TASTE

Two Paragraphs from My Current Work in Progress

This is a doodle of an eyeball glyph I did in Adobe Illustrator a while back that I’ve never had an excuse to use until now. If you scroll down past it, you will find an excerpt from the current chapter I’m working on. The species so described is part of the established lore of the fictional Environment in which my story is set, but I think this would be the first time I’ve fully realized it in prose. Might give it more qualities in future drafts, but methinks this is serviceable as a rough sketch.


At first glance, this life form looked perfectly harmless. Comical, even. Resembling a course layer of chocolate brown hair growing out of solid bedrock. Carpeting the walls of the burrow. The fur of a shaggy dog, without the dog. But as every worker knew, this fur was not to be petted. If one were to agitate the hairs in any way (either by accidentally kicking them or handling them in any non-gingerly fashion), such an action would trigger an immune response in the organism, causing fruitbodies to germinate in the agitated hair tips. A mere ten minutes or so later, these hairs would have evolved into thick, almost woody stipes bearing mature spherical sporocarps, each one with that characteristic appearance suggestive of the head of an old Morgenstern club with a shiny metallic sheen. One could probably see their reflection (albeit distorted) looking into such an anatomical structure. But no worker in their right mind would dare find out for sure. It was grilled into them from their job training that if a fruitbody had that certain silver look to it, it was dangerous. One should get as physically far away from it as humanly possible, with the same speed and sense of urgency as if it were a time bomb on the verge of detonation. Because in many ways, that’s exactly what it was.

That silver part of the Silver Brown never made a sound when it burst. But a worker would always know when it did. Their sinuses would instantly be assaulted with an odor that was as distinctive as it was repugnant – something like a cross between cheap men’s cologne and a skunk carcass in an advanced state of putrefaction, with a subtle hint of wet dog flatus. The unmistakable stench of untold cubic gallons of the organism’s seminal ether being ejaculated into the open air, a minute percentage of its mist and vapors invariably finding its way into the lungs of any hapless soul who just happened to be in the vicinity.


The Journey of SILVER BROWN

Out of Left Field

SILVER BROWN was originally envisioned as a trilogy. I later scrapped that idea, reforging it as a single volume in three acts. Similar to Nineteen Eighty-Four. With a few differences. The acts in my particular yarn aren’t formally numbered. Brief artistic interludes separate them instead. Ones that feature diagrams I created myself depicting islands featured in the world of the story, or the insignia of witchly organizations. Like this one…

sisterhood oggbrew

Last week’s draft had a Chapter Nineteen. Then one fine morning I decided to remove it from the manuscript. Entirely. After letting it sit for an extended cooling period, it dawned on me upon re-reading it that too many details about the mysterious shapeshifting entity known as Isimud were being needlessly spilled. I conceived this entity as a Catwoman-like character, in the sense that the question of whether he’s a good guy or a bad guy is open to interpretation. Chapter Nineteen killed too much of the mystery I was going for. It also had that out-of-left-field Whiskey Tango Foxtrot quality to it, like the “Piper at the Gates of Dawn” chapter from The Wind in the Willows. But I regret neither writing it nor tossing it. The process of writing it served as the creative appetizer to make me hungry enough to write the chapters that came after it, so everything has its place.


react_lego2
Be here now. Speaking of shit coming out of left field, this is how that castle is coming along. The one I talked about last time.