Second Date

May 12, 2012 § Leave a comment

Seamus found himself humming “Whistle While You Work” as he cleaned out his car.  He didn’t clean his little Toyota very often, but he wanted everything to be perfect for his second date with Lisa.

            His heart fluttered at the thought of her.  They had only just met, but he was already smitten.  They had already made a deep and last connection.  He could feel it.

            Man this car is disgusting, Seamus thought.  The back seat was full of half eaten candy bars, fast food wrappers, empty bottles of energy drinks, old socks, a detailed map of the city, and hundreds upon hundreds of photographs.  Seamus was a wonderful photographer.  He owned a small portraits shop in the mall, right next to the coffee shop where he had met Lisa.

            What a natural. She acts like the camera isn’t even there, Seamus thought, holding up a candid photo of Lisa that he’d managed to snap on their date the night before.  She hadn’t seemed particularly upset when he’d pulled out his camera and took picture after picture of her.  In fact, she seemed to have enjoyed it.

            She looks the best in this one, he thought.  He held up another picture of Lisa, the first one he’d taken of her as she left her office on her way home.  I should make her a collage, he thought, suddenly inspired.

            He cleared a pile of Kleenex and lotion off the back seat and laid out a handful of pictures. He had the one of her leaving work, as well as the candid of her.  He also had one of her in the car, one of her eating dinner, and one of her at the gym.  He had a bunch of her at home–sitting in her living room, feeding her cat, watering her plants, and even a really nice one of her in the shower.

            Man, am I glad I sprung for that telephoto lens, he thought.  He’d had to spend most of their date stuck in his car, as he wasn’t good with crowds.  They made him nervous.  But, he didn’t want to seem standoffish, so towards the end of the evening, after he’d made sure that she’d gotten home safe, he climbed the tree outside her bedroom window so they could hang out for a while.  Then, because he was a gentleman, he made sure that she got to sleep ok.

            It took him nearly two hours to get the last of the junk out of his car.  Then he spent another hour getting out the smell.  He wanted to make sure that everything was perfect.  He opened the trunk and began to line the edges with soft carpeting.  He put in a long cushion, a few throw pillows, and even a reading light.  After all, he wanted Lisa to be comfortable.  It was important to impress a lady like that on a second date.


Reality Check

April 27, 2012 § Leave a comment

Short Story for my Gotham Writer’s Workshop Class:

Reality Check

It started one lovely weekend in September when I first moved in to my new apartment in Brooklyn, and ended on a cold winter night in February on a fire escape in my underpants.

When I first moved to New York City, I arrived with all the gusto and determination of Canadian illegally crossing the border into the States.  I had just graduated from Yale with a degree in business.  I wanted to get a degree in Art History at Berkeley, but my father told me once that “no son of mine is going to become some hippy liberal faggot.  You’ll be a Yale man just like me, and your grandfather, and your great grandfather.  You’ve got quite a legacy to live up to my boy.”

During my time at Yale I traveled a well-blazed trail.  I joined all the same clubs my father had been in.  I took all the same classes he had taken.  I was in the same fraternity that he, and his father, and his father’s father had been in.   I was living a life that had already been lived.  As I approached graduation the question that came most often was, “So, what company are you going to work for after school?”

I hated the question.  There was only one answer they would accept anyway and that was, “Oh I’m going to go work at my father’s firm in New York.”  It was what was expected of a legacy like me.

When you’re life’s path is as well laid out as mine, you have to find creative ways to make your own choices.  I couldn’t rebel in any normal teenage way.  If I had died my hair or joined a band or, god forbid, voted democrat, I would have been shipped off to West Point faster than I could say ‘art school’.  So I found unique ways to rebel.

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Writing Exercise #6

November 17, 2011 § 1 Comment

I’m actually pretty proud of this one.  In fact, I may try and turn this into a real short story later.  After NaNoWriMo of course.  The prompt is: “Santa Claus” is really a package delivery service run by Aliens.

“How could you loose an entire squadron of elves, and half a contingent of reindeer in one night?  Do you have any idea how much your little stunt is going to cost me?  What were you thinking?  An unauthorized fly by, in a major metropolitan area, during the day, in November for cripes sake!  Hundreds of people saw you Zant! How are we going to explain this one?  The US military is already up my ass about the sightings last Christmas over Des Moines, and now this? Do you have anything to say for yourself?”

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Writing Exercise #5

November 16, 2011 § Leave a comment

Writing prompt:
There’s a pill out there that gives you godlike powers.

“I don’t understand…so this pill turns you into God?”

“Well, sorta. I mean, you get to be god-like for an hour or so, but it wears off. Look man, you said you wanted to experience something crazy and wild your last night out. This is the cream of the crop right here.”

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Writing Exercise #4

October 25, 2011 § Leave a comment

The idea behind this exercise is to write a scene without any dialogue tags or external descriptions. Everything must be told through dialogue. The goal is to make it so that the reader can always tell who is speaking and follow the story. If you feel like commenting, I would love to know if you’re able to tell how many characters are in the scene, where they are, and if you can follow who is speaking.


“Can’t we talk somewhere more…private?”

“Oh relax Suul, sit down, have a drink! Enjoy yourself! Hey, sweet cheeks! Let’s have a round for me and my friend here!”

“Good Gods Trean, are you trying to get caught?”

“You need to relax more. Look, we’ve got a new girl performing tonight. I can arrange a private party for you later if you like.”

“If you’re not interested in doing business, I’m leaving.”

“Ok, ok. Let’s go to my office.”

Chapter 1

October 24, 2011 § Leave a comment

Chapter 1

Only thirty yards stood between Corr and freedom. The tall reeds whipped at his unexposed skin as he ran towards the forest edge. He did his best to protect his face with his hands, but every step he took was more painful than the last. He knew that once he passed the edge of the Riverlands and entered the lowland forests of Endrin he would be beyond the outer edge of any patrolmen of the Rhen Alliance.

When he finally reached the forest’s edge


October 23, 2011 § Leave a comment

I am a huge Star Trek: The Next Generation fan.  Even though this isn’t directly related to my writing exercises I would nevertheless like to take a moment to discuss an episode from season 6 entitled Tapestry. In this episode Captain Jean-Luc Picard is given an opportunity to relive his life at age 21. For the benefit of those who have been living under a rock since 1993, I’ll go over the plot. For those of you who have already seen it, well then, this will be a nice review. Or you can Click this to jump ahead.

Make it so number one!

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