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Capntastic
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« Reply #40 on: April 21, 2012, 01:39:50 AM »

The nerves in my arm were misbehaving.  There was sweat on my forehead, and I only noticed it when I realized I was digging into my wrist with my fingernails.  I couldn't stop.  It felt like my muscles were packed full of ground up shards of glass, and every motion I made caused these phantoms to slide deeper into the tissue.  The not-so-phantom incising pressure of my fingernails was relief.  There was blood under the nails at this time.  I remember seeing it getting packed deeper beneath them, past the quick, congealing, as I dug.  I couldn't stop.  My brain was fevered with so much sensation as I ripped up threads of skin and muscle, tearing a disgusting ring around my wrist.  I kept going, foregoing sleep, only taking water when absolutely required, and splashing some on the increasingly deep ravines of flesh to prevent scabbing, which hindered my progress.

That was six months ago.  I stand before you today a skeleton, proud and free.  Thank you for listening.
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BlueSweatshirt
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« Reply #41 on: April 22, 2012, 10:40:11 AM »

Delilah, why won't you come home?
"Because I'm too busy coming elsewhere!", a snarky retort.
But Delilah, oh how I love you so!
"Bitch, you ate my shrimp."
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rdein
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« Reply #42 on: April 22, 2012, 10:42:15 AM »

anti empire by rdein


i killed an ant today
feels like yesterday
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ink.inc
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« Reply #43 on: April 22, 2012, 09:34:17 PM »

The nerves in my arm were misbehaving.  There was sweat on my forehead, and I only noticed it when I realized I was digging into my wrist with my fingernails.  I couldn't stop.  It felt like my muscles were packed full of ground up shards of glass, and every motion I made caused these phantoms to slide deeper into the tissue.  The not-so-phantom incising pressure of my fingernails was relief.  There was blood under the nails at this time.  I remember seeing it getting packed deeper beneath them, past the quick, congealing, as I dug.  I couldn't stop.  My brain was fevered with so much sensation as I ripped up threads of skin and muscle, tearing a disgusting ring around my wrist.  I kept going, foregoing sleep, only taking water when absolutely required, and splashing some on the increasingly deep ravines of flesh to prevent scabbing, which hindered my progress.

That was six months ago.  I stand before you today a skeleton, proud and free.  Thank you for listening.

I enjoyed this.
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Capntastic
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« Reply #44 on: April 23, 2012, 01:51:05 AM »

It's a sort of recurring joke with friends and I that I'll jam out these elaborate and uncomfortable monologues that end in some variation of "and now i'm a skeleton".

The most notable usage I've gotten out of this 'technique' was in Lamezine.

You can see that here.
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crzikrn
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« Reply #45 on: April 25, 2012, 07:23:10 AM »

Once a rabbit always a rabbit.
That annoying rabbit.
The only reason I hate frogs is because,
they go "rabbit, rabbit."
-
The farmer
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« Reply #46 on: April 25, 2012, 08:01:31 AM »

This is a short story, or actually some kind of prologue I wrote about half a year ago.
I might want to use it in a visual novel or something similar, somewhere in the distant future...

---

The man took another sip from his coffee.

He coughed a bit and realized that he was bored.
He looked out the window from the car, across the water.
For the last hour, nothing significant had happened.
The sunset was quite beautiful though. The western part of the sky, across the water, was still tinted a little bit red, even though the sun itself was already below the horizon.
The moon had probably already risen as well, but was hidden behind the clouds.

The man sighed.
He looked at his watch.
9:30PM.
It's still be two more hours until the end of his shift.
He looked at the water again.
There were almost no waves, and no wind at all. Normally, you would be able to hear the soft sound of the waves hitting the multitude of piers standing about 50 meters from each other. You should also hear the whispering of the wind in the leaves of the trees planted at the other side of the car, with the purpose to serve as some kind of separation between the road and the small hiking trails that the city had built here years ago at the side of the lake.

Still, nothing happened.
There was nothing special to be seen from the car with the view partly obstructed by some bushes.
The night was falling swiftly, and soon there would be even less visible.

The man suppressed a yawn, he had worked since six this morning. He started fiddling with the knobs on the car's radio.
"Fzzzzz...tus update, I repeat, Patrol Car 143, status update please."
The man did nothing in response. It wasn't meant for him. The man took another sip of his already ice cold coffee. The coffee didn't really taste like something you'd want to drink anymore. He decided that he would not drink the rest of it, and turned the car window down to splash the remains on some bushes.
The man thought about the dinner he originally planned with his girlfriend. He had been looked forward to it for two weeks (and he hoped that she did as well). But he had to cancel it.
Why was it always on these kind of moments that somebody got sick, and that he had to take over their shift.
Stupid sickness. Now he would have to wait and watch the area the whole evening. Nothing would happen here today. It never did.
Lame colleague. He probably wasn't even sick to begin with. He just canceled his shift because he had something else to do. This wouldn't be the first time that that happened either.

--

Suddenly jolted awake.
He had heard a strange sound, the screeching and cracking of... an old bike? That had to be it. In the distance, he thought he saw something like that as well. But the darkness prevented a better look.
As it came closer, he knew for sure that it was a bike. On the bike was a person was riding with more or less an average stature. The person looked slender, but because of the darkness, the man wasn't too sure about that either.
The person got off the bike about twenty meters from him, and put the bike against a tree.
Because the way the person moved, and because he was now able to see the person from the side, he assumed that it was a she. Probably a girl of about ... sixteen,seventeen years?
She stepped on the closest pier, extending about five meters onto the lake.
The way she moved was a bit strange. Her back was twitching. Is she crying or something? Or did she just have some pain in her back?
He could see her as she brought her hand up to her face. Was she going to wipe away the tears?
Or wait no, he could now see that she was holding a mobile phone. But that doesn't explain her weird movement.
"Yes, it's me", he could hear her say into the phone. He saw her looking up at the night sky. A sky full of dark and menacing clouds.
It was now completely dark. Even the last bit of sunlight had moved to somewhere behind the horizon.
"No, it's too late"
Because there was no wind, he was able to hear the girl quite well. She had a high and soft voice.
At that moment, the moon appeared from behind the clouds, letting him see her face. She looked unreal and beautiful.
But then the moment passed, and the moon hid once again behind the clouds.
The man looked down, at his watch. It was now 10:05PM.
He looked back up. He was a bit frightened. The girl had disappeared. He hadn't heard anything. No splash or anything. No feet running away. Nothing. For a moment he wondered whether had dreamt the whole event.
But her bike was still standing by the tree. Shit! What the hell was going on!
He knew that he had to call the police station right away, and he already had his radio transceiver in his hand, when he decided against it.
Instead of his radio transceiver he got his mobile phone, and called a special number.
...
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Ř̺͈̮ͬͣ͑͂͊̐a̲͈̲̩̫͍̟̕i̪̪̩̼̩̊̽ͫn̴b̗̠͈̯̲͡ͅo̥̤͓̥̩̾͐ẅ̺́͢ ̴̙̑̍̅o̰̹͙̻̭̘̅͌͐̾ͅf̖̖͖͍̽̅̉͡ ͓̱͓͔̖̣̗ͭC̽҉̗̼̳̖͇̳h̺͕͠a̵̾ͤ͆́́o̼̙͖͎͍̳̅̿ͣs͓̒̌̀  FOCUS-Bytebeat
JoGribbs
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« Reply #47 on: May 12, 2012, 04:56:03 PM »

Last night I by Joseph Gribbin

Okay, so, I was living back in my old place and you were still there in your room on the fifth floor of the adjacent building. This might have been the past but I don't know.

So I'm looking up at your window and I know you are angry at me so I decide to send you a text. I send you a funny one and you just uh kind of ignore it. I mean I think you do. I look up at the window and you're not there but the lights are on. I send another text, this one is like 'are we okay?' then 'are you okay?' and each time I look up at the light from your room and I just feel awful. I ask if I can come up and apologise. The light goes out.

Time passes. I'm surrounded by people I don't know. They've all got hair and piercings and there's a guy who's wearing all leather and has a black lightning bolt painted over his left eye, separated from his hair by a yellow headband. As he walks he jingles. The only person I know there is you, hunched, sitting on the railing, a cigarette tucked between a smile.

No that's it and I. No I don't know what it means I. Okay. I uh. Okay.
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noah!
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« Reply #48 on: June 05, 2012, 02:16:22 PM »

Having fun. Providing a service. Kids talking to kids running a lemonade stand and I'm behind them. They're talking about bicycles and my lemonade's getting warm in the pitcher. Worst service ever. Manager's talking about playing cards in bicycle spokes. Didn't come here to learn about that. Two kids behind the counter, three kids in line and I'm the fourth. Silly putty seat-mods but no citrus.

Gonna report these kids to the BBB. I'll drive them out of town.
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« Reply #49 on: June 07, 2012, 02:34:02 AM »

one of the possible prologues for a story i'll never write.

yet that night, the moon did not rise; and that morning, nor did the sun.
and so he, feebly stepping outside into the surrounding darkness, looked up into the starry void and began wondering.. how could he have never appreciated such a thing?
such warmth that had once kissed his skin, such energy that had once filled his deepest passions, and such magnificent hues of a brilliant amber, that had once filled the skies from far beyond the distant horizon; was now nothing more, than a simple thought.
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Capntastic
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« Reply #50 on: August 09, 2012, 02:02:45 AM »

CYBERTEXT
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Theophilus
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« Reply #51 on: August 18, 2012, 10:12:11 PM »

Talking about creativity with ¡Ñóáh!, he suggested writing a short story. I took ten minutes or so to cook this up.

Andy clips his toenails, every Thursday evening, over the rug in the family room. Click. Click. Click. He notices the severed toenails are... disappearing. Can anyone keep track of every toenail fragment? Where do they all go? The world where toenails and fallen pubic hair are gone, where the lost coins and the very tiny Lego bricks go. A flood, a deluge, a sea of severed toenails, twisting about. Imagine what diseases lay dormant in such a domain disappeared. Consider what microscopic creatures creep in the cramped corners of the world of toenails lost. Sickening. I gotta wash my hands.


this kind of thing is totally outside my comfort zone


sweaty palms

alliteration
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Capntastic
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« Reply #52 on: August 18, 2012, 10:20:41 PM »

Legit crits:  Too much forced rhythm from punctuation marks.

Quote
Andy clips his toenails, every Thursday evening, over the rug in the family room.

Flows better simply by removing the commas:

Quote
Andy clips his toenails every Thursday evening over the rug in the family room.

Further, despite establishing Andy as a character, and sort of hinting at a third person omniscient type of POV, at the end it becomes "I gotta wash my hands.".  The sentence fragment of "Sickening" also highlights this shift in a jarring way, since 3rd person omniscient is usually too detached as a narrator to be sickened by things- likewise, to have the mortal presence to narrate the phrase 'click click click' without objectively stating what we, as people, would know that clicking to be coming from.

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Theophilus
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« Reply #53 on: August 18, 2012, 10:23:42 PM »

thanks for the criticism. i didnt really put a whole lot of thought from a literary standpoint into it. i never really write for fun (even though it is enjoyable). maybe ill do some more of these. stuff like that feels so obvious now. why didn't i see that while i was reading it over?
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Capntastic
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« Reply #54 on: August 18, 2012, 10:25:10 PM »

On Something Awful there's been a Flash Fiction Thunderdome for the last two weeks, and it's been pretty amusing since it's wholly irreverent with its over the top bloodsport affectations, while still being friendly and casual.  

Here's my two entries from the previous weeks:

http://www.brodzkybooks.com/life-under-soil/
http://www.brodzkybooks.com/tagged-for-love-thunderdome/
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Capntastic
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« Reply #55 on: August 18, 2012, 10:33:58 PM »

why didn't i see that while i was reading it over?

It's the same reason some unskilled person can look at good art and bad art and genuinely know the difference, but when they sit down with pencil in hand they have no idea where to start, and once they get started, they have no idea how to progress.

Look at, say, 13th century European art.  A modern day child can tell that perspective is all sorts of problematic, even if they can't explain precisely why.  And those people, those 13th century artists, were at the top of their game and made their living doing that.  It doesn't mean that they were bad at art, it is just proof that they don't have anywhere near the wealth of techniques to build upon when putting things together. 

Visual art is a technology, in that it's a tool that gets you a specific effect, and there are techniques that have been developed to make those 'effects' (realistic proportion, shading, etc) easier and more coherent.  Writing's the same way.

It's not that you're oblivious as to what makes a story good, at least not on a subconscious level.  It's just that it's hard to know exactly what needs to be done to convey things in a coherent manner.

(This is sort of long, but it's not aimed solely at you-- this line of thought has been in my brain for a while now)
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Capntastic
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« Reply #56 on: September 12, 2012, 11:57:52 PM »

http://www.brodzkybooks.com/eventual-eden-thunderdome/
http://www.brodzkybooks.com/gunfarm-thunderdome-technical/

Two new flash fictions.  The second one is salvageable into something larger, I think, since I had a lot of ideas I wanted to expand upon, setting-wise.

There's also this going on, if you hain't heard yet:  http://writeorelse.tumblr.com/post/31278247839/write-or-else-prompt-1

Any comments or critiques appreciated as always.

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Capntastic
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« Reply #57 on: November 02, 2012, 02:53:24 PM »

The pregnant nun was surprised to see that her state sanctioned gynecologist was an owl. The owl wasn't surprised at all; he was quite prepared. He'd been trained how to perform rudimentary ultrasounds via elaborate conditioning routines with dead mice placed on the equipment.

The owl pecked a toggle switch on the side of the machine to "ON" and a gantry swung out of the side of the wall, narrowly avoiding contact with the top of the nun's head. A thin hose was zip-tied to the armature and, from its specially formed tip, a flat ribbon of honey began drizzling onto the nun's habit. The owl flapped its wings and began rotating its head.

It was special "Audic Medium" honey, collected from a particularly genetically modified sort of bee's hive. Once the habit had been thoroughly matted down with it, the owl began whirling a winch with its beak. Two new pneumatic devices slowly emerged from both sides of the wall.   A telescoping rod with a microphone on the end slowly made contact with the small of the nun's back, and from the other side, a similar rod tipped with a very large speaker grille nestled itself into the nun's honey-soaked belly.  The owl spun its head upside down and scratched at an LCD display, eventually getting its talon into contact with the button next to it.

A series of precisely modulated sounds began blasting through the nun's body from the speaker. The microphone collected the sound and began tabulating data. A ticker-tape readout of the results was spooling out of the side of the machine, gradually enveloping the owl, who was now asleep.

The test was completed, and the nun had received the news: She was pregnant with an owl egg.

This is Obamacare.
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« Reply #58 on: November 02, 2012, 05:32:46 PM »

The pitch night is as still as the breeze that fills it, the trees call back a rustling echo of the gentle pushing wind, causing the whisper of rustling fir and pine trees fill the air. A lone night owl that stands on an outcropping tree branch lets out a soft sound of satisfaction as it pushes off its perch and descents to its prey below.

...

You better be making this as a game.  Wizard
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Capntastic
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« Reply #59 on: November 05, 2012, 07:22:01 PM »

Hoar Frost
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Faisal shifted his weight and pressed his palm onto the cold ground as he went from kneeling to laying on his side. He didn't break eye contact with his family. He enjoyed this position, closer to the ground, and slightly removed from the common eye level of the others. Together they all watched him bring his hand up, watched as the frost melted, and listened as it dripped down his arm and onto the ground. It was all he was able to offer at the time, outside of the warmth his wisps of exhalation brought. He knew the air was communal, and knew that those breaths were all that sustained them as a group.

No one had said a word about his change in position, and Faisal went back to listening. The breath of the older man, his father, had slowed in recent times. Deeper, more patient. Faisal couldn't imagine what could be waited for. His sister, who he loved dearly, was the epitome of rhythm in this regard. He often fell into synch with her, as a matter of course. She used to laugh when she noticed, and try to set herself apart. Mother's eyes were closed again, and this was normal enough. She was quiet to the point that all Faisal could do to reassure himself of her presence was scan the air to see her breath. He could make a noise of course, and her eyes would snap to attention, but he wanted her to rest. His own lungs rose and fell as always, and it was a burden to ignore this. He liked to keep his mind on other things.

He'd keep eye contact even when the others were sleeping. It was an automatic responsibility. Only when he slipped and looked past his family, beyond the small glow of light and warmth they provided, did he remember exactly why he had to keep at it. His sister used to spend time suggesting the things that might be out there, good or bad. It was known to all involved that this was a thought exercise meant to prevent the mind from falling into disuse. It was a courtesy, and perhaps a responsibility for her that she took on of her own will, automatically. Faisal couldn't stand it, but appreciated her intentions.

Eventually he slept, his eyes closing into a different type of blackness, breaking contact with his father. His body was dull and empty matter during this time, as lifeless as the dirt he was laying on. Faisal's limbs stiffened as his breath slowed to an imperceptible minimum. His skin grew cold as frost settled on it. His hair and fingernails grew. Eyelashes fell off. Every second of this period of blank repose was scrutinized by eyes he could not be aware of. He was sustained by the knowledge that his stillness would be observed, even while his slumber deprived him of knowledge.

When he opened his eyes, and rejoined the family, all three were focused on him. His father inhaled, paused for a second, and spoke.

"I've come to a decision. You will be leaving us."

It took until the frost of his father's breath touched him for it to register. Even then, Faisal's father continued to fill the air with his voice.

"You squander too much heat. You're lax in your duties to us. We will all be better with you gone."

Voiceless noises escaped Faisal's throat as he tried to form an argument, but he knew his father's nature. The decision was as solid and cold as the ground. His sister was looking down at the ground. Had she known this was going to happen? Had they spoke of the matter while he was asleep? How long had this been in motion? He wouldn't be able to know these answers. All he could do was comply with the decision.

He shifted his weight to his hands, and struggled to put his feet down underneath him. His tendons cracked, and he felt the cold and numbness as blood rushed to his muscles. He hadn't stood up in so long. He lurched forwards as his balance was thrown off by the sudden perspective change. Looking down on his family from this angle was entirely new. How much taller had he grown since this had begun?

He clutched at his shoulders to keep the warmth close to him as he began to step away. His own light was dim, and he could barely be certain of where he put his feet down. His family receded into the distance. For a moment, he considered staying just outside the edge of their sight. It would be too cold, and he would not be able to sustain himself once he slept. The blood continued to surge through his body. They had cast him out, truly.

His entire posture changed, as his body responded automatically to what his mind was focused on. His inhalations were pure, and deep. Knowing there was nothing out there in the cold and blackness, and knowing that his family could kill him with a single decision, he moved in a way he never had before. He began running.
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