Tiny Update

I just learned about 30 minutes ago that a very short story I recently wrote (a bit of mythic realism) won second place in a contest. It’ll be published on the website soon and I’m even getting some money. Who says you can’t make a living writing about Valkyries?

I’ll announce the contest and the website once they do. Thanks for reading.

A Mountain is Easy to Love

A mountain is easy
to love in the spring.
The wildflowers blossom,
the rivers rush and heave.
Cool evenings under blankets
begged by wide open skies,
the landscape of dusk
with wild yellow eyes.

A mountain is easy
to love in the spring.
Yet warm afternoons
soon spread summer wings.
But summer’s spawn of spring
and so still easy to remain
in repose on the mountain
with tents to slake the rains.

A mountain is easy
to love in the spring.
Till the songbirds cease singing
and autumn takes the leaves.
Tents and blankets both are lost
For a mountain sometimes steals.

A mountain is easy
to love in the spring.
But winter comes to roost
and snow settles in.
It grows moody and cold,
but the mountain is keen.
The mountain is honest-
and shares everything.

A mountain is easy
to love in the spring.
So if a mountain suits you
build a cabin neath her eaves.
But if the thought of winter scares,
stick to valleys, narrow streams
For there’s only so few places
for those with mountain dreams.

Toll

I know I put a great burden on you
To stay when the dark night took me
When laughters fire turned to ash
Swept by cold winds between my teeth

When the summer left my spirit
And cruel autumns did descend
You tended new moon embers
To light a future starlit spring

I know I put a great burden on you
To swim through treacherous seas
When the tanker of my anger
Might spill its oil over me

You captained the boat so often
midnight storms and starless skies
My love could be a sextant
Or blind my navigators eyes

I learned what toll this forge extracts
In being loved by you
It is the dark place within a bell
That causes it to ring so true.

Naturalis Familia Memoriae

Our Winter settles in,
rests on stone park benches
In warm cups of coffee
breathing steam into the night
Our Autumn has gone
the last fires left glowing
as the coals turn cold
on another sunset Samhain

Adolescent Summer’s shrug
lumbers past winter’s chill
remembering, and waiting
for the sun again to crest the hills
Little Spring is being sheered
of mushrooms, fallen trees
wrapped in turtlenecks of
moss and snow, asleep

How many more family portraits can we take?
Before little spring will always be summer,
and our Winter & Autumn, uncared for
will fade to outdoor memories.
When they no longer rear their heads,
and we will tell our children
“This is what your family was
but your family is now dead.”

Why no Updates?

Hey! Why aren’t there any updates from the last three years? you cry, having come to my website looking for brilliance.

In part, because most of my short fiction and whatnot is in the lengthy and heart-wrenching world of S U B M I S S I O N to various magazines and publications. Since the turn around is often 6+ months, time flies waiting for a rejection letter, which I have received several of. That explains the time gap.

Meanwhile, I’ll post some poetry or flash fiction at some point soon here, especially after I get my next rejection letter am feeling pissed about it. Afterall, that’s why I created this website.

 

 

 

 

Twine Update!

Deep in the midst of working on my newest Twine game, “What Color Are You,” and reaching a point where it is finally coming together. The GUI looks like a spiderweb of interconnecting pages, but it is finally starting to work out! One of the biggest experimentations in this Twine is my use of the “New Game + ” mechanic, with content that changes with each playthrough. Will people play through a twine multiple time to see deeper content, I guess we’ll see.

Flash Fiction and Lucha

I will be participating in the NYC Midnight Flash Fiction Contest again this year, which kicks off at the end of July. In previous NYC Midnight Contests, I have placed very well, even reaching the top 25 of more than 700 contestants in my first Flash Fiction Contest.

Flash Fiction is something I enjoy immensely. You may or may not know that I am the reigning and undisputed North American Lucha Libro Champion from 2014 and through a strange turn of events, I may be the only official North American Lucha Libro Champion to ever exist.

You see, Lucha Libro is an event from Peru in which aspiring writers don masks, are given three random words and set before a laptop connected to a projector. They then have five minutes to write a story that integrates the three words they were given. In Peru, the winner is published following the contest and the losers are demasked.

When I read about this event in Peru I rushed to a local bookstore and tried to convince the owner to run with the idea and adapt it for Phoenix — after all, Mexico runs deep in our cities culture and Lucha Libre is a cultural idea that most people from Phoenix would immediately relate to. Their calender was full for events, but a local art space called The Firehouse picked up the idea of the event and ran with it. They reached out to the Peruvian owners of the intellectual property and requested a chance to do the event in Phoenix.

The originators consented to allow The Firehouse to do the show, free of royalties, for one night. If the Firehouse wanted to do the show again, they’d have to pay.

So, you may see where this is going.

I ended up competing in the event as “La Biblioteca Wrecker” and winning. I think I may have approached the event more seriously that some of the the other writers- I was telling a friend who was also competing that I had been running “wind sprints” in which I chose a random word and wrote a piece of microfiction in one minute. They were sufficiently intimidated. I wrote the fullest extent of my abilities, and won in every round. The ironic part of me winning is that one of the judges is an editor for a local literary publication that has sent me more rejection letters than I care to count, but he seemed genuinely moved by some of my work on stage that night. It was edifying but also somewhat hollow — The event felt rough around the edges and the hosts and judges had trouble making the event about the writers and writing rather than about themselves. Regardless, the Firehouse chose afterwards to not do the show again (nor to publish the chapbook of the winning works, I may add). As of this moment, there is a wrestling belt over the television in my living room declaring me the 2014 Lucha Libro Champion and I have never had my mask removed. Should the event spring up in an official capacity anywhere in North America, I will be sure to arrive to defend my belt.

Sworn to Secrecy

I am struggling to some extent

with the lack of success

of my artistic work over the last year.

It’s not a sense of failure

nor do I feel unfulfilled,

but I am at times looking down

at the page

or listening back

to the sounds

and thinking “I only seem to be getting better.”

It is no doubt in part to blame

on my own isolation.

I have sequestered myself

with the only consistent things in my life-

my own optimism

my desire to mutilate ink

and endless grey smoke

In this tower I am a lonely wizard

too shameless to pretend

that I don’t feel that way.

Too shameless to pretend

that I don’t feel alone.

From here there is a vantage point,

and I can see light hiding

behind the horizon

but the people below, indistinct.

I’ve made forays down

to the paper world beneath

and shared a little

of the witchcraft

I’m perfecting

but it is mostly to jacketed backs and empty fields.

I have known great success

alone,

in silent repose or roaring mania,

but so few have known it.

It’s not the fear of blight

or obsolescence

but that these rotting golems

and tattered homunculi

will live without dancing,

their sole purpose

undone.

If you are out there,

I made it for you.

I’ll keep it till you find it.

And I’ll pray that you like it.