Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Designed by Ali
Ideas end up in my gun in many styles, many calibers, let's say.   Some are fully formed, can't wait to pull the trigger explosions of scene, pathos, action, adventure, beginning, middle, and end.  Others are skeletal, the primary characters are there, the macguffin, if there is one, is there, too, and there's a general flow of where things will go.   But sometimes, not often, mind you, but sometimes there's just one thing.   A name or an object someone would desire.  No bells and whistles, no grand plans unfolding in the always sold out movie theater of my mind.  Just one thing.

That's what I'm armed with today.

I tried a contest sort of thing in this column a while back and no one bit.  But since it's been a while and especially since ALL PULP's had a major spike in hits lately, thought it might be a good time to do so again.  What I have in my head is a singular scene, an opening scene.  This short, pithy paragraph you will find below.   The contest is thus-Add to what I have, go as long as you want, but at least a page.  If you don't write out a complete story, then make sure there's a synopsis of where you think the idea would go.  The top five will be posted on ALL PULP and then in a manner I have yet to decide on a winner will be chosen from the top five.  That winner will be printed in one of Pro Se Press's upcoming anthologies and will receive a percentage comparable to other writers in Pro Se's anthologies.  So, yes, this is a contest for a (albeit paltry, trust me) paying writing gig.   All you have to do is make me love the story you tell starting off with this spark-

She walked into my office, moving like a song of forbidden jazz full of sultry horns, hellishly hot ivory licks, and a rolling drum beat with the cadence of exploding artillery every time she stepped.  A melody that haunts your soul,weakens your spirit, and teases your body in ways that are illegal in most states.

"I know it's late."  The melody out of her full, painted lips was as seductive as the accompaniment.  Dusky, but softly tender.  Like silk sheets on a cheap motel bed.  "But your door was open."

"Never closed."  I didn't give her one inch, not moving from my reclined position at my desk, feet up on the corner by the half empty whiskey bottle, my battered fedora pulled down over my face, the shadow of the brim meeting the five o'clock one on my chin.  Didn't move a bit.  Except for my eyes.

She was fully outfitted, not an ounce of meat and muscle where it shouldn't be and enough there to be noticed.  Over and Over.  As she flowed across my floor, she seemed to shimmer and glow, caught in the ever changing kaleidoscope of the neon sign just outside my office window.  First red, giving each swish of her hip a devilish hint as if she were tugging a pointed tail behind her.  Then green, a soft green teasing that maybe, just maybe there was enough gentleness in that double barrel body to be nice to someone.  And finally a swirl of blue, turquoise melting into hints of ebony.   And that told the whole story.  Or I thought it did.

"I need someone," she cooed, leaning across my desk, one hand teasing its scarred top, "to go somewhere for me."

Still didn't move.  "Surprised you don't have a conga line of admirers, suitors, and gadflies behind you everywhere you go."

"Oh, I do," she laughed, rippling water running over dried bones, "but none of them will go as far as I want them to.  I need someone to go to-" her words caught, not for effect, but for a moment, the act slipped. "To go to The Epiphany."

That name brought the shoes off the desk and forced me to push my hat back on my head.  This noirish fantasy just took a turn for the tricky and possibly terminal.  "That's living that only the dead enjoy."

"Yes," her effervescent red lips parted, her tongue carressing the bottom one like a snake on a limb.  "And its where you really learn what androids dream of."

There you go! send your entries to!