Friday, December 17, 2010

Dark Night of the Soul, Issue 1

As promised, today’s blog is a Fast Fiction using the word mayhem and containing exactly 200 words. I hope you enjoy it!.

          She was a blonde. The kind of blonde that made you want to give up drinking. She stumbled into my office on a dreary Sunday night. She said she had some work for me: a mystery of sorts. Her husband had gone missing and she wanted him found. I was reluctant to take her offer, but she promised a hefty payday though I hoped for so much more.

          As I pulled a bottle of scotch from my drawer and poured a glass she described the scene of her estranged husband’s disappearance. Broken bottles. Shattered windows. Furniture upended. Pure mayhem. It sounded like my kind of party. I asked her why she didn’t go the cops, but she just smiled and winked and pursed her lips together in a way that made me forget my question. This woman had my full attention, but I had no way of finding out what had happened.

My investigative business had not even opened, yet here I sat with the most stunning woman my eyes had ever seen. She wandered into my office looking for help and I was going to do my damnedest. It seems my luck was finally turning around. About damned time.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Charged Up

Some days you have to recharge. I get so stressed and beat down doing the day to day grind wife working and being a husband and father that it can truly become overwhelming and it can affect my mood and my energy level. For the last couple of weeks I’ve been on a downward spiral, but after a very lazy day today, I feel reenergized and ready to take on the world – which is good because my next few day off I’ll be spending preparing for the holidays.
I have literally watched television most of the day. Between that and making a quick Wal-Mart run this morning, that pretty much explains my activities. It’s nice to go a day without phone calls from work or pressing things around the house that need to be done. This day has done wonders for me.
Tomorrow will be a different story though. I have to be at work at 7, then I leave there at 1230 to be at jury duty orientation at 1. Fun times.

Remember to vote in my poll. It’s to the right. Up there. See it? Good. Pick you word and my Friday blog will be based on the most popular.

Have a great day and try to make sure you keep a full charge!


          I awoke this morning very suddenly, I’m not sure what it was, but it was rather jarring. Now, I’m sitting around awaiting the incoming Ice Armageddon (Volume 2) that’s apparently headed our way and I just can’t stop thinking about how fortunate I am.
          I was always brought up with a good family backing, but I married into a family equally as good. I’ve realized this week that, while I don’t make a lot of money, things could be way worse. A girl a see routinely told me this week how hard she truly had it and she wasn’t even complaining, she was just making conversation. I’m glad she’s got the external support she does because I’m pretty sure I couldn’t handle her circumstances. For example, with the heat fully on in her house, the ceiling, walls, and floor are so poorly insulated that it hasn’t been above 50 degrees in there all week. I can’t manage to wrap my brain around that in a way that doesn’t make me feel guilty for the things that I have. Whether through mine and my wife’s hard work or through family, we are very blessed to have the things that we and I’ve realized this week that I have been taking things for granted.
          Take a minute today while awaiting Icepocaplyse or while going to the grocery to get your bread and milk to remember that no matter how bad off life seems, someone – likely someone you know – has it worse and doesn’t ever complain.

The poll is up! Word with the most votes gets used for Friday!

Monday, December 13, 2010


          In my life I have done one thing that I really, truly regret. I started smoking. I’m not going to give away the particulars of the whens and wheres, but suffice to say,I was too young to be doing it and I knew better. It’s something that until a little over a year ago I still did on a regular basis. I quit in October of last year, but this time of year I feel the familiar urge to imbibe.
          When I quit it wasn’t a challenge for me. Like most people who quit, I had quit several times before and I would sometimes even go a couple of months without so much as a drag, but it was always hard and I was always irritable. When I quit last year, it wasn’t a challenge. There was no struggle. I woke up one morning and smoked the last Marlboro Menthol in my pack and decided I was too lazy to go to the store to replenish my supply. I stayed lazy for a day or so before I realized that if I had lasted a day or two, I could last a lot longer than that. So I did. I have the urge occasionally to light one up, especially when I come across my Sig Arms Zippo lighter dad gave me, but I’ve always stayed strong. I’ve seen what smoking can do to someone’s health and the potential ruin it can have on a family, but sometimes all I can think about is that first draw off of a freshly lit cigarette and how, if it’s been a little while, it makes you feel light headed.
          My smoking habits always seemed stress induced; the more nervous or apprehensive, the more I would smoke. On a good week I’d smoke a pack or a pack and a half in the entire week. If it was a bit more stressful there were times it was a pack a day. Lately I’ve even been getting the familiar shaking of my hands when my body is convinced I need to light up and after meals it’s all I can do to not purchase and pack and fill my lungs with that oh-so-tasty cancer. I’m weak, what can I say?
          The holidays stress me out, specifically with my job and it’s becoming harder every day to fight the urge. I will prevail though like I have every day for the last year and change but some days, today in particular, it sucks. If you’ve never smoked, I beg you, don’t ever start.

Thanks for the comments on yesterday’s blog! Keep the suggestions coming and I’ll post a poll tomorrow.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Fast Fiction

          To defeat the constant struggle with writer’s block I’ve been having lately, I have done some research and I’m determined to knock this damn dirty ape off of my back.
          Yesterday, Wil Wheaton tweeted about an intro he wrote for a book called “The Fast Fiction Challenge, Part 2” by Lee Barnett. Essentially, the Fast Fiction Challenge is where a writer is given a word, and within a designated timeframe, he or she must write a short fiction story that uses that word at some point. From my understanding Lee goes for exactly 200 words for every story that he writes. The end of that sentence marked 101 for me, so as you can see, it’s not much space to get the context of a story across to readers.
          Due to a discussion with my wife this evening I have decided that I’m going to give it a try here on my blog. My Monday blog will detail what I’ll be writing for my Friday entry; basically, I’ll give a word count because I want to vary it up. On Monday’s entry I want readers to comment and give me a word to use; common or uncommon I will use it in my Friday story. In the event that I get more than one word suggested, I will set up a poll on the site (once my wife teaches me how) and readers can vote until Thursday. Then on Friday my story will appear with the word being used and having the correct word count. Easy enough right? Now this will require a little reader participation, so hopefully that won’t be too much of an issue. Anonymous comments are enabled on my blog so anyone can leave one without having to log in.
          I thing this will be fun for me and I’m really looking forward to stretching out my creative muscles on this exercise. We’ll try it for a bit and if it works, great, and if not, I’ll move on. Blogs will be up like normal through the week, the only real change is that on Friday it will be a Fast Fiction.
          I hope some of you are as stocked about this as I am. That means that I have at least one entry per week where I don’t have to stress about content. This will help my sanity a bit I think.

I’m going to start this week of traditionally. I will do a 200 fast fiction that will post on Friday that includes a reader's word. Start commenting!

Sunday Funday

          The last couple of days I have hit the wall of writer’s block with a resounding thud. I’ve written 54 blogs up to this point and it’s getting a lot harder to find something that I think may be interesting to write about. Case in point; Friday’s “blog” was terrible. I hated it for every second that I was answering the inane questions, but, honestly, I tried all day Thursday and all of Friday morning to come up with something but struck out like a rookie.
The view from my office window.
          To perhaps help remedy the situation I have spent a couple of hours cleaning my office. It still needs some work and some organization, but at this point, it’s as good as it’s going to get. I get a feeling that it will be a big help to my writing process because I can actually get to the keyboard and the mouse now without moving trash or books or just general clutter out of the way.
          As I was wrapping up my cleaning I sat down in my chair and turned around a caught my lab, Harvey, just staring out the window watching the snow fall. It’s a peaceful scene; he’s watching out the window, and I’m watching him. Some days it’s good to be me.
          Well, now I’m off to help Stacey get Grayson dressed in warm gear so she can take him to play in the snow. I’m smarter than that, and I will stay inside and hang out with Jackie. I hope everyone has a great day! Enjoy the little things!