Eve hummed tunelessly as she whipped together a pad of butter and a large lump of garlic. She reached for a bottle of white wine and splashed it onto the mixture as well. She closed her eyes as she stirred, well lost in the simple ecstasy of being home alone for the weekend. When her daughter was around things were always a crazy mess, not to mention that the child would never eat Eve’s favorite food with her. Continue reading
“Mr. Drusus? Can I talk to you for a minute?”
Jack looked up from his datasheet. One of his students, a bright young girl named Anastasia, stood at parade rest in front of his desk. Her eyes were focused at something on the floor.
“Of course, Ana. Please, sit.” He pulled up her class records on his desk. “Is there something specific you wanted to talk about? Your grades all look pretty good, but that last essay of yours was not what I’ve come to expect from you.” Continue reading
This is just a quick preview of something larger that I am currently working on.
December 12, 2016
Krasnoyark Krai, USSR
63 Miles NE of Norilsk
I hate Siberia. That was my mantra as I crawled forwards, eyes squinted against the wind. I hate Siberia, I hate Siberia. The snow kept finding ways to sneak down the top of my coat, where it took longer and longer to melt as I got colder and colder. I saw the ridgeline, just ahead of me, wind howling up and over it, making the snow spray wildly into the air. My companion nudged me in the shoulder and leaned close enough to talk into my ear in his accented English. “How is it going, Typhoon?” Continue reading
Something moved briefly through the rain, emerging out from being the cover of a large tree trunk before skittering across the muddy ground on all fours to a new hiding spot. It appeared as little more than a shadow as it made its way, in short bursts, towards the bank of the river. Continue reading
Lily smiled at her mother and father, at Daniel’s parents, and at every one of the long drawn out procession of well wishers. She smiled until her jaw locked and she feared her teeth would push through her gums and leave her smiling still, a mess of red blood dripping down onto her white lace dress. Continue reading
I watched Eric run around the track. Every step sent up a puff of dust that the wind picked up and carried until it had drifted far away from its point of origin. The sun made the sweat on his forehead and on the back of his neck shine like rivers of mercury. Continue reading
Lily sat on the splintery bleachers, elbows on her knees, chin nestled in the palms of her hands while her fingers tapped a staccato rhythm on her cheekbones. Now that school was out for the day she had the vast space of the gym all to herself. Continue reading
Dialogue is a beast. It sometimes seems easy to write and flows well when read out loud. Other times it sounds clunky and forced. Writing short snippets of dialogue based on a scenario, or a moment in time, or a part of an overhead conversation seems to me to be the only real way to improve writing dialogue. In other words, just practice. Practice like this little exchange here between two college-aged friends. Continue reading
A while ago I was working on a project set in a different world than ours, and one of the struggles I’ve encountered with that is how to build the world without explicit world-building exposition. One method I have settled on over the years is to do a lot of the heavy lifting through the characters that populate that world, through their dialogue and also through the thoughts of the point of view character. This is an excerpt that is heavy on character in order to build a universe. Continue reading