Monday, August 29, 2011

Hurrah for Happenstance

          He'd found a secret passageway.
          It had happened quite by accident. Trying to scamper off while his companions slept, Jones had walked into a tree, unable to see it in the darkness. He realized it was hollow when he fell through it, tumbling down into the hidden tunnel underneath.
          Its declination was about as steep as the cliff face, but it was marginally safer. Indeed, after many awkward and painful falls, Jones found himself at the foot of the falls.
          Climbing back up wasn't much easier, but he imagined that this discovery would probably make up for his earlier indiscretion.

I'm really glad to be back in the swing of things.  I continue to have a ball with these fortunate heroes.  My obstacle for their continued progress turned out to be a bit easier to solve than initially thought, but at least it was kind of challenging for Jones.  We'll see if the rest of the party is as capable (read: most likely yes).

Either way, I hope you continue to enjoy this little yarn.  It's getting towards the moment that initially inspired the telling of the tale.  I'm especially excited for that.  Should be good.

My Weekly Pull - August 24th

As we quickly move towards the last week of August, I'd like to take a moment to take a look back at what I picked up last week.  So let's do that.

FF #8

DC Comics


Other Companies

As always, you can find my previews for these books here, and my thoughts on a few of them here.

Following those links, you'll notice a few things.  Firstly, Skeleton Story #5 is not in my Preview column.  That is not at all a comment on the book (which I absolutely adore), but more a consequence of renown.  Skeleton Story's publisher, GG Studios, is kind of super small, and I couldn't find any solicitations for their forthcoming books.  Consequently, I couldn't find a cover or any information about the book online.  It's really a shame, because it means that fewer people will know about what is possibly one of my favourite books coming out right now.

As far as I can tell, this is actually a reprint / translation of a story that was originally published in Europe (in Italian, as far as I can tell), but that doesn't take anything away from it.  The translation works pretty well, but more importantly, the art is mind-blowingly good.  It's absolutely beautiful and unlike anything else coming out in North America.  So there might be some mild hyperbole there, but take a look at one of the pages I found on GG Studios' deviantArt account (click to embiggen).

That's just a random page from the first issue (with the original Italian in tow), but it still looks amazing.  The images are cartoonish, but done with all the care of a painting.  The character designs are awesome, and the panel layout is surprising.  I love the hell out of this book and wish that more people knew about it.

The week as a whole was incredibly good.  The weakest book I got was probably Batman Inc. #8 (as explained at the Weekly Crisis), and even it wasn't all bad.  Just super weird.  Gates of Gotham #5 surprised me by regaining my waning interest in the book.  A solid ending.  Project Superman had the same.

I could continue by giving you a laundry list that would repeat all the titles I listed above with a few words explaining what it was I liked about them, but I'll spare you that this time around.  Suffice it to say, the books you see above are some good ones.  If you aren't reading them, you should try to get your hands on them one way or another.

This month we have the highly anticipated arrival of the DCnU, which could really go either way at this point.  It's hard to say whether it will be good, bad, or simply mediocre.  I imagine it will be some combination of all three, but the question will be how much of each possibility it will be in the end.  We shall see.

Sunday, August 28, 2011


          When they awoke the next day, Jones was gone.
          Kevlin was furious. He could not believe that the cowardly thief had scampered off while they slept. He loudly intoned that it was a shame that they hadn't thrown Jones from from the cliff the night before like he had suggested.
          Kevlin cursed Jones throughout the morning. He cursed him while firemaking for breakfast, he cursed him while making breakfast, and he cursed him while eating breakfast.
          Kevlin was so busy cursing him that he didn't notice when Jones emerged from a hidden opening in a nearby tree, battered and bruised.

And with that, we're back in business!  Things are getting busier and busier on my end, so the daily posting that I tried to maintain for August probably won't be able to continue, but I'll still try to get up these short stories as often as I can.  And if I have some time / inspiration, any number of other things could show up on this blog.

Only time will tell, so let's see how it all shakes out.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Going Back on my Word

So that claim about no more delays?  Perhaps given a little hastily.  It looks like I will not have time to put anything up today in the way of stories, and I apologize for that.  If you're dying for some wonderful words penned by yours truly, you could always give a look at the latest article up at The Weekly Crisis, where the team (including myself) give their thoughts on some of the comics coming out come November.

If that's not quite your style, I'd invite you to swing by thought balloons to take a look at all the Riddler scripts we have up this week.  I must say, I've been blown away at the quality of some of these pieces.  Not because I doubt my fellow thought ballooners (perish the thought), but because I was unsure about the character.  But everyone has brought their A-game and then some, making for some great reading  My script will be going up later tonight (4 am), so if you're wanting to give it a gander, you'll have to wait for tomorrow.

But fear not, I'll be back soon, and I'll bring some fresh words organized specifically with The Thought Wrangler in mind.  Believe you me.

A Complication

          And then Jones mentioned that the cavern's entrance was actually at the base of the Falls. The others weren't terribly impressed that he had kept that detail to himself.
          Their first concern was convincing Kevlin not to beat Jones to death, a task made all the harder when Lennox started to come around to the idea. Ultimately, cooler heads prevailed, and it was decided that Jones could live. For the moment.
          The group then focused their attention on how best to descend the falls. Kevlin's suggestion of throwing Jones off the cliff to gauge its height was rejected as impractical.

I figured that things had been going (relatively) smoothly for our plucky adventurers, so why not throw a wrench in the gears?

Now I just need to figure out how they'll overcome this problem.  Writing by the seat of your pants can be challenging when you purposefully make it more difficult for yourself.  Hopefully I can come up with something by tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Falls

          It was as if they had found the edge of the world. They stood at a precipice so tall that its bottom was impossible to see. They stood next to a river so immense that it could have easily been confused for a lake were it not for the current's furious pace and the water's sudden terminus where it rushed over that very precipice. The torrent flew from the world with a deafening speed, plummeting into forever. Eventually, it was swallowed by a massive, billowing mist far, far below.
          No one could say how long they stood there in silence.

I'm sorry to everyone who has been waiting on the next installment of "The Four Adventurers" (as I'm apparently calling it now).  I was really put off-track by my vacation this weekend and was simply unable to figure out how to do this part yesterday.  I'm not sure if I'm 100% happy with this description of the Falls, but that is alright.  This whole adventure (both of these four figures and the 1 Character 100 Words experiment) is to practice, practice, practice, and that is certainly what I have been doing.  And that does make me happy.

Stay tuned for tomorrow, when these crazy cats do something more than look at massive descriptions!

...if we're lucky.

Monday, August 22, 2011

My Weekly Pull - August 17th

Just back from a nice little vacation, so this one is a little later than usual, but as I've mentioned before, these posts are as much for my benefit as anyone who is willing to read through them.

Anyways, compared to some of my previous weeks, I barely bought any comics at all this time around.  Try as I might, there simply weren't that many series that I followed / was interested in trying out.  Consequently, I have a pretty sparse list for this past week.

Marvel Comics


DC Comics

Image Comics

As mentioned in my reviews, Batman was a complete bust, Power Girl was a fun read, and Daredevil continues swimmingly.

As for the other books, both Spider-Island tie-ins were great.  Spider-Girl picked up right about where Paul Tobin left off with his recently-cancelled ongoing series, and Venom had a quality story and an interesting revelation that could have some big impacts on the main title.

Finally, Gladstone's was really good.  My interest had been waning a little bit, but this last issue was really enjoyable.  Really, it was just a study session between all the kids, but it was pulled of perfectly.  There was even a wonderful page offering what I assume is the writer's feelings on the importance of comic books that was quite eloquently stated.  Of course, it also had a great joke to follow it up, giving a good amount of tongue in cheek.

A light week on my part, it looks as if things will be ramping up again come this Wednesday.  Feel free to check out The Weekly Crisis for my thoughts on those books tomorrow, and if we're lucky, stay tuned to this page for the next installment of our heroes' quest, which should continue without interruption until its conclusion (whenever that may be).

Friday, August 19, 2011

The Journey (Not the Destination)

          They left immediately.
          Their trek was far from an easy one. The Falls were half a world away, and the lands in between were barren and inhospitable. They crossed scorching deserts, dark forests, freezing tundra, and countless other treacherous terrains. Yet they trudged on, sustained by their dreams of the riches that awaited.
          Long after their departure, just as it was beginning to seem as if they would never arrive, they did. What they saw was staggering. No book could have prepared them for the sheer size of Cloudburst Falls. They seemed to exist on a scale that defied comprehension.

This took way too long.  Need sleep.  Good night.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

A Breakthrough

          Jones figured it out in the end.
          Unlike his more conscientious companions, he stopped looking by the end of Day Two. While they poured over every codex, folio, and compendium they could find, Jones was casually leafing through less seemly materials.
          He had always enjoyed a good bawdy tale, and each library had more than its fair share of vulgarity for him to peruse. Eventually, he happened across one particularly steamy story involving a comely maiden and a certain cavern of untold wealth that was located near Cloudburst Falls.
          Haphazard searching proved far more valuable than they had thought possible.

I know I said I was enjoying this yesterday, but I'm really enjoying this now.  I had quite a fun time coming up with the method of discovery.  It seemed far to easy and boring to have dedication pay off, so I thought why not have do-nothingness take the day?  And so here we are.

This tale also has the first named member of our little band of heroes (if you can call them that).  Say hello to Jones!  He's pretty alright sometimes.  When he feels like it.  The rest of the time, he's not up to much good, but the other three let him stick around for some reason.  I'm sure they'll figure it out eventually.  Well, maybe not.

Either way, thanks for stopping by to follow the continuing adventures of our current protagonists.

Next: they continue to do stuff! (probably)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Search Begins (Or, A Needle in a Haystack)

          Unfortunately, wanting a treasure and attaining it are far from the same thing.
          Although they were wholly convinced of the existence of the cavern, they knew little beyond that. What scant references they had amassed offered no hint as to where their prize would be found.
          They soon realized that their haphazard searching was not going to yield the location they so eagerly sought. In consequence, they travelled the great libraries of the realm, scouring their overflowing stacks for any book that might have a scrap of relevant information. They spent many mucid, mildewed, and mundane months in this endeavour.

I'm really enjoying this little fantasy yarn.  I have a moment that I'm building towards, but everything that's coming up in between is coming to me as I go along.  We'll see what obstacles await our intrepid seekers in the days to come.  If we're really lucky, we might even find out their names!  Anything is possible in the wonderful world of writing!

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Four Adventurers

          The four adventurers first heard of the Cavern of the Glittering Sea years earlier, stumbling across an ancient tome that spoke of it while they were sacking an evil aberration's keep. At first, they had dismissed it as nothing more than the imaginings and folktales of some forgotten people, but they continued to find references to the fabled cavern, making them less and less certain of their initial scepticism. While the details often conflicted, all of the tellings agreed that there was an immense underground chamber somewhere in the realm that housed unimaginable wealth. Wealth that they desired for themselves.

So I was playing Dungeons & Dragons yesterday.  Can you tell?

While the adventure my friends and I currently pursue is rather different than the above tale, this is certainly inspired by the stories of fantasy and heroism that are so common in pen and paper roleplaying games.

As you may have noticed, I've been getting into the habit lately of continuing some of my stories from earlier posts.  Well, I think I'll take it one step further and write myself a little tale about these adventurers and their cavern that will be told over the next few days in 100 words snippets.  I initially started these 1 Character 100 Words postings to practice and experiment, so experiment we shall.

I hope to see you back here tomorrow for the next part of this epic quest, whatever form that may take.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Victory In The Preparation

          “Stay back!”
          Amos drew his blaster pistol from its holster as the group of Rannian thugs approached. Most of them stopped. He nervously pointed the device at the one who kept walking.
          The creature paused for a moment, looked at the blaster, and smiled, its mouth filled with razor-sharp teeth.
          “I mean it! I'll blow a hole right through you if you take one more step.”
          Hands shaking, Amos pressed the barrel into the smirking Rannian's chest. The Rannian brushed it aside without a second glance.
          “You'd have a lot better luck making that hole if your gun was charged.”

I wrote this while struggling to work on some other projects of mine.  Can't find all the answers I need (for the other project) at the moment, so I figured I'd write a little space vignette that doesn't necessarily need answers.

Poor Amos.  We hardly knew ye.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Or Was It?

         That's odd.
         I could have sworn that Keith saw me. But that can't be right, because he definitely would have held the door if he had. We always have the nicest conversations while we're heading up together. I can't imagine he would want to skip that. I know I always look forward to our chats.
         And here I was going to ask if he wanted to come by my place this weekend to watch the game. I know he mentioned that he followed hockey, so I figured he would be interested.
         I guess I'll ask when I see him tomorrow.

So if you've somehow managed to read this before going through Worst Morning Ever, you should probably go read that.  It will help this one make a bit more sense.

Don't worry, I'll wait.


Okay, got it read?  Glad to hear it.

Here we have ourselves an alternative take on that fateful morning.  Perhaps it wasn't as bad as Keith thought?  It certainly appears that Jim would happily forgive what he has accurately deduced to be an accident.  However, maybe Keith is better off avoiding Jim.  Based on their different perspectives, Jim seems like kind of a weirdo...

My Weekly Pull - August 10th

Wow.  I literally bought all the comics this week.  It's ridiculous how many issues I came away with.  In fact, there were a few issues that I'd missed out on in earlier weeks, so this is actually just a partial list.  As always, you can check out my thoughts of anticipation of each issue here, while my reviews for a handful (5) of the books can be found here.

Now let's look at that list, shall we?


DC Comics

Other Companies

This is perhaps the most comics I have ever bought in a single week.  All told, I picked up 17 comics this week.  In that total, I have three numbers 1s and six concluding issues.  Everything else is something in between the two, I suppose.

I already raved about Cloak & Dagger over at the Weekly Crisis, but that book is just too good to not continue talking up.  You should be buying it.  Nick Spencer and Emma Rios are both great creators, and they are at their best in this book.  I've loved Nick Spencer's T.H.U.N.D.E.R Agents and Morning Glories (both of which I also picked up this week - they were both excellent), but this might be the best thing I've read by him.  And Rios's art is simply out of this world good.  I want all comics to be so well drawn and so creatively composed.  Just looking at it makes me feel inspired.

American Vampire is as good as always, which is unsurprising considering how talented Scott Snyder and Sean Murphy are.

On the Flashpoint note, Frankenstein continued to be as good as always, while The Flying Graysons disappointed just as I imagined it would.  It's too bad that series couldn't keep up the momentum it had going with issue #1.  I guess J.T. Krul just couldn't manage it.

I really enjoyed issue #0 and #1 of Alpha Flight, but I'm starting to have my doubts about this series.  One of the things I enjoyed the most about it was the high degree of verisimilitude it has had.  And for a book about Canadian superheros whose secret base in underneath Parliament Hill, that's saying something.  Everything that was happening seemed like it was based in reality and it was clear a lot of research had been going into the book.  However, this issue was a definite step down in that department, as it spent a lot of time on the streets of Ottawa, and sometimes I questioned whether the artist had ever seen the city or even looked at Google Street View for longer than six seconds.  The skylines left a bit to be desired, especially in the area around Parliament.

The worst offense, however, was a scene that took place inside Centre Block.  It was the Prime Minister scrumming in the House of Commons Foyer, but it was one of the worst depictions of the Foyer I could imagine.  It had the general idea that there were arches of some type and that the walls had a general pattern of laid stone; however, the colouring was completely off, making the interior resemble a medieval castle.  I was waiting to see a sconce hanging on the wall.  Additionally, there was a portrait hanging on the wall, but it was clearly not a former Prime Minister (and definitely not Mackenzie King or sir Robert Bordon).  Yes, I'm being a bit nitpicky, but when you're getting everything else right, such a flagrant error stands out even more.  It took me right out of the story and only led me to examine other representations of Ottawa even closer.

It was also unfortunate that Alpha Flight's big plan to counter the corrupt Canadian government was to seek out the help of Wolverine.  I was kind of buying this book because I wanted Canadian superheroes other than that guy, and it doesn't really help their credibility that at the first sign of danger they go running to Wolverine for help.  Doesn't make them seem all that heroic, you know?  Again, disappointing.

On the plus side, virtually every other book I picked up was absolute gold, so there is that.  When you buy 17 comics and only two of them are let downs, I gotta say that you're doing pretty alright for yourself.  Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), there's only five or six books that I'm interested in for next week, so it looks like I'll be able to save some of my money instead of spending it all on comics.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Worst Morning Ever

          I totally just let the elevator doors close in that guy's face. I didn't see him until the last second, but he's going to think I did it on purpose.
          I see that guy every day. We seem to always take the elevator at the same time. We had a good thing going. Nods of recognition. Occasionally exchanging a word or two.
          Now he's going to hate me.
          Should I apologize when I see him tomorrow? Act like nothing happened? Why did this happen? Riding the elevator is going to be so awkward.
          Unless I start taking the stairs...

I'm not really sure what inspired this one.  I haven't taken an elevator lately.  Or at least, I haven't accidentally insulted someone while taking an elevator.

I guess I just wanted to write some guy overreacting to the least important thing possible.  Who then subsequently decides to make a minor life change to avoid facing his insignificant problem.  If that's the case, I think I managed that pretty alright.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Road Trippin'

            This road trip was an unmitigated disaster.
            We lost the only map. We had three flats. It rained every day.
            Jeremy only brought one pair of underwear. Dale would only play country on the stereo. Aaron needed to stop every fifty miles to pee.
            We were too cheap to pay for motels, so we slept in the car. Every night. It was cramped, uncomfortable, and it didn't take long to start smelling pretty rank.
            For all that, when we finally made it to the coast, seeing the sun slowly rise over the ocean almost made up for it all.

Don't have too much to say about this one.  I didn't have much of an idea this evening, so a friend of mine suggested "road trip".  This is what came of it.


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Child's Play

          Escaping from his carrying case proved to be much harder than Solomon would have expected.
          The lid was exceedingly heavy, and supporting its weight while climbing out at the same time was no easy feat. To complicate matters, the moment Solomon's head emerged from the case, he let out a small yelp of terror. Instead of being on the ground as he had hoped, his container sat atop a rather large bookcase. And though Solomon would never admit to being afraid of heights, he still did his best to avoid looking down as he finished wiggling out of the box.

Apparently the puppet's name is Solomon.

I wanted to spend some more time working with my idea from yesterday (or earlier this morning, depending on how you look at things), and while brainstorming, came up with this moment from Solomon's adventure.  It's not necessarily how I would compose it for a longer tale - my arbitrary 100 word constraint was in mind writing this - but I am happier with this look into Solomon than what I did last time.  This is definitely something I need to keep focusing my efforts on.  Working on it makes me feel excited, which is always a good thing.

All An Act

            Without my master's guidance, I don't know what to do.
            I have been a daring adventurer. A celebrated leader. A gallant champion.
            My words have made men braver. Ignited others to action. Inspired nations to greatness.
            I try to remember some of the speeches to reassure myself, but nothing comes to mind. A few words manage to trickle from my lips, but they ring hollow, as empty I am.
            I saw myself as a hero. I realize now that it was all an act.
            I am a sham. I am ashamed. But above all, on my own, I am afraid.

One other idea that I've been kicking around is a story about a puppet.  He would be a classic marionette who has performed all types of great adventures and played every heroic role imaginable.  But one day, he would wake up (think Toy Story-style here) to find his master is no longer there.  Deciding he needs to go find him, he would go on some adventure to figure out where his master has gone.

I envision a big part of this story being the puppet coming to terms with the fact that he isn't any of those roles that he has performed.  He isn't the king's stalwart soldier.  He's not a skilled huntsmen.  He's not a beloved prince.  And so forth.

He'd find some friends along the way to help him on his quest, and he's also learn that even if he's not a hero like in the stories, it doesn't mean that he can't be heroic (or some such).  However, this piece in particular would take place earlier on the in the adventure, when he's realizing that the roles he's performed are not who he is.

I don't think this quite manages to attain the feeling I was aiming for.  It's too rushed.  Doesn't spend enough time dwelling on the realization.  I will definitely have to spend some more time with the concept, but considering the hour, this will do for tonight.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Justice For All

            “I can't believe they're reassigning me to Pleasant Plaza. That's a C-list neighbourhood at best. I thought we were supposed to stop the bad guys, so why am I getting punished for it?”
            “Come on, man. We both know the problem is the way you stopped the Backstreet Brawler. You're lucky The Council decided only to reassign you. It could have been a lot worse. They could have switched you over to villain. Or banned you outright. And we both know how street level heroes manage freelancing.”
            “Thanks, Cape. You always know how to brighten the mood.”

So one hundred words is not a lot for a conversation.

What you see above is a small look into an idea that's been bubbling around my head for the last little bit.  It's still in the early stages, but as you may have gathered, the concept is a world where an organization (presently the vaguely-named Council) controls every aspect of superheroing.  The good guys, the bad guys, and the in betweeners all have to follow their decisions, whether they like it or not.  Kind of like the WWE, except with a lot more property damage and the occasional casualty.

Writing it out, I guess it has some things in common with Gladstones's School for World Conquerors, the relatively new series from Image.  And let's be honest here, I'm sure there's at least a handful of other works that have played around with the idea in one form or another.

Either way, here we have a quick glimpse at two heroes living in said world.  Intrepid is bemoaning The Council's recent ruling against him and the Crimson Cape is trying to soften the blow, but there's only so much one can offer.

What do you guys think?

A Royal Rumble

            They came at him like a pack of animals.
            The nearest man punched him in the stomach, causing him to bend over double. That was quickly followed by someone slamming their fists into his back, sending him sprawling to the ground. Before Jester could think to get up, they started kicking him. Again and again and again.
            He cried for help, but his lungs were empty. All he could manage were some bloody hacks and coughs.
            The beating ended as quickly as it had started. Finished, they walked off, laughing.
            Jester whispered a silent prayer of thanks and blacked out.

The first sequel story!  You must all be so excited!


Well, at the very least, I'm excited.  Which will have to do for now.

Jester isn't doing so well here, is he?  How will he get out of this one?  Will the Royals come looking for their wayward fool?  Is he on his own?  We may never know.  Unless, of course, I write it at some future point.  Anything is possible, I suppose.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

My Weekly Pull - August 3rd

As I mentioned last time, I am now throwing up my pull list over at the Weekly Crisis, and if you'd like to look over some of my anticipatory thoughts on the books I bought this week, you can check them out here.  Additionally, you can look over my reviews for a number of these books right here.

As you can see, I had quite a number of books to pick up for the opening week of August.

MYSTIC #1 (OF 4)

DC Comics

Other Companies

If you were to compare this list to my preview article, you would notice that both The Marvelous Land of Oz trade paperback and Hero Comics 2011 are absent from the latter.  That's because I decided to pick these two books up on a bit of a whim.  I still haven't gone through The Marvelous Land of Oz, but I am really excited to get the chance.  I absolutely adore Skottie Young's art.  Relatively recent to the comic book scene, he has a gorgeous style that is unlike anything else going on right now.  Can't wait to read some comics drawn by his hand.

Hero Comics 2011 was an odd kettle of fish, because it was an anthology book to benefit the Hero Initiative, which exists to help out comic book creators when they are in financial crisis.  A fine organization, they managed to get some fine creators for the book.  I decided to grab it when I heard that the original Sandman creative team of Neil Gaiman, Mike Dringenberg, and Sam Kieth were collaborating on one of the stories within.  I haven't actually read Sandman (something I hope to soon rectify), but I do know that if those folk are working on something, you should be reading it.  Their short piece, "My Last Landlady" was pretty darn fine and worth the cover price alone.  As an added bonus, I discovered that John Layman and Rob Guillory made an original Chew story for the book as well, which was great.  Anthologies are always fun, in my opinion, because you get to read work by a number of different creators, and you sometimes discover authors that you had never heard of before.  Not so much the case this time, but a fine read nonetheless.

It was a pretty big week, but if the solicitations for the rest of the month are any indication, my book purchasing looks like it will only continue to rise in the next few weeks.  We'll see how able I am to resist the siren call of event tie-in books.  If my track record is any indication, I'm going to be shelling out a lot of dollars.

The Morning After

            He woke hours later, head pounding.
            Opening his eyes, he was blinded by the mid-morning light. Unable to think, he shut his eyes tightly, hoping to keep the brightness at bay. But even with his hands covering his face, the pain lingered on.
            He thought to get up, but that proved even harder than facing the day. Every movement made the pain worse. Finally, still unable to rise after his third attempt, he gave up on the idea, falling back to his shabby bed with a muffled thud.
            On second thought, maybe I'll sleep a little longer, he considered wretchedly.

Based on a(n unfortunately) true story.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Going to Leave a Mark

            “It was brutal. The guy unleashed a massive boot, and the ball absolutely flew. Hit Jamie square in the face and ricocheted straight into the back of the net.
            “Man, that ball was going so fast it probably hit the twine before Jamie realized what had happened. Well, if he realized at all. Jamie was gone from the moment he got clocked.
            “Have you ever seen someone out on their feet go down? It's hard to watch. Jamie slammed into the ground. No attempt to stop the fall, you know? Just thinking about it makes me feel a little sick.”

So no kittens this evening, but we are back to soccer.  In a matter of speaking.  The real purpose with these soccer stories has been trying to capture impact moments (whether it's the ball hitting Jamie's face, the fist fight, or the guy getting clipped in the jaw).  Wanting to practice some action from a few different perspectives here.  They've just been about soccer because I play way too much (had two games this evening).

It always seems so easy when you read it on the page, but figuring out which moments to focus on and how to organize them is a lot harder than I would care to admit.  I know these are far from perfect, but I like to think that they're improving with each effort.  Even if that's not quite true, I am happy to be back to doing these short pieces on a regular basis, so there is that.

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Greatest Story Ever Told

            Muffin was the cutest little kitten. Everyone in the entire neighbourhood agreed. Wherever he went, people would stop and comment on just how cute he was. They would insist on petting him. Or scratching his ears. Or giving him sweet belly rubs.
            Being the cutest kitten was a pretty good gig, and Muffin relished every moment of it. He would often sit outside the corner store, knowing that eventually someone would find his adorable kitty features irresistible and then they would buy him some wonderful treat. Like milk. Or candy.
            It was kind of the best.
            Or so Muffin thought.

Yeah.  So I really just wanted to write a story about kittens today?  I'd say I accomplished that pretty well, but there's only one kitty in this tail (zing!), so maybe I'll have to reexamine the concept one day soon.

Or maybe I'll write something more serious tomorrow.  It's hard to say.  Either way, some levity is beneficial, every now and again, right?


Thursday, August 4, 2011


            Tick, tick, tick.
            I'm at work. I'm sitting at my desk. Staring. Listening. Waiting.
            It's been a long day. And it's still in the early stages.
            My screen flickers before me. The words, the numbers, the figures have lost all of their meaning. Gibberish scrawled across an endless field of artificial light.
            I try to focus, but everything is too loud. Machines hum noisily. People natter relentlessly. Phones rings constantly. No one answers. Nothing stops.
            It surrounds me. Invades my space. Storms my thoughts.
            In desperation, I look to the clock for comfort. It reads 10:43.
            Tick, tick, tick.

Guess who had a long day at the office?  They say to write what you know; I feel like today gave me a pretty good handle on time's sometimes slow passage.  I'll leave that for you to decide however.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

"Fight Night"

          Things had been getting heated. An muttered insult. A crude epithet. Words soon flew back and forth between the two teams. None of them pleasant.
          Still, the punch took everyone by surprise. They had been fighting for the ball, and suddenly, they were simply fighting. Everyone thinks they know how to fight, but few actually do. These sorry excuses for combatants clearly didn't have a clue. Though the haymakers flew fast and hard, it did nothing to hide how pathetic and stupid these two grown men were.
          And yet, it had seemed like such a good idea at the time.

More soccer, although I suppose this story could work for any ball-based sport.  Maybe they're actually basketball players?  Or handball players?  Anything's possible with imagination!

Monday, August 1, 2011

A Matter of Perspective

          That guy should have been paying closer attention.
          It was clear we were both going for that ball. It was poor positioning on his part to stand right where I was headed. Obviously I wouldn't be able to stop in time. I'm not wearing shoes. I thought that was pretty obvious.
          Besides, he seemed pretty alright. Sure, it sounded kind of bad, but he got up fast enough that it couldn't have been all that painful.
          Now don't get me wrong, it's a shame that his jaw clipped my shoulder. 'Cause, I mean, now my shoulder is kind of sore...

So I didn't get any closer to looking at the actual collision between the two characters, but I have taken the (slightly modified) scene from a different point of view, so there is that.  I don't rightly know why this particularly idea is giving me such fits, but I'll just have to keep wrestling with it until I get it right, I suppose.

Until next time.