Tuesday, July 13, 2010

"The Part When People Start Screaming"

He can’t exist.

He's not supposed to exist.

Except on the safety of my television screen.

But I come out of the office and he's standing in the middle of my living room, in a navy blue button down, with his hair in haphazard spikes and whirls, and his eyes dark and intense without the distraction of thick framed glasses; behind him, the television that had been showing the NBC rerun is black, sparking, and gives off the faintest odor of ozone.

Whether it's my quick exhale of his name or the sudden resonating thud of my heart against my ribs that alerts him, I'm not sure, but he looks at me and I half expect his pupils to dilate like a cat's; every muscle in my body goes rigid when he steps forward—lips parting to draw in a soft breath, like a sigh of anticipation—and raises one hand before he stops short, head tilting, eyes narrowing and says, "You're not one of us…but you recognize me; who are you?"

I open my mouth and find that I only seem to be able to make basic vowel sounds; what exactly do you say to a fictional, psionic, serial killer who's suddenly appeared in your living room?

A self indulgent piece inspired by Heroes and first appearing at my blog over on the Six Sentences Social Network.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Villains in Sweater Vests

I've been watching Heroes.

Yes, the year it's canceled is the year I start watching the show. (But, that's actually better than starting a show, getting hooked on it, and having it canceled as you're eagerly awaiting the next season. I know what to expect going in.)


I'm watching Heroes and...Gabriel Gray. (O.K. and Sylar too. Granted, same person, different facet.)

And this just gives me a kick in the head to ask:

What is it with me and crazy characters in glasses and sweater vests?

No, really.

See, one fascination:

Dr. Jonathan Crane (as portrayed by Cillian Murphy in Batman Begins)

And now...

Gabriel Gray/Sylar (as portrayed by Zachary Quinto)

(And note...they even have a similar expression.)

Granted, Sylar doesn't maintain the Uber-Geek look (which I do love by the way; see also: Dr. Spencer Reid in early seasons of Criminal Minds) because, hey, after you start gaining infamy, you want to cut an intimidating figure and all black with spiked hair and sexy stubble is a much better way to do that...

Case in point:

Some days, I think I might have the beginnings of a problem...

Is there an Anonymous group for this type of thing?

Saturday, July 10, 2010

[Six Sentences] "On the Second Date In as Many Months"

"...So," she finished and sat down her empty coffee mug.

And he sighed, "Yeah…" and cupped the back of his head, pressing his fingers to the base of his skull, trying to stem the strange sensation—part magma, part glacier water—that had settled in the pit of his stomach and was winding its way up to his temples.

She’d shifted away from him on the couch, putting her back to the arm, watching him and...did she expect him to say something else? "Well..." his tongue had grown fat and clumsy in the cradle of his jaw and his brain was full of black noise, smothering the words he wanted to say; the words that maybe he should say?

But she shook her head and stood, the same no nonsense look on her face that she had the night she'd given him the run down of exactly what she liked and how she liked it, before taking a condom—too old, he should have bought new ones—from the pack lying on his bedside table, pressing it into his hand, and bearing him down to the bed with a kiss. "I've got an appointment tomorrow at the clinic," she picked up her purse, "and you don't need to do anything, but I told you I'd tell you if anything happened and I keep my word; I'll see you," she finished, and he watched her turn hard on her heel and walk out the door.

First posted on the Six Sentences Social Network

Monday, July 5, 2010

The Nail Files

My week in summary: Submitted a flash fiction to an eZine. Got rejected.

Within the space of two days.

I'm not sure whether to be insulted or thankful...

I'm leaning toward the latter. Because, really, I'd rather be rejected immediately than tortured with weeks between the submission and the (more than likely) rejection. Apparently, I got it in just in time for the batch read. (Also, I must remember to recognize assistant/multiple editors in my salutations. Whoops. Bad writer etiquette, no biscuit.)

And here it is:
Thanks for letting us read your submission. I’m afraid we are going to pass this time. Unfortunately, we get too many submissions to offer personal feedback on each one. Best of luck placing it elsewhere.

As rejections go, it's...even keel, even for a form letter. I've had worse (form letters). More blunt. With no "bests of luck." (And I do appreciate those wishes for luck.)

Because that's really what this is all about, in the end. Finding the right market and Editor, with the right story picked out--from one of your gazillion files--and submitted at the right time.

Tell me there's not just a bit of need for the "luck of the draw" in that?

With a smidge of talent thrown in on the top, of course.

Oy vey.

I suspect every writer who attempts to be an author (yes, I do separate the two) has a bit of a masochistic streak inside.

Otherwise, I don't think we'd keep doing this to ourselves...

"...the nail in my wall would no longer support the weight of the rejection slips impaled upon it. I replaced the nail with a spike and kept on writing." - Stephen King, On Writing

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