Archive for free fiction

Too Sick to Write or Too Sick Not To?

Posted in The Writing Process (How do I Come up These Beats?) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 05/07/2013 by Angel D. Vargas

A funny thing happened to me in bed two nights ago.

And this is the point where you roll your eyes and ask, “Are you serious?”

Considering that I am now recovering from a cold, I couldn’t be more serious if I tried. Post nasal drip has a way of embarrassing a young writer even in front of the characters in his or her head.

The best part is I then get to put the “Snotgate” incident in one of my other short stories for fun. Quick, what are some original descriptors for “a big ole strand o’ snot?” 😉

The best part I can say about being sick (other than the fact that I am being taken care of at the moment by a very sweet and sexy girlfriend) is that I come up with arguably some of my most insane or brilliant writing ideas when my brain is being turned into “Grey-Matter Stew.”

Why is this the case? I have no idea. It can be argued that some of the most brilliant creative minds in the history of art were some of the most wounded or “ill.” Van Gogh wanted to give his girlfriend a new earring for Christmas once, right? The only problem was the earring was his actual ear. Other than that, kudos to him for his insane passion and devotion – the SAME madness, one could argue, he applied with frantic candor to his famous works of art. Who could look at “Starry Night” and NOT know that this man, brilliant as he was, had some issues? Do you think Munch painted “The Scream” because he was a “happy-go-lucky chap?”

Could “mind altering conditions” of insane variety be responsible for other creative masterpieces? Of course they could! Nobody can argue that Earnest Hemmingway and Virginia Wolf weren’t perhaps some of the most mentally unstable people of the 20th century. There isn’t anyone who would say that Walt Whitman was the most “well-adjusted” fellow, even though some of his poetry is considered worthy enough to be included in classical education curriculum.

And I don’t know what to tell you all about musical names like “Nirvana, Jimi Hendrix,  Radiohead, Prodigy, and Lords of Acid.”

And if you think cinema is getting out of this blog piece unscathed, I got two words for you. Star Wars.

Enough said.

So what am I, an aspiring writer with a penchant for horror and action adventure stories going to contribute with my own illness-inspired insanity?  I won’t really know until enough people read my writing and take a shining to it. (“Heeeeere’s Johnny!”) What I can tell you is that at roughly two in the morning, my fever-melted brain decided to cogitate on the way that the plot of my “ancient Chinese action/adventure-horror” manuscript was evolving. Maybe it was time for me to play “chapter and paragraph” Jenga in order to make sure that two story arcs were unfolding in an interesting and creative enough way so that when the final chapter of the first half of my book was written, everything could come together in one exciting “KABOOM” moment.

And what the hell, you might ask, would constitute a “KABOOM” moment for a bunch of action heroes, mythical monsters,  and their supporting characters in Ancient freakin’ China? Don’t bother asking Marvin the Martian. He isn’t writing this book.

I don’t want to give anything away. But I will say that I can write a hell of a sword fight scene now that I’ve read a book on Chinese sword fighting techniques AND I’ve had a couple of beers.

Does that mean I encourage the ingesting of mind-altering substances whenever authors decide to sit down and commit their fingers to keyboard? No. Frankly, I think that ultimately sets a dangerous, self-limiting precedent, and it doesn’t give you anything interesting to say in those “twelve-step” meetings.  But I don’t discount the possibility that every once in a while, an artist’s body has to be pushed to some rather uncomfortable limits in order for their mind to shut down what’s not important. Once that happens, an artist can focus on the creative essence of their work, and they may come up with some interesting scenarios, ideas or techniques that they never would have pondered if their minds weren’t simmering in “Grey-Matter Stew!”

“Halleluyah. Holy shit. Where’s the tylenol?”

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C is For Ca$h … and Cookie.

Posted in The Writing Process (How do I Come up These Beats?) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 04/03/2013 by Angel D. Vargas

A lot is happening in my creative spheres that I want to share with you all.

I’m a writer. But I don’t just write blogs, and I won’t hide the short stories and the novels I’m coming up with. My story on Jukepopserials, ‘Unbreakable,’ has its readers. I’ve taken quite a shine to writing it. As the characters continue to evolve, they find new ways to reveal their stories to me. All I do is translate for my characters in a way that honors them and reflects their true nature.

When I started this adventure on Jukepop, I had no idea that the story was going to become what it is. I’ve already come up with 26 installments or chapters, and it seems that each of my characters has a long journey ahead of them. Who knows how each trek will progress, and what it will mean for the post apocalyptic world that I’ve created?

I had the notion once upon a time that there was little to be gained from revealing what is truly at stake when I write this serial. I enjoy writing . Committing my visions to text has been nothing short of amazing. I respect writers who bring their A game all the time, and putting on a game face when I sit to type out the latest installment can be a real challenge. Real life can feel a lot hairier than a zombie apocalypse and hell fire.

To say that I do it for the money, therefore, would seem trivial. But it’s not. You see, the top thirty stories on website receive accolades and cash prizes. While I always bring my best to the table, there is a lot more riding on getting votes on that site then I was willing to admit until now. I wasn’t even sure this story would make it past 15 chapters. But the narrative has taken off. ‘Unbreakable’ remains among the top 45 out of nearly 200 serials on the site.

I know I can do better.

So I will ask everyone I may or may not know, writer, reader, or candlestick maker, to do something.

Go read Unbreakable, create an account on Jukepop and lend me your votes.  When you’re finished doing that, spread the word! Tell friends, family, co workers, anyone with an internet connection on any device who might be interested in horror/paranormal fiction. I’ve been sneaking into the top thirty for a while. It’s time I stopped sneaking and started barreling ahead.

In other news, I’ve decided to lend my voice to another exciting project. A friend of mine named Shaun Adams offered me the chance to record one of his creepiest horror tales in my own dulcet tones. I’ve done small things like this before, and I really like Shaun’s ideas. Take a listen to ““Soil Dweller,” written by Shaun Adams, Recorded by Angel D. Callido.” Let Shaun know what you think of his work. Let me know what you think of mine 😉 Want more of Shaun’s stories? Maybe you should find out when Evil is Free on Amazon.com.

Chapter 13 – Better Late Than Never!

Posted in The Flow and Rhythm of Life, The Writing Process (How do I Come up These Beats?) with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 12/14/2012 by Angel D. Vargas

Okay. So remember when I said that I was ultra busy? Oh wait, you probably don’t because I was too busy to say so. I apologize to my readers for this late post. My best friend is in my home city with me. She flew in yesterday and we’ve been snapping pictures of the NYC skyline and painting the town all sorts of colors. While her visit provides a welcome distraction from my normal schedule, it also means I’m posting this latest chapter of my serial, Unbreakable, this morning instead of last night. No worries. It’s still choice material. If you or your friends are fans of horror/paranormal stories, I recommend you check this story out immediately. Sign up at Jukepopserials.com if you haven’t already and give any or all of my chapters a vote if you think it is merited.

I’ve been noticing that people like my work, but they don’t want to create an account and vote. That’s all well and good for those people, but it could mean that my serial ceases to exist if I don’t stay on the charts, as it were. The site was created to measure the popularity of public online serials and their authors. The most popular serials may or may not end up becoming something more in the future. While it’s true that I’m working on many projects at one time, this one seems to have taken on a mind of its own. Don’t they all? But unfortunately, without OFFICIAL readership, I don’t get to regale anyone with further exploits of Logan and his band of merry guardians.

Do any of us want to add more frustration to Logan’s  life? I don’t see myself being able to hold back Zeke’s zealotry on the matter. And don’t even get me started on Kenshiro. He’s …  another matter.

I’m sitting at 67 votes. Can I break 75 with this next posting? Perhaps I can get to 80? I love and appreciate my staunch supporters already. I could always welcome new ones.

Chapter 11 Arriveth.

Posted in Drum Roll, The Flow and Rhythm of Life, The Writing Process (How do I Come up These Beats?) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 11/29/2012 by Angel D. Vargas

As promised, Chapter 11 of my Serial, ‘Unbreakable’ is finished and posted at Jukpopserials.com for your reading pleasure.

Much has happened in the last few days. An unexpected bit of news has left its mark. But I will keep writing. That is really my best choice at the present.

Enjoy.

 

 

A Lot To Tell

Posted in The Flow and Rhythm of Life with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 11/18/2012 by Angel D. Vargas

And here we go! Follow the bouncing shuriken.

If you’re going to ask me “what’s new,” I’m going to answer you with the following sentiment: There’s a lot to tell.

I’ve found myself wondering why some people have a tendency to tell me that there “isn’t much to tell” when it comes to their own lives. I know this isn’t the case. For my short time on this earth, I’d like to think that I’ve learned some things about the complexity of life. I tend to want to hear people’s stories. If I’m asking you what you did before you came to work, for instance, I genuinely want to know what makes you tick.

And don’t make the mistake of thinking that I interview people on the spot because I’m a writer and I want to secretly write them into my books. That isn’t the case for me. People’s motivations for getting up and being alive matter to me in the same way that mine do. I like to think that there are reasons for some of the crazy shit I end up doing. I believe that there are deep roots behind the emotions I experience when I run into an unexpected situation.

But maybe the real reason I’m writing this entry is because I can feel myself changing.

I don’t want to get lost in the crowd. I don’t want to be invisible or anonymous anymore. And part of the reason I don’t want these things anymore is because they no longer serve me.

It used to be a romantic concept for me to be the silent, wandering observer. In many ways, I still do that when the mood strikes me. If I want to think about the next few chapters of a book I am trying to write or edit, nothing does me better than to wander the streets of Manhattan and watch people. But I’ve been looking into people’s faces more and more of late. Instead of making up stories about them without their knowledge, I stare straight on and almost dare them to speak to me. I smile, I laugh, and I even interject myself into the occasional conversation about ice skating and coffee at a Starbucks just before I buy that white chocolate mocha and wander into the park.

That’s not the me that I am used to. If you want to know the truth, I haven’t done things like this since I was a very young kid.

I began to ask myself questions at the beginning of this week about how closed off I’ve been since I’ve moved back to New York City. In a city that seems to teem with life, how is it that I haven’t made new friends? Oh yes, it still appeals to me to some extent to keep myself a mystery; to hold onto the secrets of my sordid existence. But how secret is my presence on this planet going to remain if I’m busy trying to make a career out of writing? True, writers need a lot of alone time, and I finally seem to be able to get some when I need it. But people are social creatures, no matter how alone they wish to be. The art of being alone seems to manifest best when loners have the choice to reintegrate and be among others on a moment’s notice. Nobody can be truly alone, or they would cease to exist. If I wanted total Isolation, I could try something like solitary confinement, but I can pretty much guarantee that I wouldn’t like it once I woke up from a twelve hour sleep.

Certain aspects about my history are still very difficult to reconcile. Integrating the lessons from my past with my progress toward my long term goals is still a challenge. But utter silence and self isolation both fly in the face of everything I truly know about myself. I can yammer with the best of ’em. I can hold my own in a political debate or a contest to see who can murder the most songs in a karaoke stand-off. Life is so damned funny to me these days that I stop every few minutes and laugh at nothing in particular.

How can I not explore social interaction when I have trained myself to read people so well? That’s easy. What I learned about people was how to read extreme, negative emotion. I can tell right away when someone is a bully, a sexual predator, a child abuser, or just not a nice person. But that’s a lot like a police officer who can spot a perp at 50 yards before he or she does anything to get themselves arrested. After decades of honing that skill, it’s become clear to me that it actually keeps me pretty separate from people. Don’t misunderstand me. It’s a fine thing to be able to tell these sick individuals apart from the rest of the populace if you mean to live another day on this planet or otherwise avoid trouble. I’ll neither understand nor accept child rapists, but I can spot them a mile off thanks to my past experience as a mental health professional. It helps to have a family member who was in law enforcement for more than two decades. But if you were to ask me if a woman was attracted to me, for instance, I’d say that more than half the time, I would give you the exact wrong answer.

So here’s to a new challenge for me coming in 2013. I haven’t waited that long to start the journey, but I’ll certainly continue it. The rule, if I want to call it that, is simple. I’ll hold my head up high, stop pretending that I’m invisible, and I’ll stop turning around and looking for trouble whenever I hear excited shouting in my own neighborhood. It seems simple, doesn’t it? Don’t think for a minute that this is not a major undertaking for me. But spending years in a shell after having been dealt a crappy hand by life has finally gotten old. I’ve already reclaimed writing as a part of my being. It’s time for the next step. It’s time to stop playing the social ninja.

New Chapter!

Posted in Drum Roll, The Flow and Rhythm of Life, The Writing Process (How do I Come up These Beats?) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 10/04/2012 by Angel D. Vargas

Hello all!

I just thought you would all like to know that a third chapter to my serial is up and ready for your reading pleasure! Check it out at Jukepop Serials! Look for the Serial called ‘Unbreakable’ by Angel D. Callido and click on the link. The white form in the forest is the temporary cover for my story. It’s that easy!

Just a note, I try to edit my own work as closely as possible. I know it doesn’t always turn out perfectly, but I try to keep a  sharp eye to my writing. I wince when I read mistakes in others’ writing, especially if I happen to like the material.  Feel free to point out any mistakes you DO find, but bear in mind that once I publish each chapter, I can’t go back and revise it. It’s kind of a final post each time, since each chapter needs to garner enough votes in order for me to stay in the public eye with this serial.

If you haven’t submitted votes yet (and you actually think my stuff is worth it), please cast your vote for me on the website. Your support is needed and appreciated, but only if I earn it. This warrior strives to hone his craft, always.

Enjoy! 😉

In The Thick of It

Posted in The Flow and Rhythm of Life, The Writing Process (How do I Come up These Beats?) with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 09/28/2012 by Angel D. Vargas

Ok. I’m going to get to the heart of the matter.

Life is weird. Life is hard. I don’t know why, but I’m going through a blue period.

It isn’t as though there’s any reason that I can discern for it. Life may be hard, but I am living my dreams. I am writing for the masses. I hope to make some money at it someday. My work is being read by more and more people. I am having fun losing myself in the universes that I create.

I also feel alone even when I am surrounded by others.

I somehow don’t know how to react to the taste of success. It could be seconds away from my fingertips, and I would have an attack of nerves. I’d get cold feet  if I had to give a speech in public. Maybe I should just read it in someone else’s voice!

I’ve gotten colder. I’m not going to lie. My inner warrior took over. My mind has been on nothing but self defense and survival for so long now, that I can’t seem to shut it off and just breathe. I can’t put down the sword.

How often does one receive an anonymous gift of flowers?

And how did I forget to breathe when I got that gift? It doesn’t seem right to me.

Plainly, I’ve more work to do in learning to accept friendship, gratitude, love, admiration, and respect. I somehow got the impression that I didn’t deserve any of those things. I’m not going to delve into my past. I’ve already been there and done that. It’s time to move on.

I made a video tonight with new free editing software. In truth, I’m not at all sure how I did it. I didn’t add any effects. I didn’t speed anything up or slow anything down. It just sort of came together and turned out pretty well. My writing is the same way.  I don’t know where the fuck the next sentence is going to come from, but I plunk down one and than another. Before I even realize what I’ve done, I’ve amassed more than a thousand words inside of an hour.

I feel like my life has been that way. I don’t have a plan. I just get up, suit up, show up and hope to goodness that something good comes from my efforts.

Life often fucks with me when I make too many plans. So I have to tread with some care, it seems.

I’m awfully tired lately. I have a short fuse. People who waste my time become nothing but irritants.

And I’m worrying everyone around me. Co workers shake their heads and wonder why I go silent. Friends ask me what the matter is. My parents cock their heads and furrow their brows.

I feel like telling them all to back off.

But I won’t. It isn’t anyone’s intention to get under my skin or to try to make me admit to things that I don’t want to talk about. But the only answer I have for such a question is “don’t give up on me.” I can’t speed this along. I’m obviously in it. I’ll figure my way out of it. I always do.

Though I wonder if I’ve spent my entire life living with such a pattern. Perhaps these mood swings are seasonal in nature. It might explain why I brood so much during the fall.

Then again, maybe I brood because I haven’t yet learned to recognize my own progress.

It’s a lesson we might all need to be reminded of. It pays to take stock, but to focus too narrowly on one single detail can be toxic.

I’ll hold onto my flowers. I’ll keep writing my stories. I’ll keep blogging, recording my voice and making my vids.

I’ll keep trucking. With some better rest along the way, even I might learn to see the bright side of life.

Until then, maybe it’s best if I just get through the obstacles in my way and move along until I give a damn again.

Anyways, enjoy the vid. I made this bad boy myself 😉

 

 

 

 

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