Thursday, August 25, 2011

Doodle Riggers- Inspired By Kurt Vonnegut

This was for assignment with my writing professor in Undergrad. It was a screenwriting course, however he began with delving into short form prose writing. Here in this assignment we had to mimic the voice of one of our favorite authors. This I found to be a fun exercise. Here's another piece I wrote inspired by Kurt Vonnegut one of my all time favorite authors. I have read nearly all of his books. I wish I could say I have read all of them- but haven't. Nonetheless, Vonnegut fans will quickly catch on to his style I mimic here. I wrote this a few years ago around 2004 or so. Depending upon what I am writing, I have learned to adjust the narrative voice. I thought to add these to give readers a chance to see how one can alternate narrative voice and flex it until you find your own unique voice that fits with you. The novel I completed "Scars of Valor" (338 pages) just last year was inspired by my real life experiences regarding my husband's deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan- 27 months to some of the worst areas of both Iraq and Afghanistan. The book will still need to be revised again and I am currently adding to it. But, the book has a different voice from the one I use in my blog posts. You have to be flexible and know what voice to use and when. I am not an expert and still learning however, but this is just based upon my own experience.

I had also mentioned in my earlier blogs that I have gotten an opportunity to potentially write someone's Biography. This is still in the works and will take a lot of planning. Nothing has been set in stone, but it is still in the brain storm stage. Anyhow, I recall having read advise by Stephen King somewhere, where he said that one should not wait too long to complete their book including editing. This goes with anything you are creating because you may get too removed from it and never come back to it again. 

For me, I have to jump back in to it as I have already revised it once. I haven't worked on editing again. I got it pretty close during my last heavy edit. However, your work as a writer and creator is never quite done. It is all in the editing where you must re-structure, reformat, cut out and add the necessary elements that you need in order to achieve a mature manuscript ready for submission. In screenwriting it is the same way. All of it takes time and working at it regularly. So, here you can see how I shift voices to flex and mimic Vonnegut. It is a good exercise- try it some time. Enjoy. 

Doodle- Riggers

Here is a story of the only extra-terrestrial I have ever met. The alien I’ll call Tommy Haengii for short. His actual extra-terrestrial name is much too long and without any vowels, a normal human wouldn’t know how to say it. He was a boring thing who ascended here from God knows where. Before I begin, I’d like to say that this is not really happening. That really, it’s only fictional. It is however, both fictional and reality. I was there so I am entitled to tell you about boring Tommy and his his boring obsessions with a humanoid by the name of Amy. Human? Or so he thought.  

. . .
             She was fast. This meant that she had much speed. This also meant she had much development in the years it’s taken to build her up. Tommy Haengii took oolongs of moments staring at her hardware; her drive had made something ignite in him. He wasn’t sure what.  Boy did he love her software. She was a package. He wanted me to introduce him to her. To show him “the ropes” so that he could be learned well and so on. I said to him “All I can do is show you the basics of her components; it’s pretty simple… getting down to it.” It wasn’t simple for Tommy. Not at first. 

. . .
            Tommy Haengii arrived at planet earth in a place full of rectangular shaped objects, shoved against the wall. On his planet, they made these rectangular objects. They created them. This place was called the bookstore. These rectangular shaped objects opened and beckoned to him to pick them up. He was good at being boring. So much that he told me he learned how to figure the objects out rather quickly. He learned on his own and after a day or so, he finished figuring out a dead man. He was called a philosopher. He was named Plato. And his object was 1000 pages. Other such objects he did use. More and more and more, until the bulge on his shoulders was full of such annoying doodle- riggers called-words. See, Tommy wasn’t only just boring but fidgety and for an extra-terrestrial, extremely talkative. Don’t ask him to recite the objects he’s filled his bulge with. It was a mistake I made once. He wouldn’t quiet up. From his planet, this was the way they all worked. On his planet caffeine consumption in the amount of gallons of coffee (10 times stronger then that of human-coffee) was consumed on a day to day basis. These creatures would become fidgety, begin searching, begin spilling out their doodle-riggers, that is words from over consumption of dead people like Plato or Faulkner, and then they’d absorb some more doodle-riggers and rectangular objects. Absorb every detail about anything, especially about other earthlings they’d analyze and scrutinize. And then they’d flap their jaws endlessly. Until that is, I explained to him what “Shut the fuck up!” meant.  

. . .
            This is when I introduced him to Amy. She was an exciting new gadget he soon became obsessed over.

. . .
            Love, Tommy told me was something he thought he was in. I told him he didn’t know about it and where the hell did he get it from. He said he found it in the rectangular objects when he’d first arrived here. The object was called the ‘Bible’.  Here is what it said:                                                       

‘Love is patient, it is kind,
it is not easily angered,
it does not hold any records of wrong or right,
it is not jealous, or boastful…

And so on…

. . .
            Tommy Haengii understood Amy’s language. He said she understood him too. I showed him all I knew about her. As his nature, he figured out how she worked. Finally. He learned what made her run, what made her shut down, and what brought her into overload. What he didn’t know was that he could make her crash. What he didn’t know was she was immortal. Never ending, always existing. Though one day he spilled water in her tower, her motherboard fried and he thought her dead. He thought he was dead too. He said he had those doodle-riggers called-words stored in her. He said he was working on one of them rectangular objects, a book. Like the bookstore he’d arrived in. I tried to salvage Amy. I worked on her until I could no more. It was good however that he had these doodle-riggers called words saved on a disc. He continued to flap his jaw in panic. So I said, “Calm the fuck down it’s saved you dumb ass extra-terrestrial.” 

. . .
            Tommy and I went to heaven the very next day. I told him it was called ‘Fries Electronics.’ He told me it was heaven, like the ‘Bible’ described only better. There he realized Amy never left him. She was there surrounding him, beckoning him. So he purchased her for a good price. And Tommy Haengii began feeling something very strange. It was a doodle-rigger called contentment or rather ecstasy. 


Inspired by the voice of: Kurt Vonnegut

1 comment:

Thomas / Richard Morgan said...

It might not totally mimic Vonnegut, but there are definitely his elements there. Nice work.