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20 Minute Write

2 months ago
Let's try something here. Set a timer for 20 minutes and write whatever comes to your brain. Don't think, don't get hung up on every sentence: just let it pour out. Get used to the feeling of flow, allowing yourself to put words on the page that you've never even thought consciously about. You don't have to pick at each sentence with fine surgical tools; sometimes you just need to open the floodgates and let it drain out, while you stand over the rushing liquid of words with a pool cleaning net, catching the dirty bandaids and globs of hair, otherwise known as revising and editing. Oh, and the 20 minutes only applies to the actual writing. Please please please edit after for spelling and punctuation. Uh, here's mine: Don’t do drugs they said. You’ll mess up your life they said. Actually, they said you’ll fuck up your life, but hey, who’s keeping track. Certainly this guy isn’t, or rather, this ninja ain’t. It’s a strange thing, huh? Drugs. If I ever took one, I’d let you know what it’s like. Right now I have a vague guess on what it’s like. I’m talking about weed here, not some of those hardcore hippy psychedelics, the ones that make you question the government. I question a lot of things, but the government isn’t one of them. No, I’m ok with big brother doing his thing as long as he don’t piss in my water cup. It’s hot out. I’m basically sitting in a puddle of sweat writing this thing. Actually, I’m typing it, but hey, who’s keeping track. My keyboard click click clicks as these misguided, unstructured thoughts flow freely. And why shouldn’t they? Why shouldn’t thoughts be like nudists, unafraid, unashamed to let their dirty parts show? Because it’s fucking disgusting, that’s why. Nobody wants to see that. Nobody wants to open their window, gaze out on a bright sunny morning and see some hairy dude hanging brain, waving, saying “Hello, Neighbor!” as he bends down to pick up the newspaper. Nah, imma pass on that dawg. I like my mornings free of hairy nuts. The only nuts I want are in my cereal bowl, in the grape variety. I don’t want my first view of the day to be a man’s teet. The only teet I wish to see, other than my dear old lady's, is the red little cap that sits on my milk gallon. That’s 2% milko, bud, not that fat-free bullshit. It’s like saying something “fat-free” is automatically healthy. Tell me it ain’t so. “It ain’t so.” It’s like some fat fuck can not exercise for the better part of ten years and think they’re healthy because they buy “fat-free” milk and get salads and Micky Ds. Ironic, isn’t it? A fat fuck drinking fat-free milk? Almost as ironic as rooster eating chicken or Bruce Jenner winning “Man of the Year.” Wait, I think I wrote, err, typed that wrong. My fingers bang on the keyboard almost as loud as your mom and…your dad. See what I did there? Classic misdirection. You’re reading and only seeing what I want you to see. Your eyes are fixed on the screen while I have my way with your…[fill in the blank, make it funny though]. You’re here at my disposal. If I decide I’m done with you, I can whisk you away like a cat pawing with a small bug in the dirt. If I wish to stop my sentence, I. That’s the thing here, it’s all one -sided. I have all the power. I am the alpha, and you are the beta. Why don’t you do what betas do and do just that. Just do it. Come on, I won’t stop you. I’m the one telling you to do it, remember? There are no consequences here, no harm will come to you, I promise. It’s just the good ol’ computer screen and me and you and the Rage Against the Machine blasting in my ear. This is the end, I think. We’ve made it this far without a casualty. I don’t know if we’ll make it much longer without having one.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
I've usually seen these called writing sprints. They're fun to do as a group, comparing word counts after.

There are bots that run these, we used have one but then she betrayed us and I'm too paranoid now to invite any more to the server.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
The goal here is more about keeping a continuous writing flow going, instead of aiming for the highest word count (at least for me), but I agree, it's interesting to see the total number. Plus, it's not a long amount of time. My tiny 'topia post took several hours to make, and that's not even 2,000 words.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
If we're spewing words, it is of interest to me how many words can be spewed, and how it compares to previous records once you can get on a roll with it.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
I hate so much writing Sprints. I don't understand why writing has to be a race to FAST FAST FAST
. I mean I can write a word and copy paste five millions of times and winning. The only thing that encourages is learning writing badly in bigger quantities.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
It's not really a competition, just a nice data metric to keep track of. We all prefer a well-written 200 word story rather than 1,000 words of nonsense. The whole point of this thing is really to break writer's block and condition yourself to type words instead of painfully mulling over each sentence. You write a lot, so this probably isn't as helpful for you.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
The marketplace is noisy and crowded with Erku buying and selling and standing around to gossip under parasols and canopies and a few scraggy trees that have been allowed to shove aside the rust and cream bricks. You hear a fountain bubbling nearby, and the squawking of indignant birds. There are many of these, very colorful, although you’re unsure of whether they’re being sold for food or as pets. Lika and Somba chitter excitedly from their basket, and you hope they’ll draw no attention as either. Likewise, your guise of a villager seems to be holding up. No one gives you so much as a second glance. Expensive carriages draped in bright silks rattle by on a road seemingly kept clear for them, pulled by matched teams of immaculately brushed horses. You’re eying a fruit stall with some particularly nice looking peaches and trying to ignore the rumbling in your stomach when you hear one of those horses suddenly squealing, and the shouting starts. “Assassins!” Shoving your way through the excited crowd, your unfamiliarity with the language working against you now as you’re only able to understand brief snatches amid all the hubbub and panic, you come up upon an overturned carriage menaced by three men wielding swords, hoods pulled up and lower faces covered. Two guards with their red and grey sashes are already on the ground, while a third crouches near the carriage. This leaves the fourth, a man with his black hair in dozens of beaded braids to fend off the three alone. One of them darts in to take a swing which is skillfully parried, while the other runs in behind him and is about to strike, when you drop your basket and dive in to intervene. Your blade clangs against that of the assailant, and the guard turns, eyes briefly meeting yours. There is no time for introductions but it’s clear he isn’t about to complain of the help. The two of you each fight off your chosen opponents, while the third assassin circles and looks for his opportunity. He gets it in a moment, and makes a quick yet complex gesture at you. You’re hit by a sudden wave of dizziness and nearly trip over your own sword. Your opponent moves in quickly to take advantage of

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
Welp. I'll do this again in the morning and try to continue it, at least far enough to end on a complete sentence. 383 words. And yes, edit locking is irrelevent for me but I promise not to touch anyway.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
Cliffhanger much? This is pretty impressive. Did you plot before flipping the hourglass? I'd like to point out the uniqueness of the names. It definitely adds to the story's immersion.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
This is something intended for some nebulous future point in my theoretical fantasy epic. So not planned out in detail, but I know who the characters involved are and knew there was going to be an encounter with assassins to kick off a bigger plot segment later.

Otherwise figuring out names is something I'd definitely do before starting the timer, since that is something I get very autistic about. Coming up with new ones is still blank staring at a screen, but for a good purpose.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
These damn kids. Always up to no good. Why can’t they just behave themselves? It’s like they ride by on their bicycles just to spite me. They’re loud. You know how mother told you to use your “inside voice?” I don’t think they have one. They ride by, in pairs of two side by side, going on about some damned test or making fun of Ricky for liking Elizabeth, “Ricky likes Be-ethy!” they’d shout to Ricky’s shame and to my disruption. Kids. They have nothing better to do than make fun of each other. I don’t even remember getting that chance. I was, well…they just don’t understand how good they have it. One day, they’ll learn. They’ll learn to enjoy small comforts; you don’t notice them when everything is comfort, but when real life kicks you in the ass for years, you learn real quickly to enjoy the little things. Things like a sturdy rocking chair and a cold beer after a day’s work. Things like waking up early, feeling the brisk morning as you step out to grab the paper. These damn kids. They don’t understand. “Mr. Isley!” My mind draws back to the present. The rocking chair and beer I was thinking about are very real examples. Casually rocking back and forth creating a steady creaking, I take a sip from my Budweiser and look up. “What is it Ricky?” “Sorry to bother you, Mr. Isley. Have you seen George?” I shake my head. “How about Eric or Mark or Christian or Danny?” “Sorry, kid,” I answer with another sip. “No one’s ridden past.” Ricky’s face curls in a mix of confusion and thought as if someone told him the color blue was actually green. “We were supposed to meet at the park an hour ago.” “Don’t know what to tell ya, kid.” “Ok…keep an eye out for them, ok?” Ricky asks. “I don’t got anywhere else to be,” I answer, slapping the side of my portable cooler. As Ricky walks down the driveway, my thoughts wander again, this time towards the direction of Ricky’s words. A group of kids missing with everything going on certainly isn’t a good sign. It’s still a few hours away from mandatory curfew, but missing kids are missing kids. These days, you’d better call it in before 24 hours. These days, a kid late to dinner ends up with their picture on a milk gallon. I take a sip of Budweiser. These damn kids.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
I really thought the twist would be that he murdered them.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
Yeah, didn't want to make it too cringingly edgy by doing that. That'd make it just like an extended 50 word story since most of them ended with a similar twist.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
The home fence is still as white and as perfect as you can remember it was yesterday, nothing gloomy seems to have happened in the few hours you've been away. The police tape hanging over the front door like a cobweb is the only clue to what happened.

The chief of the military police greets you somberly, "I give you my condolences, for the death of your mother, Miss Samantha," his tone is as false as his hairpiece.

"I would rather be congratulated, Agent. God knows that only her clients and the Communists will miss her" you smile coldly, thinking about the fact that the old and miserable whore lies in hell with her beloved Lenin, probably on her knees since that is the only thing she has known how to do all his life.

The military police surround each piece of furniture and piece of garbage in the house, sniffing around like hounds after hares. it's not your business. You wonder, as you nervously clench your hands into fists. At last, you ask, "I am told that She has committed suicide as the treacherous coward that she was, but how did exactly she kill herself?" curiosity is clear in your voice, but you don't mind showing it. As much as you have wished for her death all your life. Some uncertainty about how she commits suicide turns around in your mind like a broken record.

"Hanging. A strange way of suicide for a woman. Now we need you to come in and certify that she is the corpse to the coroner's office. You can take as much time as you need," his tired voice.
End

Sorry, I am really slow, and I am terrible at this.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
Glad you participated. It doesn't really do any good to review these since they aren't complete stories, but I do enjoy your style and uniqueness of setting.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
Writing in a language you're still learning is going to slow anyone down, but the main reason for the word count is to track your own progress. If you ever do this again you'll have your previous attempt to compare it to.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

"If you don't mind," you say, "I'd like to join your quest."

"You wish to seek revenge against the Wickerwidge?" Boss Off asks.

"It sounds like fun, to be honest," you say.

"Revenge is not supposed to be fun," Toke Atoka says. "It is a serious endeavor."

"That may be," you say, "but you guys haven't seen what my life has been like lately. Ever since my parents came down with the Fiery Plague, none of our neighbors will come anywhere near us."

"You are not contagious, are you?" Toke asks.

"Not that I know of." And that's true; when Doc Smithwick diagnosed Mom and Dad all those weeks ago, he said nothing about you and your sister.

"I have never heard of the Fiery Plague until this evening," Toke continues, "but I do not think I would ever want to contract it."

"What are the symptoms?" Boss Off asks.

"Bursting into flames," you say. "That's why my parents need to keep themselves covered in asbestos blankets, to keep from burning down the house."

You notice both Woodland Robots inching a little bit away from you.

"That sounds horrible!" Toke Atoka says.

"The doctor said not everybody who gets sick catches on fire," you say. "And at any rate, I doubt that either of you have anything to worry about."

Boss Off looks at you from across the campfire as he adds more sticks from Toke's pile. "And why is that?"

"Because you are robots! Everybody knows that metal doesn't burn."

"But we do have combustible components," Toke Atoka says.

"Not to mention lubricants in our joints made from birch bark oil," Boss Off adds.

"The campfire doesn't seem to be bothering you, though," you point out.

"We cannot live in fear of everything!" Toke says. "Besides, we would not be very good Woodland Robots if we did not enjoy a good wood fire every now and then."

It's a logic you're not prepared to dispute.

"So, as you were saying, young human," Boss Off says. "You wish to seek revenge against the Wickerwidge with us?"

"If you don't mind having me."

"You certainly have a just cause," Toke Atoka says. "But as we said earlier, he is a nasty, nasty creature. Our quest is sure to be dangerous."

You get the sense he is trying to talk you out of coming. "Just how dangerous?" you ask.

"Enough to give you bad dreams," Toke says.

"If you live long enough to have them," Boss Off adds.

"Well maybe if he brought the Fiery Plague to my family, he'll know how to cure it."

"Perhaps," Toke says, "but do not expect him to give up his secrets easily."

"As far as I am concerned," Boss Off says, "you may come with us. But we will be leaving early in the morning."

"That's fine with me," you say. "But there is one slight little problem: I'm going to need something to eat first."

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

This is what I was able to get down in 20 minutes. This is from the storygame I'm currently writing, so basically I just set a timer and typed away. The scene occurs somewhat late in one of the branches, so the characters/setting were introduced previously. Basically, Boss Off and Toke Atoka are robotic Indians sitting around a campfire.

491 words total, for anyone who's interested in the count.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
An excerpt from Bill Ingersoll's current WIP: a rare honor. Care to share a little background on the storygame? For some reason, I thought your next story was going to be the succubus one.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

This is what I'm working on:

Wickerwidge Title

Basically, a child's fantasy: "You" and your sister are bored out of your minds, because your parents are quarantined with something called the Fiery Plague and now none of your neighbors will even let you leave your front yard. So instead you slip out the back, where there is a long stretch of woods, and there you meet a variety of beings, none of which you ever knew existed. All of them have a beef with a fellow named the Wickerwidge. The story is intended to be everything "Eyes" wasn't: short, light, and branchy. Whereas "Eyes" finished at 50k words and 7 endings, "Wickerwidge" is currently sitting at 21k words and 9 endings (so far)... and none of the pages will be more than a 1000 words long.

I do have ideas for other stories cooking in the back of my brain, including Ureste #2 and Orion #3, both of which may appear this year. The "succubus" story, however, has been a challenge, structurally speaking. My original effort last summer hit one brick wall after another, and so I moved onto "Woban." I had much more success in December-January, getting it up to 46k words. I had one good branch going, but I was drawing a blank on the where the others should go.

The good news is that I have been getting ideas recently, so after "Wickerwidge" I will probably switch back to "Saints." But be warned: for anyone who thought "Eyes" was wordy, you ain't seen nothin' yet. Some individual pages top 6000 words, and the whole thing will be at least the length of a novella. I'm not expecting it to be a wild hit, but I am very pleased with several of the scenes I've written and I am eager to see it through to completion. But structurally it will be very different from my other stories, with only one narrative path. Instead of a "Cave of Time" format it will be delayed branching (a.k.a. branch and bottleneck). The problem has been in maintaining continuity, as well as keeping some of the branches from spinning off into wild directions.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
This sounds like it's going to be a lot of fun. We don't have a really substantial kids story on the site yet, Imagination is the only one of decent length.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
I feel like this could easily turn into a horror story.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

Not necessarily. Most fairy tales have their dark elements.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
So you wrote about dot Indians and now it's time for (robotic) feather Indians, cool. Man, if people were going around dramatically bursting into flames, everyone would take social distancing a lot more seriously.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

You know me, all about the cultural appropriation. I'm still getting hate mail from members of the Three-Eyed Pacific Islander Anti-Defamation League.

As for the Fiery Plague, my assumption is that social distancing would be enforced with garden hoses.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
What brand of 2% milk has a red cap? I've always seen red on whole milk.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
how dare you point out mistakes on my own thread.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago


Haha, I bet she feels stupid now! (And I think this means Ninja owes me a life debt for defending his honor.)

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
Uh, yeah, I totally knew that was a thing. That's why I wrote it of course.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
You--you are...this is...NOT POSSIBLE!

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

Yoren, the kindly cleric

In a far away place, in a city filled with plague and pestilence, there lived a cleric by the name of Yoren.

Many remember him as a kind man, quite unusual for one tasked with the destruction of the undead and aiding the monster hunters when they arrived.

Yoren travelled far from the city, going on rumors of a cure for an overwhelming illness taking hold in his portion of the city.

The rays of the sun beat upon the man as he walked through mud and swampy waters. Carrying around the large sword and shield he had become well known for in addition to his chainmail was not helping much. 

Regardless, he carries on.

A frustrated grunt sounds out from near him. A man in creme colored coat and pants, a dark brown vest worn underneath. A brown mask worn over his mouth and nose compliments the dirty creme hat on his head. 

"I told you we should have taken the pass, higher ground would jave gotten us there quicker."

"Take heart Duran, it will not take long." Yoren smiles at the hunter by his side.

"You're taking us on a detour aren't you?" Duran says, "we're after some undead, leave the cures and the remedies to the church."

Another voice speaks up from behind. "You forget, my friend. I am a friend of the church."

Father Bregan, slayer of monsters and friend of the church. An interesting combination indeed. 

Beside him, last but not least. His twin sister Helen, the doctor. A black cloak adorns her shoulders, as well as the beak like plague mask. 

She remains quiet, indifferent to either mission. Admittedly, the remedy is Yorens personal mission. His primary order is to take these hunters to a town infested with some rogue undead.

The cleric spots what appears to be a valley ahead, a thick fog envelopes it. The plants they would need are somewhere down there.

There are rumors of a tribe of barbarians in the area. Yoren speaks their tongue, and Duran even knows some.

A light rain begins to fall on the travelers as they start down the steep pass. Its true, they could have gotten to their destination quicker if they had taken higher ground.

Sometimes the journey itself is better than the destination anyways.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
This is surprisingly structured for only having 20 minutes. I'm liking the diverse party. I'm excluding your post in this statement: a lovable cast/party can make up for a lackluster story -- at least in my mind that's the case. Take Clive Owen's King Arthur or The Magnificent Seven for examples. Plan to continue?

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

Yeah Im gonna continue this 

The characters general story I had been mulling around in my head for a while but this quest he is on sprung into mind spontaneously.

Glad you liked it

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

Please do not read this. Please do not read this.

Once you begin reading he will know. I am being forced against my will to write all of this out. As much as I resist my fingers continue to type. Right now, I sit in the darkness of my room with only the screen of my computer in front of me giving off light. I fear to look away from the screen. I can hear him moving around the downstairs of my house. He has my scent and soon will be there for you once I am done with.
 

It will start off with scratching at the door at night. He'll test your mind and see how quickly you become fearful. I think that's what fuels him. The fear is almost like food to him. My steps are beginning to creak as he comes up. I fear I do not have enough time.
 

I'm sorry for submitting this. I'm sorry, but my fingers will not stop typing this out. Next is the tapping at the windows. It could happen at any moment. There is no order in which he performs them. It could go on for days or months. This all started for me four months ago when I read a message like this on another forum.

 

I can hear him outside of my door. I know this is how it ends for me and, I'm sorry, but how it will end for you too. I wish I knew how to stop it and I wish I was strong enough to just kill myself before I was able to log in. The door is slowly opening. It creaks as he opens it. I can hear his wheezing breathes come closer to me. His steps are slow and clumsy as he bumps into various items in my bedroom on his way over to greet me. There isn't much time left. I haven't moved away from staring at my monitor; my fingers typing everything I'm currently thinking. I hear something dripping from behind me. I can only imagine it as his jaw opening up to eat me. It must be his saliva dripping off of his tongue and into my hardwood floors. There's a small growl like a rabid animal about to pounce on it's wounded prey.

Forgive me. Forgive me. Forgive m

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

Is this a creepypasta or some shit

Booo

20 Minute Write

2 months ago
Besides the first and last line, the narrator comes across relatively calm for the situation, probably because those are the only lines that are actually written by the character. Actually, there are little inputs in the bulk of the post that seem more character specific than a forced message. Was that intended? Not to get too much into review mode, but most of the sentences have the same subject-verb-object structure. Sure, you could chalk it up to whatever it is forcing the narrator to type. I think the last paragraph, in particular, is the place to sprinkle in some cumulative sentence spice.

20 Minute Write

2 months ago

Thank you for the feedback. Please don't go easy on it if you see something that looks wrong or incorrect. I love the brutal and honest feedback this community is known to provide. As I look back on it, yes the structure is relatively simple mainly because I wanted it to have the feel of everything that is being thought is being written down exactly. I didn't put anything fancy or anything because in this situation someone wouldn't want to paint a beautiful picture of what's happening big picture. Thanks again!