Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Almost finished!

Almost finished with Dark Woods!

It's a new book, short, about 30-35k wds after I'm finished (assuming no major edits). I'm almost to the ending.

I think I'll get really drunk and write that part. See, it's one of ~those~ endings, where I need to rip out my heart and eat it just to get the right words on the paper.

So, bon appetit! Pass the salt and red pepper, please. Hope to choke it down by Easter Sunday.

Then I have a project with OHP that I'm looking forward to. It'll involve a series of urban fantasy short stories. Fun genre, that. Magic in the back-alleys, baby, total Gremlins and Twighlight and Harry Potter and all those other mod-fantasies you see!

Diggem up some worms and toss me some dirt.

- Eric

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Great Writers

Good writers write. Great writers confess.

- Eric

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Exerpt from Walk With Me Into the Darkness

Excerpt from latest work. Working Titles:

Dark Woods

Henry and the Whore

Walk with me Into the Darkness

Dirt Don't Talk



Away from the Light


Henry James Jacoby touched his father's boot and said the word again. He could barely reach the boot it was up so high, and when he touched it, his father rocked gently back and forth, suspended by his neck from a doubled-up length of baling twine wrapping the crossbeam rafter in his father's workshop. His father swung next to an overturned wooden ladder, stained with paint and grease and mud caked at the bottom. His pants were damp and smelled of urine mixed into the musky reek of shit and a decomposing body.

Henry righted the ladder and pushed it closer to his father and climbed up and twisted his father around so he could see him and poked his father's chest. Hard and cool as the concrete floor beneath the ladder.


His father's tongue had exploded from his mouth. So had his eyes from his skull. The man's face was the color of an over-ripe plum, puffed with pungent juices. His lips snarled back in rage or fear. The twine dug a deep bloody rut into his neck, and his fingers clutched near his cheeks at something not there. What hair remained on his father's barren scalp stood out in a cobwebbed mess. The bloated thing hanging by the rope looked nothing at all like Daddy.

Henry leapt off the ladder and climbed on top of his father's workbench so he could reach a machete tacked between the coping saw and the rip saw and the myriad chisels and screwdrivers and wrenches and wood clamps. He tipped over a coffee can full of nails and screws and jumped off the bench.

Henry climbed the ladder with the machete and faced the bloated thing at the end of the rope. The creak of the ladder matched the creak of the bailing twine twisting against the rafter.

Standing on the top step of the ladder and balancing himself against his father, Henry hacked at the rope with three quick machete chops before his father slapped to the concrete floor. The ladder tipped and clattered, and Henry fell with him and landed on his father's chest. It was as if Daddy had dived beneath Henry to catch him. Henry fished out his father's pocket knife and cut off the rope from his father's neck and laid there for a while, his head on his father's belly.

He didn't look at his father's face again, but chose to stare at his boots, scuffed and brown from hard days in the pasture. They were just like Henry's boots, only bigger.


The workshop steamed in the summer heat, baking him and his father laying on the floor, and it was after dark when the smell overtook Henry. He recognized the smell. It was the sweet-musty scent of all things dead. Dead calves smelled that way. Dead squirrels and rabbits, too. He'd seen a dead horse once, and when they shoved the corpse into a pit, the horse had expelled a long gaseous blow from its ass, so fierce that they all ran away from it, his father and the man who'd hired his father to do the digging and the other man's daughter, who owned the horse. The girl ran, too, even though she'd cried and thrown herself on the dead horse's neck just minutes before.

Henry felt his father's belly beneath his head. It was tight with that stench, the dead gas so nauseating he'd vomit when it violated his nose. He never wanted to smell it again, not ever. The Death Gas.

Sweating in the summer heat, Henry threw open the shop doors, the double doors that slid on tracks so wide a tractor could fit, and stepped into the pasture. He stood there with his hands on his hips looking at the night sky and the empty black hole of the new moon. None of the stars said a word, and he didn't ask them any questions. Henry and the stars just stared at each other for a while.


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Random Action

All right, here's an action scene, just for practisimo. This is a true story, by the way. This actually happened to me here in Dallas.

Rain pounded the windshield as the car swerved left and right. Smooth tires neither screeched nor gripped the pavement, but glided over the road on a sheet of summer rain slick as black ice. He turned the wheel gently into each swing of the truck's rear, resisting the urge to put his full weight on the brakes, and touched a soft toe to the accelerator, hoping he could stabilize before he ran off the road.

Cars blew by him on either side, dodging him, and then a tread found pavement and launched him forward across three lanes of traffic, into the ditch, the deep mud twisting the wheel back to the right and almost yanking it out of his hands. No concrete median rose up to meet him, but he was approaching an overpass and the huge concrete pillars rushed at him. He thought about trying to swerve away from them, between them, back onto the road, but an instant calculation said he was fucked, stay on this path, at least die right-side up and head-on.

He flew under the bridge sideways, almost glancing the pillars that now were to his right when they should have been well to his left, and then he bumped onto the pavement and found himself facing oncoming traffic and a long row of cars throwing up rain-mist and swerving left and right to avoid him.

Still resisting the urge to slam on the brakes and throw himself into a tumbling mess of American steel, he cranked the steering wheel to the left, straightening, slowing, shaving off momentum until he felt all four tires grip the pavement, and then he turned right, hard, avoiding an oncoming truck, and came to a stop on the inside shoulder of the opposite traffic lane, pulling into the median and out of the way of traffic.

Nobody honked.

- Eric

Monday, March 8, 2010

Where I'm weak

I just realized something about my writing. I do that, you know, analyze my style, constantly learn, try to re-invent myself and challenge myself.

I do a good job of dialogue, I think. No, I know I do a good job at it. The dialogue's real, genuine, easy-to-read, flowing, and well-spent. When I hit a dialogue section, I bang out 1,500 words an hour, easy.

I do a decent job of moving scenery. Heck, I don't know what you'd call it. Descriptive prose, perhaps. I keep it simple. In some ways I'm a minimalist. I keep it simple. I try not to over-describe. I try to describe in pieces, small bites, rather than stuff one huge bolus of description down the reader's gullet!


I do all right with humor. I can hold someone's attention.

I can think of original topics and unique perspectives.

I can write and write and write. That's called being verbose, prolific. I have a substantial word count under me, now. I'm a ~writer~.

I avoid cliches. I avoid weasel words and abuse grammar sparingly.

I proof-read. I re-read. I re-write.

All these things I'm good at, but let me tell you my weaknesses.

Actions scenes stump me. I don't know why, but they're a weakness in my repertoire. I need to beef those up, find me an action author and chip out how they do it.

So many action writers are cheesy, though. I'm not a rat, and I don't like cheese in my words. I'm self-conscious about my action scenes. I should practice some. Maybe I'll write one this week and post it, see how it goes.

I'm also weak on plotting.

Did I say, Weak?

Nay. I suck. I'm terrible! Plotting ~destroys~ the worms. They can't dig when I think too far ahead, or if I write it down in advance. I have an idea of where I'm going, sure, but if I write it on flash cards, I can never stick to it.

That's how I got stuck on New Texas. I had this Excel spreadsheet with character lists, plots, sub-plots, settings, details, maps, the whole shitful in a ballcap.

I'm also pretty good at making up new -isms. Shitful in a ballcap. That's a good one!

Anyway, I stink at plotting. I've decided that's just something I cannot have in my writing. It's too constrictive. I'm like a worm in a potted plant -- I can't dig dig DIG! Not with the restrictive walls of a plot!

And God help me if I hit an action scene. I got stuck for a week on one action scene last week. Stuck. 500 words, and I could NOT bang them out.

On the action, I need practice.

On the plotting, though, restricting my characters to a predestined path... well, here, wear this ballcap.

- Eric