My photo
-Bearded Creative Pioneer of the World of Tomorrow-

Monday, January 31, 2011

Promptly/Your Story

Here's the newest promptly/Your Story. Which means that it could be published in Writer's Digest!!! The prompt is the first sentence of the piece. Enjoy!!!

Circus Peanuts and Abraham Lincoln

-Nathan Honoré-

It was on a bright, starry night that the traveling circus rolled into town. I looked out my bedroom window. The snow had stopped, but left a thick blanket on the ground. Arthur Avenue was completely deserted. The wheels of the circus trucks left perfect imprints in the snow as they passed. The last car disappeared into the night. My room had glow-in-the-dark moons and stars on the ceiling that always helped me fall asleep. The circus passing by left me on edge and the universe above me gave me no comfort. I got out of bed and put on my favorite Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle slippers. Leonardo and Donatello looked up at me curiously. I paced around my room, looking for something to do.

My dad had just bought me my first guitar. It was an authentic Fender Stratocaster. It was perfect except for the color. I wanted either black or blue, but instead was given the standard candy-apple red. Regardless, I had mastered two chords, and by mastered I mean vaguely knew how to make those chords. C and G7 were the only ones in my Mel Bay chord book that my chubby little fingers could form. I loved how they sounded. They were so normal and definitive. Each strum had a purpose with those chords. I would find Beatles songs that used those chords and strum along whenever they popped up, noodling around for the rest of the song. I named my guitar Abraham Lincoln. I loved his beard. Also, he was honest, and that was something I wanted to be.

The red Abraham Lincoln sat on his stand in the corner of my room. My slippers and I eyed him up with every pace, trying to figure out what to do. The circus had literally just drove by my own house. I couldn’t just go back to sleep. The Turtles and I resolved we would write a song for the circus and present it to them. I picked up Abraham Lincoln, carefully placed my fingers on the enormous fret board, and strummed the infamous C chord. I slowly alternated between the C and G7, letting these words flow out of my mouth in a simple four-note melody:

Circus, circus,

You went past my window.

Circus, circus,

I am excited for the show.

Circus, circus,

You are very neat.

Circus, circus,

I wrote this for when we meet.

I put down Abraham Lincoln and scribbled the words on my Batman notepad. It was genius! They would be so thrilled when I played them my song. They would ask me my name and the name of my guitar and we would eat circus peanuts together. I packed up Abraham Lincoln in his gig bag, took off my slippers, put on my Batman boots, and put my jacket half on. I opened the door to find my dad standing in the hallway. He looked down at me in his blue and white striped pajamas. I almost didn’t recognize him without his glasses, but his moustache was the same. It had to be him.

“Going somewhere Mr. Music?” he said.

Wanting to be like Lincoln, I spoke the truth. I told him about the circus driving by, me pacing around my room, picking up Abraham Lincoln, and writing my amazing song. Dad put his hand on his chin. After a moment or two, he squatted down and gently took Abraham Lincoln from me. He started taking him out of his bag. My heart sank with each tug of the zipper.

“Take off your coat and boots and put your slippers back on. Then meet me in my office.” I was seldom allowed to enter Dad’s office. He would tell me there were too many breakable things in there. I put Leonardo and Donatello back on. I looked down at them and shrugged. When I pushed the office door open, Dad was sitting with headphones on and Abraham Lincoln in his hands. He motioned me in.

“What chords were you playing?”

I told him. He quickly played them back and forth with ease and fluidity.

“Now, we’re going to record your song and send it to the circus. Is that okay with you?”

I nodded vigorously. Dad handed me some headphones and we recorded my song. We finished it quickly. Dad said he would try his hardest to get it to them.

“I know they will get it,” I replied. “We have Abraham Lincoln on our side!”

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Projects Aplenty

Greetings and Salutations friends. Much to report. First of all, I have been on a composing rampage. This last weekend I completed my new work, Marlowe. It's definitely inspired by Raymond Chandler's famous private eye, Philip Marlowe. This one is five tracks instead of the usual three, and I'm very excited about it. You can check it out here

I also wrote two other short songs, which I have dubbed "Songettes" for a project with a friend I've never met. He has some amazing photography that has inspired me to compose mini soundtracks/themes for the respective pictures. Unfortunately both of those songettes/picture combos are unavailable for distribution for various reasons. However, we will remedy that problem by starting completely fresh and making something of our own. I am very excited for this collaboration. He has been very professional and seems to be as excited as I am. It'll be a nice change of pace. So look forward to that.

My extra duties and odd hours at the Wilderness are now at an end. My normal work week has resumed, allowing time for my precious Promptly and other non-musical writing. I really want to make time for both, and hopefully my regular schedule helps that. Here is today's promptly. It's a little sappy, but I can't change the prompts. Enjoy!

It was a strange engagement. But she had reasons of her own for wanting to go through with it. And so did he.

Two Words

-Nathan Honoré-

Gina loved James. Bill loved Tiffany. James loved Gina. Tiffany loved James. However, Gina is marrying Bill to spite James because James didn’t propose in the seven years they were together. James is marrying Tiffany to spite Gina for trying to spite him by getting engaged to Bill. Bill agreed to marry Gina because Tiffany was infatuated with James. It was awkward. For years, these four had been a very tight group of friends. They would do everything together. Things got ugly when Gina dumped James for not proposing to her. The proposals that followed occurred almost instantaneously. The spiteful plans were hatched, but this did not stop the group from hanging with each other: business as usual. The couples would stare longingly at the other’s fiancé. As one announced a wedding date, the other followed. Soon, the dates were upon them. James was to marry Tiffany a week before Gina and Bill.

“Where is Bill at?” James asked.

“He’s running late, as usual,” replied Gina. She was sitting at the group’s favorite bar in the usual dimly lit booth. Her vodka cranberry needed some tending to. James went to the bar, got Gina another and himself a Seven and Seven. He slid carefully into the opposite side of the booth. He pushed Gina’s drink towards her, then dove head first into his own.

“Yeah, Tiff’s running late, too,” he said between gulps. He was ready for another. Gina’s eyes glanced at James as she nodded. Her gaze quickly returned to her drink. It had been six months and forty-six days since their last kiss. They played with the stirrers in their respective drinks, careful not to make any unnecessary coughs or groans.

After a couple of silent minutes, Gina said, “ You’re really going through with all this then?”

“Going through with what?” James replied. Gina let her mouth open a little and slid her hand two inches past her drink. James stopped playing with the stirrer and started his hand towards hers. It was about half way across the table, directly under the low hanging light above them, and Bill came through the door. With a goofy smile on his face and smudgy glasses, he waved and walked towards them. As he got close, James quickly pushed his hand further across the table passing Gina’s outstretched fingers.

“Just grabbing her drink. Do you want a Schlitz, Bill?”

“ I do,” Bill replied, sliding next to Gina.

James turned and quietly said, “ Tomorrow, those will be the hardest two words that I’ll ever say…”

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Dark Knight Rises to meet a challenge

My very good friend and Pantsless compatriot, Zach of all trades Churan has hit me with some very important knowledge:some very key casting for the next Batman movie. I kind of went overboard on my facebook response and have decided to just post it as a blog. The info= Anne Hathaway as Selina Kyle and Tom Hardy as Bane.

First of all, I have heard rumors that this will be the last of Christopher Nolan's Batman movies. Because of this, I definitely did not see Catwoman and Bane as the villains. Both have huge backgrounds and are complex characters. To fit all of that into one movie seems like a bit much, but they are definitely a great pair.

In regards to Anne Hathaway...I honestly believe that Christopher Nolan will do to her what he did to Heath Ledger. He will make us see her in a way we've never conceived before. My instincts say no, but they also said no to Heath Ledger as the Joker. As soon as I saw that first teaser for Dark Knight with Ledger's Joker laugh, I knew I was dead wrong. I believe my instincts will be wrong again. I eagerly await the transformation.

When I hear Tom Hardy I am both excited and confused. I have a sizable man crush on Hardy after his performance as Eames in Inception. His character was perfect and kind of stole the film a little bit. Clearly, he is an awesome actor and this gives me great hope for the way they will portray Bane. In the catastrophe of a film, Batman and Robin, Bane is dumbass packmule/goon for Poison Ivy. WRONG. Bane is kind of a genius. He is also Latino with a thick accent...hopefully Hardy can do an accent that isn't his charming English self. So, when Nolan casts Hardy as Bane, it must mean that he will lean towards the intelligent and lethal Bane, not the dumb piece of shit that George Clooney faced. Now, Bane is a huge, huge guy. Hardy is not. I pray that they won't "Juggernaut" Bane like they did to Vinnie Jones in X-3. CG is also not the way to go. Not sure how to pull off such a superhuman character whose dimensions do not match the average human, but I am confident Nolan will find a way or reinvent the character so it works.

I just can't wait another YEAR for this movie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

My kind of Prompt

Promptly finally pulls through for me, giving me a topic that I am near expert on: bathrooms. I'm quite happy where with this one went and some lines that were coined in the process.

Side note: I finally finished my Batman novel, based on my all-time favorite Batman comics, the Knightfall series. Some of
you are already familiar with the story line. Bane messes shit up, breaks Bruce Wayne's back, a new Batman is appointed and basically goes ape-shit. It is an amazingly illustrated comic and the story is great. The novel adaptation did not disappoint and actually filled in some gaps for me, seeing as I don't own the entire series of comics, but come pretty close. Great read if you love Batman as much as I do. Batman: Knightfall by Dennis O'Neil.

And now, the prompt: He'd never been in her bathroom before. As he turned on the hot water to wash his hands, the mirror, which was prone to fogging, fogged. And he saw what was written there.

John and Tina had been dating for five months and he had yet to go to the bathroom in the same building as her, let alone in her apartment. When they were out to eat, he wouldn’t even go to the restaurant bathroom. Bodily functions hadn’t been put on the table yet and John liked it that way. Every movement would shift and pass peacefully and his bladder was as strong as Paul Bunyan.

One fateful night, John screwed up. His ritual before heading out for the evening was fixed and meticulous. John was a creature of habit and he always honored the three S’s with the reverence of the Pope on Good Friday. Shit, shower, and shave, in that order. But work ran late and his movement had shifted to the bowels of his mind. John immediately jumped in the shower, and then shaved his face, taking time to make sure his slightly bushy sideburns were precisely even and trimmed. He checked his phone and had a few minutes more than normal, but couldn’t figure out why. Being raised that “early is on time, and on time is late,” he grabbed his corduroy jacket and headed out the door.

Tina had wanted to cook for John for a while and John, being the nice guy that he is, agreed. The evening was going great. The pork stir-fry that Tina crafted was delicious and the Riesling matched nicely. But there was something in the food that set John’s internal system off. Cartoon sized sweat poured from forehead. The gut-wrenching cramps caused him to squeeze his leg. He shifted his weight over and over. None of the usual tricks worked. It was there. It was time.

John politely excused himself to what he called, “the little boy’s room,” clenching all the way. His walk qualified him a top spot in the Ministry of Silly Walks, hands straight at his sides, completely upright and stepping carefully.

He turned the fan on and let loose. John now knew what it was to give birth…to twins. When he had finished, he flushed and turned the hot water on to wash his hands. Tina had mentioned on their first date how her ex-roommate used to leave fog mirror messages for her all the time, seeing as the mirror fogged up easier than the Moors of England. John washed his hands and looked up to see: “Thank you for washing your hands.” It was accompanied by a smiley face and a giggle from the other side of the door.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Promptly Strikes Back

Indeed, promptly comes through for me once again. The prompts lately have done nothing for me, but this one spurred my creativity. Enjoy compatriots.

The contents of the time capsule were, to say the least, baffling.

The construction site on Canyon Road had been in a permanent state of "coming soon" for fifteen years. Scott had played in there for years and then started hanging when he turned fourteen. Under cover of darkness, he would sneak through the bear-sized hole in the fence. Scott kept a small wooden box that most people use for drug paraphernalia under some rotted 2x4s. It contained a flashlight, Batman comics, fingernail clippers, and peanuts. Scott knew he was a loner and accepted his status in high school. His parent's thought he went to a friend's house on those nights he went to the construction site. What they don't know doesn't hurt them, Scott thought.

One summer night, Scott snuck into his beloved construction site, through the hole in the fence, and to his wooden box. He grabbed his flashlight and shown it randomly around the ground around him. His thumb started to slide towards the switch to the off position when something reflected back at him. Scott walked carefully towards it. It was metallic and shaped like a thermos, still half buried. Scott uncovered the rest with his hands, noting to get the dirt out from under his nails later with his clippers. The cylindrical object was a tarnished metal with a line down the middle. Scott twisted it and the top half came open. He poured the contents on the ground and plopped himself down.

“What the hell?” Scott said.

There were three items and a note. The note read:

To whom it may concern,

May this kit of anonymous fame be as useful to you as it was for me. I have buried this time capsule to immortalize the best ways to gain anonymous fame in the year 1953. If used properly, these things will assist you in doing things that you can take pride in forever, but will never take credit for.

Toilet paper- toss this over the trees and houses of your foes. It will take forever for them to clean it up.

Whoopee cushion- use with great discretion. Try to slip it onto a teacher’s chair or behind someone in front of you at church. Do not laugh more or less than others. That will solidify your guilt.

Baby Ruth- This candy bar is a perfect replica of fecal matter. Place in a pool and wait for the screams of disgust. The staff will have to evacuate and drain the pool. No laughing.

Enjoy, friend. I don’t know you, but I wish you all the best. Remember; never take credit for these actions. The key to this kit is anonymous fame.

Sincerely, John Baker

Scott finished reading and held the objects in his dirty hands. The whoopee cushion was still rubbery, the toilet paper strong, and the Baby Ruth unopened.

“Would Batman use these?” he asked himself. But quickly decided that he was not Bruce Wayne and hoped that Batman would forgive him for what he was about to do. Anonymous fame waited.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Things to come

Hey everyone- little update after the first week in the new year.

Writing has been slow, but I am finding the time to do it. It's just a matter of finding a new routine, as I no longer have to go the library to get internet. The guy we've been stealing it from finally learned how to lock it, so we caved. It becomes hard for me to concentrate at home in my favorite chair so I'm going to figure something else out.

Although, last night I came up with an idea for an original new story. I started a story about a fictionalized version of me that follows the semi-ficticious Bearded Sons of Christ (the band my brothers and I have made in real life.) I plan on balancing the hilarity that is in some of my writing with the dark and thought-provoking, as an underlying theme in the story is me dealing with my feelings towards my grandparents. I have a page done and can't wait to keep going.

More soon.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Holiday Madness

The hectic holidays are finally through, which means I can finally get back into a regular writing routine. I have been making a lot music lately, but my writing has been suffering. By the way, I created a bandcamp for myself under the pseudonym of Cranston. Cranston is the last name of the alter ego of The Shadow, Lamont Cranston. I found it fitting for the music I have created. If you have time, check it out: Cranston-Bandcamp

Here's my first promptly of the new year. I'll keep improving as I get back into a steady schedule, always do. But this is obviously not my best work. Either way, enjoy!

Craft a story featuring a cell phone, a lost and found box, and a blizzard.

Lisa was working at the resort when the blizzard hit. It was unexpected and swift, as most blizzards are, rendering the area completely useless. A great whiteness washed over everything. At least the blind know how to move around without their sight. Those with sight would squint until they couldn’t squint anymore.

The snow was still falling in heavy quantities when Lisa put down her binder. She was the head of the Lost and Found department and the Backcountry Resort and Golf Course. Though she was not enthusiastic about her job, she worked like it. Making calls and e-mails about blankets and cell phones that were left behind by their careless owners was rather tedious. But Lisa enjoyed people and helping them.

“Holy shit…” Lisa said. She was alone.

“When did all this happen?” she thought.

She emerged from behind her bar-like desk and walked towards the huge glass doors. There was pure whiteness outside. Lisa thought she saw an inch or two of the black handrails but couldn’t be sure. Her arms crossed. She stared for a few minutes into the ungodly white light.

You put on quite a show, really had me going…

The ringer broke Lisa’s contemplative and stoic state. She walked back to her desk and picked up her phone, looking back at the snow every few seconds. It was mesmerizing.

“Hello, this is Lisa,” she recited.

There was crackling and a terrible wind noise on the other end.

“Hello? Is anyone there?” She looked at her phone. It showed that a hotel number was calling, which could have been anyone on the resort.

More noise.

“Do you need help? Are you ok?” Lisa continued.

“L…Lisa…” a deep, smoke-ridden voice said. She knew who it was before he had actually gotten her name out: Jonathan from Security.

“Jonathan, where the hell are you? Are you ok?”


“Outside where?”

More crackling and wind noise.

“Jonathan, where are you?”

“Park….ot-“ The phone disconnected.

Lisa ran to the door again, looking into nothing, hoping to see something new. She knew that if she opened the door and went looking for Jonathan she would be able to see even less. The harsh wind would blind her and knock her down. She would need supplies.

The Lost and Found closet held a lot of summer clothes and flip-flops, but there was a bin of swimming goggles. Lisa thought that those might make it a little easier to see. Some poor blind person had left his walking stick. It would work for Lisa now. She donned her winter jacket, hat, and gloves. The goggles were tight but they fit. Lisa strode to the door and pushed. The wind was formidable foe, warning her to stay put. She lowered herself and lunged at the door. It opened enough for her to get out. Her goggles immediately fogged up and the cane had fallen somewhere in the snow. Now she wondered if she would be able to get back in.