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Literary eXpatriates
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Date:2009-01-24 21:25
Subject:happy 2008
Mood: sleepy

that idiot is out of the whitehouse and the country is out of money. do the two of those do anything to make us all more creative, such that we can do something interesting with lx_arena?

just wondering.

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Date:2004-10-29 01:10
Subject:still a halloweenie

by popular demand...

max's spooky fantasy story (chapter 2)

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Date:2004-10-28 13:29

'Tis late October, when young Max's thoughts turn to grim ghosts and spooky spires of macabre mansions. And stuff.

Last night I dreamed of being chased by a serial killer, who I ultimately killed with a very large butcher knife, stabbing him in the heart (located oddly close to his stomach) and working the knife around to nearly cut him in half, because that was the only way to be sure he was dead. He was cast down the stairs into the basement, where his face peeled away from his skull in four directions, creating a horrifying gory satanically bovine mandala. 'Twas very creepy. But I liked him better that way than when he was trying to murder me and all my friends.

I have been writing a spooky fantasy novel. Unfortunately, it is not yet very spooky or fantastic, and I worry that when it becomes so, it will be incongruous with what came before. But hopefully I can smooth out that difficulty with the help of my readers. Who, I'm hoping, will be you.

I present chapter one, in PDF format that I'm hoping will preserve my eclectic font choices, and would be greatly appreciative of any feedback that may help me to limit the suckfulness of my writing. It's about 20 pages. I will post chapter 2 as soon as someone asks for it.

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Date:2004-09-24 15:39
Mood: curious

if I posted a 40-page beginning of a story here, would anyone actually read it?

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Date:2004-09-21 15:28
Subject:Big B

This is a combination of assignments.
Mav's "write a story featuring a one-letter named character" and Stephen King's "write a story about this situation" where he went on to describe a sort of complicated thing where a woman is getting abused by her husband, leaves him, he goes to jail, and she becomes a single parent. A bit later, she drops her kid off at a birthday party, and comes home to realize that her husband has escaped from jail and is now in her house. Got it? Now reverse the genders of the husband and wife. The WOMAN has escaped and the MAN is a single dad, home alone.

Big BCollapse )

my thoughtsCollapse )

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Date:2004-09-19 23:08
Subject:ok new challenge...

Max is currently writing a story about a character named G.

I am currently writing a story about a charcter named K.

I think everyone should pick a letter, post it here, and write a story, or at least a fragment about a character with a name that is a letter and we can maybe crit and talk and what not and maybe just maybe someone will get some decent writing done for once.

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Date:2004-09-16 12:28
Mood: pleased

"The idea that creative endeavor and mind-altering substances are entwined is one of the great pop-intellectual myths of our time."
-Steven King, On Writing

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Date:2004-08-17 12:59
Mood: chipper

I was chatting with anisodragnfly and chrismaverick separately about what to do with LX_Arena.

For a while, I was posting the exercises from "Steering the Craft" by Ursula K LeGuin, and that was sort of neat, but it fell by the wayside.

I thought about posting links to the random harlequin romance novel website writing contests they have there, but that probably only applies to me.

What to do! What to do?

Steering the CraftCollapse )

Romance IdolCollapse )

So, what else is new?

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Date:2004-01-04 15:00
Subject:Since I'll be teaching poetry, here is a poem.

Poetry: An Introduction

Like rap
Is meant to be read out loud.
It is meant to be shared
But we lock it up in books.
We restrict it to printed lines on pages
Add punctuation
And line breaks.
We count syllables
Proclaim patterns
Discuss slant rhyme
And assonance.
A poem is loud
It is vital
It is spoken if not sung
If not screamed.
Deliver me from your treatises
Your scholarly papers
Your dissection of rhyme and meter
Your classification of metaphor and simile
And onomatopoetics.
Breathe me simply:
A poem.

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Date:2003-08-23 16:53
Subject:Back to School Time

I therefore challenge you to think. Part of my plan this year is to have a weekly "bonus" assignment, contest, whatever you want to call it. That way if anyone wants extra credit, it's planned for and available without me having to think of anything. Of course, I have to think of these things in advance. I want the assignments to focus on fun things about language, challenging the kids to think about some cool aspects of words and grammar. So here are some of the ones I've thought of so far. Anything you can suggest along these lines or totally different but cool will be used.

Ex: radar, Hannah, Able was I ere I saw Elba
Prize for student with the longest list of palindromes
Prize for student with the single longest palindrome

Alphabet Code
There is a standard code used by police - N as in Nancy, D as in David.
The student has to come up with his/her own totally new code using all 26 letters and real English words or names, providing a definition for any unusual words. Doing this around a theme would be extra cool.

Opposites are Alike
Those weird phrases we have where the opposite means the same thing - the house burned down, the house burned up. (This is not my favorite example; I could use a better one as I am brain-impaired right now and can't think of any.)

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Date:2003-07-21 22:07
Subject:"surrounded by the half-eaten dead..." no wait, that's another story

I'm answering

[Error: Irreparable invalid markup ('<lj-user="sui66iy">') in entry. Owner must fix manually. Raw contents below.]

I'm answering <lj-user="sui66iy">'s political satire challenge 3 months too late. sorry about the that part. It's a cento. That's a poem where all the material comes from other sources. Like a collage, the art is in the arranging. This was written soon after the challenge was issued, so it had to be.... late April? Anyway, that's the context.

In Pagan Times (cento)

The official
currency of Iraq,
the dinar is
nearly worthless.
U.S. forces will
temporarily replace
the Iraqi currency
bearing Saddam's
face with
whole bean
rich-brewed, Italian
style espresso
a variety
of pastries
related accessories
and weapons. Our state
-of-the-art facilities
recycle or upgrade
unwanted governments

Iraqi civil servants are
end-of-life products
reusable commodities
consumer electronics
they have been working
hard to restore
basic services
and clean up after
our comic
to continually upgrade
our weapons

“Starbucks is committed
to a central role in
rebuilding Iraq
Kofi Anan said yesterday.
Essentially, we run
an environmentally
safe and responsible
leadership in all
facets of our business
and we wish
to make
a difference every day,
to bridge divides
through our company-
operated effort quote
team up to clean up
with opportunities to
recycle their
used government

to reduce the burden
on earth’s resources,
of charge.

of our customers
are computer
-savvy and
are continually
upgrading to own
the latest technology.

Iraqi civil servants
roasts and
sells them

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Date:2003-07-17 11:24
Mood: hungry

Part One:
Write a paragraph of narrative, 100-150 words, in sentences of seven or fewer words. No sentence fragments! Each must have a subject and a verb.

Part Two:
Write a half page to a page of narrative, up to 350 words, which is all one sentence.

short sentences don't have to consist of short words; long sentences don't have to consist of long ones. If you find this happening in your prose, you might try, just out of contrariness or curiosity, to counteract the tendency.

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Date:2003-07-09 15:59
Subject:a little late, but hey

my response to thwomp's second challenge. i might still get around to the first 'cause i like the idea, but i knew right away what i wanted to do for this one, just took a while to get to it.

push comes to shoveCollapse )

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Date:2003-07-04 15:08

i circle like a
vulture over maria
as she reads potter

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Date:2003-07-01 20:17
Subject:I cheated and used apostrophes
Mood: aggravated

Connie come in here and get this nice lady a cup of coffee God I have not seen you since well since I can’t remember when really it has been a long time Connie where is that coffee you need to meet this woman you wont see her every day I am giddy and giggly How have you been What have you been doing with yourself since I saw you last Connie Hey Connie what about that coffee Grandpa there isn’t any woman Go on Connie get some coffee for him he’s been talking to noone all night listen to him Heehee well how is he Has he been doing alright Is everything going well for you up there Haven’t any of you said anything to him all night you just leave him talking to noone Well he’s probably talking to someone we just don’t know who it is Heehee

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Date:2003-07-01 17:50
Subject:mav said i should post this here
Mood: sad

Locked Out of My Cage

At Forbes and Murray, I see the man who sits
in the booth next to mine, every morning, and I
ask, "Are you an orphan today, too?"

Silky's, oh Silky's, with your expensive
bitter coffee, with your young and nubile
waitresses who would not defend
me, like a she-wolf her cubs, from the intrusions
of smoke-bumming louts and others, various
and sundry, who might disturb my precious

Oh Silky's, you are not a bad bar, a dive, a shithole
or squalorous parlor, or any other slander
my mind might conjure as I consider
stepping through your doors.
But you are no Cage, and now you tell me
you don't open 'til four?

An orphan again, take me, oh Coffee Tree!
No, don't say that, don't you dare!
But it is true, today: "No Mocha Froza for you."
The mix is all used.
And as I sullenly sip my iced mocha
latte, thinking, would it kill you
to have a smoking section?
my eyes alight
on a small plastic tub, holding inside
it a thing I've long sought. And as I purchase
my peanuti noodles, this orphan knows
the world's not all dark.

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Date:2003-07-01 17:15
Subject:ok connie, here you go...
Mood: blah

that's right, I'm answering an LX challenge... I rock!

MissingCollapse )

So how does this work, thwomp? Are people supposed to comment on these little exercises? When are you posting the next one? I any one else doing one?

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Date:2003-06-25 12:41
Subject:I am Garcia Marquez
Mood: tired

OK, I'm not, but that's the title of the exercise anyway.

Exercise Two:
Write a paragraph to a page (150-300 words) of narrative with no punctuation (and no paragraphs or other breaking devices).

Suggested Subject:
A group of people engaged in a hurried or hectic or confused activity, such as a revolution, or the first few minutes of a one day sale.

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Date:2003-06-19 14:24

theadana suggested that I post this here. Any and all criticisms are welcome, but note that it was written in response to an interview question which gave me a time limit of an hour with no prior planning (a time limit with which I almost managed to comply). This is not to say that things which could only be improved with more time are not worth noting, but I would appreciate it if you annotated them as such if there's any ambiguity.

Also, even though you probably don't know me, don't hold back. "It sucks" is a perfectly acceptable comment, although a description of specifically why you think it sucks would probably be more useful.

IncomprehensibiliaCollapse )

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Date:2003-06-11 12:53
Subject:Baby Babaland
Mood: contemplative

He sits squiggling on the Sea-doo. Hands pressed to his abdomen on each side for support.

“Ba-ba! Ba-ba-ba-ba-ba!” A giggle, a trilling trickle “Ba-ba-ba! Uvvmmm”.

“Nathan! Nathan, look at the camera!” mommy tries to gently command an unyielding 7 month old, hiding her face behind his midsection, a picturesque picture of the baby on a machine he’s unable to operate.

She slides him slowly from the vinyl seat. “Who’s a silly boy? Who’s a silly boy, you? Yes! Yes yes yes! Yes you are, mommy’s silly sleepy baby boy!”

A sleepy smile, drowsy eyes droop droop dropping followed by a sudden clarity “must not fall asleep!” dawning in his just now dropy gaze.

“Ba-ba ba! Ba-ba-ba-ba-ba!” Hiccough “Ba-ba”.

Dad dodges some drool. “Babies say the weirdest things over and over and over again”, he adds sopping up slobber from a sodden cheek.

“Ba!” A squeak! High pitched squealy squeak. “Ba-ba! Ooooooooooh. Uvvmmmmm. Ba-ba-ba!”

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