Category: snippets

One Word Wednesday: Dominant

I’m posting this later in the day than I originally planned.  Not being a morning person, and being at work all day made this slip my mind until I saw some friends post this to their blogs.  And this was originally my idea!  What does that say about my brain?

One Word Wednesday is part of my ongoing effort to create new blog content.  I pitched this idea to CritiqueCircle, and some people decided to jump on.  I’ll link their posts at the bottom.

The idea is based on oneword.com.  They give you 1 word per day, and you have 1 minute to start writing whatever you think of.  Today’s word is DOMINANT.

He didn’t like this new secretary.  He liked to be in control, and this was something that she just couldn’t handle.  Sure, she worked for a different partner.  And sure, he didn’t have to deal with her if he didn’t want to.  But there was something about the way she looked at him, about the way she rolled her eyes when he barked an order, and the way she walked past him with an air of “fuck you” that drove him insane.

I took this idea from a project I briefly worked on a little while ago and plan to return to, about a power-hungry executive and an unruly new hire.  It was called Executive Tantrum.

Other posters:
Lanise Brown

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Six Sentence Sunday #3

I’ve decided to try signing up for SSS this week instead of just posting something.  The following excerpt is from Swamp Gas.  Next week, I’ll go back to posting from Jasper City.

This takes place in the swamps near a war-torn US city.  The protagonist Stelle encounters an injured man during a distress cal:

“Stelle moaned through the gas mask, holstering her weapon.  She knelt down and examined the man’s body.  His skin was several shades of red, and blistered.  What Stelle took to be cold chills were actually violent muscle twitches, indicating serious nerve damage.  It was only a matter of time before the chemicals he inhaled killed him.  

Stelle quickly opened her pack and produced a second gas mask.”

Six Sentence Sunday #2

For this SSS I’m going in a somewhat different direction, in honor of NaNo 2012.  I’ve decided this year I’m going to start working on Jasper’s Fall, which takes place a decade before Jasper City.

When I plan, I tend to write out a summary first of what I want the story to be, as if it were going to be on the back of the published book.  Using that as a starting point, I brainstorm from there and end with writing the outline.  It was coincidence that this summary turned out to be six sentences long.

“It is the twenty-second century.  The North American continent is beaten, scorched, and all but destroyed by a war with no end in sight.

Two brothers, Edward and Calvin Jasper, are part of a unit who tried to defend their homeland and failed.  When they stumble across a camp of civilian survivors, Edward finds inspiration to abandon his hopeless cause and start over.  He’s moved to build a great city and bring civilization back to the land.

It isn’t long before Edward realizes just how hard his cause will be.”

From CHUM

CHUM is for now a short story, but I plan on making it part of a novel set in an alternate version of 1920s Chicago. Robots are just being introduced to the world, especially as part of the Untouchable Project aimed at using new and very convincing androids to crackdown on those who break Prohibition law. In the middle of it all is Thomas Quinn, a simple supervisor in a robotics factory who hopes that his latest project will impress one certain girl.

To say that Tom’s experience with being around women was limited would be an understatement. Shy and awkward as he was, it wasn’t completely surprising to him when he thought back to the last time he even held hands with another girl. He had to comfort his baby cousin somehow when she found herself separated from her mother, Tom’s aunt Frida.

His mother told him that he was still a handsome young man with his whole life ahead of him, and that may have been true with him in his mid twenties, but he still felt at times that he was wasting his better years when he saw his younger brother with a different, beautiful young flapper every night.

Perhaps he could adopt some thing like his brother did, like a fake Italian accent, a nonsense nickname, and a gun. But Tom didn’t like guns at all, and he always grew so squeamish even at the mere rumor of one being in the room. He had no hope of ever being a family’s associate like Johnny.

That wasn’t so say that he felt just as nervous walking through the factory today with Marla by his side. He had been admiring her from afar for almost a year now, and flirted with the line that had separated admiration and stalking when he shadowed her on some of his days off, if only to find out more about her and what she liked. He was certainly too shy and invisible to strike up a conversation himself.

Om must have looked like such a nervous wreck now, with Marla walking next to him in her best red dress and heels, and with lipstick and a flower in her hair to match. The dress didn’t show off her curves at all. Tom wondered at first if she even had them, and only dreamed of a time when he could ever get a chance to see them. But Marla’s true beauty was in her face, with hardly any makeup expect for her lipstick. She certainly didn’t need to wear any at all, and the lipstick was just for showing off.

It certainly worked. Every man in the factory stopped his work to look at her, pausing periodically and losing focus on the tasks at hand just to get another glimpse of her. There was the occasional whistle from someone standing a safe distance away. Surely, she got that kind of attention from interested man and jealous women often enough to bore almost anyone else, but Marla continued to accept it with grace and a renewed sense of pride.

In comparison, it only made poor Tom all the more anxious. His pulse raced even more, and he felt his body turn pink. Anyone who turned to look at the pair at that point would wonder what the hell Marla was doing with the bundle of nerves named Tom.