Drabble – The Comedy Store, Alphard 3

It was vast, the distant windows only visible because they were so tall. Every word Silas uttered was swallowed by the immensity. Puffing with bravado like a sparrow singing at an avalanche, he said, ‘What is it?’

Kilikilitak shifted his broad wings and replied, ‘Why, it’s a comedy club. Ambassador Kahkahree suggested we try one. Very amusing he said.

Silas’s furrowed his brows: ‘You have comedians, but no comedy clubs?’

‘Yes.’

‘Fair enough.’

Kilikilitak burst out laughing, sending Silas flying into the air. Silas didn’t know the Keelee race laughed with their wings and he had been standing very close.

Drabble – Standards

Standards dropped after the bombs fell, that was no surprise, but it definitely changed us when Brian died. Where do you bury someone in a bunker? The stench – I can still taste it now – made the decision for us. It was so messy that we boiled him, one piece at a time, tearing off chunks of his flesh so he fit down the toilet. We had to keep the skeleton.

I’d come to terms with what we did, it broke Spike though. He’s been acting out ever since. I guess that’s why he keeps hiding the skull in my bed.

Drabble – The New Book of Revelations 1 i-iii

The gates were immense and swollen with rust. The lieutenant obliterated the locks and Dr Castella quickly retrieved the fragments, cooing in veneration. Something moved in the mist ahead. I nudged Strauss. Weapons raised, We took point as we breached the Gates of Heaven.

The moaning was reverence stitched to agony. I found the first on his knees. He cried, ‘Judgement is upon us! Have mercy, our fathers.’

I stopped too suddenly for Strauss, who knocked me off balance. Hadn’t he heard? On my knees I tried to understand: Heaven had people in it. They thought we were gods.

Drabble – Pogo

In my dream she giggled like a child as she bounced around the room, pogoing recklessly from the drip stand. The mother I knew was severe and restrained. Dad told me years ago how she had changed after I was born. I awoke consumed by grief, which scared Laura immensely.

The next day, in the stroke ward, Mum had the same expression as always. Her eyes were fixed on the ceiling. It was later, when I slumped back in the chair next to her bed, weary and muggy from the hospital’s environment, that I saw the dents in the ceiling.

Drabble – The Invasion Begins

X149 had his instructions, the invasion was to commence immediately. Acting simultaneously with fellow agents worldwide he dropped his copy of The Times, tore off the itchy human suit and drew his photon immobiliser. He screamed to the cafe, ‘Vacillating earthlings! This is your last day as a free planet. You belong to the Klax now!’

No-one moved. Then a hand crept up in the corner booth. ‘Is that a photon immobiliser?’

X149 was confused: ‘How do you know that?’

‘Rogalprax, Delvin Empire.’

‘Oh… Well everyone else is enslaved!’

More hands went up. All of the hands in fact.

Publication

This is officially the start of ‘something’. I have joined to illustrious and impoverished ranks of ‘People who have had a story published’. I am now a published author. I can prove it, just ask Norm.

In fact, don’t ask Norm, he’s very busy. But do listen to Norm read it out here – Drabblecast 292: Hollow as the World

So there we have it. My name has been spoken, associated with the act of creation, and just like that I have taken a bold step into being much more marketable as a product creator (see How to Get a Literary Agent). No more will submissions be accompanied by the distasteful conclusion, ‘I do not have any publication credits to my name as yet, but have various pieces out for consideration across a range of markets.’ Ohhhhh no, Nelly, not any more.

Now they will be joyously closed with ‘My work has been published in the Drabblecast (episodes 292 and 288). Whilst the honour of being my first has passed I can assure you I am much more experienced now. A fact I am sure you will appreciate in a few minutes time. Now put the cava down and come here, you hunk of love, you.’ Or words to that effect.

For those of you who can’t listen to the podcast, here’s the flash in all it’s humble glory:

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Drabblecast, Norm Sherman and tickling the lexical bone

My Christmas discovery for 2012 is something that has bought me great joy. Like endless shiny packages of great joy, each individually wrapped by a different talented person and containing those sour, bitter-sweet lumps of raw meat which ooze word-juice, flambéed in 100% proof narrative before being coated in the crumbs of your expectations and deep-fried in the realisation that yes, there are actually over 260 more of them to come. I am, naturally, talking about Drabblecast, but you already knew that didn’t you. Clever little monkey.

Having been sent there by a (modestly done) nod towards her own work I found myself listening to Go Beep by Aliya Whiteley. I was expecting an interesting story, based on precedent, but imagine my joy at hearing the rest of it. Norm Sherman is one of a very rare breed, an America who is deadpan, erudite, frequently surreal and excellently cutting. He’s definitely not racist either (see ep. 262).

For example: “Another Halloween special. Another night sitting around eating candy straight from the bag and ignoring the goddamn doorbell. Just another tradition I like to call ‘Fuck you, I paid for it’.” Which is followed by a great debunking of costumes, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and skanks and a Lovecraftian take on the 12 Days of Christmas (My True Lovecraft Gave to Me by Eric Lis)

I could list more but that would take the fun out of discovering them yourself. For those who are a little ashamed of giggling on public transport, maybe listen to it at home. I’ll leave you with the strongest recommendation in my arsenal (yup, the blue one with the ribbon on) to check it out though. A couple of good starters though: