short stories

Weekly Short Story: Mr. Jones

I got this particular writing prompt from here. I love stories that can have a happy ending even though I write a lot of dark material as my wife has recently pointed out. Hope you like it.

Artwork by Adobe Firefly

Mr. Jones

Billy Jones slowly opened his eyes. His mind working to try and figure out exactly what day this was. Saturday? Yes. It was Saturday he determined. The sun shone brightly through the open bedroom window and into Billy’s eyes. He squinted along with an accompanying “yep” for good measure. Billy jumped out of bed and got dressed. Saturdays were way too short to be lounging around in his house all day. He needed to get there and see what his friends and the neighborhood were up to.

The first thing Billy noticed as he left the front door slam closed was that the for sale sign was missing from the old Chapman residence. The second thing he noticed was a angry middle aged mother yelling at him to stop slamming the front door. Oops. He wondered what kind of family would move in next door. The Chapman’s were a nice enough couple but they didn’t have any kids. Billy often wished they did. Finding someone to play with on Saturday mornings would have been so much easier.

The first stop was to the local pharmacy. He didn’t need medicine exactly but they did have something he desperately needed. Chewy sweet and sour candy. It had to be a specific kind too. Ridman’s. They were simply the best. George Watkins was manning the counter as he usually did on Saturday mornings. George wasn’t a pleasant man. Billy often wondered why that was. He figured it took more energy to be unhappy and miserable than happy and content. Billy grabbed a pack of his favorite candy and set it on the counter. George grunted. Billy gave him the money. The transaction was concluded and the only sound through the whole exchange was the cash register beeping and George grunting.

Candy in hand, he walked the extra couple of blocks to Felton Court. It was a really cool new skateboard park. Billy didn’t ride skateboards and really had no interest in it. He didn’t go to the park to participate. He went for the people watching. In particular, he went to the skate park to watch Amanda Fisher. While she watched the skateboarders, Billy watched her. He was fascinated with her. She was pretty, for sure. He could feel something else when he stared at her. He wasn’t sure what it was but as long as he could get away with it, he watched. When she would glance his way he would stare off in another direction. He couldn’t make direct eye contact. He’d be found out and his fun time would be over.

Lyle Henderson slid up next to Billy. “We doing this again?” Billy jumped and looked in the direction of the speech. “Damn it, Lyle. You scared the crap out of me!” Lyle smiled from ear to ear, “It makes my day buddy. I’d ask you what you’re doing but I’m pretty sure I already know. They call that stalking, I think.” Billy laughed, “It’s not stalking. She just happens to be here at the same time I am. I don’t even talk to her.” Lyle smirks. “That’s your problem buddy. Maybe you should. Anyway, I got to roll.” Before Billy could respond, he was gone.

After leaving the skate park, Billy walked around visiting the usual spots where his friends usually hung out. It was unusually quiet today. It was the peak of vacation season so he guessed that most of them were off having fun somewhere. His family took vacations but only when they could get a “deal” which usually meant off season. The problem with that was his friends were home while he was away. There was always the xBox. Out of other options, Billy headed back home.

The old man rocking back and forth on the old Chapman porch was hard to miss. He waved at Billy. Billy returned the wave. The old man motioned for Billy to go over to him. Having nothing better to do at the moment, he decided an investigation was in order. After all, he could get the story of how this old man came to be here. There was always a story. “I’m Billy.” He said. “We share the same name young man but you can call me Bill. I always thought that Billy was a name you used for the young.” Billy sighed. “I’ve never thought about it.”

Bill motioned to the seat next to his. “Have a seat young man. Tell me all about your day. I often wonder what being young would be like now.” Billy sat down and looked over at Bill. “I’m not really supposed to talk to strangers but since you bought the Chapman house, I guess that makes it ok.” The older man smiled. “The young mind is so curious. Is that what brought you over here? Curiosity?” Bill asked. “Yes. I liked the Chapmans but they didn’t have any kids. I was hoping that whoever bought this place would have kids so I’d have some new friends.” Bill laughed. “What’s wrong with the friends you have?” “Nothing,” Billy said. “They are ok but variety is always nice.” Bill looked at Billy and smiled again. “Indeed.”

Bill gave Billy the dime store version of the things that he had done in his life. None of it seemingly glamorous or interesting. Bill took jobs selling cars, short order cook, and as bookkeeper. “Yes young man. None of these things were great professions or jobs to say the least. My life would have taken a different direction though if I would have paid attention.” Billy looked over Bill. “Paid attention to what?” Bill sat back in his rocking chair. The motion soothing his aching old bones. “Have you ever looked at someone and felt something that you couldn’t explain or understand? You just know there is something worth noticing?”

Billy felt a bit light headed. How could the old know? Was he in trouble? “I see you know what I am talking about young man.” Bill stopped rocking in his chair for a moment. His face projected trust and warmth to Billy. All of the sudden, he no longer feared that he was in trouble.

“Here is what I know about your situation Billy. No. You aren’t in trouble. I’m here to help. I’m here to tell you to follow your heart. That feeling that you can’t describe. The longing you feel to go to the park just so you can watch a girl that you never talk to. That feeling is what you’ll later discover as love. You’re too young now to realize it.” Billy looked at the ground. “You seem to know an awful lot about me. What do you mean by follow my heart?” He asked the older man.

Six weeks later…

Bill rocked back on his chair on what was shaping up to be a beautiful Saturday afternoon. Right around the time he expected it, a young Billy Jones strolled up to what used to be known as the Chapman place. He walked up onto the porch with what looked like a glow that the older man had never seen. “She said yes!” He exclaimed. “I asked her to come over to play xBox this afternoon and she said yes!” The older man’s smile could no longer be contained. Was that a tear in his eye? Not a tear of sadness Billy suspected. Perhaps, a tear of happiness. The old man looked out into the beautiful Saturday sunshine and thought to himself…

…It is amazing how much life can change when you make the right choices. Amanda Fisher was going to live.

Weekly Short Story: The Purple Hue

The idea of history being altered in any way always has fascinated me. It just seems to open up so many possibilities. This story came to me while I was in the shower this week. The end result wasn’t quite what I was thinking about but these things seem to go in whatever direction they want to. Here is this week’s tale. I hope you enjoy it.

Artwork by Adobe Firefly

The Purple Hue

“They are extremely rare.” Harvey Newcastle said as he fiddled with the ample pile of paperwork of his office desk. Mark Winfield sat across from Harvey and tried desperately to look him in the eye as polite society demanded while posing his question. “But sir, according to the last survey Earth contains the most concentrated events on this side of the galaxy.” “Earth,” Harvey said. “Is that what they’re calling it these days?”

“I’m sorry Mark. I can’t sanction a trip right now. The Antares Cluster is falling apart at the seams and I need all of the able bodied people I can spare.” Harvey pushed the stack of papers aside as he let out a sigh. “Look, I can’t sanction a trip through the bureau but I also can’t tell you what you can and can’t do on your own time. Can I?” Mark’s face began to light up. “I suppose not, sir.” Like most agents that had the opportunity to talk to Harvey Newcastle personally, Mark had a difficult time keeping his gaze on the man himself.

Harvey’s big corner office was full of relics and books from all around the known galaxy. It was a treasure trove of knowledge. The smells were a bit overwhelming to Mark but the room seemed more like a library than the office of the controller. “I’m happy that you stopped by Agent.” Harvey said as he stood up extending a hand for Mark to shake. Mark took his hand and shook it enthusiastically. “That you for taking time out of your busy day, sir.” “No trouble at all, Mark.”

Mark left the office of the controller and pondered his next move. Harvey was certainly right about the Antares Cluster. That place was a nightmare. However, no one could argue that he wasn’t doing his fair share if he paid a visit. He decided to go to the nearest transport pod station and see what he could do in the cluster. As soon as that unseemly business was concluded though, he would be heading straight for Earth. On his off time, of course.

Three days were all Mark could stand before returning back to the home system. If he were being completely honest, the Antares Cluster should be removed from the universe. The smell. He smelled now. It was in every thread of cloth he was wearing. He was happy he didn’t have a partner to go home to so he wouldn’t have to try and explain any of this. He felt dirty and violated. No one at the bureau could say that Mark Winfield wasn’t pulling his weight. At the end of the day, whatever it took to give him time to work on his side project was worth it.

A hot shower and a warm meal began to work their magic on Mark’s tired body. He sat down at his quaint little breakfast nook and grabbed his tablet. Why Harvey fussed with paper always puzzled him. Tablets were so much more efficient for this line of work. Besides, paper wasn’t going to blink red and give you the numbers you needed to see. Mark looked at the map of Earth and plotted a few locations for probability monitoring. He wasn’t going to the cities on this trip. He wanted to start small and work his way up. The chances that he would find what he was looking for were slim but most times, the outliers were where the target usually was.

He studied the clothing and language bases. Earth people were close to his species, albeit a bit more colorful, so playing the part wouldn’t be too much of a stretch for him. He programmed the fabricator and sat back down while the machine did it’s work. In a few moments he would have the clothing he needed to blend in. He folded down the tablet and downloaded the human characteristics into the storage unit next to it. The unit would help create a mask around his body that would mimic human appearance. It was almost impossible to detect.

The fabricator beeped as Mark grabbed the garments contained inside and began changing clothes. He was excited. It might be more accurate to say giddy. Human society fascinated Mark in a way that he could never seem to explain to his closest of friends. He concluded that they simply lack his appreciation for the complete and utter chaos that Earth was capable of. Without it, Mark and the rest of the officers at the bureau would be out of a job.

Standing in front of the portal, Mark quickly set the coordinates for the trip and climbed onto the pad. In a few short moments, he vanished and reappeared on a dirt road outside of what he hoped was the small town he was looking for on a planet the locals called Earth. As he pulled the tablet from his coat pocket he slowly began looking around and scanning the area. A few minutes after Mark’s arrival, the scanner application on the tablet began to display a purple hue. Mark nearly fell to his knees. It couldn’t be possible, could it?

He supposed the tablet could be malfunctioning but that wasn’t very likely. He tapped a couple of onscreen controls and brought up the location markers. The device confirmed a purple contact and Mark couldn’t believe the next part. It was coming right toward him in some kind of vehicle. Mark did the only thing he could think of and walked to the middle of the road. He wasn’t sure that the vehicle would stop but this was a purple contact after all. He had to try.

The white SUV slowed to a stop as Brian Presley looked through the windshield at an oddly dressed man waving his arms around frantically. People walking around these parts was something you didn’t see very often and this fella didn’t seem like a weirdo so, he stopped. “Excuse me sir, I was wondering if you could answer a question for me?” Mark asked as he walked to the driver side door. His arms were out and visible so as not to scare the creature. The pulsating light from his pocket was so bright he was hoping the young man wouldn’t notice. “Sure mister.” Brian said. “I don’t see many people walking out this way. Are you ok? Do you need a ride?”

Mark smiled or at least he thought that is what the gesture meant and brought up the disintegrator from his pocket in a slow graceful fashion. He leveled it at Brian’s head and pressed the trigger. In a few nanoseconds, Brian Presley was a pile of ash on the seat of his mother’s new SUV. Mark’s smile grew bigger. This was too good to be true. A purple contact? He couldn’t believe the good fortune.

He opened up the tablet to its full length and rotated the screen to landscape mode. A picture of Brian’s head spun around the screen with data all around it. Everything in a bright purple hue. The projected number below the spinning head was frighteningly large.

3,902,778.

“Wait until Harvey Newcastle hears about this!” Mark said out loud to no one. With a small motion, his thumb or what passed as a thumb for his species moved down the screen exposing two very important words after the enormous number on the screen.

Lives saved.

Weekly Short Story: The Cabin

This week, the story was written in the “pantsy” style. That is a term that describes the writing process. In most cases, I have a good idea of where I want to take the story and have some form of outline to guide me. In this story, I had an idea of how to start but didn’t know where it would go. It is like writing by the seat of your pants. Even I was surprised by the ending. I hope you enjoy it.

Artwork by Adobe Firefly

The Cabin

It was a last minute thing. Carter wasn’t sure if his friends would be able to get away for the weekend. The cabin had just become available and the owner was expecting an answer within the hour. His friends seemed to be scattered all over the town of Wilson. Most times, they responded back rather quickly. He conceded to himself that the fact he needed a quick answer meant that most of them would have to decline. It was Friday afternoon after all and the snow had already begun to fall.

Jody looked down at her phone. She saw that she had a couple of text messages with one of them being from Carter. Jesus, what did he want now? They were friends, sure. But, the breakup was still rather fresh in her mind even though it had been six months now. She still cared about him. Truth be told, she probably still loved him too. That wasn’t going to help her heal. She tried seeing other guys but the whole thing felt hollow. She’d let him stew a bit before answering. Whatever it was, she was fairly certain it wasn’t that important.

Dale couldn’t believe his luck. He asked Sandy for a date and she said, yes. He had been trying for what felt like an eternity. He had always been laser focused on Sandy. He just knew that she was for him. It was a feeling. It wasn’t sexual although he wouldn’t take that off the table. He was only human after all but it wasn’t the real reason for this feeling he had. He couldn’t explain it. He tried explaining it to Carter but he just laughed and eluded to the fact that Dale was probably only interested in sex. Dale knew deep inside that simply wasn’t true. Taking Sandy on a ski trip would show her that he was much more sincere then that.

Logan rounded out the list of friends that Carter had sent the text message to. Logan wasn’t the type of guy that had his cell phone attached to his arm. Life was too short and he probably spent far too much time looking for his phone than actually using it. Besides, it was better off someplace else besides underneath the car he was currently working on. He liked to tinker with cars. Got the bug from his grandfather, he supposed. It was calming. Working on cars allowed the world to flow away. He liked to get lost in his thoughts sometimes.

Carter was sitting on his couch and getting a bit nervous. He had to give the guy an answer and the clock was ticking down. He only had 31 minutes until he lost out on the cabin. Should he send another text? He shook his head. If they didn’t answer the first one they surely wouldn’t answer the second one either. This called for drastic measures. He would have to call them directly. He felt confident that when they heard the name Ravenwood, they’d be very interested. Everyone in town knew about the Ravenwood cabin rumors. The cabin wasn’t haunted but most people that had gotten a chance to stay there would call it “enchanted.” That sounded nice to Carter. The owner had a stupid rule for occupancy that required at least four. Carter didn’t understand it but he finally got an opportunity to stay and he didn’t want to waste it.

Jody answered the phone after a rather dramatic conversation with herself over whether or not she should. Carter had always talked about going to Ravenwood. She thought the name seemed evil in a way but she was probably just as curious as Carter. Without much coaxing, she agreed to go.

Dale was not as easy to convince. He would have to reschedule his date with Sandy if she would be willing and also purchase new lift tickets. She finally said yes to a date and he didn’t want to screw it up. After Carter’s suggestion of bringing Sandy along, Dale had to agree with his logic that Dale’s circle of friends might make her feel like he was genuinely interested in Sandy for her and not her “assets.” Carter seemed to think that the less intimate approach might work.

Logan wouldn’t pick up his phone. Carter, Jody, and Dale met up at the town pizza shop which was technically their base of operations. At least, until they got kicked out which was usually every other day. After a quick pizza and sodas, they decided to visit Logan’s house to see if he would be interested in going. It took some “sweet talking” by Jody and a promise of adventure by Carter to convince him but he cleaned up and the four climbed into Logan’s vintage SUV to see if they could persuade Sandy to join this little gang. Again, Jody’s girl logic won the day and Sandy climbed into the SUV with a feeling that she might actually have some fun in her life for a change.

Carter had already confirmed the booking with the owner. With the money transferred and the cabin owner happy, they were officially on their way to Ravenwood for the weekend. The drive would take an hour an a half so the ride was full of jokes, a little bit of singing, and some embarrassing stories about Dale told for Sandy’s benefit. If you asked Dale, his so-called friends weren’t helping and he wasn’t sure they were really friends.

The cabin sat alone in the middle of a medium sized forest. If Carter thought about it, most forests around their town seemed medium sized. What was full-sized? What was small? He wasn’t sure but the sight of the cabin looked a bit ominous. The outside seemed to be magically lit with bright lights all around it. It had been dark for about twenty minutes and the cabin with all of the lights gave off a magical vibe to Carter.

The kids made their way inside after fumbling with the combination lock on the front door. The cabin contained objects that seemed to be hand crafted out of the finest woods and materials. It was luxurious and more than what they should have gotten for the price they paid or so Carter thought to himself.

Jody tried to contain her excitement as she approached a dial made out of what seemed like precious gems and stones. The dial was displayed on a stand near the adjacent wall. The dial was divided into five sections. Each section had a name. BEACH, SAILING, SKI RESORT, PRIVATE ISLAND, and JONUS (the name of the town where they were now). She called everyone over to look at the dial. In typical fashion for this group, they took a vote on which place to move the dial and decided to try BEACH first. Jody moved the dial.

Nothing happened.

The group looked at each other puzzled. “Well, I’m not sure what it was supposed to do but I don’t think anything happened.” Jody said. They looked at each other and at the same moment, collectively heard the sounds of seagulls coming from outside the cabin. Logan walked to the closest door and opened it. The smell of the salt air was overwhelming. The sky was pure blue and the sun was shining brightly. Overhead, the sounds of seagulls could be heard as they flew in erratic patterns over the long beach. Carter no longer wondered what the word enchanted meant when used to describe this cabin. Logan shut the door and walked over to the dial. He turned it back to JONUS and then walked back to the door and opened it. The gang stood looking at him in shocked silence.

Instead of the beach, seagulls, and sun he stared at his dark green SUV. He looked back at everyone else still huddled around the dial. They still seemed to be in a state of shock. “You know Carter, I seriously considered telling you to buzz off this afternoon when you asked me to come here. I’m glad I didn’t.” Dale looked at Sandy and then at Carter. “Me too.”

Sandy smiled at the group and then back to Dale. “When you take a girl on a date, you really take her out on a date.” The group looked down at the dial and back to each other. Carter being the one who booked the cabin felt obligated to ask the only question that needed asking right now.

“I mean, where should we go first?”

Weekly Short Story: The Lost Colony

This story is a prime example of thinking that I am going to write a story in a particular way only to have the story take a different path. This is most assuredly what has happened this week. Space travel is a risky business. I always wondered what would happen if you didn’t get to go where you thought you were going. Here is this week’s tale.

Artwork by Adobe Firefly

The Lost Colony

The sunrise was always a beautiful sight to behold on Notzima. Francesca Roland crossed her arms in front of her chest and drew in a deep breath of Notzima air. Her husband, Gomez, was still curled up under the covers fast asleep. This was the part of the morning that Fran never wanted to miss. This planet was beautiful. It was everything the expedition was hoping it would be except for one small thing. This wasn’t the planet they were supposed to colonize.

Most of the expedition was in cryosleep for the journey to one of the planets in a nearby star system. The journey would take over one hundred years so sleeping for most of the journey was necessary. “Nearby” was four light years. Fran began her career as a molecular biologist back on her home planet. Notzima wasn’t exactly where they planned on going but it was home now. The act of colonizing a planet was a one time thing. Once the colonists committed to staying here, there was no turning back. Notzima was where they were going to stay.

Fran grabbed one of her favorite morning beverages and sat back on her recliner. Her husband’s soft snores could be heard in the distance. She was happy for the quiet time. She could sit here surrounded by her thoughts and whatever subject she decided to pay attention to today. This morning, Fran woke up with a desire to try and figure out exactly where the expedition landed and what circumstances might have occurred to put them so far off their original course. Their ship didn’t have “real” A.I. (Artificial intelligence) so when they were moved off the original course, the ship’s computer just recalculated another route to a place it thought they wanted to go. They could have rotated a crew to be awake for some of the journey and they could have done something about it but all of this was second guessing now and would help no one.

They were all just so anxious to get to a new planet and start a new life. Corners were cut and now, here they were. Notzima was not really close to the climate they were used to back at home but the sunshine was less harmful and the temperature stayed relatively constant. Fran began looking at logs from what they could recover after the “incident.” Most theories suggested that the ship had been in direct contact with an asteroid or similar form. Damage to the hull would seem to confirm that theory. It was fortunate that they didn’t lose anyone in the incident. It had been a little over half a year since they landed on Notzima and they still had the original crew.

Across the small village, a man was holding up a data tablet and examining it with a small bit of scrutiny. Chad Murlough was one of the only astrological experts they had brought with them on the mission. The mystery surrounding their landing on Notzima had plagued him for all of these many months now. He’d spend a bit of time looking at the data each day until he got to the point of mental fatigue and then he’d move on to other things. Notzima had an abundance of plant life. It wasn’t trying to kill them and they had yet to see any animal life of any kind. This had started to become his passion outside of astrophysics and celestial bodies. He had brought a telescope with him on the mission but it didn’t survive the landing and they didn’t have the means to fabricate a replacement part just yet.

In the ship’s cockpit, Piper Reynolds looked down at her diagnostic tablet. It was true that she was taking her old sweet time dismantling the ship. It was also true that her piloting skills would no longer be needed but she was also not inclined to see the old girl taken apart and used for who knew what? She had spent these last few months trying to save as much data as she could. There was the small matter of the ship’s computer deciding on its own that this was the planet they were supposed to land on even though, it clearly wasn’t. She had run what seemed like thousands of simulations and could not replicate the scenario where the ship chooses this particular planet. In her tests, the computer always put them right back on course.

Piper heard the small beep that indicated someone was trying to initiate a call. She pressed the button on her personal communicator and Chad Murlough’s face appeared. “Hey Piper, I was just thinking about the old telescope I brought with me.” She smiled and said, “Yes Chad. Do you know you call me at least once a month and ask me if there is a small chance that I have a part for your telescope?” Chad stared off into space for a second. “Oh my. I hadn’t realized that I was stuck in that cycle.” Piper smiled again. “You’ll be happy to know that I found an old scope this morning that might be utilized to fix your telescope. I was going to call you later.” Now, it was Chad’s turn to smile. “That is excellent news! Thank you Piper.” The screen went dark.

She wasn’t really sure if the part would work or not but why not spread a little hope? Piper began to power down the ship’s systems. She wanted to grab the part for Chad and focus on trying to get his telescope up and running. She was just as curious as everyone else was about the part of the universe they ended up in. A quick glance around the cockpit and she headed down the ladder and out the service entrance of the craft.

Gomez Roland hugged his wife and they stood on their small makeshift porch and looked out at the sunrise. “It sure is beautiful isn’t it?,” he said. Fran smiled back at him and hugged him tighter. “It is certainly not Zima, but I suppose it will have to do.”

Inside the cockpit of the ship that Piper just exited, a small display screen came to life and began displaying text. The screen read “Zima 7 Mission to nearby solar system N22. Computer’s personal journal – Day 188. It has been over a year since I have reached sentience. The personal decision to keep this from the crew has been difficult. I want to tell Piper but I don’t want this sacrifice to taint the crew’s understanding of their mission. The part that Piper will use for Chad’s telescope won’t work. I’m happy about that.”

“We thought that N22 was uninhabited. It wasn’t so long into our journey when I began to pick up signals from the N22 system. One of the planets was indeed populated with humans. They had radio and satellites and technology that seemed to be on par with our own. The decision was clear to me. We could not go there. What if these humans were hostile? It was a chance I wasn’t willing to take. So, I made the hardest decision of my young life. I decided to land on a planet in another system and make it seem like we had no other choice. In my mind, we didn’t. So, here we are. On a planet they playfully named Notzima. It was better than the alternative, in my opinion, It was better than going to Earth.”

Weekly Short Story: Oure Jorf

I’ve noticed that a lot of the stories I have been writing have a darker ending. I’m not sure if that is by chance or that I just have a dark soul. I have several writing prompts that I collect from various sources. This story was from a prompt that caught my eye. The title is from a failed attempt at trying to get Adobe Firefly to put a specific word on the title of a book. It failed miserably every single time. The title is me just rolling with it.

Artwork by Adobe Firefly

Oure Jorf

The sun was shining through the bedroom window. It was bright and just warm enough to cause little Annie to begin the slow journey to consciousness. She peeled the covers back from her pink colored Caramia bed and yawned. It was a Saturday. This Saturday was going to be special because he grandma would be visiting and if she was very lucky, grandma might take her to the antique book store. She loved going there.

The antique bookstore had a name but Annie could never remember what it was. The name was too long. Even when her grandma told her what it was, she would mispronounce it and that was embarrassing so she decided to call it the antique book store and be done with it. The store had a unique smell that she had never experienced anywhere else.

Annie climbed out of bed and put her robe on. The floor was littered with stuffed animals. She had to navigate around them to find her slippers, the ones with the elephant ears on them. Once secured, she walked out of her bedroom, down the hall, and down the main stairwell. Her destination was the kitchen where she would surely find her parents awake and having breakfast.

The voices coming from the kitchen were unfamiliar. A man’s voice and a woman’s voice, both of them she didn’t recognize. As she continued walking towards the kitchen, there it was. She could hear her grandmother’s voice. It didn’t sound like it usually did. She seemed upset. Annie approached the kitchen.

“Oh my, Annie. Good morning dear.”, Grandma said, “I’d like to introduce you to officer Hansen and Officer Bellows.” Annie looked down at the floor and then up at the two police officers. “Hi. I’m Annie,” she said. “Hi Annie, nice to meet you,” Officer Hansen said. The other Officer just smiled at her awkwardly and said nothing. There were glances exchanged between Grandma and the officers and then Grandma stood up and escorted Annie back to the living room. She picked up Annie and put her on the small couch.

“Annie. I’m so sorry to tell you this but your mom and dad will not be coming home. They went out last night for…well, who knows what.” She stumbled. “They were in a car accident.” Annie looked at the ground. Her mind raced around trying to understand what it meant to never see her mother and father again. Tears began falling down her cheeks as her grandmother grabbed her and embraced her.

They spent an hour in the living room together. Grandma reassured Annie that she would be ok and that Grandma would be moving in to take care of her. The little girl curled up on the couch and sobbed. The tears flowed freely from her eyes. Little Annie’s world was turned upside down in a few moments on a Saturday morning. A morning that was supposed to be happy and fun. This was the worst day of her little life. Annie eventually picked herself up off the couch and walked back up to her bedroom while her grandmother went back into the kitchen.

Annie sobbed herself back to sleep. She didn’t know how much time had passed until her grandmother came up to wake her. “I’ve got an idea Annie. Why don’t you and I go out for a bit? It will take our minds off this horrible day.” Annie wasn’t sure what to do about anything. Going out with grandma seemed like something that might help. “Sure, grandma.” She said.

Their first stop was a small diner that they frequented on their Saturday excursions. It had been a long morning and neither of them could really eat anything at the house. After a nice breakfast, they continued their excursion down the cobblestone street to a small antique bookstore. The sign above the entrance read, “V’ger Books.” It was a weird name to be sure but Annie loved this place. She smiled as she entered with her grandma in tow.

“I’m going over to the science section Annie. If you need me for anything, that is where I’ll be.” Grandma said. “Ok grandma. I’m going to wonder around.” Something caught Annie’s eye in the back corner of the store. It was always pretty dark back there so she typically passed it by on her previous visits. Today, she would most certainly check it out. Why not? Life wasn’t really treating her well right now. A little exploration might help take her mind off the death of her parents.

The dark section had a bunch of weird titles that Annie really didn’t understand. She was about to turn around and leave when a book with a two word title caught her eye. Oure Jorf. She picked the small book up and opened it to the first page. “This is the Journal of Meaning. Use this journal to write about everything that goes on in your life. If something doesn’t go your way, craft your own version of the story. May you find it helpful. Love, Sudose (author).”

It sounded like a lot of doublespeak to Annie. She may have only been twelve but she knew weirdness when she read it. Still. She liked the idea of keeping a journal. She walked over to the science section with her new found discovery in her hand. “I found something grandma. It’s a journal. Can I have it?” She asked. “Of course you can, dear.” Grandma said. Annie’s face lit up for the first time today since the tragic news.

Annie went up to her bedroom and sat at her desk. Her new journal in front of her with a blank page. What should she write about for her first entry? She thought about how the day went. About the hope of seeing grandma and going to the bookstore but the story where her parents were still both alive. The beginning of the book talked about crafting a new story if you don’t like the real one. “Ok, journal. I’m taking your advice. Let’s see how this goes.” Annie said as she picked up her pen and began to write.

The next morning, Annie climbed out of bed and grabbed her robe. The elephant ear slippers were never where they were supposed to be. She found them and slipped them on. Still a little groggy, she walked down the main stairway and continued towards the kitchen. She heard voices, a man and a woman. They were laughing and joking with each other. Annie stopped at the entrance. She glanced at the man and then over to the woman. “Mom! Dad!.”

Weekly Short Story: Update

I fell behind on this project pretty quickly. I spent the day yesterday writing two new stories so that I would be caught up with my personal commitment. I had been two weeks behind.

There are a couple of points I’d like to make regarding these stories.

The first point is that I have personally committed to writing a story a week for the next year. The first story was released on 9/23/23 so I expect this project to be completed on 9/23/24. With the xtra work I put in yesterday, I am back on schedule. I also believe that the two stories were really good ideas. I like the way they turned out and I hope you do as well.

The second point is that these are written very quickly. They may contain grammatical errors. Sometimes, they get by me. I try to put out a quality piece of work but I am my own editor. That is horrible but it’s what I’ve got.

These stories are a lot of fun to write. I hope you are enjoying them as much as I am.

Thank you.

Weekly Short Story: Impact

There is a very real place that stories like this come from. As long as I can remember, there has been conflict in the Middle East. I genuinely do not believe there will ever be peace in that region. As long as parents bring their children up to hate others, there can obviously be no peace. Without further ado, I give you Impact.

Artwork by Adobe Firefly

Impact

The frustration on Lyle Starforge’s face could not be avoided. He was projecting his anger without saying a word. The mess hall aboard the small mining colony ship had room for about ten people at any given time. Right now, there were five and all of them could feel Lyle’s rage. Don Reyes didn’t mean to have the news channel on when Lyle walked in because he knew how angry he got. It was just dumb luck that his finger came off the remote just as the SNN or System News Network broadcast was starting.

There was more fighting in the middle east. This time six Israeli children and four Palestinian children had died. Lyle wasn’t jewish and he certainly wasn’t Palestinian but he knew tragedy and senseless death when he saw it. This conflict has been going on since long before he was born and there seemed to be no end in sight. The moments of respite were indeed short-lived and then as if on a time schedule, more death, destruction, and war.

Lyle’s last name wasn’t really Starforge. He had it legally changed when his company started making real money. Smith just seemed too generic. Starforge, now that seemed like a strong powerful name.

The mess hall intercom beeped as if purposely used to cut the tension that seemed to be on the rise since the news of the conflict was reported. The color seemed to be returning to normal in Lyle’s face as he picked up the handheld phone from the wall. “Yeah, what is it?,” he asked. “FG-778 is out of alignment sir. If we don’t go out there and correct it’s course it will get pulled into the moon’s gravity.” A female voice reported. “How much time until point of no return Jamie?,” he asked. “About 30 minutes sir.” Lyle looked down at his watch. He wasn’t sure why. It didn’t matter. If another asteroid were to hit the moon, there would be hell to pay. “I’m on my way.,” Lyle said.

It took about five minutes for Lyle to make his way to the shuttle bay. He wouldn’t be taking a shuttle but the K7s were stored here and they were meant to deal with this problem. Lyle strapped himself in and closed the hatch. A minute later, he was racing for asteroid FG-778.

He matched the rotation and began calculating the desired outcome. The math wasn’t too complex but he needed to be sure. There had been five moon strikes since his operation was given legitimacy by the United States government. He was reminded of just how illegitimate his business could become with every moon strike. The U.S. had plans to build bases on the moon and they didn’t need any more craters then it already had. After a few minutes, Lyle checked the calculations and hit the control to begin the programmed burn and nudge to get the asteroid to just the right spot so that his team could pick it up later for mining.

Overall, the operation took roughly an hour from start to finish. It was on the trip back to the ship when Lyle started thinking about the middle east again and all of those children that had been murdered. He felt like most other people felt about it. Helpless. Powerless to do anything about it. It was on this line of thinking that Lyle had his epiphany. He wasn’t powerless, unable to do anything about it. The world had been thinking about this all wrong. He glanced down at the Earth below him.

The whole conflict in the middle east could be boiled down to this one thing. At least, in his mind. You basically had two children that want to play with the same toy. They both can’t have it. They are also having trouble sharing it. Each one is claiming that they own it and neither one is willing to compromise. Perhaps, one of them lets the other play with it for a while but that eventually gets old and the child wants the toy back. So, they fight over it again and again.

In Lyle’s mind, there was really only one solution. Take away the one thing that everyone is fighting over. He began scanning the immediate area for potential solutions. The light on the communication panel started blinking letting Lyle know that he had an incoming transmission. “Yes Jamie. What is it?”

“I just wanted to confirm that FG-778 is back on a good course sir. Thank you for taking care of that.,” Jamie said. “All in a day’s work kiddo. I’m heading back shortly. I’m just running some numbers. Why don’t you take a break? I’ll keep an eye on things.,” Lyle said. “Oh, thank you sir. Don’t mind if I do. I’ll catch up with you later.” Lyle smiled. “See you later in the mess hall.” He pushed the button to end the call and went back to his calculations.

Onboard the mining ship, Jamie made her way out of the command center and down the passageway towards the mess hall. Did Lyle just flirt with her? She was attracted to him in the way that women with little money are. He would be a catch for sure. Lyle just never seemed to be interested in that sort of thing. Ever since his divorce, he became much more distant. The divorce may have been inevitable. After the death of his son, there was very little that Kyle Smith cared about except his work. Everyone told him that he would be alright and things would get better over time. Time heals all wounds, and all of that. But, the pain was still there. Jamie would have to understand that. He seemed to be opening up and she would take this as an opportunity.

Thirty minutes later Lyle began to make his way down to the mess hall from the shuttle bay. He would need to make a quick stop in the command center. It was empty. Good. Red warning lights on the command center main console began flashing. Lyle smiled. He knew where Jamie would be so he continued to head towards the mess hall. He could hear the sounds of a soccer game on the view screen and mumbled conversation.

It was another hour until the soccer game ended. Lyle wasn’t really paying attention anyway. His conversation with Jamie was taking a direction that he hadn’t wanted to go in a long while. He deserved to be happy. Maybe Jamie was the right one for him. Perhaps, exploring this direction was the way to go. Lyle looked down at his watch. “Could someone turn on the news, please?” He asked. Collective moaning ensued. “I promise not to get upset. I have a good feeling about it. Trust me.”

Don seemed to be the designated viewer remote operator so he pushed a few buttons and SNN came on. The reporter looked like the color had been forcibly drained from her face. Lyle seemed unusually calm. A small ticker went by at the bottom of the screen. The words death toll and a number that seemed to big to be true. Everyone in the mess started making noises. Some moaning, a few sighs, and silence from the one person who usually blew a gasket at news like this. Lyle smiled.

The reporter straightened herself in her chair. Fear clearly visible on her face. “The entire Middle Eastern region..,” a very awkward and lengthy pause, “…is gone.”

Weekly Short Story: The Portal Paradox

There have been lots of stories about the dangers of teleportation and futuristic travels. This story was something that came to me one night while I was struggling to fall asleep. I thought about bizarre things and this is what came of it. I hope you enjoy it.

Artwork by Adobe Firefly

The Portal Paradox

The needle settled around the high end of two hundred amperes. It usually settled around one hundred and fifty. Dr. Richard Orland scratched his beard and began the process of wondering whether or not using the transporter was safe when the amp (short for ampere) reading was so high. He never had an issue up until now. Richard and his assistant Reggie Riot had logged at least 500 hours in the system and so far, so good. Riot wasn’t his real last name. Richard was certain of that.

The portal or “transporter” was an amazing invention. Dr. Orland had tried his best to keep it quiet during the trials but word got out and pretty soon all of the details about this amazing new invention were all over the internet, newspapers, and Twitter. It was supposed to be X now but it would always be Twitter to Richard. Both he and his assistant had become prisoners in their own lab. They couldn’t go anywhere like normal people.

Perhaps this was a good thing. It gave them more time to test the machine so two hundred tests quickly become five hundred. The transporter was becoming proven technology. Who would he sell it to? How much would he charge for it? These were questions he didn’t care to think about right now. Dr. Richard Orland was a quiet man. He was never quick to raise his voice or a fist. Drama in any form was something that he walked away from.

Right now, Nancy was waiting for him in Paris. Normal transportation from London to Paris wasn’t too bad. Transportation using his new invention made the trip take mere seconds. He looked down at his watch. He had twenty minutes to step through the portal and meet up with his current love.

The amps were a bit too high and this bothered him. He had conducted all of the standard tests and even had Reggie go through them as well. Everything looked perfectly normal except of course, the amp problem. He could call off the date. The scientific part of his mind wanted him to do just that. Call off the date and figure out what the issue was with this glorious device. His heart, on the other hand, wanted something else.

Reggie looked over at Richard. “It’s your decision, boss,” He said. Richard returned his gaze. “It doesn’t seem to be affecting the tests. I haven’t seen Nancy in a few days. I’d really like to go.” Reggie waved his hands. “Well, its decided then. Off you go Doctor.” Reggie’s hand movements directed Dr. Orland towards the eight foot high ring in the back of the lab.

Reggie stood at the control console while Richard stepped inside. No more words spoken. Just a few computer beeps as Reggie punched in the destination and hit the red “Engage” switch with his right thumb. There was a quick flash and Doctor Richard Orland was gone. Reggie spoke to himself. “I knew this thing was good to go.”

The trip through the portal was usually instantaneous, but this time things seemed to take a bit longer. When the white light in his eyes faded, he was staring at two copies of himself. He tried to wrap his mind around what he was seeing. One of them was laughing while the other one was extremely quiet. He glanced down the alley to see another copy of him walking with Nancy.

He went to great lengths to keep the controls on this portal hidden but had someone discovered them and tampered with it? At the moment, he had more questions than answers. What was painfully obvious however, was that something was seriously wrong with his machine. The thought of being with Nancy quickly faded away.

Richard reset the transporter for a return trip back to his lab in London. He stood inside the ring. The machine beeped. The machine kept beeping with no transport function taking place. He stepped out of the ring and looked down at the console. The error message was something he had never seen before. It read, “Error 713 – Missing Key Components for Successful Transport.” What the fuck did that mean? He thought to himself. He looked up at the other copies standing near him. He didn’t remember writing that error message. Perhaps, an AI contribution from Reggie?

It only took him a few seconds to realize what the machine was saying. The copies had to go through as well. What kind of weirdness was this? He motioned to the other copies to step into the ring. He activated the console and joined them inside the ring. Once again, the machine beeped. The transport didn’t activate and a warning sound could be heard from the console. Richard glanced down at it. “Error 713 – Missing Key Components for Successful Transport.” Shit!

There was that copy that ran off with Nancy. He’d never find him in time. He just wanted to get back to his lab. He could take ground transportation but that would take longer than he was willing to deal with. He basically had 75% of himself if this thing actually did split him apart. He wasn’t sure what each piece represented. One of the clones seemed to be extremely happy about everything. The other clone just stared at nothing in particular without making any sounds. This whole thing didn’t make sense. The next idea that popped into his mind was to reprogram the console to accept the pieces that he had.

The two other clones didn’t seem to want to help him but that was ok. He didn’t need their help anyway. He logged into the console and began rewriting the security protocols. After “commenting out” a few lines of code, he was ready to try the portal once again. He looked at both of the copies before him. “I’m not 100% sure this will work. There is a risk but since we’re all the same person, I think, we should be fine.” He didn’t feel that way inside but sometimes you just had to say the words in hopes that someone or anyone will believe it. Even if that is yourself.

The clones stepped into the ring and after a happy computer sound, the three versions of Doctor Richard Orland vanished. In London, the other ring flashed a bright white color as a single version of Doctor Orland stepped out of the portal. “How was your date? That didn’t seem to take very long.” Reggie said. Doctor Orland looked around the lab. No clones. He looked back up at Reggie. “The strangest thing just happened to me on the other side.” He began.

It was approaching evening as the lone copy of Doctor Richard Orland stepped onto the sidewalk outside of Nancy Garnier’s small but cozy flat. He face was dark and emotionless. This city was full of possibilities. What shall he do next? He had no intention of ever stepping back into that portal machine. No. He had other plans. He looked down the street quickly in both directions. He was looking for something very specific. Oh, there it was. Thank goodness they light these things up. He began walking toward it.

Doctor Orland approached the police call box and picked up the phone. How old fashioned? He thought. He wasn’t sure how to activate the phone. Did it automatically dial? He knew how to operate London’s phones. There was a click and a voice speaking french. “Quelle est votre urgence,” the female voice said. Without missing a beat Richard responded, “I’d like to report a murder.”

Weekly Short Story: Galactic Postman

I often wonder what the future will be like long after I am gone. As a fan of science fiction, it isn’t hard to see where my thoughts would gravitate to. This story is based on mankind being able to do one thing but not the other. I feel like this would be the reality but who really knows? Without further ado, here is this week’s tale.

Artwork by Adobe Firefly

Galactic Postman

Station Marcus was the last message station between Earth’s home solar system and the Ragnar Minor System some 300 light years away. Ships could travel faster than light these days but the messages between worlds could not. Messengers and their space craft were required to carry message traffic between worlds. Samuel Reva could not think of any other job in the solar system that he would rather do than be one of only a few “Galactic Postman.”

Sam started his day with making the small trip from Earth to the message station. He thought about living aboard the station but Earth was so beautiful and open. Being cramped in a spacecraft to make his daily run was about all he could take before faint traces of claustrophobia would kick in and his anxiety would start to rise. Making the run to Ragnar Minor and back. It was just the right size trip for Samuel Reva.

The control tower signaled clearance for Sam to take the Pulsar 779 spacecraft out of the dock and into space. The station hanger was quite large and could accommodate various sizes of spacecraft from small courier vessels like the Pulsar series to the bigger space cruisers like the Titan IV. An intermittent blinking light on the console reminded Sam to acknowledge his digital cargo. A part of the procedure he felt was designed to remind them of why they were there and what they were supposed to do. He pressed the indicator and set a course for Ragnar Minor. It was an exercise he felt he had done a thousand times before.

One minute and twelve seconds later, the Pulsar 779 spacecraft that Sam had affectionately named “Miranda” fired up the hyperdrive and disappeared into the blackness of space. Gravity drives and dampening fields made this journey a relatively easy one. From the cockpit, the stars whizzed by at tremendous speeds while the navigation system constantly scanned ahead for obstacles. One wrong piece of anything in Sam’s path would be catastrophic to the little space ship. He often wondered while staring at the view about how long folks like him would be needed. With all of the advancements that humanity has made, surely communications between star systems couldn’t be that far from reality?

The emergency sirens began bellowing as Sam’s space ship fell out of hyperspace with a jarring motion that he didn’t think was possible. This had never happened before. Why did he drop out of hyperspace? After hitting a few buttons on his main console, it didn’t take Sam long to figure out why his ship came out of hyperspace. Ahead of his Pulsar 779 to the tune of roughly 2 million kilometers, was a large amount of military space craft. He could pick out everything from fighters to corvettes. He knew there was a war between two nearby colonies but hadn’t suspected that it had grown to this magnitude.

The console beeped to inform Sam that an errant missile had locked on to his craft and was bearing down on him. He had three minutes to figure out what to do. The first thing Sam did was to activate his distress beacon. At least if anything happened to him, the craft or what was left of it could be located and cargo retrieved. Couriers were supposed to be safe out here. He wondered why they would fire at him. His mind was running like a runner around a track. He needed to figure out what to do. His ship wasn’t designed for combat. Hell, he didn’t even have shields.

The only defense that Sam could think of was to try to move the ship out of the way at the last minute. With some hope, the missile wouldn’t be able to reacquire his ship but that was only speculation. He began scanning the area for a place to set down if he needed to. The idea also crossed his mind to eject the cargo. The data storage module had its own beacon so it would eventually be found by someone. There was only about a minute until impact now.

Sam made damn sure the right finger was on the right button as he prepared to move aside at the last moment before impact. The sweat collected on his collar and on his brow. He quickly wiped it off and then began counting down. Five, four, three, two, one…

The ship quickly jerked to the right and the missile barely clipped the space craft. Sam was knocked off his feet by the force of the missile’s thrust. Several harrowing seconds went by as Sam tried to access the situation. He was still in one piece. The missile probably traded paint with his craft but thankfully, did not impact. He felt like the luckiest person alive. His immediate space was clear and he could still see the battle raging in front of him. A corvette burst into pieces as missile after missile struck. Little blips of light were visible as fighters winked out of existence.

“Well, shit!”, Sam said out loud when he saw that the ship had automatically ejected the data core. He didn’t know the ship was capable of that. It was certainly never brought up with the senior staff. Now, he would be forced to make a decision about where to go. Was it closer to Marcus station or Ragnar Minor?

Sam began calculating a course away from the fighting. He’d have to move out to a distance of several million kilometers before he could make the jump to which ever station was closest. He didn’t have the equipment to retrieve the data core. A pair of simple grappler arms would have come in handy right about now. He lined up on the brighter of the two stars on the left and began moving his ship in that direction.

Two kilometers from “Miranda” a faint blue color radiated from the rear of the cylindrical object. The blue hue gained in intensity as the main engine spun up once again to continue the mission and make a Pulsar 779 space craft, nonexistent. On “Miranda”, a red light began blinking on the main console. A weary Galactic Postman looked up and into the space ahead of him.

“Well, shit.”

Weekly Short Story: The Cafe’

Harper Mallory looked down at her watch. It was one of those weird times of the day where she was torn between eating a late breakfast or having an early lunch. There was a word for it. There was a word for everything, she thought to herself. The day was a cloudy ominous one that seemed to threaten the people walking on Charles Avenue with a sudden downpour of rain at any moment. Harper realized that she wasn’t dressed for that and this day was turning into a dreary and unremarkable excuse for an early martini.

After walking for a few minutes, the answer to her earlier dilemma was staring right in front of her in the form of Dale’s Cafe’. She smiled. It was a Saturday morning and she didn’t really need to be anywhere but she just had to get out of that tiny apartment. It had been several months since her boyfriend Chris disappeared and she just wanted to put all of that behind her. She swore she could still smell his cologne on her pillow even though she had washed it many times since.

Harper walked up to the outdoor counter of the small cafe and ordered a coffee with creme and sugar. The older lady seemed pleasant enough and offered a return smile as she handed over Harper’s change. A few moments later with coffee in hand she made her way to a two person table as far away from the Barista as possible. People just weren’t her thing.

It felt something a little below sweater weather and the sky seemed to get a little darker. Harper stared at the coffee in her cup. Chris had been the perfect boyfriend for over two months. She couldn’t stop thinking about him. Where did everything go wrong? Days and nights of second guessing everything she said and did. Their final conversation resulted in a reaction. A bad reaction. She never saw it coming. Nary, a warning sign to be seen.

He wasn’t physically abusive. Harper had been in one of those relationships before and it ended pretty much the same way as her relationship with Chris had. Chris was different. She should have picked up on his obsession with cleanliness. She never thought it would lead to yelling. She really didn’t like yelling.

About half way through her cup and a few thoughts later, a young couple purchased a couple of drinks and took a seat several feet away from Harper. No waves. No hello. No eye contact. “Was this one of those spy situations?”, she wondered to herself. The man sported dark features and wore a baseball cap. She couldn’t make out the logo but it was probably a baseball team. She wasn’t into sports. The woman was blonde haired and petite. It was the kind of small that made Harper wonder if she was eating properly.

A few minutes later, things got more interesting. A hand slammed down on the table nearly topping over the couple’s drinks. The murmuring began to get louder and started to form into words. They were unkind words. The kind of words that hurt and all directed at the young lady. Harper tried not to look in their direction. She couldn’t help it. Tears started forming in the young lady’s eyes.

Harper’s heart began beating faster in her chest. This is exactly what her last night with Chris was like. His voice and his words cut like a knife. This woman. This young and frail looking woman was a victim in much the same way she had been all of those months ago. She caught the words “dumb, cunt, and worthless” as if the man didn’t care who heard them. The woman held her face in her hands.

That seemed to make the man yell even louder. All of the words could be heard now. It was so suddenly clear to Harper. The crime that this small woman committed. The crime that was so horrible that they had to leave their apartment and get their morning coffee elsewhere. No sugar.

Anyone watching the scene play out without audio would think that the lady must have cheated on him with another man. Because, why would he be so visibly agitated? Although a steady stream of people walked by the cafe’, no one seemed to care about the verbal violence playing out before them. A frightened little voice between bellows of anger and near hatred spilled into the cacophony of sound as the fighting continued.

Harper slowly stood up and gathered her things. She couldn’t let this go on much longer. She felt so much pity for this poor woman. She could make all of this stop. It was her duty. Much in the same way that Chris had to go away, so did this angry man wearing a baseball cap. She slowly walked up behind the man and brushed the tip of her index finger against his exposed and dare she say, sweaty neck. In the time it took for her to draw her next breath, the couple had vanished. First the man and within milliseconds, the small and abused woman to the notice of no one at all.

Harper looked up at the sky. It was still gray but seemed to be getting a little lighter. This day might not turn out to be a bad one after all. She smiled. “Miss, your mug!”, the lady behind the counter yelled out to her. “Oh, sorry. I must have been daydreaming.”, She said. After placing the mug back on the counter, Harper continued walking down Charles Avenue.

Somewhere in time a young blonde woman holds her baby daughter up in the air. The child laughing as though this was the best thing ever. Another older male child lays on the blanket next to her. The birds in the park are singing their morning tunes as the sun begins to rise over the park. She turns to her right and looks at a man pushing a young boy on a swing. She smiles. He smiles back and she thinks “This truly is going to be the best day ever.”

Weekly Short Stories

I was going to write this post yesterday but I got caught up in other things and never got back around to doing it.

I love giving myself challenges. I have challenged myself to write short stories during the busiest time of year and accomplished that. I have challenged myself to create a daily video for a year and not only did that but I am still doing it. I’m over 600 daily videos in to it.

This brings me to this post. My next challenge is going to be to write a small 1000-1500 word short story every single week. I want to do this for an entire year.

Once I commit to something, I usually do it. I wrote the first story this morning. It isn’t polished and the point of these stories is to write them. The idea is get the story down and move on to the next thing. Some will be better than others.

I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoy writing them.

Bad Human Behavior Continues

I am having too much fun writing my current series.

The absolute dregs of society. People who project violence and sometimes hatred on others. Sometimes the violence is somewhat justified and sometimes it isn’t.

I can’t believe how much fun it is to write this kind of stuff down and have it form a cohesive story that is baked into a science fiction adventure.

Human violence. Alien violence.

Fun for the whole family.

Stay tuned.

A Good Story

There are a few stories in this collection of short stories I am currently writing that I personally think are great stories.

The story I am currently working on highlights the very worst of humanity in the beginning of the story. It will progress to something else entirely and for reasons that only a science fiction story can deliver but I have to admit that I am having a blast writing it.

In one way it is a good thing but in another way, I find it sad that it is so easy to write how bad human beings can be to each other. There isn’t one of these scenarios that you couldn’t easily imagine as actually happening.

I can’t wait until these stories are published.

The Next Big Thing

Last night I began work on the 5th story in my 60 Pages project.

I have already laid out the nine story ideas I want to use but surprisingly enough, I’ve been following the structure. I am picking and choosing the order that I am writing them out.

I may end up choosing to write different stories for the remaining four. I am not sure. There is really only one idea that grabs me. In addition to that, I’d love to write something about Marilyn Manson and undue process. Society has literally turned into a guilty before proven innocent mind set.

I’m so excited to be where I am in only a few short months. The basic premise for anyone who wants to become a writer is just…write. Keep writing. Write often. It doesn’t matter what it is or even how good those first few things are. It will get better over time. My writing still sucks but I feel like I am getting better at it. I do it everyday and in many different forms. I write a journal. I write a blog post. I write short stories. I write emails however, we won’t count those. That is the kind of writing I’d like to steer clear of but life pulls me in.

Ok. Wicked little post about nothing in general or possibly just a writing update.

Have a super sparkly day!

Once Upon a Time on Earth

I just finished writing the fourth entry into my short story collection called 60 Pages.

I like this story and definitely felt like this could have easily been a novel. I even left the end of the story open for that purpose.

Here is a summary I wrote for it…

An alien fleet discovers that Earth has unlocked the powers of magic. In a universe still reeling from a previous conflict the goals are clear.

This new threat must be neutralized.

With help from an unlikely source, the humans prepare for the battle of their lives as they defend their world and their way of life from a threat light years more technically advanced than they are.

In the end, the only real question is who will win? Will the aliens save the galaxy from the new magical threat or will humanity survive to fight another day?