Flash Fiction: So many guns

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Another week, another bit of flash fiction adventure.  Chuck Wendig brought back the X meets Y challenge (last time I got Transformers meets Toy Story, which somehow led to a magical girl inspired western).  This time I got True Detective meets Guardians of the Galaxy.  I was stumped at first, but then I realized that GotG is actually just classic adventure fiction; I can easily replace space with water and spaceships with boats, and end up with a solid swashbuckling genre homage instead.  As such, I wrote the piece in my Elven Progenitors setting.  I think you’ll see the True Detective parallels without too much effort, if you have a decent memory for some of the episodes and character dynamics.  This is, of course, it’s own thing.  I also consider it more rough than usual, since I’m a bit rushed; I have to go get in line for the Avengers!

Anyway, I hope you like it.

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Last Days of Loneliness: Crucial Exposition

I’ve solved some of my problems in Last Days of Loneliness, I think.  If you read my earlier posts about how things were terrible and how I couldn’t figure out why Amanda knows to kill the eggs with fire, rest assured, I’ve stumbled across an excellent workaround.

I had very similar conversations with Ben and my brother Nate about how to solve my narrator’s knowledge problem, in which they basically said that I should make someone else in the town or cult tell her to use fire to kill the eggs.  I, of course, resisted their advice at first.  I’d had similar thoughts many times previously, and always dismissed them because I thought it made no sense for someone to break the cult’s taboos and try to warn Amanda.  But after talking with both Nate and Ben, who both made it sound so plausible, and then reading some of George Buckenham’s rules for making games on Rock Paper Shotgun, I decided what the hell; I’d go ahead and do as Buckenham suggested.  So I tried the stupid/simple solution.  And I liked it.

Go figure.

What follows is the scene that I thought wouldn’t work, but did.  It comes some time after a scene in which Amanda goes to the police station and overhears an interesting conversation, and long before her ultimate recognition of the information that she is given in this scene.  Enjoy.

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Flash Fiction: Blood in the Desert

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This week’s dose of flash fiction comes inspired by Chuck Wendig, as per usual.  This time around, I was supposed to start a story with one of the sentences submitted last week as my prompt.  I chose the edited version of a sentence submitted by The Story Hive.  After realizing that I had to rewrite what I’d initially created, I used this week’s project to experiment with timing in narration.  I also tried to continue with a character that you’ve seen before.  You’ll probably still enjoy it. Continue reading

I’m busy, but…

I have a funny pair of videos for you, to tide you over while I finish my school project.  The first video is an excellent example of why I find Rimworld fascinating (you can read my posts about it if you like).  The second one is what happens when the people making Sesame Street love Game of Thrones.

First, bad things happening to desperate space-wreck survivors (hint, it goes poorly):

Second, yes, they really did this:

Flash Fiction? It Wasn’t Me

il_570xN.195917181I totally would have worn this in high school

I spent more words introducing this than writing it.  Bizarre, but useful since I have so much other work I really ought to be doing.  Anyway.  Chuck Wendig’s challenge this week is to write the opening sentence to something, nothing more.  Here goes:

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from being a teenager, it’s that plausible deniability is everything.

Shenani-games: Random Character Generation is GREAT

This weekend was a good one for gaming.  On Saturday I ran a last minute seat-of-the-pants adventure involving a great deal of bullshitting, and on Sunday I continued to run a standing campaign based on the material I started posting about last fall, in the setting I’ve been writing about this spring.  I had a great time with both sessions.

I’m not going to tell you much about the campaign, since that would potentially expose spoilers, but I absolutely have to share the basic setup of the Saturday game with you.  You remember whothefuckismydndcharacter, right?

Because we had very little time to set up and run the game, I decided that the players should roll down the line, which is to say that they had to roll their ability scores in order without being able to shift them around and spend too much time thinking about what they were going to be.  Then Spaige whipped out whothefuckismydndcharacter and got “a fucking sentimental Human Warlock from a cavern without echoes who is a recovering cannibal.”  I immediately decided that people could rearrange their ability scores as long as they shifted them to match a randomly generated character from that site.  Two of our players (Thom and Whitney) were hardcore / lucky and both rolled down the line AND used the random character generator.

The party ended up with an elven wizard, two warlocks (one human, one half-elven), a rock gnome rock bard, and a dragonborn barbarian.  The party’s wisdom scores were (I believe) 6, 6, 7, 8, and 12, with the barbarian as the wisest party member.  The lowest charisma score for the party was 14, and most people had 16 or higher.  Marvellor the Shit had a 20.  How did he end up with a name like that?  Well…

As the first few people figured out who their characters were, everyone decided that the PCs should start at 3rd level and that everyone would need an epithet of some sort.  We made a joke about the gnomish bard rocking out, and so he quickly became Duane the Rock, rock gnome rock bard.  The dragonborn barbarian, who had once survived a cookpot (it said so in his backstory), was described as having proportions like unto a Red Delicious; he’s bigger up top than down low, but he’s all around larger than he really should be.  He came to be known as Horgrin the Vast.  Spaige’s human warlock took the Great Old One pact, and was thus able to communicate telepathically (Spaige, seriously, I still want the fluff you came up with for that demon-tainted cave of the cannibalistic thought-collective, it was great), so she became Chathi, the Last Disciple of Silent Whispers, or Chathi the Last for short.

Whitney still needed an epithet and was randomly generating her character name (she got extra bonus points, because she randomly generated everything including wizard her spell list), but she quickly realized that her name was her epithet.  She ended up playing The Gart, which was perfect because it continued the tradition of four letter epithets.

By this point people were starting to get a little cracked out and/or drunk.  Thom showed up late and generated his character as quickly as he could, randomly generating the name Marvellor for his half-elf warlock, but was stumped for what to call himself until we pointed out that he needed a four-letter epithet.  Thus was born Marvellor the Shit, and his less impressive imp familiar Bixby the Crap.

Together these hooligans decided to search out a treasure as yet untouched by the adventuring group which had touched (more like scarred) all of their lives.  There’s so much that I’m skipping over, like the beautiful way in which they connected the fragments of backstory given to them all through the random character generator, but suffice to say that they had reason to despise and outdo the people who had ruined the lives that they once led.  As such, they journeyed into the land of Kraskya, the ancient and ruined city, and promptly fought a large number of things that they were hilariously ill prepared to face.  And despite the fact that high charisma types and people with enchantment and deception spells rarely do that well against the undead, they triumphed.

Of course, we left off while they were still stuck underground, more or less trapped by a very very large number of skeletons, but I’m sure that will be a good story for another time.

What I Usually Write, or, Responsibilities to One’s Audience

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More or less what I grew up with.

I love adventure fiction.  It’s makes up a large portion of what I write, probably because it’s what I grew up reading in books and creating in role-playing games.  When I don’t write adventures, I still generally use the climactic structure to resolve the primary tensions of the piece.  Unless I feel like experimenting, I don’t usually do the “unfinished story” thing and leave such tension unresolved.  But you probably already know this, so why the hell am I telling you?

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Flash Fiction: Worth a thousand words

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Another week, another piece of flash fiction.  This time, Chuck Wendig has prompted us with a photo, as seen above.  My response is below.  Enjoy.

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You know how they say that a picture is worth a thousand words?  Well.  I thought that the painting of a fairy king on my manager’s wall meant that he was nerdy, liked fantasy, and that we might get along, seeing as how I think fairies are pretty cool and have been kind of a mythology fanboy for a long time.  I should have paid more attention. Continue reading

Flash Fiction: Definitely NSFW

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This week, in honor of Clean Reader, Chuck Wendig decided to challenge us to create something “filthy.”  I’m not sure that I succeeded, but I’m less prudish than some, so who knows.  I wasn’t really interested in just making something filthy by using lots of swears though, so I switched things up and added an additional challenge for myself: I tried to write content that Clean Reader’s creators would find objectionable while using very few words that their program would know to “clean.”  The result is probably best described as erotica.  You have been warned.  Also, if you like NSFW cartoons, I mention the Rock Cocks and they are a semi-real thing that you can look up.  Enjoy!

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