Thursday, July 06, 2006

JP's Genre Drabbles

Link to Original Story: Genre Drabbles - JP

I have to admit, I’m pretty proud of these. Some more so than others, though. The horror one is pretty overtly ripped from Lovecraft (and even more so from the Call of Cthulhu video game), and it’s not all that swell. Likewise, the fantasy one may no so much as qualify as fantasy, and is really more SpecFic, or, possibly, Random Junk.

I’m much happier with the other two, however. The SF one has gotten a really great response from those who have read it (okay, JED and C), which is funny, as I dashed it down desperately in the last minute; sometimes things just come together. My favorite, though, is the SpecFic drabble. It may not be the best on its own merit, but it doesn’t have a single word repeated; not an “a,” not a “the,” not an “as.” That was actually a little difficult to do. Is the effect worthwhile? Probably not, but what the hell. I did it, which is cool.

Let me just say that I hate JP. I absolutely loathe him. I detest him. His talent makes me sick to my stomach. I have dry heaves of jealousy. There is no doubt to me that he absolutely hit a home run with these stories. Apparently, drabbles are his natural element. I struggle to find anything more substantive to say, I am so perfectly awe-struck. His fantasy, though not exactly fantasy so much as parable is eleganty worded, clever and moral. His SF is elegant and brilliant in it's voice and it's ability to convey both comedy and drama - perfectly captures the efferevescent weirdness that is SF. His horror, Lovecraftian by default, is such an encapsulation of that master that the Great Old Ones could be channeling through JP's puny form. It grabs you with it's inescapable creepiness, the pervasive fear that is transformation and corruption. And finally, his spec fic bonus feature. So freakin' great that I don't even know what to say. He had to point out to me how it never repeated a word. It IS the 100 words. So damn good I'm not even worthy to understand it. I will say that it's spec fic in the general realm of Phantom Tollbooth and The Little Prince, but being compared to Antoine St. Exupery is no diss in my book. He is, without a doubt, one of my favorite authors of all time.

JED's Genre Drabbles

Link to Original Story: Genre Drabbles - JED

Allow me to again reiterate my distaste for people with talent. See, writing a "good" story is so out of fashion these days. It's much more trendy to write crap. In the same sense that Paris Hilton has earned her celebrity, I too have earned accolades for these stories. I will admit that I like the idea of interlinking them. I will give myself that. And the journey isn't a bad theme to work with. The problem here is in the execution. Every single one of them comes out more as a vignette than a drabble. In my own defense, I have never actually read a drabble, and I will not repeat this mistake in the future. Still...meh. I tried to make them all a reflection of the essence of their genre. The fantasy is epic, and steals the song line from Tolkien, so that works. But it makes you wonder who these people are and what's going on. The SF is dull in it's reflectivity. It gets the "calm before the storm" feeling of a journey, but it leaves you wanting. The horror is less than horrifying, and more generally disquieting. The spec fic is specy, but I'm not sure how clear the theme is, and JP pointed out that it too left the reader feeling that the story had more to be disclosed. I was initially happy with these. But on reflection I am sorely dissapointed with them.

JED may be down on himself on this one, but I think it’s undeserved. I loved the way that he wove all drabbles into a single theme, and gave each one a place in that theme. They all play off each other, though each is different. That’s an idea I toyed with myself, before quickly dismissing it as “way too damn hard.” JED pulls it off masterfully. I do think that a couple, primarily the Fantasy one, don’t stand alone too well, but that’s a minor quibble. My favorites here are the SF one and the SpecFic one. Both do a great job of being self-contained, and have some awesome imagery. I’m especially fond of the SF one, but have to admit that the SpecFic one contains the better imagery, the cooler message, and the subtle shade of the metaphor for the creative process lingering behind it. The image of the stream running clear and pure out of the burnt forest is a powerful one.