rough and calloused reaches up and grasps her wrist, firm but gentle. Closing his notebook, he turns to her.

"Sorry. I've got a story to tell," he says, getting up from the bar. Dropping a few bills, he turns to the door. "Got to be a place a man can write in peace," he mutters, walking into the night.

-Just something small I threw together, because Hemingway rocks. You can also find me on

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

First original piece in years that didn't make ashamed.

Here goes:

Jesus was a right bastard. Out all night, coming home piss-drunk and violent. More often than not, he'd give Maggie a slap and a shove when he saw her at 3am. She'd been crying for hours at that point; crying for hours the way she did when her savior didn't come home.

No one blamed her when she did it. No one except a couple of J's old college buddies. They always thought the bastard walked on water and would tell anyone who'd listen that Maggie was nothing but a whore. Most of us, we just felt sad for the whole mess. A bit freaked out too, but when a woman is willing to permanently fasten her own husband to the headboard with a commercial nailer and then open his side with a meatfork - well, when that happens, you know something's just not right in that household.

We do miss them. In the old days, before he drank too much and she wasn't crying all the time, they were good friends. On the bright side, after they took Maggie away and cleaned up the townhouse it only took 3 days to rent it out again.

Short, untitled and rough. But it doesn't make me embarrassed to read it.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Snuck up on me

I've been beating myself for the last few days about a small problem I'm having with my writing: I seem to have forgotten how to write. Not like my hand can no longer form words, but it seems my brain has lost the ability to do more than just describe. I can look at an item and tell you all about it, but I can't seem to give you the feel of it, or conjure up some pretty metaphor to make the object more real in your mind.

This is what I thought. Turns out I was off a bit. I haven't forgotten, its just kind of grown over, like the skin on a piercing you've ignored for awhile so you could go to fancy job interviews. See, that was one of those things that makes stuff more real. Since I used like, I guess that was a simile, not a metaphor, but hey, its all close enough.

So more writing, more reading and hopefully a real post of a scene or something soon. In other news, almost finished with Schrodinger's Ball. I highly recommend this book. The bizarre paths the characters follow bring you in, sit you down and open a beer for you, encouraging you to watch until the end. Its funny without resorting to cliche humor and its intelligent without having to make you feel stupid.

Once I'm done, a review will be posted.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

New process

I've been spending some time analyzing the process of writing. Everyone does it differently, but there do seem to be some constant themes. I frequently have seen the "write something everyday" concept and I am trying to do that. This blog post is a clear example. Its not much, but it does qualify as something.

The other thing I have seen is what I like to call the "Little Literary Legos" strategy. Mmmmmm, taste the alliteration. Its all crisp and tingly! The deal is simple: Never throw stuff away. Write down all those good ideas and keep them. Some will turn out to be complete garbage. The good ones can be pieced together to form larger works. You end up building a story block by block.

I got a good journal to keep these things in. The journal will only hold stuff I'm writing. No to-do lists or notes to remember to call the dentist. Just my stuff.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Life and its alternatives

I gotta wonder, why do I keep getting kicked in the face?
Did I ask for it, or do I go looking for it?

This shit just finds me. Fight it - can't roll over. Roll over you get yer ass kicked too.

So what to do? I guess
the only thing
is to not

Yeah, I wrote something. It kinda sucks, but its something. Now, on to the book.

Currently I'm reading Schrodinger's Ball. Its an odd book. Just started it, but its going to be a good story about humanity and relationships mixed with a quantum physics . . sort of. Here's the back cover blurb:

Four friends set out into the night in Cambridge, Massachusetts, undeterred by the fact that one of them might actually be dead. Deb has perfected the half-hour orgasm. Grant, a geek, desperately desires Deb. Depressed Arlene has just improbably slept with Johnny, their leader, who recently and accidentally shot himself to death.

But is he (or anyone) alive or dead until he’s observed to be by someone else? Maybe not, according to Dr. Erwin Schrödinger, the renowned physicist (1887—1961) who is, strangely, still ambling through the Ivy League town, offering opinions and proofs about how our perceptions can bring to life–and, in turn, reduce and destroy–other people and ourselves. And what does Schrödinger have to do with the President of Montana, who just declared war on the rest of the country, or the Harvard Square bag lady who is rewriting the history of the world? What’s the significance of the cat in the box, the “miracle molecule,” or the discarded piece of luncheon meat?

Answer: All will collide by the end of this hypersmart, supersexy, madly moving novel that crosses structural inventiveness with easygoing accessibility, the United States with our internal states of being, philosophy with fiction. In Adam Felber’s dazzling debut, science and humanity collide in a kaleidoscopic story that is as hilarious as death and as heartbreaking as love.

I'll give my comments on it once I'm finished with it. Is a small read so it shouldn't take too long. If anyone is still out there, grab a copy and read with me.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

change of plans

Going to spin this up again and make some changes.I have little time to write, but I have time to read so we're going to be discussoing books. I figure on reading 50 to 100 books per year so that be plenty of material. I'll make first book post within the next few days.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

aliens are real

--==guest writer ./revlinux==--


Let me explain. I went to lunch today with a couple of friends from work, we'll call them Suzi and Steve.

So, Suzi, Steve and I went to get a bite to eat at a local buffet. So far, so good. We get our food and sit down. Pretty normal lunch conversation. Bitching about work, bitching about government, bitching about people that bitch about work and government. The usual.

Now, before I go any further, I need to explain something. In order for my theory to work, you must believe as I do (or just humor me for the sake of this writing). I firmly believe (after today) that aliens exist, and that all of the vast knowledge they have about us came from one source: re-runs of the Jerry Springer Show.

While we were eating, another patron walked in. I glance up and notice he has a pretty standard short hair-cut that one would find on any of a million blue-collar types. A simple short-cropped bowl-cut-esque style, and a prolific mustache straight out of a bad '70s porno, but there was one other thing: it's a mullet of epic proportions! I don't notice right away because it is braided and draped over his shoulder. It reached his waist easily! That is one HELL of a mullet! I am in shock.

I say to Steve, "man, I can't help it, but that guy just screams 'stereotype!' I wouldn't be surprised to see him in some dive bar, beer in hand, dip in mouth, flannel shirt unbuttoned 3 or 4 buttons, asking every chick he sees 'hey hot stuff, want a free mustache ride?!'"

At this point Steve looks over my left shoulder, glances at Mr. Mullet, and nods to me, somehow stifling a laugh. I say "no way! please tell me I'm wrong!" Steve replies with "Nope, you nailed it. Flannel. 3 buttons open. Dip."

Suzi has been following our exchange this whole time, but has managed to keep her laughing to a minimum. But, alas, that wasn't to last.

In walks another hungry group. A pretty little blond-haired, blue-eyed girl, maybe 16, 17 tops. In tow is a toddler. Also with them is the girl's mother. Now we have 3 generations, and I swear not a 30-year old among them. I'm sure you can see where this is going. I notice little details: the too small t-shirt on the teenager that was airbrushed at the mall. The "tramp-stamp" tattoo peeking out from under said t-shirt above bluejeans cut so low it would make an exotic dancer blush. Another tattoo on her neck in gangland script letting all the world know just who the "baby-daddy" is.

I decide to point all of this out to Suzi. I try to be subtle. "Suzi, I'm going to bring my son here on my next day off. 'Look, son, that over there is white trash.' It'll be educational." Suzi promptly chokes on her drink. (timing is everything!)

Now, just when I thought things were going to settle down, in walk the "frat-boys." They had it down to a T. They were meat head types, wearing t-shirts and shorts (in 30 degree weather, mind you) showing off bulging muscles complete with kanji tattoos on the inside of the biceps. Again, the little details stand out. At first glance I think it's a Hard Rock Cafe t-shirt from some impossibly exotic locale. Upon closer inspection it is revealed to me to be a Hard On Cafe t-shirt advertising a "gentleman's club" in southern Florida. Steve takes it all in stride, "I've seen worse. Hell, I think I've worn worse to family functions! I've got this one, on it is a squirrel with elephantitis ..." He never gets to finish. Suzi just can't seem to catch a break, and just about chokes on her latest bite of chicken. (Again, timing.)

At this point the meal is over. No more food could be consumed. We are laughing too hard. And a good thing too. In walks the most obese person I have ever seen still walking under her own power. She was one jelly donut away from being a lifetime patron of Bob's Angioplasty Palace. Suzi has just about recovered from her near-death experience, when I turn to her and say "Well, it's a good thing we're done eating. We'll never be able to compete with that." This time it's Steve who almost buys the farm with an egg roll lodged in his throat.

Let me pause here to tell you this: I know that if I share this next part, I will be going straight to Hell. No passing GO, no collecting $200. Hell. A very special Hell. Now that I've cleared that up, and not been struck dead thus far, I'll continue.

Bob's Angioplasty Palace patron is NOT alone. You see, I've taken my eyes off that group just long enough to ascertain if Steve needs a careful application of the Heimlich Maneuver, and when I look back, what I see makes me gasp out loud. All joking aside, I think I peed a little. "Suzi, you know how they say that there's no such thing as an ugly baby? Well ..." Suzi turned around and ALMOST managed to choke back the scream escaping her lips. It was horrific. This is NOT a baby. This is an 80-year-old woman shrunken down to infant size and placed in a high-chair. This is the kind of thing that Barnum and Bailey would have killed for.

At this point everyone in the restaurant is looking at us. We just can't stop laughing. A hasty getaway is a must. We throw down some cash, grab our coats, and get out as fast as we can.

Proof positive aliens are real, and are performing social experiments on us. They just want to know how 3 relatively normal people would react to a roomful of Jerry Springer Show stereotypes. I hope we gave them some good data.