Prompt: While drunkenly setting up your avatar for a simulated world, you find a developer’s Easter egg and end up with the rarest character class in the game. There is only one: the village idiot.
I was at a point in my life where I was doing a lot of things drunk. It was like a game; how intoxicated could I be while still getting the task done and not getting noticed? I shopped for sweaters drunk. Hiked drunk. Even coded drunk. It’s very strange to look at a program written by an intellectually-meandering version of yourself. It’s like seeing a toy train’s tracks cross over each other a hundred times, and never in the same place. Continue reading
Prompt: A story about a murderer who wanted to be an actor instead, but was terrible at acting.
In this, the fifth entry in Cut from the Script, we will have our most volatile actor to date. As stated in the dedication, this book’s goal is to act as the credits to a film containing only the darkest parts of life, like sitting through a screening, staring at a black square the entire time, yet still feeling dread and depression after leaving. Continue reading
Prompt: Two prophets, sent by the same existing god, preach conflicting things.
Glam had, in the past month, aged out of the sympathy of most of his fellow villagers. As a life long orphan, some had told him he was an orphan even before he was born, Glam had relied on his boyish good looks and a few smears of coal dust on his neck to earn him a place to sleep. Sometimes a hay loft. Sometimes a guest room. Sometimes an apple tree and a blanket. Continue reading
Prompt: A guy who can run extremely fast, but when he walks he’s extremely slow
All of the training meant nothing. I neutralized it completely. Seven months of getting up at five in the morning and going to run around the park before the early traffic made the air foul. Seven months of eating cereals with names like Bran Balance, Ultra Oats, and Royal Regularity. Seven months of my wife and daughter cheering me on and I threw it all down the drain. That’s what I couldn’t stop picturing. My little girl screaming her heart out over the edge of a cliff, because all her praise fell away into nothing. Continue reading
Prompt: A scifi story about posthumanism and discrimination
Every footstep had to be sanctioned. Infrak’s steps had been predetermined for more than four years now. Each step with his giant feet, each as wide as a schooner, was clearly marked with concrete borders. These steps moved in a circle around the city. It was his patrol route, now that he wasn’t needed for battle any longer. Continue reading
Prompt: realization vs. reality
There once was a god who figured things out as they went along. They made planets before space, plants before light, and animals before food. This god’s world was a slow moving disaster, but it was too late to stop now; it already rolled across the gravity they’d put out like a carpet. All they could do was their best as they watched trees grow tall before their leaves showed up, families give seasonal gifts before the children were born, and wolves lick their lips before the hunt was even on. Continue reading
Prompt: A magic school where every year there is a battle. Those who win learn a new spell and those who lose have to leave the school. The main character only ever gets one spell (not a very good one).
The waterfall muffled any scream that might’ve escaped the natural arena. It was the least-used part of the school, only once a year during final testing, yet it always drew the largest crowd. People who’d never expressed an interest in education before showed up with snacks and noisemakers to see the graduation contest. Continue reading