The Serial Killer Epidemic: Interview Transcripts is my FINAL DIALOGUE for the series. This means that I’ve written my whole short story collection! Yesterday’s post was actually my 52nd dialogue . . . I just didn’t realize my count was off. So this 53rd dialogue is the last piece I’m adding to my 2018 writing challenge. Now that doesn’t mean as I’m finalizing my short story collection that I won’t write another dialogue or two (or dredge up some old piece of writing and convert it into a dialogue). I do have dialogue ideas I just never got around to writing.
Out of all the stories I’ve written over the years, The Serial Killer Epidemic: Interview Transcripts is one of my favorites. Like Expire and The Defining Attribute of a Girl, I actually wrote this piece years and years ago. In fact, I wrote this story even before marijuana was legalized anywhere in America. I guess I felt it coming, since legalized marijuana features so prominently, though my fictional trajectory toward legalization is rather different than it is historically happening.
It surprises me really that this story hasn’t been picked up anywhere yet. Maybe it’s too sci-fi for most literary publishers? Possibly it’s too experimentally literary for most hard sci-fi publishers? Or maybe it has a flaw that 25 drafts hasn’t smoothed out (if there is a flaw, I’m not seeing it)? But I’ll keep sending it out because I really want this dialogue, this short story to appear in print somewhere. And I’m pretty much set on only publishing it in a paying market, which is likely the real reason it hasn’t yet found a home, since places that actually pay writers for the work they do are extremely competitive.
The Serial Killer Epidemic: Interview Transcripts is a story in Q&A format. The interviewer, is trying to get to the bottom of a wave of child serial killers. Drugs to video games are blamed. But the truth may be more complex and conspiratorial or—worse—simple and endemic to the nature of modern society. This is just an interview; you’ll have to decide for yourself is the answer lies in between or outside these questions and answers.
FINAL THOUGHTS: I just want to thank everybody who has given so much as one like to any of my posts about this 2018 writing challenge. I’ll be working hard to polish up my 52+ dialogues so I can get some more of them published here and also have a book ready to send out to publishers or agents at the end of 2019.
This isn’t the last you’ll hear of my dialogues, but it is the last official post of my writing challenge. So thank you again for reading, liking, subscribing, and commenting. It’s been an awesome writing journey.
Dialogue #50 for my year-long writing challenge is Ho Ho Ho, Mother-Fucker. When two friends run into an evil Santa, hell-bent on mayhem and murder, they cut him down to size with a critique of the transgression Santa Claus trope.
This was a fun one to write. Here’s some entertaining resources and inspirations for this dialogue:
For dialogue #49, I’ve written We Toss ‘Em, a story about two men who are taking out a hoarder’s trash. Dino fossils* are found, but regulations say they must toss ’em into the trash.
*My apologies to any paleontologists who run across the story once it’s published. The two men involved call the fossils dinosaur bones, which is inaccurate. My excuse? Well, I’m going for realism of speech, not accuracy of facts in this one. If you take issue with my fictional perpetuation of a common enough mistake, please make no bones about it, pardon the pun, and leave a comment below.
“Imagine if a giant god came floating through outer space and vomited on us, hurling all this fiery debris down to Earth.”
This week’s dialogue is God Vomit, a creative conversation concerned with the possibility of a strange, godlike Boltzmann Brain. If you don’t know what it is, a Boltzmann Brain is a self-aware creature created from a random configuration of elements and atoms rather than through other means, such as evolution or genetic engineering. Basically, it’s a creature arising from chance. It’s a cool concept, and one I felt worth exploring in this dialogue.
This is dialogue #48. On my first week of the challenge I wrote an introduction, so I’ll have one to make up some week soon. The truth is, I have more dialogue ideas left than there are weeks in the month. So either I’ll scratch off an idea or two, write extra dialogues before the year is over, or just write them after the new year for inclusion in the future published collection.
URBAN EXPLORING: Enchanted Castle is a dialogue about the depths of enchantment. Two urban explorers enter into an enchanted castle but find not the dilapidated magical charm they anticipated. Instead, they encounter the enchanted remains of a decaying nightmare.
These are the last weeks of the dialogue challenge. I am amazed at myself for sticking it out even in my busiest weeks. I’m even more humbled knowing that there are writers out there who manage to write a blog or article post multiple times a week. I really don’t know how you do it, but I applaud you.
For those who are wanting to read some new dialogues, stay posted and subscribe to get email notifications. My focus is on getting the last dialogues written, then I’ll start to type up whatever is still in pen and paper drafts, edit, and send my pieces out. There are some dialogues submitted here and there, so who knows, it’s possible something new will be published soon. If there is, I’ll do a post when it’s published.
Today I decided to scratch the dialogue I was going to post and wrote a new short and sweet one in honor of the blizzard that has me stuck at the hotel all weekend. It’s short and sweet (the story, not the blizzard). I’d say the dialogue is exploring the nature of art or some shit like that. I enjoyed the image I conjured up and enjoyed writing the piece. Hopefully a future editor of a magazine will like it enough to publish it. And if I’m really lucky, a reader or two will like it as well (yes, my mom counts as one of these two hypothetical readers).
Actually, fuck that editor and those two hypothetical fans (Sorry, Mom!). I’m posting this story on Medium for all the world to ignore. Again, it’s short, sweet, and totally first draft (I wrote it in a rush like 20 minutes ago). So ready to read it or not, hop on over to Medium to check out Man in the Snow.
UPDATE on a fudged up update:
Somehow when I was updating the Medium series that has similar posts about the dialogues as this blog does, all but 23 cards (everything before dialogue #37 + the title card) were totally deleted with no way to get them back. According to my stats, no one reads the series anyway. Just about anyone who cares how this challenge and future book of short stories of mine reads the blog (Thanks, Mom!). It’d be a pain to hunt down every last link to the series in all my old posts and articles; instead, I’ll just leave a note on the series directing people back here and, later, directing people to a book sale link (in advance: Thanks for buying two copies, Mom!).
I will be getting rid of links to the series feature on the Dialogues page, so if you’re really interested, this is the last time I’m linking to the Medium series feature even though it’s just going to contain a link back to this website and hopefully someday a book link. Oh, and it did something really weird to the title card, and I’m just going to leave that too. As always, just zoom out if it says you need a larger screen to read it. All right, click the link to proceed:
This week’s dialogue is Cup of Love. The story is about two old friends, Lacy and Samuel, who once had a romantic connection. They’re getting together for coffee to celebrate Lacy’s engagement. Things go well until lions are brought into the mix.
In other news, I hope everyone in the U.S. of A. had a happy Turkey Murder Day.
I know I did. A few new dialogue ideas came to me. So I’ve got some stuff to write for the next couple weeks. It’s hard to believe that soon I’ll only have a month left in my weekly writing challenge.
This week’s dialogue is The Wave. In this creative conversation, we find a world where a periodic wave comes crashing down on all who stay above ground. If anyone stayed above, they’d be washed away to oblivion. . . Or maybe that’s what they want you to believe. And if you don’t believe, what do you do? Do you stay out as the wave nears? Do you risk death to find a potential hidden truth?
Exciting news, my friend who’s been working on script for a video project says that he’ll be giving me a first draft to look over next week. I’m totally hashtag excited. I’m also excited to start working on some of my own scripts, but these dialogues must all be hashtag finished first. (PS: Is it okay to write out the word “hashtag” instead of using the symbol? Let me know your thoughts in the comments).
Other than that, I watched the pizza delivery guy steal the Do Not Disturb sign right off of a guest’s door at the hotel. As he reentered the lobby after his delivery I asked him to give me the DND sign he took. He then lied, saying it fell on the floor. Bullshit. I have cameras. But whatever. Poor, sad soul.
Terry Won’t Let It Live is this week’s dialogue: When three explorers deep in an ancient man-made tunnels find a creature that appears to be an infant, a three-way struggle ensues. Denise thinks it’s human and wants to take it back with them. Jacob believes it’s an animal and says that they should leave it. But Terry, he believes it’s an abomination that they must kill.
This is a pretty dark dialogue. I don’t think it constitutes horror exactly, so we’ll see if there’s any luck getting this one published or not.
I’m still behind on typing up my dialogues. Alas, I’ve filled my plate up with too much to do again. Luckily most of it is writing-related. Next week doesn’t look too good for writing, however, since I’m working two extra mornings. My evening reading will have to wait while I put my writing first.
The wife and I are leaving for a wedding Saturday, thus why I had to make sure I had a post up about the dialogue today instead of Saturday (I usually use my downtime at work to make my post). It’ll be fun, especially since I won’t be back until Sunday night. The only worry is snow. I don’t think it’ll be an issue, though the wife had a hard time making it up a slick hill this morning. That’s good old Iowa for ya.
If you’re snowed in, may I suggest you read a little thing I wrote about the future of wedding bells here: Digispouse.com Testimonial.