Grenade

I’ve had this idea in my head for a while, but I didn’t know where I’d actually go with it. I was thinking of writing up some kind of army story, but I don’t know enough about the military to write something that hasn’t already been done. Instead, I decided to work on my long, David Foster Wallace-like sentences. I noticed in many of my stories that I tend to write the same kinds of sentences over and over again. I never push the boundaries. I want to change that. Does this one-sentence story work? Would you rather it be broken up into many sentences? Do you want to try and write a sentence with at least 100 words?

Grenade

I was only following orders, said the young private, who stood before the emotionless judge, while the jury, who couldn’t remove the images of the small, burned bodies from their minds, thought it was ironic that the jury was going to determine his fate; he knew it was sealed when he signed up to go fight; he thought, as he stood, unaware his legs were trembling, he was born to fight, which meant long before he decided to pull the pin on his grenade, before he heard the screams of the women and children, before the silence set in, his fate was already set in stone, which also meant that there was a God, and if there was a God, he could be forgiven; however, he wasn’t looking for God’s forgiveness; he wanted the children he murdered to forgive him, knowing damn well he wouldn’t get one; he decided when he was given his guilty verdict he would not apologize for his actions.

Pig, Hog, and Pork

I was originally going to post these stories as a three-part series, but they aren’t all that suspenseful; my intentions were for the reader to read them all together. I think it works better like this. Write your own three short stories like these! Make them all connected to each other. If you want, give yourself a word-limit to make the prompt tougher.

Pig

He walked happily in the little pen on the farm down the road. There was a small mud pit to roll around in, a nice hay bed to sleep in, and a fresh supply of food and water. The old farmer acted as if it were an honor to be taken out of the woods. He had lost his mother and father in the process at an early age, but he knew that one day, he would find someone just like her, and be the pig his father would be proud of. He fanaticized about playing with the other pigs in the woods as he listened to them rattling their cages from across the room.

Hog

No one saw the bullet coming; it was a perfect shot. Their heads exploded like water balloons. The old farmer used his old M1 religiously. He said a prayer before and after every shot, asking for forgiveness, thanking the Lord for a quick and easy death for the animal. In this case: animals. The shot went clean through the mother’s ears and into the father’s heart. It reminded the old farmer of JFK’s assassination. Their baby, covered in blood and gore, tried to run away, but he was already cut off by the howling dogs.

Pork

The pig, now grown up, who’s old enough to understand what really happened to his parents, seems to have finally been given his wish. He assumes the farmer is giving him mercy as he unlocks the gate. For the first time since being captured, the pig is allowed to walk on the grass outside the pen. The young farmer ties the pig to a fence post across the property and stops inside the house to grab something. When he comes out his face looks more grave. His body is more slouched over. The pig, who hadn’t realized before, saw the old farmer’s face in the young man’s. Most pigs don’t realize what’s about to happen, but this one recognizes the M1. The young farmer did a great job maintaining it. He ties the rope tighter, then pulls the trigger.

A Place I Once Lived

Hey everyone. This is the follow up (it was part of the same assignment given in class) to the previous post. Again, the title is the prompt. The idea with this and the last post was to write short pieces with only one sentence paragraphs.

A Place You Once Lived

I lived in an upstairs apartment on 28th Street in Astoria, Queens.
I hesitate to use the word lived because I moved when I was four, and I didn’t have enough time to remember it.
I’m only twenty-four now and I still feel like I have only just begun to live.
One day, I’m going to go back to my roots, and I’m going to bring my girlfriend with me.
Hopefully, it will never be a place I once lived in again.

A Place You Are Just Passing Through

This is another small flash fiction piece that I did in class. The title is the prompt. Write your own stories in the comments below or email me. I would love to start showcasing all my followers’ work here! Make it as long or as short as you want! Here’s mine:

A Place You Are Just Passing Through

A small town is filled with a million different things going on.
It seems uneventful, because I’m only passing through, but it is its own universe for some.
Everything they will ever know and love is there.
They could be coming Home.
It deserves to be looked at more closely.

Blue Purse

This is a quick, little piece based on an object we were given in class. I was given a small coin purse and came up with this. 

Blue Purse

If you stare long enough at the purse, you get lost in all the colors, the shapes. They’re round like eyeballs; they stare back at you; they draw you in like a black hole, except they’re bright and full of color. What have I done? What does it know, or have to offer me? Money, Stupid—if you’re lucky. It’s a purse, not a portal. But what about the space between and within? It’s your world. Everything you know, love, and desire is all held within. And it does draw you in; its beyond you.

Changing Names

I’m back–again. But with news! I am officially a Queens College MFA graduate. I can’t explain to you how happy it makes me to accomplish one of my many writing goals. For those of you who stuck around since the beginning of this blog, who know my story, thank you.

For those that don’t know, I’ll give you a crash course. When I first started this blog, I was just getting into writing. I didn’t take my first application and submission seriously because I didn’t know how competitive writing programs were. I thought I would have an advantage by knowing the director of the program, but I was actually making it tougher for myself. She knew what I was capable of, so she wanted to see how I could get even better. When I didn’t get accepted, I made the decision to double down on my writing and work twice as hard at getting into the program the following year. I accomplished that goal, and it felt so good telling people I finally got in. Now that I’m done, a year ahead of everyone I entered the program with, I feel humbled by everything I’ve learned. Now, I feel like I can begin my career as a writer.

So, what’s the point of all this? I have a lot of time on my hands to write while I try to find a job in the publishing field. I’m back to trying to write at least a short story a day. I have lots of pieces piled up from all my classes so I’m going to start with those.

This piece comes from a tiny text craft course. I don’t remember the prompt we were given, but I like the sound of the piece itself. My guess is that we were writing stories with one-sentence paragraphs. We were often given prompts from old, obscure books and magazines, or tiny objects and toys my professor brought into class. If I have the original prompt for any future story, I will write it or upload it to these posts. Enough of me. Here’s my story:

Changing Names

At one time, it was believed that to name a child after a living person meant death for one or the other.

I didn’t realize this when I named my son after myself.

I was so proud to give him my name because it took just as long for him to be conceived as me.

His mother, like my mother, blamed herself, while she was in labor for four days, to keep my spirits up.

I blamed myself for the same reasoning, that luck was never on my side.

We knew when he came—I had a feeling it would be a he—we would treat him like our miracle.

There was no explanation for his death, according to the doctors.

An orthodox Jew, who overheard me on the phone with my father, told me about the problem with my child’s name.

I treated luck like I treated horoscopes.

What would Freud think about this?

Holistic treatment for names should be the next big thing.

 

On Macro Photography

This was for an assignment where we simply had to write a “short-short story.” When writing this and the piece on prose poems, I was having so much trouble getting my thoughts together, but I do like how this one turned out. One question I have is: am I telling too much at the end?

On Macro Photography

A young man sat in his study trying to write a story about something deep and philosophical. He had Nietzsche and Marx on his mind due to the gloomy political atmosphere that he couldn’t wrap his head around, but nothing made sense on the outside and inside. The enormity of the election in regards to how many people who voted for a billionaire con artist could only be explained through philosophy, he thought, but instead, he found himself sitting on his computer looking at macro pictures of all kinds of things like coins, flowers dipped in gold, nuts and bolts, a pile of cogs, and master locks. Before, the young man felt safe with the idea that our way of living could not survive, along with the idea that none of it mattered anyways. His passion to find something with their works to explain what was going on came to a sudden halt when he realized that he was approaching things from the wrong point of view. Picture after picture on the forum were macro shots. Everyone was showing off the new worlds they discovered, which were right under our noses the entire time and the answer to our calls for escape.