Wandering thoughts

Disclaimer: this post is about to go down a few rabbit holes that involve the endless stream of nonsense I live with running through my head like the news ticker at the bottom of most cable news networks. Shit’s about to get weird. Turn back, or forever regret pressing onward.

At the age of 30, which is apparently just old enough for people slightly younger than me to now make me feel older than I should feel just yet, I have come to terms with the fact that the inside of my head is a much louder place than I am always comfortable with it being. My inner monologue is often actually a rather argumentative dialogue, and as of late it has been particularly distracting. It likes to remind me that the plausibility of becoming an accomplished, published author isn’t very high. That I am disappointing people who should, under no circumstances, be disappointed. Sometimes it likes to tell me I’m fat, but also suggest I eat an entire bag of popcorn with extra butter and then chase it with some ice cream, because reasonably I should balance hot and cold foods. Continue reading

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Cordelia’s – A Short Story

Cordelia’s

by Philip W. Gorski

Simon sat on the queen-sized bed, his apartment recently having become all-too-large now that Evelyn had moved out. His phone continued to make its presence known on the nightstand, its tones and chirps only the finest the factory settings had to offer. Simon’s focus remained on the abandoned engagement ring next to his antique iPhone 4, the text messages piling up pointlessly as his friends tried to convince him of meaningful distractions.

To be fair, his friends had tried their damnedest to help Simon feel at least a little better. Greg succeeded in convincing Simon to see The Monster of Blood Lake XII: Most Bloodiest Revengery, the latest in a series of movie sequels that had long ago stopped taking itself seriously as part of the horror genre. The outing had gone so close to perfect, at least up until Simon spotted Evelyn with her five friends who showed unbridled loathing toward Simon on their best days in his company.

Life had devolved into little more than cookies and cream ice cream and Netflix-binging after that as Simon burned through vacation days and his allotted time to work from home. E-mail reminders from Simon’s all-too-lenient boss about how much of a rock star he is and how they’re there to support him in this difficult time. The standard mourning of a now-dead love life. Continue reading

Misadventures in writing a second novel

Oh, wow. How far is it into January again? I’m pretty sure the year just started yesterday.

Unless I’m actually a time-traveler who doesn’t realize he’s a time-traveler…

It goes without saying that I’m a little dazed and confused. I’d like to shift the blame to being a time-traveler, but I think this gloomy, post-Christmas gray-and-frozen weather is to blame for my inability to remember what day it is. What I do know, however, is in this haze of work and naps and new things brought along with the changing over to a new year (or a New Year) has also got me working on something new and exciting, and that’s lead to an interesting couple of revelations.

The something new is a new novel-project-mess, which I may have mentioned. It’s another new novel. I lose track because I start too many projects only to let them wander around My Documents, alone and bored until I remember they exist. All of this is especially worth talking about now because it was around this time last year that I went absolutely crazy in terms of cranking out new pages of material for Joshua Harkin and the Wicked Nightmare King, a title I have grown to regret as it might as well read Joshua Harkin and the Paragraph-Long Title.

Progress is a bit more slow than with Joshua’s Nightmares (I’m aiming for brevity here, people), taking into consideration I have a different job than I had this time last year, complete with different hours, responsibilities, and so on. I am also, I’ve found, more prone to taking naps. That’s something I still need to work on.

What I’m also noticing, however, is that this novel has already taken on enough of a life of its own that it’s impossible to really compare it to its predecessor in any real, meaningful way. Joshua’s Nightmares was general fiction in the broadest sense. It features elements of sci-fi, fantasy, humor, horror, and so on. Current Novel Without a Name (the file name, which doesn’t really betray much in terms of plot, is currently The Princess, The Lich, and Some Murders) is more restricted in that it’s a blend of humor and fantasy, skipping out on sci-fi (read as “this will be lacking in epic battles between space pirates”).

The plot itself is taking more time to unfold, as I don’t want to rush getting the major players where they need to be. Events need to unfold over the right amount of time, and getting that figured out is taking up…well, more time.

Fortunately, I can say I’m starting the year off with plenty of writing instead of plenty of slacking, as even on my worst days I’m still adding to this project’s word count.

Of course, there’s always Joshua Harkin and the Wicked Nightmare King to keep busy with until this book is finished (and eventually published, I hope). Definitely just a little proud of having a four-point-three star rating for my first novel. Please check it out and, if you’re feeling extra generous, write a review once you’re done. I’ll be donating 50% of the money I earn from book sales to the American Cancer Society via Relay for Life.

Wherever you are, whatever you’re creating, and no matter how many days you forgot just what point in the week it is, I hope you’re all having a good start to this new year so far.

Warpt Factor – Installment Seven

First and foremost, this was a promised birthday present to my Aunt Leanne, who also happens to be my godmother, and that means if I failed to deliver I’d essentially be letting down two important people in my life for the price of one. Also worthy of pointing out: she offered me a rest-stop at her house on my journey back from Chicago, and that’s an offer that could easily be taken away in the event I forgot to, say, appropriately celebrate her birthday. I’m pretty sure she turned 29 today (or whatever year people pick after they no longer want to count birthdays, I guess). Yeah. We’ll stick with that.

Here’s today’s installment, before I dig myself into a deeper hole. Continue reading

One Hundred Days of Blogging – Day 42

I’m starting my morning off by enjoying a bowl of cereal while I read through the Spam comments that Phil’s Misadventures in Fiction has accrued recently. It’s oddly entertaining, although the spammers certainly do have nice things to say about my posts. Even if some of those kind words don’t really make a lot of sense from a grammatical standpoint.

Speaking of kind words: the professor I sent Joshua Harkin and the Wicked Nightmare King off to got back to me with his critique today. It’s not something I feel should be shared in its entirety on here, but I do have to say seeing the phrases “I thoroughly enjoyed it” and “you have great characters” really put a stupid grin on my face.

Meowiarty is hanging out with me while I type this, as he sat at my bedroom door and meowed until I let him in. He may be a touch spoiled, I’m willing to concede, but he behaves like a dog enough and I miss having dogs around…so by that reasoning it should be okay that he’s in here. Probably. I’ll remind myself of that when I’m cleaning cat hair out of my PC’s tower.

Naturally, today’s post will involve 42 in a way. Hopefully not too predictable a way, but we’ll see. Continue reading

One Hundred Days of Blogging – Day Twelve

Today’s the first time in a long time I’ve slept in on my day off. I mean actually, properly slept in. Woke up at 10a.m. and everything. As it turns out, my body no longer likes sleeping in, so it was less of a pleasant series of stretches as I woke from my peaceful slumber, and more like me slowly dragging my ass out of bed when I realized I’d definitely slept far too late for my own good.

I miss the days of staying up until 5a.m. for any number of reasons, followed by sleeping until noon. Except not really. I’m full of self-contradicting shit today because it’s almost 1p.m. and I chose writing and breakfast over showering, so I’m probably the most disgusting person alive right now.

As promised, I’m going to write at least twenty short stories for this blogging misadventure I’ve embarked on, and I’d hate to make myself a liar. Before I get too caught up in how happy I am with this story, overall, despite the high chances it still has a couple typos, I need to point out two things.

Thing One – The stories I’m posting here are, in all probability, first drafts with only some polishing from my editing efforts. I miss a lot of my own screw-ups, but this feels like my best option given the time restraints I have imposed upon myself.

Thing Two – In the event I miss a Day of Blogging, I will rest the counter back to Day One, and then sob uncontrollably for at least an hour for being such a complete and utter failure. And because starting over and doing anything for one hundred days sounds like a special kind of Sisyphusian Hell.

Speaking of Hell, here’s today’s post/story. Enjoy, and I apologize for my slightly-more-vulgar-than-usual language (only to my relatives who may be unaware I use such foul words). Continue reading

Monday Mayhem

There is a small, albeit moderately insane, portion of my mind that is convinced today was a test, for me from the Universe, to see just how many times I could string together expletives in the course of one sentence. If we take into consideration that I am a man whose verbosity and capacity for complex sentences is, at its best times, unrivaled, I would dare estimate that the total curse words I managed to cram into one sentence would max out around sixty. If I were actually keeping track of that sort of thing, anyway.

I’ve ranted plenty on Twitter already. I vented to my girlfriend. I even considered researching possible ways to bring about Armageddon (which, to the relief of many, is beyond my capabilities at present). Out of some weird, misplaced mercy, I will spare the additional ranting for other outlets. Let me just leave this portion of the post off with this open-ended question: why is it the universe is most prone to go to shit on Mondays? Ignoring the business of it being after a weekend, because some of us work on weekends.

My brain is a touch soft today. Whether it’s because I burned myself out writing three short stories and a blog post last night, or how the forces of stupid really stepped up their game today, I don’t know. I do know I don’t like this lack of motivation very much, as it puts a real damper on my ability to focus on anything at all (there’s a shock).

However, as a sudden plot-twist to this post, and thanks to some Twitter-chatter with @MortuaryReport, this story happened. I realize this is a rather abrupt transition into a short story that could have never happened, but that’s sort of how I do things on days like today. This is how I managed to be creative and destructive, all at once. It, like any story that happens out of nowhere, may have gotten a bit (and by a bit I mean extremely) ridiculous. I’m not sorry.

Continue reading