Day 2 of Story Spotlight:
Splotting the atom! Spoiling plots and hoping to help turn a few heads.
The Next Sixty Seconds (Will Change Your Life)
The first of today's stories is a sci-fi tinged mystery that starts out
like a tale from the twilight zone of old. Featuring cast of diverse
characters who all share an entwined fate, it is rather more complex
than a lot of 'short stories,' but like most of the stories in the book,
it is longer than a typical short story, too.
It just gets weirder before it gets more normal, that's for sure, but it
ends with a twist. It might just have something to do with next novel,
let's just put it at that. And I should know if anybody would, wouldn't I?
This is definitely a contender for favorite of the lot out of all my stories
in this book and everything I've ever wrote. That doesn't explain the very
proud sounding title though does it?
I will explain: it's the story within the story that the title refers
to. This is a story of office-worker and would-be author Clarence Smetters,
and this crazy idea he had the Christmas before. He doesn't tell his wife,
but he thinks the idea would make a great book. He's never tried to write
before, but he buys a netbook and starts writing the idea into a book
on his busride too and from work because, hey, why the hell not!
He'll surprise her when he's done. It's an incredible idea, and a brilliant
story! A truly Brilliant Story!!!
That doesn't matter at all to an uppity drug-dealer who rides the bus to
his retail job every day: he was robbed and he needs money to pay his
'Guy' fast. His 'Guy' is totally nuts, completely nuts. If he doesn't
give his dude SOMETHING, he is going to be screwed.
Clarence, typing away loudly on the bus every morning and every night,
oblivious to the world around him, clattering on his clearly fancy
shiny netbook, has made himself an easy target.
That netbook is out of his hands faster than a bus door can swing shut.
If it were a wallet or an mp3 player or something, that slick-fingered
kid would have just handed to his Guy, Clarence would have gotten a
new wallet and taken out some new money, and everything would have been
fine and good.
But it was Clarence's Brilliant Story, his only copy was on that
computer, and he needed it! Even if the dealer's
insane "Guy" had to get involved, even if it drove previously docile
Clarence to unspeakable violence and dangerous places he had not even
dared to consider, Clarence had no choice because it was an
incredible idea and a Brilliant Story.
The story about all this is pretty good, too!
Such a Great Idea
This is one of the last stories conceived for the book: one of
few 'vignette' sized pieces meant for a sort of scene change
after some of the longer stories.
It is sort of based on a real life, jocular scene between my fiancee
and I - and for that reason she feels very uncomfortable about the story
while I find it humorous. I guess that gives you a lot of insight
into our relationship!
Anyway, this is a story about an author who gets a good idea for a story
and accidentally kills his wife while telling her about it.
I don't get why it makes my fiancee nervous, or why she felt so
scared while I was telling her about the idea for this story with
her backed up against this wall and my hands reaching for her neck...
Hmm... I'll have to think about that a bit.
Feel free to check out ALL the stories, unabridged, in the first
edition of 'A Sudden Outburst of Cosmic Duck!'
Thanks so much! Please pre-order now if you can, it makes the production
of the paperback possible. You get a free eBook of my first novel,
'Under the Wall,' a thriller about a cat with the power to see the visions
in people's minds, and a killer with the obsessive idea that the bible
is telling him to look people up in the phone book and murder them
because they are sinners. They have one thing in common: they both care
strongly about the cat's family.
Also, you get a free MP3 album, 'Chordata,' full of songs I recorded in
2008. It's electronic rock with guitar and synths. Lots of solos, lots
of singing, lots of groovetastic beats. All original, back when I
grooved out more than I wrote.
All for free as soon as I see your order has come in if you pre-order
'A Sudden Outburst of Cosmic Duck!' Please do, as I said, as it
helps make the printing possible! Thanks a bundle!