Strength of body, strength of will. Both are required. A man's freedom depends on his willingness to act, to rise against those who would place him in chains. Small choices add up, building towards differing outcomes. In the moment, one does not often know the implications of his actions. Inevitably, all is revealed.
There are several "cinematic" links in the story. You will have the option to view multiple events happening simultaneously. While not adding to the branching, they do offer deeper insight into the story.
Hello. It's me, Pitka ("Ninja" to my friends), your morality guide. Together, we will embark on a journey filled with lessons on life and ethical behavior, while having fun along the way, of course!
I've written a series of short fables for your benefit. Come, take my hand as we navigate through life's innermost difficulties.
Entry for Bucky's Year's End Contest
Thoughts appearing as fragments. A mind shattered. Broken. Weak. One of us. Author's Note: Official endings will be titled "Epilogue." There are seven total to discover.
She offers everything a man could want. Sterling City, an unsteady lover, but a lover nonetheless, filled with gunfire, liberal women, and elevator dings!
One day her embrace is warm, and the next, it's the cold shoulder and couch for you, baby. Best to get out while the going's good.
Contest entry for IWT 13: The Resurrection
It's the 'burbs, baby. Wipe that city grime off on the door mat. You know what, why don't you just remove those filthy shoes entirely.
She's calm, collected, and safe. Sterling Suburbs, nothing like her erratic sister, filled with carpool lines, trick or treaters, and a steady supply of Budweiser.
Written for Mara's Halloween Writing Jam
A small-sized, suburb-dwelling Sterling City
The Providence of Kria consists of two major nations: The Kingdom of Brelia and the tribal territory of Rath. The ten-year peace between Brelia and Rath is quickly unraveling. In attempt to prevent another war, heir to the throne of Brelia, Prince Urijah, is sent on a diplomatic mission to appeal to the Rathans. In your older brother's absence, the burden of defending the kingdom falls to you. Your choices will determine the fate of the kingdom.
Runner-up for Corgi's Unofficial Contest: The Lords of the Land.
9/1/19 Update: Corrected a few punctuation errors
Taking place during the Golden Age of Piracy, assume command of The Sanguine as you plunder and search for treasure in the profitable Caribbean. In this swashbuckling fantasy, you embark on a dangerous quest to an ancient Aztec civilization. Peril lies behind every tree, stone, and indigenous spear.
The story adds fantasy elements to events occurring in the 1700s. There are many real life characters and places in the story. Many are factually accurate, and many are not. I highly encourage you to research the people, places, and deities after reading.
Entry for Gower's Battle in the Ruins of a Dead Civilization contest.
1852 - The Territory of New Mexico
The hunt has taken me to to the outer edges of civilization. Out here, lawlessness abides. There are no godly folk. Only heathen. The inner demon in me can relate to the call of anarchy. No rules, being bound by nothing; it sounds like freedom. In the end, that "freedom" is simply the self-indulgent, care-free living that is a poison upon humanity. If killing a man will save society from the infection of lawlessness, then I will gladly do what is necessary.
You eye the journal at your lap. The freshly written ink expands and bleeds to the perfect width of the quill. Satisfied that it won't smear, you shut the book and toss it aside. The meager fire at your feet does little to warm your body, but its original use was already completed. The frail, thin-boned squirrel did little to satisfy your hunger. Still, it would keep you alive until the next meal. You pull the leather waterskin from your pack to gauge how much longer it would last. With a gentle shake, you estimate it'll last a couple more days with strict rationing.
The road is lonely. In a former life, you dreamed about wandering the world without any responsibility or burdens. The reality of the road's harsh living conditions were nothing like the trigger-happy romanticized versions of the lawless west. Here there are no home-cooked meals, no warm body to lie next to yours. It's only you and the necessary task. Someone had to die.
You gaze up at the night sky. It seemed foreign at first. Without city lights to disorient the constellations, it looked like an entirely new sky. If you traveled at a good pace, you'd reach Canyon Diablo by midday. You pull the bone-carved pipe from your pack and light a match against the sole of your foot. You lie down on your bedroll, breathe in the relaxing tobacco, and drift off to sleep...
The Wild West is a dangerous place. Be sure to make good use of that "back" button. I've hidden three achievements throughout the story. Yes, your total score will show if you've discovered them or not. The highest score possible is an 8/8.
Achievements: 1 point each
Epilogue: 5 points
Entry for mizal's Lone Hero contest
8/28/19 Update: Fixed the symbols appearing in the description
There is no escaping our nature. It simply exists. The voice within me, the one that causes me to commit terrible deeds, burns a low ember. Still, it remains, always present, always looking for fuel to burn. It wants to escape. I feel its lust. It wants to devour. This day is no different. I must battle the darkness within.
In various sections, you will be given the option to view a simultaneous event happening in the story. While not directly affecting you, the reader's path, they may create a more cinematic feel to the story.
Originally written as the last page for Sixteen Words,
I hope you enjoy my full adaptation of Contemplation.
Embracing the Writing Process
So you want to be a writer, huh? It ain't easy, kid.
on 11/28/2020 10:49:43 PM
Oh. That's why they kicked me out of Disneyland as a child. Man, they have some good churros there.
on 11/28/2020 10:48:32 PM
Well you see, it's a real Samson situation here. God will take away my writing powers if I consume sugar.
on 11/28/2020 10:32:23 PM
Flew back to my hometown. The airport was eerie; I was literally the only passenger past security for a good 30 minutes. Granted, I got there a little early and the airport where I live is small, but still it's weird seeing normally heavily populated areas with no one in them. Posted up at the bar, overpaid for a beer and pre-made sandwich. Bartender gave the second one as a freebie though, so I'm thankful for that. Didn't even need to pass a charisma check. Across the hall from my seat was a family with masks and face shields. AC must have been pushing 30. The stewardess gave me a free cheese and fruit platter, probably due to the charisma boost from drinking the two beers, definitely wasn't because it was expiring or anything. I ate as slow as possible in order to keep my ninja mask off as long as I could. Thanksgiving itself was normal enough. As a man, my only duty was to consume the hard work of the slave women in the kitchen before they get a chance. Typical Thanksgiving things also include football games, family members asking every possible question in the history of man (about my life specifically), and cliches involving "food babies," "comas," and "upping pants sizes," you know, not like Americans don't eat that much every day or anything. But no, no pie was eaten. Desserts wish they could explore my holy of holies. Sometimes I wish they could as well.
This Week's "Mead Hall"
on 11/23/2020 11:20:42 PM
8.5% is high-ish? You're on a whole 'nother level than the rest of us.
on 11/23/2020 10:06:59 AM
First of all, I have spent years training mixed-martial arts, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, and wrestling. So in terms of how combatants would square off against each other, naturally, I have a decent feel for it. Pretty sure Malk has a similar experience there. That experience led to others in college where I helped choreograph/act (though using the word "act" is generous) in multiple film projects as well as a decently budgeted music video where they wanted a martial artist to come in and perform some flashy, over the top techniques, which provide more of a spectacle than practicality. And that's where the sweet spot is in terms of writing combat scenes, at least for me, at least in the setting of their respective storygames.
Make it natural. Embellish (spectacle), according to the setting.
Make it natural: It really can be quite simple. It doesn't have to be a long, drawn-out paragraph describing the the incoming fist, its knuckles wrapped tight, so tight that they turn white, including flashbacks to the character's childhood and the emotional trauma built up over years of mistreatment by a cruel stepfather who would give it to your mom each night, knowing full-well the house is old and creaks with mere footsteps and the "giving" certainly does more than creaking, even shaking the structure down to its foundation. No, it doesn't have to be that. Instead of a twisting, 720 roundhouse kick to the temple, how about we start with a something simpler? Or better yet, does combat fit naturally into the scene? Forcing it comes across as cringey/edgey/adolescent, even.
Embellish: Now to the fun part, the cinematic part. This is where creativity can peek its head into the natural scene that's been set up. Sure, a punch to the face can knock someone out. But a punch from your bonefide bad mother fucker main character can send NPCs flying across the room, sometimes several rooms before landing comically in the women's bathing area, momentarily distracted from the combat they currently find themselves in. This is the place where damage from the main character (or villain) is amplified to near Hollywood levels, and the damage they can sustain is on par with The Rumble in the Jungle.
Writing in a fantasy genre helps here as anything too embellished can be blamed on magic. Damn wizards make my writing unrealistic. I suppose SciFi can use a similar excuse. This is the place where a heroic figure can take on ten men, fight his way through a battlefield of enemies, or escape from shackles and put the big hurt on his former captors.
Setting: I concern this more with the characters themselves than the physical area they're in, which certainly is important as well, but the main focus should be on the characters, the object of the fight itself. The physical setting is simply the green screen behind the fight playing out. A character's personality and traits will determine what, for them, is natural and according to who they are. That goes for the story's overall theme as well. The example above involving landing into a room of women bathing wouldn't work in a story too serious for its own britches.
Take one of my newer stories, Nameless, for example. The main character was from a wealthy house, trained formally growing up. Then, he abandoned that lifestyle and eventually found himself in slavery. The way he fights is built on a formalized, even pristine training, performing technique according to the way they should be performed, mixed with a pent-up ferocity from being another person's possession. Another character, one who spent years as a gladiator, fights a bit differently, taking damage to give damage, doing unconventially things to win, which is all that matters. Winning. I made sure to give the gladiator character wounds after each fight scene, while the main character mostly went unscathed. One battle scene in particular has both characters taking part. The gladiator, having spent time in the military and accustomed to the physical toll and grind of a prolonged battle is fine, while the main character, more as a duelist, dies if he chooses to stick around. Fighting is tiring!
For the Glory of CYStia
on 11/18/2020 9:09:11 AM
Anything for CYStia. Now let's see if I can turn that smug, flexing article into a smug, flexing 100K word story. The question is, can one double dip into the rating and writing commissions? Also, for anyone deterred by the large word count, it's not really that much for an entire year of writing. Spread across 11 months (giving yourself a month for uploading and proofreading, because we all proofread our work, right?) it's about 9,030 words a month, which is little over 300 measly words a day. This entire post is over a third of that now. I've never broken the six digit word count, but I think this is a good opportunity for it.
The Elders Of Emar
on 11/11/2020 8:50:45 PM
Yikes, I outed myself. I tend to view the first ending of a storygame as the "winning" and canon branch though. I always find it interesting when real life affects the current WIP. Some influences are more clearly shown, like yours. All the breathing/meditation stuff from Unbroken is directly from the yoga training I was doing at the time. And yes, Sterling is based on a real woman. The same tends to happen with whatever book I'm reading at the time, which makes me nervous as subconscious plagiarism is a tricky thing. If ever accused, I just quote Ecclesiates 1:9.
The Elders Of Emar
on 11/8/2020 10:25:37 AM
Orion is Bill's SciFi series. I wasn't aware he teasered the next one though.
Things Fall Apart
on 11/1/2020 5:01:00 PM
I just started reading The Dark Tower for the first time. Apparently, it's supposed to be a light fanfic of Red Dead Redemption.
Halloween Writing Jam
on 10/31/2020 10:48:26 AM
Didn't have much time, but I managed this
. Are you tired of seeing my name on the Newly Created list yet? I am.