Posts Tagged ‘ Fiction ’

A Rant about Stories, Using a Story

Ladies. Gentlemen. That weird guy in the back with a DeLorean. How are things in the future?

Firstly, I apologise for not updating this since July. Three things have demanded my attention:

  1. Uni work, assignments and readings. Self explanatory.
  2. The Australian 2010 Federal Election. Since I’m doing Constitutional Law as part of my degree, the current hung Parliament scenario now is almost like a dream come true. I’ve been boring my parents with the possible legal and pragmatic scenarios that could happen at any time, so much so that they are thinking of switching my degree to Bachelor of Leatherworking. Is that even a real degree?
  3. Plain Laziness. Yeah, sue me.

Today, though, I want to talk to everyone about something that has been bothering me for quite a long time: The State of Writing.

Huh?” You may say. “Is the state next to Washington?” And then I will hit you.

Or you may ask, “Whatever do you mean?” Good question.

Books and stories used to be really well written, with famous authors such as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Hugh Lofting, and to a lesser extent Captain W. E. Johns producing marvellous works of fiction. Who could forget the best-selling Sherlock Holmes series,

or the intrepid Biggles series,

or even the famous vampire novel, Dracula?

Oh, har de har har har. That DOES serve to illustrate a point, though. Stories today have been “dumbed down” for the shorter attention span of the public, who can’t even sit through a 5 minute speech or 100 word document before getting distrac – OOH! BUTTERFLY!!

But how is the writing getting lousier? The creation of Fan Fiction. Yes, the very thing that allows people to use their creative juices and think of great alternate adventures involving their favourite characters in TV, books, movies and so on leads to a massive lack of quality writing. Many FanFiction writers (not all, I do stress) create stories that have poor grammar, or no description, or their characters inconsistent with the original show/book without saying so. Or even all three.

If you want to have a look, go to FanFiction.net and just click around on a couple of stories. Without a doubt, there will be many that are poorly written. Enough that would make you feel like buying the poor sap a dictionary.

(A/N) I would like to stress here that there are some FanFiction writers who are great writers, and their stories are marvellous. However, those that do not tend to bring it down for the rest of us. No insult is intended. Please don’t sue / kill / use a cattle prod on me.

To illustrate a good story, let me tell you guys one. This is how I got into writing in the first place. A story of love, determination, and friendship.

I was just a young kid, living the high life in the school system. I would painfully meander along to class everyday, strive hard to score good grades, and hang out with my friends during recess. Afterwards, it was homework, television, music, and piano to while away the lonely nights. Life was just, well, mundane.

Until one of my best friends changed all that.

I had known Kelly for a long time, ever since I was young, and she was one of the few people who would give me the time of the day. Often times, people would ignore me and regard me as a weird outcast – but Kelly never did that. Most days we would hang out and talk (always with other friends around, of course), just enjoying the other’s company.

And I committed what, in hindsight, was definitely a bad decision. I fell in love with her.

Oh, it was a gradual thing. I only noticed it when I discovered that all I wanted to do was to talk to her, to hold her close, and be the best friend that she could ever want. Maybe even more. I couldn’t stop thinking about her. And by then it was too late.

Being the romantic that I was, I decided to confess my true feelings to her. Being the coward that I was, I decided to do it by letter. Night after night, when my parents thought I was simplifying a polynomial equation to the lowest algebraic factor, I was actually hard at work pouring out my feelings on paper.

Finally, it was all done. I chose Valentines Day to give it to her (cheesy, I know), and boy, was I nervous. I was figuratively sweating bullets and wetting my pants, and my teeth were literally chattering. In hindsight, I much preferred it that way rather than the other way round.

Gathering up my courage, I strode up to her, card and rose in hand. She was on the phone, and just as I approached, she hung up and turned to me, her pretty eyes aglow and excitement radiating off her face.

Before I could get a word out, she leapt forward and hugged me, words tumbling out in a rush.

“Oh my god, I can’t believe it! Mark just asked me to be his Valentine! I’ve had a crush on him for, like, ever! Ohmigod, I can’t believe it! This is the happiest day of my life!”

***

I still can’t remember how I got through the rest of the year. Needless to say, I burnt the letter and the rose when I got home (to which Greenpeace objects strenuously). I was devastated, heartbroken. But eventually, I got over it. Kelly never knew about my feelings, since I decided that our friendship is more important than my selfish ambitions. All I wanted was for her to be happy. And to this day, Kelly and I are still really good friends.

I started writing short stories after that, as a way of keeping myself occupied. And now it has become a full-blown hobby. Other than assignments, church, and TV, this is what I do in my spare time.

But you know what? I still think of her from time to time. To use a line from a song by a band called The Young Veins:

“I tried to love you, but you still love him, so
I’ll keep my distance and lie to the truth….”

And I’ll never know what would have happened had I told her just one day earlier.

***

So, what was the point of all that? The point was, I made it all up off the top of my head.

But before you start booing and throwing rotten grapefruits, that was done to demonstrate a good story. There was good grammar, formatting, and the story flowed logically. And most importantly, it was interesting. And that’s all that matters.

Before I go, I’m going to leave you with a something written by a real author. C.S. Lewis, author of the bestselling Chronicles of Narnia series and other great Christian books (which I recommend everyone reads), also wrote this great paragraph in is sixth Chronicles of Narnia book, The Silver Chair:

Gay,” said Puddleglum with a deep sigh. “That’s what we’ve got to be. Gay. As if we hadn’t a care in the world. Frolicsome. You two youngsters haven’t always got very high spirits, I’ve noticed. You must watch me, and do as I do. I’ll be gay. Like this…”

Stirring stuff. I bet Puddleglum voted for the Australian Greens Party.

Did you ever have a bad experience with a poorly written story? Leave a comment and tell us about it!

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Double Cross – An Avatar: The Last Airbender Fan Fiction (Chapter 1: Part 1)

Welcome to Chapter 1 of my Avatar: The Last Airbender Fan Fiction! If you want to read the previous chapters, you can find them here and here.

***DOUBLE CROSS – CHAPTER 1 (PART 1)***

Location: Team Avatar’s Campsite
Time: 0800 hours (7 hours later)

“Nnnnoooooooo!!!!!!!”

The shout woke the two kids, which had until now been sleeping peacefully. Toph and Katara sat up and glanced around, trying to rub the sleepiness out of their eyes, straining their ears for……………

“Aaarrrrgggghhhh!!!!”

The scream echoed around again, sounding like the cry of the inhuman.

Then Sokka stormed into the campsite, eyes blazing, with anger on his face.

“Alright, where is it? Somebody stole my only bag of salted meats! It was you, wasn’t it Toph?” Sokka ranted in fury.

“Me? Yeah right. Like I would steal the meat from a selfish, insulting jerk that woke me up………… Actually, come to think of it, yeah, I probably would steal it.” Toph replied, a smirk on her face.

“What!? Why, you……” Sokka spluttered.

Leaving them bickering like children, Katara smiled and strolled away to get a drink. Then she frowned. Something was missing.

“Guys!” Katara shouted. “Do you feel like there’s something missing?”

Sokka wheeled around in surprise. “Duh! My salted meats? I’ve been yelling at Toph for the past 5 minutes!”

“For the last time, I DID NOT TAKE THEM!!!!!!” Toph retorted. “It’s only meat anyway.”

“Only meat? I’ve been saving those meats for days! And it’s gone!” Sokka groaned. He knelt on the ground, holding his head in his hands. “Oh, my meat, my beautiful meat…..”

Katara grinned. The she glanced around again, taking stock of her surroundings.

Ok, she thought. What’s missing from Team Avatar? Me, Appa, Sokka, Toph…….. Everything seems to be here except for……

The Avatar.

“Toph! Sokka! Aang’s gone!”

***END OF CHAPTER 1 (PART 1)***

Remember to leave a comment!

The Random Musings of an Attention-Seeking Author – 23/02/2010

(Picture from http://www.cartoonstock.com/directory/s/slow_day.asp)

Hmm hmm hmm….another slow day….

  1. Posted the next part of “Double Cross – An Avatar Fan Fiction” up here on the blog…if you want to see it, click the link: Double Cross – An Avatar: The Last Airbender Fan Fiction (Prologue: Part 2)
  2. More “Whose Line is it Anyway?”. Seriously, they need to get it back on the air. And soon.
  3. Watched an old episode of “HOUSE M.D.”. Seriously, my brother has been telling me that Phil Brown (manager of soccer club Hull City) looks like Hugh Laurie (actor in HOUSE). I’ve got two snapshots right here:

Here’s one of Phil Brown:

And here’s one of Hugh Laurie:

(Pictures from Google)

Same? Different? It’s your call. Over to you guys now!

Does Hugh Laurie look like Phil Brown? Leave a comment and cast YOUR vote!!

Double Cross – An Avatar: The Last Airbender Fan Fiction (Prologue: Part 2)

For all who care and those who don’t, this is the 2nd part of the prologue of “Double Cross”, an Avatar Fan Fiction I wrote a while ago. You can find the 1st part here (Double Cross – An Avatar: The Last Airbender Fan Fiction).

Without further ado, here we go!

***DOUBLE CROSS – PROLOGUE (PART 2)***

Location: A small Earth Kingdom village
Time: 1900 hours (6 hours earlier)

The rain drizzled down softly and slowly. It was a cool evening. A single villager strolled down an alley, his manner nonchalant. He was the perfect image of a hardworking farmer coming home for the night. Anyone would swear he was totally unsuspicious. Another person among hundreds. He seemed to be making for a little hut, situated in the middle of the village. Again, another ordinary hut in an ordinary street. Perfectly normal.

Once there, however, he knocked thrice, paused, and then knocked again. A slide in the door opened and a whispered conversation seemed to take place. Then a yellow envelope, with a red streak on it, was passed through the slide. The villager picked it up, glanced around furtively, and casually strolled away, his manner once again ordinary.

Up on a nearby hill, two figures could be seen half-hiding in nearby bushes. A telescope was put to the eye of one of them, and he did not look happy. The other was sitting on a grass mat, holding up an umbrella, and watching the scene below with a satisfied smile on his face.

The first figure spoke.

“Uncle, we are too late. The messenger has left with the note to the Avatar.” With his voice rising, and with fire in his eyes, the implication was all too clear.

The second person continued to smile, then held up a yellow envelope with a red streak. Perfectly identical to the one the messenger left with.

“It seems that we are not too late after all, Prince Zuko.”

***END OF PROLOGUE (PART 2)***

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An Observer Sighting….but NOT in FRINGE!!

Ok, introduction first. FRINGE is a science fiction TV series by the creator of LOST and writers of TRANSFORMERS…..and it’s pretty freakin’ sweet! It has been described as a hybrid of The X-FilesAltered StatesThe Twilight Zone, and Dark Angel, garnering millions of viewers and favourable reviews.

Well, then, as part of the mystery that is FRINGE, there is a man that appears in every episode, if only for a few seconds. He is known as “The Observer”, and trying to spot him in every episode makes for a great pastime, and only adds to the awesomeness of FRINGE.

See Fringe: The Observer Mashup for clips of him in each FRINGE episode.

As part of the viral campaign for FRINGE, the producers have also put him in real life events and shows, such as in the MBL Allstar game (The Observer Guy from Fringe in MBL Allstar Game), and American Idol (The Observer on American Idol (From Fringe)). However, it seems that he isn’t only staying in real life events or only on FOX shows….he made the switch to NBC! (Gasp!)

It seems that The Observer also appeared in a NUMB3RS episode, “Scan Man” (5×05), in the background while FBI Agent Don Eppes was talking to his FBI psychologist. Below is, released for the first time, actual documented proof!

Dun dun dummmmm!

You can spot him just to the left of the screen as he passes by.

For those who have the episode, the entire appearance is from 37:49 to 37:51.

***

[UPDATE]: I found another one! This time, it’s in the newly released episode of NCIS: Los Angeles, “Blood Brothers” (1×18). And here is the screenshot to prove it:

He’s standing with his back to the camera, in the middle of the screen.

Pretty weird, huh?

What do YOU think? Are the Observers arriving, or worse, have they taken over?!??

Double Cross – An Avatar: The Last Airbender Fan Fiction

Hey, y’all. This was a fanfiction i wrote a few years back for Avatar: The Last Airbender. It still isn’t finished yet…which says a lot for my attention span. Have a look, and tell me what you think – questions, comments, snide remarks – you have your say on it!

***DOUBLE CROSS – PROLOGUE (PART 1)***

Location: Somewhere in Earth Kingdom Territory
Time: 0100 hours

Anyone around would tell you that that night was horrible. The night was dark, the sky cloud-ridden. Rain poured down by the bucketful, smashing against the leaves and trees again and again. The wind howled such that to cause fear. Indeed, all of the townsfolk were huddled safe in their snug, warm homes, knowing that to try to brave the fury of the thunderstorm was something only a mad or desperate man would do. No one would even dare to venture outdoors.

If someone would have left the comfort of their homes and walked to the edge of the forest, they would have noticed nothing out of the ordinary. But if that certain person happened to look up, they would have seen something unusual.

They would have seen a small figure, far off in the distant sky, flying to some unknown location. They would have seen him using some sort of contraption, possibly a glider, to travel freely in the air. They would have seen a small animal, perhaps a lemur, flying alongside him. They would have seen the bald head, adorned only with a blue arrow.

And they would have seen the grim, unsmiling expression on his face.

***END OF PROLOGUE (PART 1)***

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A Very Juliet Story

Well, good morning everyone. I was looking through some stories written when I was still in school, and I came across this one. Technically it’s a Fan Fiction, but in English Lit it’s called “an assignment”.    -.-

Anyway, this is from Romeo and Juliet, one of Shakespeare’s most famous works. This story is my take on Act IV, Scene III – what would have been going on in Juliet’s head?

As always, enjoy, and tell me what you think!

***
Location: The house of the Capulets
Time: 1930 hours

A single tear rolled down her cheek, splashing onto the floor below.

The young girl was sitting on her bed, face buried in her hands. Her eyes brimmed with tears, threatening to spill over. Her head, pounding with anger and grief, was filled with thoughts of despair. She could see no way out of her dilemma.

She glanced down at a finger on her hand; on it was a single gold band. A ring.

Her wedding ring.

Two days ago was the happiest day of her life – her wedding to the love of her life. She did not care that her family and his family were bitter enemies; all she cared about was him. So, she had sneaked out in the early morning to meet her sweetheart at the church, and before the Friar, they had wed. They had promised to be forever faithful to each other, to love each other for eternity.

And then they had wed.

It was the happiest day of her life.

Fortune, however, never smiles upon a person for long. Bad things always came in threes, and this time, it was an omen. Her husband killed her cousin Benvolio in a rage, after Benvolio killed her husband’s best friend. She had loved Benvolio dearly, and this came as a great shock to her. But what was even worse was that the murder had broken the already-unstable peace, and her husband was now banished, never to return.

She could not bear to never see her husband again. That, coupled with the death of her cousin, nearly broke her.

Then her father finished the job for her. Not knowing that his daughter had married the son of his sworn enemy, he ordered her to marry her other relative, Paris. It was a loveless marriage, one of convenience. And it was to be held tomorrow.

Her choice was either marriage or death. But Capulet did not realise that marriage to anyone but her husband was like death to her.

Now, she had only hours left to find an escape to her husband. Thankfully, the Friar had come up with a cunning plan: All she had to do was drink a potion that simulated the symptoms of death. When her people put her in the family crypt, thinking she was dead, her husband would sneak back in the dead of the night and fetch her. Together, they would flee the city and start a new life elsewhere.

They would be together, forever.

But she was afraid.

The girl was afraid of death, of either a physical death or an emotional death through a loveless marriage. She was afraid of her parents, and what they would do if they found out. And above all, she was afraid of never waking up again.

Was it worth it?, she asked herself.

She gazed at her wedding ring once again, her tears flowing freely now.

Yes, it was.

Steeling her resolve, she unstoppered the vial and quaffed the contents. She gasped at the acrid taste, and threw the empty vial away. Soon, she lay on the bed, to sick to move.

She only had one last coherent thought before the darkness overwhelmed her.

Romeo, Romeo……I come.

***END***

P.S Remember to leave a comment!

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